|Tour Overview:||They prefer living above 1,000m and shy away from the outside world. There are seven broad hill tribe groupings: Karen, Lahu, Hmong, Lisu, Akha and Mien.|
|Destination:||Baan Thong Loung -Chiangmai|
Northern Thailand is home to interesting and colorful ethnic minorities, known as the hill tribes. These add an important element to tourism here and you may visit, or go trekking to numerous villages, where they are happy to receive you. Since most are rural and poor, any economically uplifting opportunities are welcomed. Most of the hill tribes have migrated into the region during the past 100 years from the Asian interior and have largely preserved their traditional ways, making them a fascinating cultural study.
They prefer living above 1,000m and shy away from the outside world. There are seven broad hill tribe
groupings: Karen, Lahu, Hmong, Lisu, Akha and Mien. However, within these categories, there are sub-categories and clans that further divide the groups. Each hill tribe has its own customs, language, dress and spiritual beliefs and this is sometimes true even of the numerous subcategories within one hill tribe.
For example, the Green Hmong and White Hmong speak in different and distinct dialects and dress differently. The hill tribes are most distinctly recognized for their colorful and unique costumes, which they continue to wear daily. Most of the hill tribes living in the remote upland areas practice subsistence farming. They were pretty much left alone until the 1950s, when the increase in their numbers, extreme poverty, statelessness and threat of insurgency forced the Thai government to establish the National Committee for the Hill Tribes. However, as is the case with any minority groups, hill tribes have issues with citizenship, conforming to mainstream Thai society and the loss of their indigenous customs and languages.
Furthermore, their placement at the centre of the lucrative drug trafficking along the Myanmar border has often put them in compromising positions. These are all difficult issues faced by both the hill tribe people and the Thai government. Baan Thong Loung e-co tourism village is located 30 kms north of Chiang Mai
and a trip to Baan Thong Loung will allow you to visit the main groups in just a half day (Karen, Lahu, Pa-Long and Pa-Dong or Long Neck).