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Tags : Waterfall

Timings : 8:00 AM - 5:00 PM

Time Required : 1-2 hrs

Entry Fee : No entry fees

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Bua Tong Sticky Waterfalls, Chiang Mai Overview

Bua Tong Waterfalls in Chiang Mai is a scenic waterfall made from deposits of limestone and various other minerals. The waterfall is also called ‘sticky waterfall’ as the limestone generates plenty of friction to prevent you from slipping over the watery rocks. This makes it easy to climb to the top of the waterfall with the support of ropes.

The rocks that the Bua Tong waterfall is made up of look like giant bubbles on top of one another. Though these rocks might look like a hard sponge, they can be a little hard on the feet. However, that does not make the trek up the water any difficult and you can still easily climb up the cascading water. This waterfall is surrounded by a lush green landscape that makes the location very soothing and pleasant. On an average hot and humid day, the water is pleasing and cool. At the entrance of the waterfall, there is a nice picnic spot and a few restaurants. 

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How to Reach the Sticky Waterfalls

The Bua Tong Waterfall is around 50 km to the north of Chiang Mai’s Old City and about 45 km prior to the town of Phrao. You can easily travel to the waterfall on a scooter or maybe be rent a car according to your convenience. Take the Superhighway to road no 1001 towards Phrao. The road towards the Bua Thong Waterfall is very smooth and your ride is sure to be very enjoyable. A return journey to the Bua Thong Waterfall can cost around THB 1000.

On your way to the waterfall, you can find many eateries while driving through the small towns. It can take you a bit longer to reach your destination in case you stop a couple of times to enjoy the pleasant view along with your journey.

Best Time to Visit

You can visit the waterfall all throughout the week since it’s never too crowded. You might want to avoid travelling up to the Bua Tong Waterfall on a public holiday as you might get stuck in traffic since you are likely to find many people visiting the waterfall.

Planning a trip to this location during the rains might not be a great idea. However, summer and spring are ideal seasons to visit the Sticky Waterfall because you could cool off the heat in the cool waterfall. Also, the best hours to visit the water are likely from early morning to mid-afternoon since as it will start getting you will not be able to enjoy your hiking.

The Secret of the Sticky Waterfalls

The Bua Thong Waterfall derives its nickname ‘The Sticky Waterfalls’ as the mineral deposits that form rocks help you get an incredible grip. The main source of the waterfall is the fresh spring that contains water high in calcium carbonate. The cascading water leaves calcium deposits behind on the rocks making them non-slippery to climb on. The floating limestone helps you climb the waterfall even with your bare feet or with any specific equipment. The rough rocks help you get a hold while climbing the waterfall.

Climbing the Bua Tong Sticky Waterfall

You must have seen some waterfalls from afar but who thought you could actually climb one. At Bua Tong Waterfall, you will be able to get an experience of a lifetime while climbing to the top. There are 3 stages to climb this waterfall, and you can enjoy yourself by relaxing a little at each stage. The rocks might feel like a hard sponge or even prickly against bare feet, but that’s what helps you get a grip over the gushing water. The lack of algae, fungi or slime accounts for a significant factor in climbing up the waterfall.

The mid-level of the climbing stage might be a tad challenging, but it’s not dangerous at all. Though the waterfall might get a bit steep at places the limestone deposits on the rocks make are a good aid to help you get through. This journey will be one of the most bizarre experiences you must have ever encountered. Once you are done climbing the Bua Tong Waterfalls, you are sure to think of yourself as a superhero.

Things to Do at Bua Tong Waterfalls

1. Relaxation: The waterfall has 3 levels, and you could sit down at the different levels to revel in the surroundings. The small pools with crystal blue water at the bottom of the waterfall are a great place to relax and lie down in cool water.

2. Nam Phu Chet Si: A holy shrine and scared spring are hidden in the lush green jungle. It is just a short stroll away from the top of the sticky waterfall. You can find many religious locals visiting this place.

3. Healing Waters: The clear water here is considered to have some healing powers. There are buckets attached to the main source, and one is allowed to pour some water on their body using these buckets.

4. Hiking: You can also go on a loop hike into the jungle. This hike can indeed be a great experience for people seeking adventure.

5. Picnic: There is also a picnic spot where you will generally notice locals relaxing on a pleasant weekend. There are a few restaurants around this picnic spot where you can eat authentic Thai cuisine.


1. While visiting the Bua Tong Waterfall, make sure that you carry a few necessary things: swimwear, extra towels, comfortable footwear, probably flip-flops (avoid wearing shoes and socks), sunscreen and a good waterproof camera. You can also carry water shoes if you are not comfortable with flip-flops.
2. The sanitation requirements might not meet your exceptions, as the toiles are squat toilets and do not have toilet paper. So, make sure you carry tissues and hygiene sprays.
3. In case you are planning to go to the picnic spot to make sure you carry mats, mosquito spray/ crème and plenty of water to save yourself from dehydration.
4. If you are extremely picky about the places, you eat from then carry some snacks too. Although please remember, you are not allowed to carry any snacks to the bottom of the waterfall.
5. You can even book a tour who will provide you with a guide and even transport facilities. If you take the tour, you also get to visit the nearing towns and interact with the locals.

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