Encircled by mountains and valleys, Phayao is a peaceful province in the north of Thailand separated from Chiang Rai Province since 1977. It occupys the area of 6,335.1 sq km and is divided into 7 Amphoes, including Muang, Chiang Kham, Chun, Chiang Muan, Pong, Dok Kham Tai and Mae Chai. Phayao is an enchanting community with spectacular picturesque natural beauty and majestic religious sites.
Each of its districts has wild reservation area, a lot of natural parks and agriculture areas with lichee garden, longan garden, corn fields, rubber plantation, etc. In addition, it also hosts various ancient buildings with the rich culture.
Phayao was founded in 1096 as an independent city kingdom with its own rulers. In the mis-14th century, it became a part of the Lannathai. To 1897 it was part of Chiang Rai province before was seperated from it again and became a province of its own. Now Phayao has become a fascinating destination with a wide range of attractions, both natural beauty and long legend history.
The province offers many interesting attractions. The temples tourists shouldn’t miss are Wat Anarnyothippaya and Wat Srikhomkham monasteries which houses antiques and exhibitions on local intellectual, literature and life styles of locals. Other attractive site is Phayao Lake, the 3rd largest lake in Thailand, is where to provide breeding source for species of freshwater fishes. In the middle of the lake stands a temple named Luang For Por Sila, is a Buddha worship. Chiang Kham district is with relics of Buddha as Wat Pra Nung Din, Wat San Muangma and Pra Thad Sobvan. Other highlights in other districts worth visiting as Wiang Lor, ancient over 500-year building which covers a wide area and is suitable for biking; Wat Pra Thad Kingkang, a famous worship; Wat Tha Far Tai, a peaceful and quiet temple; beautiful Namtok Nam Pin waterfall with warm water which is stable 35oC in every season; many other waterfalls in Doi Phu Nang Park with picturesque peacock and local regional species make the chance to swim and float by boat; the Thai-Lao market, offers many kinds of goods, handicraft an souvenirs; the popular dinosaur museum in Chiang Mun; etc.
Besides the above places, Phayao is also a destination rich in culture with diverse festivals as Sacrificial Combined Force 2324 Monument Fair (early February), a merit with ceremony is dedicated to people who sacrificed in the fighting against the communist terrorists. A lot of activities are held during the festival as performances, games, exhibitions. Cassie Flower Blooming Day (14th February) is with handicrafts contests and markets of sale souvenirs. Many other festivals includes Songkran Festival, Pu Cha Phaya Lo Fair, Sky Rocket Festival, etc with abundant characteristics and colour.