Most people come to Chiang Rai to visit the White Temple (Wat Rong Khun) and the Black House (Baan Dam). I’d say they are both very much worth visiting and definitely on my top 10 temples list. Aside from those temples there isn’t all too much to see or do in Chiang Rai. It’s a pretty relaxed town with an attractive night bazar. At the bazar you can choose from a variety of thai dishes. We recommend trying the local hot pot with eggs and noodles or the shrimp tempura.
Since we hade made it all the way up north to Chiang Rai we were eager to find some kind of activity to do in or around the city. After some online research we came across Boomerang Rock Climbing and Adventure Park, which had some pretty good reviews on tripadvisor so we decided to give it a go.
We booked a full day of fun via email through the official website www.thailandrocks.com. We got a same day response from Mr. Ken, a lovely Californian residing in Chiang Rai, who runs the park. You can also call him directly 08 552 55435 if you’re in a hurry to book.
The next day we hopped on our scooter and drove to the park early morning. It takes about 10-15 minutes starting from the bus station. It’s easily found on google maps, alternatively, check out the schematic map on their website.
We met with Ken who welcomed us with a smile and outlined the day’s activities, which can easily be customized. Ken began by showing us the Mae Kong river which merges with the famous Mekong.
Mae Kong River
Next we hiked up to a few caves close to the park. What we loved about the caves was how untouched they were; there are no signs off the road and no built in stairs, ramps or ropes to hold on to and you have to do a bit of climbing to get in and out of the cave. For this reason you won’t run into any tourists there, it seemed quite deserted and off the beaten track.
A beautiful entrance to one of the caves
Armed with flashlights we hiked through the three main chambers of the cave, or as Ken calls them: “Little Bear”, “Mama Bear” and “Papa Bear”. In the last and the biggest chamber (Papa Bear) we saw a fair amount of bats roaming around, flying in and out from a hole in the ceiling. There, we got a chance to do some rope swinging, which was a lot of fun.
Rope swinging inside Papa Bear
After climbing up through a different entrance we walked a few minutes through the lush green forest before heading back to Boomerang Park.
Before climbing we tried two balancing activities. First we tried walking over this 13 m log which goes from the rock to the largest tree in the park. It isn’t easy to walk over but we were wearing overhead safety cables in case we lost our balance.
Walk The Log
The second balancing exercise involves a slack line and is even more demanding. We fell a few times but were instantly caught by the cable. I wouldn’t recommend this after a few beers!
Next up was rock climbing! The park provides you with quality harnesses and ropes, but you have to bring your own shoes, so don’t come wearing only flip-flops. There are a couple of climbing routes to choose from, from beginners level to advanced, which all go up to around 18 m, mostly vertical. We had a lot of fun trying to get the top, especially Ása, who had never tried climbing before. I gave a shot at the advanced route but failed half way, since the rocks were pretty slippery after the rain, and I could have chosen a better footwear than my 4$ sandals from India.
We took a quick break to relax our tired forearms and enjoyed the complimentary refreshments; yogurt and delicious banana bread from the local market.
Our final activity was the zip line. You can choose two different zip lines, both 160 m long. We gained some serious speed on the zip line, it was so much fun!
A day at Boomerang Park is a day well spent! What we enjoyed the most was the personalized service from Mr. Ken. This is not a mass tourist activity so you mostly will be enjoying the park for yourself. You can take your time, go back climbing after the zip line, or try your luck at balancing again. It isn’t rushed in any way. A visit to Boomerang Park is the perfect way to release some steam after endless temple visits and for a mere 800 baht each (if two persons), I’d say it’s a great bang for your buck!