Phu Sang National Park

Phu Sang National Park is a part of Doi Pha Mon Mountain Range in King Amphoe Phu Sang, Chiang Kham District, Phayao, and Theong District, Chiang Rai. It’s 30-kilometre boundary, connects to the Lao People’s Democratic Republic, and covers a total area of 178,049 rai. Within the park are both evergreen and mixed deciduous forest. Important plant species include;

  • Yang – Dipterocarpus alatus
  • Takhian – Hopea odorata
  • Champi Pha – Michelia floribunda
  • Cigar-box cedar
  • Burma Padauk
  • Teak
  • Rang – Shorea siamensis

Phu Sang Waterfall

High and undulating mountain ranges include the summit of Doi Pha Mon, an original source of the Lao, Pueai, Bong, and Yuan Rivers. The watersheds nurture the agricultural sites of Chiang Kham District, Phu Sang Minor District in Phayao Province, and Thoeng District in Chiang Rai Province.

The national park is a habitat of Pu Lu or Siamese big-headed turtles, a rare and endangered species. This turtle is small, short, has a long tail and a big head, neither of which can be retracted into their shell. This makes them vulnerable to enemies or dangers such as forest fire. Therefore, Pu Lu turtles have become a symbol of forest fire prevention in Thailand. The Pu Lu turtle habitat is high mountain forests, near those waterfalls and creeks offering clean, clear water throughout the year. The turtles are best observed at night while they are searching for food.

Interesting attractions within the national park are as follows:

  • Namtok Phu Sang – a 25-metre-high limestone waterfall. The water is 33C and clear, without the smell of sulphate, and is suitable for bathing. The waterfall is located by the road, 300 metres from the Office of the National Park.
  • Phu Sang Warm Spring is a seepage whose water is a headspring of the Phu Sang Waterfall with a temperature of 35?C. It is situated upstream of the Phu Sang Waterfall. The surroundings are abundant evergreen forest and freshwater swamp forest.
  • Tham Pha Daeng is a large-size limestone cave with a depth of approximately 450 metres. Within the cave are beautiful stalactites and stalagmites. It is located 48 kilometres from the Office of the National Park. A ranger leading a visit to the cave is a must. Please inform the national park in advance for a visit.
  • Tham Nam Lot is a small stone cave located at the foot of Doi Pha Daeng, approximately 10 metres from Tham Pha Daeng. The cave is 250 metres deep with a stream flowing through the cave. The level of the water is 50-100 centimetres deep. Visitors have to wade through the water during their cave visit and a ranger leading the visit is necessary.
  • Doi Pha Dam – a limestone mountain with a large cliff, 1,096 metres above sea level. Doi Pha Dam overlooks the Phu Sang National Park’s Ranger Station 1 (Pha Daeng) within the compound of Rom Yen Sub-district, Chiang Kham District, Phayao Province. It is 47 kilometres from the Office of the National Park. It is a 3-4 hour walk to complete a round trip.
  • Tham Luang – this large limestone cave. has a width of approx 200 metres, located 500 metres from Ranger Station 2, Huai Sa, 32 kilometres from the National Park offices. Visitors climb up the mountain to the cave, with a ranger leading the trip.
  • Tham Nam Dang – a large cave with a waterfall, stalagtites and stalagmites – once a secret refuge of the insurgent Communist “Pho Ko Kho.”

The Nature Study Route There are overall 3 routes in the national park with a distance of 1,400 metres (Huai Miang Route), 1,700 metres (Phu Sang Waterfall Route), and 2,400 metres (Huai Sa Route). Each of them takes approximately 2 hours for a trekking tour. There are also interpretation signs along the route; therefore, visitors can take a walk by themselves.

Pu Lu or Siamese Big-headed Turtles are a rare and endangered species of turtle whose origin is upper north Thailand and along the frontier connecting to Myanmar, and the southern part of China. Characteristically short, they have a dark green / black shell, and a length of approximately 15-20 centimetres. A point of distinction is their segmented tail, longer than their shell. They are unable to draw their head, legs, and tail into their shell, but are good climbers. Pu Lu turtles are nocturnal and eat shrimp, shells, crabs, and fish. During daytime, they hide amongst stones, and in cold season, they may hibernate.

How To Get There:

The National Park is located 90 kilometres from Phayao Province.

  • Take the Phayao – Dok Khamtai – Chun – Chiang Kham – Thoeng Route, 6 kilometres from Chiang Kham District.
  • Turn right into Highway No. 1093 for 17 kilometres from Chiang Kham.
  • Prior to Phu Sang Witthayakhom School, turn right and pass the Phu Sang Minor District Office.
  • Otherwise, travel from Chiang Rai Province – Thoeng – Chiang Kham route.

The Phu Sang National Park has accommodation and camping areas.

Phone: 0 5440 1099.

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