Day 1: Chiang Mai – Chiang Dao valley (L, D)
Your guide meets you at your hotel in Chiang Mai in the morning and takes you to your first destination, a local market.
Continue to a small Lahu village up the mountain to the starting point for your trek, which is mostly downhill and not strenuous. Admire the jungle vegetation and bamboo forest, and walk along a small stream. At the end of the hike, meet your tour vehicle for the 30-minute transfer to the Chiang Dao valley, where you'll arrive at Padeng Lodge for your overnight stay and dinner. This evening, for families with children, your guide can teach you how to use bamboo to make objects such as cups, whistles, forks, and sticks—a great time for youngsters.
Day 2: Chiang Dao Cave – Chiang Mai (B, L)
After a filling breakfast, a short drive takes you to another village, inhabited by Lisu and Akkha people. From there, follow a trekking trail to a Palong hill tribe village. Eventually you'll stop by the local school, and then walk back to the lodge. This hike takes about two hours, but a longer trek option is available, depending on the season and participants' abilities.
Have lunch at the lodge, and then drive to Chiang Dao Cave for a deep exploration. The cave is part of a Buddhist sanctuary, and various chambers can be discovered with the help of local guides equipped with gas lamps. Admire stalagmites and stalactites of different shapes, some perhaps reminding you of animals or objects. Around the cave, local shops sell medicinal plants and herbs.
Your 2-day tour ends with the drive back to Chiang Mai for drop-off at your hotel in town or at the Chiang Mai airport in the early evening.