The Pai Canyon (also known as Kong Lan) is an incredibly scenic canyon with stunning valley views and it’s one of the most reputable locations to catch a Pai sunset!
I have put together this complete guide to the Pai Canyon which includes everything you need to know before you go plus lots of photos for inspiration.
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WHERE IS THE PAI CANYON?
Pai Canyon is located 8km south of Pai township along the main highway.
If you are heading south from Pai, it takes approximately 10-minutes to the parking lot on the right-hand side of the main road. If you pass the Pai Memorial Bridge, you’ve gone too far.
HOW TO GET HERE
The best way to get to Pai Canyon is on a scooter.
Scooters can be rented for a little as 150 Baht per day from one of the many rental stores in the center of Pai.
Alternatively, some accommodations offer scooter rentals for around the same price. A money deposit or passport is generally required for insurance purposes.
If you aren’t confident with riding a scooter, you can hail a songthaew (pick-up truck with bench seats) to get from A to B. Make sure to agree on a price with the driver first before jumping in the back.
See All → Hostels & Resorts in Pai
Sunset at the canyon
WHAT TO EXPECT
There is no entrance fee to visit this attraction, simply park your scooter, grab a snack and a cold beverage from the small stall vendors, and begin the walk up the paved stair trail.
It’s approximately a 5-minute walk up the stairs to the first viewpoint, which tends to be where most visitors gather for sunset, lining up to take photos.
However, if you’re game enough to hike along the skinny ridges to farther, less crowded viewpoints, you’ll have a much better adventure and memorable experience at the canyon.
The ridge trails are very dusty with unprotected drop-offs of up to 30-meters on either side, so please take care and know your limits. I recommend wearing proper hiking boots or closed-in shoes when scrambling around the top of the canyon.
Must Read → 3 Week Thailand Itinerary
The entrance to the grand canyon Pai
Drone shot of the canyon
PAI CANYON SUNSET
Pai Canyon is the most popular, and in my opinion, the best spot to watch the sunset over the mountains as the last rays of light leave the valley. It’s also busiest during golden hour so you can expect it to be crowded at this time.
We decided to hike along a narrow ridgeline to a farther away viewpoint where I could see a rocky platform jutting out from among some pine trees.
It was a bit of a scramble to get there but we managed to have this little spot all to ourselves to enjoy the vibrant colors spreading across the sky and get some decent shots!
On the afternoon that I visited, there was a group of young and talented fire twirlers taking the stage and setting some unreal vibes amongst the crowd that had gathered during their performance.
RELATED ARTICLE → 10 THINGS TO DO IN PAI
Fire twirling performance
Fire twirling at the canyon
WHERE TO STAY IN PAI
Pai has hundreds of accommodations to choose from, so I have narrowed it down to a few of the best places to stay to suit the needs of budget backpackers, luxury travelers, and everyone in between.
See the list of accommodations below that I personally recommend:
Luxury: Pai Island Resort
This is one of the best 5-star accommodations in Pai with a dreamy setting in the forests. Featuring a pong, well-kept gardens, restaurant and bar, free wifi, and airport shuttle services. Each Suite is fitted with fine beddings and furnishings, gardens, patios, minibar, air conditioning, and outdoor bathtub. Recommended for couples, families, and friends.
Mid Range: Rim Pai Cottage
Rim Pai Cottages are 3-star accommodations framed by beautiful mountains and the Pai River. Centrally located on Pai’s famous walking street, this property features a restaurant, infinity pool, and free wifi. Choose from a double room, family room, villas, or a suite, each fitted with air conditioning, tea/coffee facilities, comfortable beds, private bathroom, and flat-screen tv. Perfect place to stay in Pai for couples, families, and friends!
Budget: Spicy Pai Backpackers
Spicy Pai Backpackers is the most popular budget accommodation in Pai. Great place to stay for solo travelers, couples, and friends! This property is surrounded by mountains and rice fields, featuring a common area, communal kitchen, and free wifi. Choose from either a dorm room, private bungalow, or a quadruple king-size room with bed linen and towels. A complimentary breakfast is also included for all guests!
FOR ALL OTHER PLACES TO STAY IN PAI, SEARCH ON AGODA OR SEARCH ON BOOKING.COM
Another option for accommodation is to stay at an Airbnb, which generally has some great deals.
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MORE THAILAND TRAVEL GUIDES
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Pai Travel Guide: 10 Things To Do In Pai
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LONELY PLANET THAILAND
One of the best books to take on your trip is the Lonely Planet Thailand Guide!
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I hope you enjoyed reading this article and If you have any questions, please drop me a comment below this post and I will get back to you as soon as I can!