A stop at the Bo Sang Umbrella Village, gives you a chance to see a lot of beautiful painted Umbrellas and also Fans. There is a huge array! When I was there, there wasn't anybody painting the Umbrellas, but they were painting some other things.
This village has for more than 200 years, been earning a living from the umbrella trade, silk and cotton umbrellas and paper parasols.
There is also an annual fair, held the 3rd week, each January in the main street. It features, an umbrella procession, beauty contests, exhibitions, cultural performancess, local entertainment, and a variety of shows day and night. There are colorful umbrellas, traditional lanterns, products from mulberry paper. This is the best time to buy umbrellas at special discounts from the retailers.
I bought a fan here, and when back at my Hotel, they told me it was a lot cheaper to buy there, than at the markets.
There also is a big array here to choose from, not so at the markets!
From Chiang Mai City, take Chiang Mai - Sankampaeng Rd., and turn left on to Bo Sang - Doi Saket Rd. The entrance to the village is only a few meters from the intersection.
Charoen Muang Road (Road 1006)
9 kilometers out of town
This is a nice trip to be a bit out of hectic Chiang Mai. Bo Sang is called umbrella village as there are a lot of manufacturers. The village is more or less one umbrella shop after the other. And yes, they all sell the same but it is a nice colorful view which is worth the trip even though you do not want to buy an umbrella. We went there with our scooters and had a nice lunch.
No trip to Chiang Mai would be complete without a trip to the village of Bo Sang to buy some umbrellas or paper. Expect to spend about an hour checking out the workshops and shopping. All the paper products are interesting and cheap. Most importantly they are light, so they make great gifts cause they are easy to get home. There is no bargaining here, only set prices.
The "umbrella village" is not far out of Chiang Mai at Bo Sang (about 9km east).
We called in here briefly on our day out seeing the usual tourist things just out of Chiang Mai.
There was very little activity that day as most of the workers had stayed home because their homes had been flooded due to the heavy rains a couple of days earlier.
What we did see was interesting but I wouldn't recommend it as a "must see".
A lot of the souvenirs were rather tacky looking.
No visit is complete until you visit the umbrella factory in Chaing Mai area, called Bo Sang . Bo sang is a Co-op of artisans which has been making umbrella for 50 years.
It's amazing how beautiful these handmade umbrellas really are. Gorgeous patterns . Very hard to resist . For a small tip the gifted artisans will paint a design on your backpack.
The umbrellas are made of both cloth and paper. They are painted with flowers and landscape view scenes of various kinds . They have beautiful lanterns as well.
Located about 9km east of Chaing Mai, Bo Sang is an excellent place to buy traditional crafts. Here you can find hand-painted parasols, fans, teak wooodwork, china and jewelry, among others. As most of the items are produced on site, the prices are very reasonable..... for example, decent sized hand-crafted/hand-painted parasols sold for about 60 baht/$1.50 each. Many of the shops also hold demonstrations showing how their products are made.
Quick tip: There's Umbrella Festival held annually in late January, which was recommended by our guide as a great display of Northern Thai culture.
Bottom-line: Looking for traditional Thai handicrafts? This is the place to go.
Bo Sang Village is near Chiang Mai and is an interesting place to check out if your keen on buying Thai handicrafts. I spent a bit of time photographing the artisans who andcrafted paper umbrellas and painted them with various Asian designs. Of course the photo here doesn't depict any of that but I assure you it was taken at the Bo Sang Villge..haha. If you've got loads of extra time in Chiang Mai this place is worth a short visit.
Bo Sang is located in San Kamphaeng District. It is a village where villagers have been engaged in their Umbrellas/ Parasols manufacture for at least 200 years. All materials, silks, cottons, Sa paper (manufactured from the bark of the mulberry tree) and bamboo are produced or found locally. Visitors will visit Bo Sang for souvenirs and see literally hundreds of designs and sizes ranging from the miniature to the gigantic.
Bo Sang and San Kamphaeng is absolutely worth a visit, Bo Sang is called the "Umbrella Village", here You can find beautiful paperumbrellas, from small til huge garden umbrellas, It is easy to send a packet home from the main postoffice in Chiang Mai.
San Kamphaeng is more known for its silk and cotton, I also found a lot of woodcarvings here, It´s dirtcheap.
We visited the small but extremly cheap market in San K. and bought some clothes (10-50 THB)
We took a bus from the post office in the northeast area of C.Mai (16 THB)