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Chiang Mai : Attractions

Chiang Mai City Arts & Cultural Centre

Discovering the True Identity of Chiang Mai

By Venus

Chiang Mai, 697 km north of Bangkok, is famous for its magnificent natural features and rich cultural heritage. The city's historical background can be traced back to the ancient Lanna Kingdom (1259-1939) when Chiang Mai served as its administrative, economic and cultural capital. For those whose time is limited but who still want to discover the true identity of Chiang Mai, Chiang Mai City Arts and Cultural Centre is recommended.

Chiang Mai City Arts & Cultural Centre
In front of the centre, the three
Kings Monument is situated.
Chiang Mai City Arts & Cultural Centre
Chiang Mai City Arts
& Cultural Centre

Established in 1997, the Centre is well located in a beautiful historical building constructed in 1924. The front part of the building is used for permanent exhibits and the rear is dedicated to other cultural activities and temporary exhibitions. Permanent Exhibits comprise 15 sections, which are divided by periods and topics. Now let's have a quick tour of exhibitions inside the Centre together.

On the 1st Floor

Chiang Mai City Arts & Cultural Centre
The delicate Lanna art
1. Chiang Mai Today: A digital video presentation will be shown as an overview of the entire exhibition and as an introduction to the interesting history of Chiang Mai.


2. The Prehistory of Chiang Mai:
This part of the building displays traces of prehistoric civilizations in Lanna. It shows the settlement of former inhabitants and tools that they used.

3. The Civilization of Two Valleys: The civilization of the Kok and Ping River Valleys are presented on wall-mounted transparencies. The exhibition in this room illustrates how the animism, and religion had influence on the city's plan.

4. Establishment of the City: The exhibition illustrates how the coronation of King Mengrai and "Seupchata" ceremony, a ritual for longevity, have set the belief related to the shape of the city.

5. Environment and Culture: This section displays the cultural integration in the northern region.

6. The Past 100 Years:
This part exhibits pictures of woods and models that indicate the forestry in the past. A mock-up of a steam train at Khun Tan tunnel and a video presentation illustrate the new era of Chiang Mai after it became a part of Siam.
Chiang Mai City Arts & Cultural Centre
A traditional Lanna-style
fresh food market

7. Good Aspects of Chiang Mai: This area presents the well-preserved culture and the true identity that the people of Chiang Mai are so proud of.

On the 2nd Floor

Chiang Mai City Arts & Cultural Centre
The Dynastic Rulers room
Chiang Mai City Arts & Cultural Centre
Mountain People room

8. The Historical Building: The first exhibit on the floor is devoted to the importance of the building and its history.

9. The Dynastic Rulers: The history of the ruling system in Chiang Mai from King Mengrai to the last independent ruler, the royal lineage, pictures, and artefacts are shown here.

10. Life on the Banks of the Ping River: The exhibition of life along the River's banks demonstrates the settlement of people in Chiang Mai. It tells us how the merchants of different ethnic settled along the sides of the Ping outside the city wall.

11. People of the Old City: This room consists of the model of the traditional northern style market or "Kat" in front of Wat Phra Sing temple and the section illustrates ways of life of noble families and ordinary people who lived inside the city wall.

12. Buddhism and the People: Models and a video presentation of Buddhist temple halls, known in Thai as vihara, which have had a strong influence on people's living style are shown.

13. Phra Pokklao: This area was once the office of the governor, which was occasionally used to welcome special visitors. The setting duplicates the original room in the former times.

14. Agricultural Society: The exhibition conveys aspects of life in an agricultural community outside the city and farming devices used by the farmers in the past.

15. Mountain People: This area gives a perspective of life in the highland communities. The exhibition shows how different tribes have lived together in harmony, tribals' ways of life and their agricultural tools.

Opening Hours: Tuesday-Sunday (including public holidays) 8.30-17.00 hrs.
Admission Fees: Adult 90 Baht / Child 40 Baht
Address: Phra Pokklao Road, Sriphum Sub-county, Muang County, Chiang Mai 50200 Tel: 0 5321 7793, 0 5321 9833

Special thanks to Chiang Mai City Arts & Cultural Centre for a press tour and useful information.

For taxi : หอศิลปวัฒนธรรมเมืองเชียงใหม่ ถนนพระปกเกล้า


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