Copyright © dave o’riordan 2017 All rights reserved.

Chiang Rai

Doi Tung Royal Palace

Story courtesy of

The government presented a piece of land in the mountains of Chiang Rai province, and the people donated their time and effort to reforest 9,900 rai or 1,584 hectares of denuded hills.

Doi Tung peak in Chiang Rai Province became home to The Doi Tung Royal Villa, the first residence of Her Royal Highness Princess Srinagarindara, The Princess Mother. The "Villa on Doi Tung" served a base from which HRH The Princess Mother untiringly pursued environmental and development work on the Doi Tung Development Project, along with many other initiatives to improve the well-being of the local populace.

When HRH The Princess Mother first set eyes on Doi Tung, the mountainsides were stripped bare, denuded by the traditional 'slash and burn' agricultural technique employed by hill-tribe communities who moved to the area in the last half century, and by opium cultivation.

Today, as a result of the success of reforestation efforts initiated by Her Royal Highness The Princess Mother, mountainsides stripped bare in 1987 are once again covered with forests. Visitors to Doi Tung are mesmerised by the natural splendour of the forested hills.

In 1993, the Mae Fah Luang Garden was awarded the Pacific Asia Tourist Association (PATA) Gold Award, in recognition of the development of the Mae Fah Luang Garden as a new tourist destination.

Her Royal Highness Princess Srinagarindra, The Princess Mother, late mother of His Majesty King Bhumibol Adulyadej of Thailand, is affectionately known to the Thai people as "Somdej Ya" - The Royal Grandmother.

HRH The Princess Mother dedicated over 50 years of her life to public service, working tirelessly to improve the living standards and quality of life of impoverished families throughout Thailand, through healthcare, education, the improvement of living conditions, and the creation of jobs to help villagers become self-sufficient.

The development projects of Doi Tung and the soon to be opened Hall of Opium/Golden Triangle Park initiated by HRH The Princess Mother are a legacy of her lifetime achievements and keep alive memories of HRH The Princess Mother and her contributions to a brighter future for many.

As Her Royal Highness Princess Srinagarindra, The Princess Mother, mother of His Majesty The King of Thailand neared her 90th year, Her Royal Highness expressed a wish to assist His Majesty The King in his reforestation efforts and the improvement of watershed areas.

Doi Tung Royal Palace and Gardens

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