Mount Phu Chi Fa

Tucked away on the border of Thailand and Laos lies a hidden gem that promises breathtaking views and unforgettable memories: Phu Chi Fa Mountain.

Whether you’re a seasoned traveler or a curious explorer coming to Chiang Rai, Phu Chi Fa Mountain is a destination that deserves a spot on your bucket list. Take advantage of the chance to discover the enchanting beauty of this natural wonder!

Discover the Hidden Gem of Thailand: Mount Phu Chi Fa



  • Beautiful sunset and sunrise
  • Breathtaking view from the viewpoint
  • Unique sea of mist phenomenon
  • The hiking trail is a moderate climb
  • Good spot for photography
  • Basic but comfortable accommodation is available


  • The path can be hazardous after rainfall
  • Hmong kids may ask for tips along the way
  • The hiking trail can be dark and uneven, so bring a torchlight or a flashlight
  • Even though the trail is considered quite moderate, it is not suitable for young children under 3 years old

The Enchanting Beauty of Phu Chi Fa Mountain

Standing tall at 1,442 meters, this mountain peak is a part of the Phi Pan Nam Mountain Range and boasts a spectacle of natural beauty that is hard to find anywhere else in the world.


What makes Phu Chi Fa Mountain even more remarkable is its relative obscurity. Phu Chi Fa is a hidden gem in Thailand that remains unknown to most international travelers due to its remote location and lack of online information. However, if you take the chance to unwrap this mysterious gem, the experience you receive will be unforgettable.

The reason for the name Phu Chi Fa is quite simple. “Phu” means “mountain” in Thai, and “Chi Fa” refers to the area that points to the sky. After reaching the top of this mountain, visitors will be amazed by the breathtaking views here. The wide blue sky, the dangerous cliffs, and the vast mountain ranges stretch so far in every direction.

What can you do at Phu Chi Fa?

Phu Chi Fa is a famous destination in the northern region of Chiang Rai Province, Thailand, mainly due to its breathtaking views, especially at sunrise. Here’s what you can do when visiting Phu Chi Fa.

Witness a stunning sunrise at the peak of Phu Chi Fa

To catch the sunrise from the summit, it’s recommended to start hiking 40 minutes before dawn. You might want to get there a little early to get the best spot to watch the stunning sunrise. The climb all the way up to the top normally takes about 20-30 minutes, so don’t forget to pay attention at the time.


The exact time of the sunrise will change, depending on the season. So your best choice is to ask the locals or check the weather forecast before planning your trip. The way up isn’t too hard, even if you don’t exercise much. However, be careful when hiking the last part, especially at night, as the trail becomes narrower with a cliffside on your right.


You can witness the rare sea of clouds phenomenon, which occurs during the winter months from late November to early February. Additionally, the sunrise phenomenon is weather-dependent and may not be visible every day.

Phu Chi Fa is not just famous for its stunning sunrise views, but also for the Phu Chi Fa Forest Park. The park is beautifully maintained, and the walking trail is suitable for people of all fitness levels.


Exploring the Natural Wonder of Thai Sakura

Among the must-visit places in Phu Chi Fa is the Banpot Wittaya School, where you can admire the stunning Thai Sakura trees. These wild Himalayan cherry blossoms are grown and cultivated in the school, and they often bloom from early January until the end of the month, turning the entire area pink.


To get to Banpot Wittaya School, you need to take a local pickup truck at the entrance, which will cost you about 20 THB per person. This fee is a way to support the local community and the school, which is definitely worth it. Upon reaching the summit, be prepared to take in the stunning view of the entire valley covered in pink flowers. You can even interact with the local students and learn about their way of life.

A visit to the school not only allows you to admire the beauty of nature but also helps support the local community. The school, open from 8 AM to 4 PM, is accessible by a pickup truck, taking visitors back to the parking lot. If you come to Chiang Mai at the right time, visit Banpot Wittaya School during your trip to Phu Chi Fa to experience the beauty of Thai Sakura trees and support the local community.


How to get there

Phu Chi Fa is located 95km away from Chiang Rai city, and to catch the sunrise, you have two options.


If you prefer to drive yourself, you can rent a car or a motorbike for around 1000THB ($28) or 200THB ($7), respectively. However, if you want to avoid the hassle of driving in the dark, you can rent a car and driver for 1500THB ($42) through your hotel.

Another option is to take a local bus from Chiang Rai bus station for just 300THB ($9) round trip, which takes about 3 hours each way. If you choose the bus tour, you’ll leave at 1 PM and return at 9 AM the following day. Budget accommodations are available in the nearby town if you need to spend the night.


Pieces of advice to tourists

Be sure to pack a light jacket and windproof layer if you’re riding a motorcycle or scooter to Phu Chi Fa. The mountainous location means temperatures can get cold year-round, with the coldest season being November to February.

Upon arrival, you’ll find numerous guesthouses and homestays available, although they may not have websites, so be sure to book upon arrival. You can expect to pay around 500 THB ($15) for a night’s stay, and many places will even drive you to the sunrise point in the morning for a small fee.

For those looking for a more adventurous experience, camping can be a good choice. But keep in mind that it can get really chilly up in the mountains. Make sure to bring warm clothing and gear and check with the locals for any regulations or guidelines for camping in the area.

Review of visitors on Tripadvisor:


Once is enough
Nov 2022

The sunset and sunrise are stunning, but the path is overly polished and beaten, which can be dangerous after a rainstorm. The temperature did not drop significantly, hovering around 20 degrees Celsius.

Along the way, there will be Hmong children dancing or singing for a tip. If you can spare THB 20/pax, please do so; otherwise, ignore them.


Gordon Lim

Nov 2022 • Solo

The sunrise was the reason I came, and it did not disappoint. A 400m trail leads from the viewpoint to the summit. It might be a little dark, so bring a torch light with you on the way up.

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