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Ultimate Guide to Yee Peng Festival in Chiang Mai

Ultimate Guide to Yee Peng Festival in Chiang Mai

Imagine holding your loved ones’ hands as you release a paper lantern into the sky– such a romantic gesture, right? Well, here in Chiang Mai, you can do just that if you join in on a celebration known as the Yee Peng Festival.

It’s meant to celebrate the end of the monsoon season and to keep bad luck away. You can get the most out of these festivities (and get a lot of good karma) if you follow our ultimate guide to the Yee Peng Festival in Chiang Mai!

Best Time to Go

The best time to visit Chiang Mai in general is from October to April. To experience the Yee Peng Festival, though, you need to visit Chiang Mai in November when the festival is actually celebrated. 

During this period, you get cool and pleasant weather which adds to the relaxing vibe of just hanging out and releasing your paper lanterns in celebration of the festival. However, this means that these months are peak seasons for other tourists as well.

You may also want to visit Chiang Mai during the months of November and February just to be able to witness other festivities. You’ll experience the Loi Krathong Festival in November while the Chiang Mai Flower Festival happens every February.

Things to Know

Currency: Thai Baht

(Check the current exchange rate)

Language: Thai

Calling Code: +66

Yee Peng Festival Tips:

  • The Yee Peng Festival is usually celebrated in November of each year and is scheduled this coming November 27 to 28 for 2023.
  • You’ll also experience the Loy Krathong Festival during this period as both festivals coincide with each other.
  • During Yee Peng festivities, you can release your paper lantern (also called “khom loi”) into the night sky. We recommend that you prepare your camera for some night photography to capture the breathtaking beauty of this event

How to Get around Chiang Mai during Yee Peng Festival

Car Rental: You can rent a car in Chiang Mai through various car rental companies such as Hertz, Budget, and Avis. Competitive rates are also being offered here by smaller car rental companies so we suggest that you ask around for the best price.

To rent a car, you need to present your driver’s licence and your passport. Once you get your rental, you can drive around the city with ease and convenience, especially if you’re travelling around the city with your family or loved ones.

Songthaew: Chiang Mai residents and locals will use Songthaews for their daily transportation and if you want to feel like a local, you can always take these to make your way around the city. 

They’re cheap and you can easily flag one down almost anywhere. These songthaews usually follow a specific route but if you ask the driver to take you somewhere specific, they’ll be happy to oblige (for a fee, of course).

Tuk-tuk: Considered an icon here in Thailand, Tuks-tuks are fun to take a ride in if you want to get around. They’re also a bit faster compared to the standard songthaew. 

However, we highly recommend that you haggle or negotiate the price of the fare with the driver first to avoid any misunderstanding after you get to your destination. 

You can find most of these tuk-tuks around tourist areas, hotels, and bazaars so it shouldn’t be a problem flagging one. Plus, you can take pictures or selfies with one to share with your loved ones and family back home– a truly unique ride from Thailand!

Motorbike rental: If you want to get around Chiang Mai faster, then renting a motorbike might be your best option. Plus, it’s also cheaper than renting a car and is less affected by sometimes heavy traffic Thailand is notorious for.

You can usually get 100 to 125cc motorbikes here but if you want something beefier, then you can look for other rental companies offering larger bikes like dirt bikes, touring bikes, and road bikes.

Where to Celebrate the Yee Peng Festival in Chiang Mai

Yee Peng Lanna International at Maejo University

Address: 166 Moo 10 ตำบล บ้านแหวน Ban Waen, Hang Dong District, Chiang Mai 50230, Thailand

Phone Number: +6652000838


  • Standard Tickets at 5,500 THB each
  • Premium Tickets at 7,100 THB each
  • VIP Tickets at 12,000 THB each (with Loy Krathong festivities included)

If you want to experience the best of what the Yee Peng Festival has to offer, then we recommend that you stay within Old City Chiang Mai. However, if you want the ultimate celebration for this festival, then you need to head to this university ASAP!

The Lanna International School hosts some of the grandest activities related to the Loy Krathong and Yee Peng Festivals and it is here where you can get front-row seats to some impressive lantern releases in all of Thailand.

You’ll see one impressive lantern release at the venue which was reported to have reached 4,000 lanterns in 2018. Tickets aren’t cheap but they’re still sold out a few months before the event itself.

We strongly recommend that you reserve and book your tickets 4 to 5 months before the festival itself. Booking 3 months prior to the Yee Peng Festival might be a little too late and you’d have to celebrate this spectacle somewhere else in Chiang Mai.

Yee Peng Doi Saket

Address: Mae Pong, Doi Saket District, Chiang Mai 50220, Thailand 

Phone Number: +6653223928


  • Standard Tickets at 4,000 THB each
  • VIP Tickets at 5,000 THB each

If you’re willing to travel outside Chiang Mai City to celebrate the Yee Peng Festival, then you might want to check out the Yee Peng Doi Saket festivities located at the Doi Saket Hot Springs. It has scenic views and tranquil fields–perfect for lantern releases!

The festivities here are not as grand as the one at Maejo University and are even touted as a private event. It only had around 3,000 attendees last 2018 but the quality and types of activities offered here are still top-notch considering the price of the tickets.

Your ticket includes a lantern, a small souvenir, a transportation fee, and access to an all-you-can-eat buffet onsite. If you opt to go for the VIP ticket, you’ll be given 2 sky lanterns to release as you please.

Wat Doi and Kruba Srivichai Monument

Address: 99 Huay Kaew Rd, Tambon Suthep, Mueang Chiang Mai District, Chiang Mai 50300, Thailand


  • Standard Tickets at 3,300 THB each
  • VIP Tickets at 4,400 THB each 

Among the lantern release sites on this list, this one has got to be the most limited in terms of attendees. There will only be around 750 guests here during Yee Peng which means that you get to see fewer lanterns but you do get a more intimate experience.

Each ticket holder will get 1 sky lantern and a delicious Thai dinner package. This is an ideal set up especially if you plan on bringing your significant other or partner out on a date during the Yee Peng festival.

Nawarat Bridge

Address: Charoen Muang Rd, Tambon Chang Moi, Mueang Chiang Mai District, Chiang Mai 50000, Thailand


  • Free of charge

If you want a more budget-friendly option to release your krathong, then you can do as most locals do and drop by Nawarat Bridge. Here, you can let your lantern loose together with the other krathongs and watch as they float around in the Ping River.

Once you get to the venue, you can simply purchase a lantern to release, priced at around 30 to 50 THB each. You can also grab a quick meal here as there are a lot of food vendors in the area, especially during the Yee Peng Festival.

The Iron Bridge

Address: Loi Kroh Rd, Tambon Chang Moi, Mueang Chiang Mai District, Chiang Mai 50100, Thailand


  • Free of charge

Here’s another budget-friendly option for you during the Yee Peng Festival. The Iron Bridge offers the same experience as the Narawat one but with fewer crowds.

You can release your lantern from this spot and watch the other lanterns coming from Narawat Bridge since the bridge also crosses the Ping River. Don’t forget to take a picture of the hundreds of lanterns here as they float along with the river’s current.

The Phae Gate

Address: Tha Phae Road, Chang Khlan Sub-district, Mueang Chiang Mai District, Chiang Mai 50200, Thailand


  • Free of charge

The Phae Gate is arguably one of the most crowded and busiest locations during the Yee Peng Festival. Here, there are crowds, fireworks, firecrackers, and food vendors who are out and about ready to enjoy the festival’s celebration.

You can witness the opening ceremony of the Yee Peng Festival here and catch a glimpse of the many parades held in honour of the festival. If you brought your lanterns with you, be sure to release them here from 7 PM to 1 AM on both days of the festival.

Three Kings Monument

Address: Prapokklao Rd, Tambon Si Phum, Mueang Chiang Mai District, Chiang Mai 50200, Thailand 


  • Free of charge

The Yee Peng activities at the Three Kings Monument are a bit more subdued as it is more traditional. There are no sky lanterns here for you to release but instead, you get a classic Buddhist ritual and candle-lighting ceremony during the festival.

We recommend that you drop by during the first day of festivities so you can watch dancers in beautiful costumes performing a Lanna traditional dance. Plus, it’s all free of charge!

Wat Phan Tao

Address: 105 Prapokklao Rd, Phra Sing, Mueang Chiang Mai District, Chiang Mai 50200, Thailand 


  • Free of charge

At Wat Phan Tao, you get to watch a solemn ceremony by monks clad in orange ornaments. They release their lanterns into the night sky while offering everyone in the temple their blessings and while chanting a traditional Buddhist song.

Where to Stay During the Yee Peng Festival

Nine Hotel Chiang Mai

Address: 9 Soi 6 Ratchamanka Rd Phrasing, Mueang Chiang Mai District, Chiang Mai 50200, Thailand 

Phone: +66979561425  

Pricing: $$

Book Now

This hotel should be on top of your list if you want to see everything there is to experience in Old City Chiang Mai. Located at the heart of the Old City, Nine Hotel Chiang Mai will give you walking-distance access to most attractions around the area.

You’ll also get spacious rooms and some of the comfiest beds you’ll ever sleep in here in Thailand. Plus, the hotel has a swimming pool with some lounge areas around it– ideal if you and your family just want to hang out after an entire day of going on tours.

We also recommend that you don’t skip breakfast here as their buffet spread is one of the most varied we’ve seen. The hotel offers local dishes and some standard Western fare (like pancakes and waffles) which we’re certain you and your family will like.

Aksara Heritage  

Address: 73/1 Rachadamnoen Rd, พระสิงห์ เมือง Chiang Mai 50200, Thailand  

Phone: +6653 279 224 

Pricing: $$

Book Now

The Aksara Heritage is the hotel for you if you want some peace and quiet during your stay here in Old City Chiang Mai. 

Located near some of the busiest streets in the city, the hotel is able to maintain its calm and peaceful atmosphere thanks to the surrounding greenery. If you’re a health buff making your way through Thailand, you’ll be glad to know that they have a fitness gym.

You can also just relax by the hotel’s swimming pool if you feel like you’ve done enough travelling for one day. Their breakfast is also something you should look forward to as the dishes are divine and the garden dining area offers a phenomenal view of the hotel!

Estia Chiang Mai Hotel

Address: 5 7 Rachadamnoen Rd, Si Phum Sub-district, Mueang Chiang Mai District, Chiang Mai 50200, Thailand  

Phone: +6653814011

Pricing: $

Book Now

If you want a budget-friendly hotel with all the amenities and creature comforts you need while travelling around Chiang Mai, then this hotel might be your best option. It has traditional and home-style interiors which will immediately make you feel welcome.

You also get access to the hotel’s pool and free coffee in the hotel lobby. What’s more, you can easily access most of the temples in Old City Chiang Mai from this property- most of them are just 7 minutes away from this location!

Bars and party places are also pretty close by so if you want some fun and excitement with your friends, you can simply walk to the bar or club of choice to drink and party the night away!

Lamphu House Chiang Mai

Address: เลขที่1 Phra Pok Klao 9 Alley, Phra Sing, Mueang Chiang Mai District, Chiang Mai 50200, Thailand  

Phone: +66918598225  

Pricing: $$

Book Now

Lamphu House Chiang Mai is a mix of the modern and the traditional and it shows in the hotel’s design choices. The facade and the lobby may look vintage but the rooms you can get here give off a modern and minimalist vibe.

The swimming pool of the hotel is also a sight to behold as it’s surrounded by perfectly trimmed plants, bushes, and small trees where you can sit and relax while reading a book or join your loved ones in splashing around its refreshing and cool waters.

A big plus for us, though, is that this hotel can help you arrange tours if you want them. Just ask the friendly hotel staff if they can get you great deals on elephant experiences or cooking classes around the area.

Where to Eat During the Yee Peng Festival

Goodsouls Kitchen

Address: 52 Sinharat Rd Lane 3, Tambon Si Phum, Mueang Chiang Mai District, Chiang Mai 50200, Thailand  

Phone: +66 88 819 9669  

Pricing: $$


Going Vegan is a big commitment and it shows how much you value the environment and (of course) your health. The good news is that you can have quality vegan meals here in Old City Chiang Mai, thanks to Goodsouls Kitchen Vegan Restaurant.

They serve vegan dishes with more of an Italian twist and these include pasta, wraps, salads, and potato wedges. Don’t forget to end your meal here with some sweet treats like their chocolate brownies and blueberry cheesecake slices.

You can also go traditional here and order some of their Thai cuisine. We especially liked Thai stir-fried veggies and their Masaman paired with brown rice as these tasted really authentic– you should go for these if you want some local dishes!

The Vorra Bistro 

Address: 184/1 Ratchamanka Rd, Tambon Phra Sing, Mueang Chiang Mai District, Chiang Mai 50200, Thailand   

Phone: +66 53 278 780  

Pricing: $$


Italian cuisine lovers, rejoice– The Vorra Bistro is here to give you a one-of-a-kind experience when it comes to enjoying your classic Italian favourites. They have different kinds of pasta you can choose from along with some heavenly desserts you can try out.

We highly recommend that you check out their pasta pesto with scallops and their vegan mushroom risotto. They taste fresh and you certainly won’t forget their flavourful and strong Italian herbs and spices! 

Their desserts are something you shouldn’t miss as well as the sweets offered by the Vorra Bistro are remarkably delicious with just the right amount of sweetness. Go for their fruit sabayon and chocolate lava cake– we promise you, you won’t regret it!

Aroy Dee 

Address: 157 Mun Mueang Rd, Tambon Si Phum, Mueang Chiang Mai District, Chiang Mai 50300, Thailand  

Phone: +66 93 171 5426  

Pricing: $$


You know it’s authentic and good if locals are lining up for hours just to order and get seated in this restaurant. Aroy Dee can get crowded especially during the weekends and holidays but the food you can get from this restaurant is all worth it.

First, their Tom Yum noodles are exquisite, with the right kind of broth and the perfect noodle texture. Their Khao Soi is also flavourful and savoury– a must-try if you want to experience authentic Thai dishes.

Their mango shake here is also something you should order. It’s made from fresh mangoes and can help energise you for upcoming trips ahead!

Mr. KAI Restaurant 

Address: 1 10 Phra Pok Klao 13 Alley, Tambon Si Phum, Mueang Chiang Mai District, Chiang Mai 50200, Thailand  

Phone: +66 92 631 5943  

Pricing: $


You can’t get much more local and traditional than this! Mr. KAI restaurant is a popular food place not because of fancy or elegant interiors and restaurant facades but because it offers some of the best local cuisines without draining your wallet!

Their spring rolls are crunchy, noodle dishes are perfectly prepared, and their chicken dishes are so tender it falls off the bone– you need to order these in order to taste them for yourself! Of course, don’t forget to try out some of their mango sticky rice.

What’s more, you can interact with the owners of this place if you’re fortunate enough to dine here with them. They’re quite friendly and will share a story or two with you about their restaurant and the food they serve.

Dada Kafe

Address: 20, 1 Ratchamanka Rd, Tambon Phra Sing, Mueang Chiang Mai District, Chiang Mai 50200, Thailand  

Phone: +66 53 449 718  

Pricing: $$


After eating a lot of fried or junk food, head on down to Dada Kafe to detox with some of their menu items on offer. They have smoothies and light breakfast items (such as fruit salads and wraps) which can give you a boost of energy without ruining your diet.

Dada Kafe is also well-known for its beverages though, so we recommend that you order a smoothie or one of their coffees to experience what the buzz is all about. Their smoothies, in fact, are so thick that it’s a meal in and of itself!

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