Buatong Waterfalls aka Sticky Falls

Welcome to one of the coolest waterfalls we have ever been to….

Our friends Lauren and Neil invited us to Buatong Waterfall.  It is a good hour outside of Chiang Mai and you won’t find this one in your guidebooks!  We went to this waterfall on the King of Thailand’s birthday which is a public holiday so we did NOT have the waterfall all to ourselves!

The waterfalls are fed by an underground river and this is what makes them so unique. The minerals in the cave water form limestone as it flows down the mountainside.  It looked like huge bubbles of rock and felt like a pumice stone.  The english nick name for the falls is “sticky falls”. The limestone is so grippy you can walk straight up the entire way! And we did!

There were little branches of waterfalls shooting off of the main branch which made easier climbing for the kiddos…

If you turn around near the top of the falls this is the view!

At the top of the falls is a shallow pool…

And if you follow the path further up into the jungle…

You will find the source of the waterfall….

Can you see just how clean and beautiful the water is?

We went up and down the waterfalls a few times, playing, splashing, making dams, and relaxing in the crystal clear, refreshing waters.

We spent almost the entire day there.  What a find!

By the end of the day we were all pretty exhausted…but not too exhausted to go out for dinner at Chiang Mai gate!

On our way back to Chiang Mai for dinner!


  • You may notice in the pictures I am wearing a sarong in the falls.  Because of the holiday there were many, many locals enjoying the falls. Thai women generally swim in their cloths so I wore my sarong out of respect.  I suggest doing the same unless you have the falls to yourself.
  • There were places to buy food at the waterfalls but we heard that they are not always open so it is best to pack your own picnic.
  • We hired a songteow for the entire day at a cost of 1500 baht, this was split by three families so it turned out to be economical for us.  The other two families were picked from their homes 20 km south of Chiang Mai and we were picked up at our home North of the old city. We kept the driver from morning until after dinner. It would probably be cheaper if you were only coming from one destination and negotiated a set time to stay at the falls with your songteow driver.

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  1. Dana Ellis says:

    Beautiful falls! But in Phuket we paid 10-25 baht for a songthaew….the 1500 would be hard to stomach!

    1. worldschooled says:

      Dana, it is 20 baht to take a songteow here. The 1500 was for the entire day, as in we had a personal chauffeur from morning until night and the falls was over an hour drive from town.

  2. Lisa wood says:

    The falls look gorgeous – love your tip about wearing clothes (sarongs) when swimming 🙂

  3. Lisa wood says:

    The falls look gorgeous – love your tip about wearing clothes (sarongs) when swimming 🙂

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