Wiang Kum Kam
Wiang Kum Kam
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4.0
4.0 of 5 bubbles237 reviews
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92
Very good
95
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43
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5
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patinhongkong
hong kong498 contributions
4.0 of 5 bubbles
Feb 2020
We visited at about 10 in the morning when the temple, which is at the heart of this ancient town, was pretty much deserted. We were able to wander at our own pace, undisturbed around the ruins. The temple itself is being restored, and murals of everyday village life being painted on the walls, were quite absorbing. I much preferred this place to the more frequented temples we saw.
Written February 19, 2020
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tempsh
Melbourne, Australia179 contributions
3.0 of 5 bubbles
You can visit Wiang Kum Kam by Tuk Tuk. Just negotiate a price for there and back and off you go. It's not far out of the city, but feels very rural. On arrival we were introduced to the driver of a horse and carriage. (Incidentally, for horse lovers, the horses are fine - not in poor health or too thin). We set off around the ruins - a very pleasant mode of transport.

We stopped at the ruins and were not hurried to look around - there was scarcely anyone around (very few tourists - it was May). There are plaques in English telling you about the sites, so it is quite informative. Then we were taken to the next spot and so on. It was interesting to see some of the local houses in passing too.

Incidentally, we did Doi Suthep by ourselves too in a Se Lor. I'm not sure that you could catch a Tuk Tuk there - the hill is very steep, and we didn't see any Tuk Tuks en route. Doi Suthep is certainly worth a visit even if just for the view and peaceful surroundings when you reach the top (once again very few tourists when we went)!
Written June 8, 2009
This review is the subjective opinion of a Tripadvisor member and not of Tripadvisor LLC. Tripadvisor performs checks on reviews as part of our industry-leading trust & safety standards. Read our transparency report to learn more.

indigocm
Chiang Mai, Thailand57 contributions
5.0 of 5 bubbles
This is the "old" capital city of Lanna Kingdom before Chiang Mai was founded over 700 years ago. Wiang Kum Kam was frequently flooded, abandoned and forgotten. It was only recently rediscovered again in 1984 by local villagers, and some of the sites excavated.

The sights are not in one particular location, but spread out through out the village (and even in people's backyards!). You can tour the site via horseback carriage, tram, or rent a bicycle. There are also lots of day tours to Wiang Kum Kam.

Nice trip to get away from the city for a few hours (although it's very close to the city) and see pleasant rural countryside and ruins. Really nice and peaceful atmosphere - not many tourists there at all!
Written December 24, 2008
This review is the subjective opinion of a Tripadvisor member and not of Tripadvisor LLC. Tripadvisor performs checks on reviews as part of our industry-leading trust & safety standards. Read our transparency report to learn more.

LeRoytheBoy
Ferntree Gully, Australia344 contributions
5.0 of 5 bubbles
Nov 2014 • Solo
This tour was particularly interesting. You engage the services of a horse and carriage and a driver who my driver wasn't very good at English, but I accept that I'm in their country not mine. He trot's me around to 9 different temples and does his best to explain about each temple's history and past. Amazing that hundreds of years ago all of this area was under the Mae Ping River. Then miraculously the Ping River took a diversion and parts of this city exposed them selves to daylight and these 9 temples were excavated for all to see and admire. Listed on the internet as in the top 10 things to see and do in Chiang Mai, I highly recommend that you do this tour. You won't regret.
Written December 4, 2014
This review is the subjective opinion of a Tripadvisor member and not of Tripadvisor LLC. Tripadvisor performs checks on reviews as part of our industry-leading trust & safety standards. Read our transparency report to learn more.

theirreverentkitchen
Seattle, WA72 contributions
4.0 of 5 bubbles
Nov 2018
Wiang Kum Kam is an archeological site about a half an hour drive from Chiang Mai old city. It's not as heavily visited as the temples closer to the city center,,and that's a definite plus. Once at the site, you can bike around on your own, rent a horse drawn cart and driver or pay to ride around in a generic sort of motorized Safari Land tram. We didn't have bikes and the idea of spending 45 minutes or so in the company of a rather loud group of tourists wasn't exactly appealing. We'd done the horse drawn buggy several years ago and found it very pleasant, so that's what we chose again.
There's a museum at the entrance to the area where you hire and pay for your cart or tram, but it wasn't open the day we were there. That was really a shame, but we'd done a bit of research before going, so we had at least some idea of what we were seeing.
The hired transportation comes with a guide, but our experience is that these only speak Thai. They do try their best and they carry on a running commentary throughout the tour, but unless you understand Thai, most of it is lost. You are provided with a booklet when you hire your transport, so you're not totally at a loss.
For all of those negatives, the site itself is very interesting and some of the temples are truly beautiful. The horse cart option allows you to get out and walk around the various sites and we never felt rushed or hurried to keep moving to get to the next stop and that was much appreciated.
As far as logistics, we rented a "Red Taxi" (read songteau) for 400 baht for a half day, with pick up in Chiang Mai old city and return. Admission to the archeological site itself is free and horse cart rental is 300 baht or 400 baht for the tram. You're expected to tip the guide, who just also happens to be the driver, but they're supposedly volunteers, so you just go with the program and count it as part of the cost of doing business.
Admittedly, the arrangements at the site could use some real improvements, but taken as a whole, the visit is fascinating and well worth the effort.
Written November 4, 2018
This review is the subjective opinion of a Tripadvisor member and not of Tripadvisor LLC. Tripadvisor performs checks on reviews as part of our industry-leading trust & safety standards. Read our transparency report to learn more.

David B
Rayong, Thailand9,813 contributions
4.0 of 5 bubbles
Apr 2017 • Friends
Sometimes referred to as the Lost City, Wiang Kum Kam is a series of archeological digs that have uncovered ancient temples and palaces.

There is some confusion as to the history of these ruins, but the commonly accepted version is that they were built by King Megrai in the 13th century. However, the area was subject to flooding, so in 1296 King Megrai built Chiang Mai on its current site.

We toured the area in our own car, but you can take a guided tour in trolley cars with an English speaking guide. They also have a Chinese speaking guide to accommodate the increasing numbers of Chinese tourists visiting Thailand.
Written April 28, 2017
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steve van Cleemput
3 contributions
5.0 of 5 bubbles
This is an old ancient city that's only recently been discovered. ..it contains a wide area with beautiful temple's and artifacts. ... not famous with the big tours so be quick before tourism takes it over. .. you can drive to the different locations by horse carriage or by open bus....
Written May 6, 2015
This review is the subjective opinion of a Tripadvisor member and not of Tripadvisor LLC. Tripadvisor performs checks on reviews as part of our industry-leading trust & safety standards. Read our transparency report to learn more.

Dave K
Arcy-sur-Cure, France252 contributions
4.0 of 5 bubbles
Dec 2014 • Couples
Eve if you are not a big history fan, this is worth seeing. It is amazing to see an entire region with dozens of rediscovered ancient wats. The museum is informative and you can enjoy a buggy ride to see the excavations. It is very reasonable and worth seeing.
Written December 16, 2014
This review is the subjective opinion of a Tripadvisor member and not of Tripadvisor LLC. Tripadvisor performs checks on reviews as part of our industry-leading trust & safety standards. Read our transparency report to learn more.

Richard B
London165 contributions
5.0 of 5 bubbles
Jan 2019 • Couples
...... you are interested in archaeology and Thai history particularly, or want break from bright glossy temples. Otherwise its probably not for you.

Situated some 6Km south - east of present Chaing Mai city, this is the site of the original late C14 city. Due to a mixture of river floods, changes of river course and war, the old city was finaly abandoned in the C17.

It comprised some dozen temple complexes which were rediscovered in the 1990's, buriied in the jungle and underneath some 2 metres of flood mud deposites. Following excavation, all that is left of most of the old temples are their red brick foundations. But quite a few do have the remains of walls & stupas, some lime succo decoration.

Getting there is relatively easy, but does depend on how you intend to see the spaced out sites; E-W 1.3k, N-S 1.1k. The simplest and most obvious way is to hire a bus or Tut-Tut for around 500bht return, and a 2-3 hour visit; Then hire a horse & cart for a more leisurely paced visit for around 300bht, with a driver who cannot speak English! Or get a trolly bus tour - either mode of transport from the visitor Centre.

However a visit to the free new Visitor Centre Museum first is A MUST to start with. Ifyour lucky you will get a very enthusiastic young lady to take you round the new small museum, therefore getting a good feel for the site and its history before your tour. It's very good, with the most up to date video graphics.

One major problem. These 'guided' tours only take you round the sites WEST of the visitor Centre! If you do your research you will find out there are some interesting sites EAST of the V/C!

From my research the best sites to see are, from West to East, Wat Chedi Liem; Wat That Kaow; Wat Pupia; Wat E-Kang; Wat Huanong; & Wat Kumkam Teepram.

So if you want to see all, or the best sites (using a very good map or GPS) you need your own transport. Bicycle is quite feasible, but the roads are dangerous from Chang Mai. Motor bike has similar issues, and you technically need a International driving licence (500bht if caught by policeman with only an ordinary licence!). A car is possible of course.

So, a bit of preparation won't go amiss here, to ens ure an interesting and profitable visit.
Written January 19, 2019
This review is the subjective opinion of a Tripadvisor member and not of Tripadvisor LLC. Tripadvisor performs checks on reviews as part of our industry-leading trust & safety standards. Read our transparency report to learn more.

WCGood67
Charlotte, NC47 contributions
4.0 of 5 bubbles
Jul 2017
If you appreciate history and archaeology, it's worth a trip from Chiang Mai to see Wiang Kum Kam. You can see 700 year old temples and ruins from a former capital city that spent many years under water before the Ping River was re-routed. Many of the temple ruins visible now were not excavated from the river bottom until the 1980s. The rest of the town is a strange mix of obvious poverty and beautifully extravagant homes. There is also an unfortunate tourist element to the whole experience. Our "red truck" taxi driver took us to a parking lot where our only option was to hire horse drawn carriages to take us through the town. The horses looked a bit thin, and we felt a little pressure at the end of the tour to buy framed prints of the pictures they had taken of us in the carriages before we left. Even so, it was worth it in order to see the amazing historical sites in the town. (And we bought the framed tourist pictures -- they were actually pretty good!)
Written July 22, 2017
This review is the subjective opinion of a Tripadvisor member and not of Tripadvisor LLC. Tripadvisor performs checks on reviews as part of our industry-leading trust & safety standards. Read our transparency report to learn more.

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Wiang Kum Kam, Chiang Mai

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