A Rich Culture In Misty Valleys
Making plans for winter? Here is an ideal place to chill out that’s at the foot of a mountain touched by mist.
Story & Images Courtesy of the Tourism Authority of Thailand
Translation Chusri Ngamprasert
Tucked away in the hills of Mae Hong Son province and in the north of Thailand, Chumchon Baan Ja Bo (Baan Ja Bo community) in Pang Ma Pha district is an hour drive from the town of Pai. Baan Ja Bo, a village where the Black Lahu, an ethnic minority live. A hospitable community, travellers who go there get treated as friends. Many find it hard not to fall in love with the warm-hearted villagers who take pride in their tribal identity, culture, language and unique dressing.
The hill tribe community offers homestay accommodations where visitors can appreciate the authentic and unique experience of the traditional Lahu way of life. After an overnight stay, enjoy the sea of mist that forms in the morning and spend time visiting the prehistoric Tham Phee Man (Coffin Cave) where wooden coffins from olden times were found. Visit Tham Bo Naam Saksit (a sacred well) where the water never runs dry. In addition, learn about sewing, basket weaving, and khene making (a mouth organ) or try out some volunteer activities like making a weir or trap, creating a firebreak, assisting in re-foresting a mountain and enjoying the cultural performances from the Lahu people.
Those who cannot get enough of Mae Hong Son’s breath-taking vistas should not miss doing so at Kway Tiew Hoi Kha – a rustic noodle stand with a million-dollar view. Amidst valleys and over misty panoramic views, visitors can slurp noodles and sitting on suspended benches above the clouds with feet dangling in mid-air!
Book a Bangkok Airways flight to Mae Hong Son, with options to chose a preferred means of transport.
Head straight to Pang Ma Pha, and continue on for another 12 kilometres to the Ban Mae Rana intersection. Keep going for another 4 kilometres to the village.
Take the Pai – Mueang Mae Hong Son bus or red minibus to Baan Mae Rana intersection. Then hitch a ride or contact the village for a pick-up service. (Contact Sornchai from Ecotourism by Baan Ja Bo Community at +66 (0) 80 677 5794, or facebook.com/cbtbaanjabo.) For more information, call 1672.