The north of Thailand's culture is Lanna in origin and the people are very proud
of their northern roots. The region is home to distinctly different food, music,
arts, way of life and even language. Chiang Mai is also a melting pot of hill tribes
and their own unique cultures.
Tai Yai - Burmese in origin, harvest rice, farm, raise cattle and trade. Their craftsmanship
lies in weaving, pottery, wood carving and bronze ware.
Akha - have the largest population of any hill tribe in the region. Originating from
Tibet and Southern China, they dwell on high grounds around 1,200 meters above sea-level.
Within their villages they build a Spirit Gateway to protect them from evil spirits.
Lahu - are also from Southern China and live in high areas. They are known as hunters
Karen - live in various areas of the region which have valleys and riverbanks.
Hmong - from southern China are located on high land. They raise livestock and grow
rice, corn, tobacco and cabbage. They are also known for their embroidery and silver.
Tai Lue - live in dwellings of usually only a single room wooden house built on high
poles. They are skilled in weaving.
Lisu - from southern China and Tibet are renowned for their colourful dress and also
build their dwellings on high poles. They harvest rice and corn and their men are
skilled in hunting.
Yao - reside along mountain sides and grow corn and other crops. They are skilled
blacksmiths, silversmiths and embroiders.