Thai superstar and Tourism Authority of Thailand Ambassador Yaya Sperbund came to Manila to promote Thailand among Filipinos and her fans.

“I really believe that Thailand is so beautiful. We have so many places that are yet to be discovered. We have so many diverse things that people can experience. I feel very lucky that I am able to share this message for all the travelers,” said Yaya.

Yaya also added that she is currently on a project to promote the hidden gems of Thailand. “A lot of people go to Bangkok, Chiang Mai, Phuket but there are so many smaller places in Thailand that people have yet to experience. We’re focusing on the local people and experiencing things from the locals,” she said.

When asked what is the best selling point of Thailand especially for Filipinos, Yaya recommended shopping, the food, and visiting Chiang Mai and nearby districts in the Northern region of Thailand. She said that Filipinos could enjoy Northern Thailand because we love beaches.

Here are some places we picked for you if decide to follow Yaya and go explore the hidden gems of Northern Thailand.

Lampang

An hour away from Chiang Mai, Lampang is known as the city of horse carts. A walking tour in the old town is the best way to enjoy the city. You’ll get to see the Ratsadapisek bridge, which connects to the Talat Kao Road, the Wang River, and the famous thousand-year-old Wat Phra That Lampang Luang. When you go hungry, discover local dishes and street food from Tha Ma-o Walking Street.

Photo Credit: Wikipedia

If natural scenery is what you’re after, enjoy the cool Chae Son waterfalls and the natural hot springs in Chae Son National Park. You can also go spelunking in the 9 million-year-old Pa Thai Cave National Park.

Photo Credit: tourismthailand.org

Lamphun

Less than an hour away from Chiang Mai, Lamphun is known for its longan plantation, its history, and cultural heritage. Enjoy a slow-paced lifestyle in Lamphun by visiting age-old temples, exploring the lush countryside and enjoying the natural attractions.

First stop is the Wat Phra That Hariphunchai, a golden pagoda that is said to house parts of Buddha’s skull. A food trip through local markets comes next. Nong Dok All Night Market and Wat Chai Chanuek Market are popular for cheap but delicious grub.

Photo Credit: Wikipedia

The third stop is relaxing in nature. Koh Luang Waterfall, a seven-tiered hidden gem in the Mae Ping National Park. It’s famous for its blue-green waters that turn into cerulean during the colder months of November to February.

End your trip by catching the sunset at Doi Khun Tan National Park. If you choose to stay, you can also pitch a tent and camp out. Stargaze at night and catch the sunrise again in the morning.