The Northern regions of Thailand have their own character that differs from those in the South. Historically, the North of Thailand is culturally closer to Myanmar and Laos than the distinctive character of the South.

This difference is reflected in social practices, cuisine and lifestyle. While the South of Thailand draws the most tourists on account of its beaches and islands, the North of Thailand is not to be missed for its wealth of wildlife, beautiful natural scenery, robust cuisine and cultural heritage.

The Lisu Lodge, The Lisu is a hill tribe in Northern Thailand. The lodge opened in 1992. Through the lodge, guests can arrange elephant safaris, guided hikes, four-wheel-drive tours, mountain biking trips, visits to other villages and one- to four-day treks. Tel: 66 81 148 0006.

Tara Mae Hong Sorn Hotel, A 4-star hotel in the picturesque town of Mae Hong Son in Northern Thailand, 149 Moo 8, Pang Moo, Muang, Mae Hong Son 58000. Tel: 66 5368 4444 5.

Anantara Golden Triangle, A natural retreat with cultural visits, daily activities of elephant encounters and cooking classes. Tel: 66 2 365 9110, 66 53 784 084.

Hill Tribe Restaurant, Exquisite Thai Cuisine & North Thai Specialties. Bangniang, Phetchkasem Rd. 13/22 Main Road from Khao Lak direction Takuapa, near the Market Place, appr. 500 m to Seven 11. Tel: 086 28 30 933.

Khaomao-Khaofang Restaurant, A restaurant set in lush gardens with good service and excellent food.181 Moo 7, Ratchaphruek Rd, Nongkwai, Hang Dong 50230. Tel: 053 838444.