A 25minute drive out of Chiang Mai lies one of the best kept secrets in Chiang Mai. The Mae Ngat Dam in Chiang Mai and the Mae Ngat Dam House boats really should be one of the top destinations in Northern Thailand but it’s just not as popular as it has the potential to be.
The Mae Ngat dam has some really cool things to do but first when you get their you’ll have to get a long tail boat out to the house boats. I’m not sure how much this costs because I was with the ranger and I didn’t see or hear anything about money for the long tail though i’m sure they will charge Farang. What you should do if you get their and no one else is getting on a boat yet just ask for a cheaper price if you want for someone else to come. Sure it won’t be long if you get their by 11.
Travelling on the long-tail boat you get to see the rolling hills full of trees and the random house boats along the Mae Ngat dam. Th water looks a little green but it pretty clean. There are hundreds of these boat houses lined up along the edge of the hills. Most seemed pretty empty to me but there were a lot of people on the water and eating.
Swimming in the Dam is no problem just remember it is a dam and it’s super deep. Wearing a life jacket is a good idea especially since most Thai’s can’t swim well so if you got into trouble you might find yourself on the bottom of the dam. Kayaks here were about 150 baht an hour and you can also hire fishing lures and go fishing off a kayak. Plenty of fish in the Mae Ngat Dam too as they can no longer go further down the river.
If you don’t want to stay overnight on the House boats that’s perfectly fine too most people just come here during the day and go for a swim have a big feed and play cards. If there are Thai people here especially there will be several tables where people are drinking and playing cards. Your best bet is to buy a few bottles and take them with you, no problems there they sell mixers beers etc. Food was delicious.
Map of the Mae Ngat Dam Chiang Mai House Boat
Directions to the Mae Ngat Dam are not that simple. I went with some dude that went through all these back streets so I honestly couldn’t tell you the exact way. Thank god for google maps right. Here is the map of the Mae Ngat Dam and make sure you zoom right in on the dam, you can even see the house boats on google.
View Mae Ngat Dam Chiang Mai in a larger map