Everyone visiting Thailand is familiar with Chiang Mai, most of them are familiar with Sukhothai and quite a few with Chiang Rai. But Lampang is often forgotten and passed without much care of it. Admittedly, It is a small place with not a lot to do but isn’t that one of the reasons you go to Thailand? To explore the hidden places and get new stories and adventures. Well in that case Lampang is the perfect spot for you, a quiet city in the north of Thailand closely located to Chiang Mai. At times the village seems to stay the same although the world around changes. It is the only place in Thailand where people still ride around in horse carriages. Wait what? Horse Carriages? Yes you heard it, you can ride around town on the back of the horses.
Location of Lampang
Lampang is located approximately 100 kilometre south of Chiang Mai and is best reachable by plane from Bangkok or by bus or car from neighbouring cities such as Chiang Mai and Sukhothai. This makes it easily reachable and a perfect stay in-between exploring the rest of the north of the country. While the city is small in size and has a population of only 60.000, it still is an interesting place for its surroundings and the culture.
The place was a big city in the Lanna kingdom and used to be bigger a long time ago, but because of the many wars being fought in the North and Lampang being in the middle it always suffered from these circumstances. Nowadays the city is small in size and relies on farming and coal-production. What makes Lampang special however, is the fact that it is just really Thai and really authentic. You can really see the locals going around on horse carriages.
The Elephant Conservation Centre
Another great thing about Lampang is the Elephant Conservation Centre, which is seen as the most animal-friendly centre in Thailand for the elephants. The centre is the only government owned centre in Thailand and thus is provided with extra care, sustainability and accessibility. There are more than 50 elephants in the forest, including babies and thus the centre is definitely worth a visit. Another interesting fact, the elephants have actually learned to paint and while they may not be the next Leonardo Da Vinci it surely is impressive for an animal.
You can also rent a bike and ride around through the city and its surrounding area. This is a nice break from the business of the rest of the country and lets you experience the relaxing Thai country side.