Culture of Chiang Mai:
Chiang Mai in Thailand is rich in symbolism and cultural heritage. Values and attitudes held by Thais frame their lives in joy. Being versed in the traditions of Thai people will endear you to them. It will enhance your travel experience, and give you warm memories to cherish
The culture and long heritage of Thailand especially the North are evident in the way Chiang Mai people behave, their traditions and the diverse annual events calendar. Chiang Mai and the North uphold their traditional values and customs. Visitors will find the traditional wai greeting of pressing the palms together and giving a slight bow is still omnipresent.
Chiang Mai (meaning "New City" in Thai) is a city in mountainous northern Thailand. Founded in 1296, it was capital of the independent Lanna Kingdom until 1558. Its Old City area still retains vestiges of walls and moats from its history as a cultural and religious center. It’s also home to hundreds of elaborate Buddhist temples, including 14th-century Wat Phra Singh and 15th-century Wat Chedi Luang, adorned with carved serpents.
Although the city (thesaban nakhon, "city municipality") of Chiang Mai only officially covers most parts of the Mueang Chiang Mai District, with a population of 127,000, the city's sprawl extends into several neighboring districts. The Chiang Mai metropolitan area has a population of nearly one million people, more than half the total of Chiang Mai Province.
The city is subdivided into four khwaeng (electoral wards): Nakhon Ping, Srivijaya, Mengrai, and Kawila. The first three are on the west bank of the Ping River, and Kawila is on the east bank. Nakhon Ping District includes the northern part of the city. Srivijaya, Mengrai, and Kawila consist of the western, southern, and eastern parts, respectively. The city center—within the city walls—is mostly within Srivijaya ward.