Tajlandia z dzieckiem Wodospad Sticky Waterfall z dziećmi Bua Tong Chiang Mai

Bua Tong – Sticky Waterfall in Chiang Mai with Kids

Imagine a waterfall that you can climb up to the very top with no fear of slipping on wet rocks. That waterfall is Bua Tong Sticky Waterfall, a spot that both children and adults will love. This is one of the best attractions in Chiang Mai.


How to get to Bua Tong Sticky Waterfall

Sticky Waterfall is located in Namtok Bua Tong & Nam Phu Chet Si National Park, which is about 60km from Chiang Mai in Mae Ho Phra district. 

You can access the park by taking Route 1001 from Chiang Mai, then turning right at km 49. Or, alternatively, you can take national road 107 and turn onto road 1414 and then switch to 1001.

We got there by rented car and it took us about an hour to drive there. You can also book a taxi for almost the whole day, which will drop off and pick up from the park for around 1,000 baht. Alternatively, there are some guided tours for 2500 baht per person but going on you own is really easy. 

Why Bua Tong is called Sticky Waterfall?

The waterfall owes its informal name (Sticky Waterfall) to the fact that its rocks have quite a good grip. The stones are not slippery as they are formed from limestone rocks and their surface is covered with a layer of deposits. 

The origin of the waterfall is groundwater coming from the spring called 'rainbow spring' (Nam Phu Chet Si). The groundwater is rich in dissolved minerals of calcium and silica. Thanks to the mineral content in the water, the surface of the spring reflects the rainbow colours and the limestone layer is deposited on the waterfall rocks.

According to the information board next to the waterfall, the falls have 4 levels, but it is possible to climb from level 3. The height of the waterfall is about 100 m and its slope is about 50 degrees.

Nam Phu Chet Si - Rainbow Spring

Rainbow Spring Nam Phu Chet Si Chiang Mai
Rainbow Spring

Rainbow Spring, this is where Sticky Waterfall originates from. You absolutely must see this place when you are in the park.

The spring is about 5 metres in diameter and 2 metres deep. Its water is crystal clear and you can easily see the intense blue rocks at the bottom of the spring. On a sunny day, the silica and calcium minerals in the water make the surface sparkle with the colours of the rainbow. This is where its name comes from.


To reach the Rainbow Spring follow a short route along a wooden footpath through the forest. The trail is well marked and easy to find. We started our tour of the park from this exact spot.

At the entrance to the trail there is a sign informing visitors of the proper attire. The spring itself and the shrines in its surroundings are worshipped. Therefore, entering the place in a swimming suit only is unwelcome.

Sticky Waterfall having fun

Bua Tong Sticky Waterfall with kids

The waterfall access is just opposite the park entrance. Once at the top, you can enjoy the views from the wooden terrace or take a dip in the small pond.

We decided to go immediately down the waterfall. The way down is by footbridges and stairs. We stepped off the footbridge to go to the waterfall where it was possible. 

The downstream section of the waterfall was closed for climbing, but you could safely continue walking down the stairs and follow the marked trails in the area.

Tajlandia z dziećmi w drodze do wodospadu Sticky Waterfall Chiang Mai

The pleasantly cool and clear water encouraged us to play in the waterfall. We began the climb to the top. Initially, the ascent is very easy and the children managed completely on their own without assistance despite the fairly rushing water flow. 

In fact, the surface of the waterfall rocks is quite rough and climbing over them is very pleasant. Few places on the rocks where it was a bit slippery are marked with red signs. Simply avoid them.

Tajlandia z dzieckiem Wodospad Sticky Waterfall z dziećmi Bua Tong Chiang Mai

At the upper levels of the waterfall there were ropes that made it easier to climb the steeper parts of the waterfall. The hardest part was the final climb at the very end, but just hold on tight to the rope. If you have problems, you can always turn around and walk up the stairs.

At the very top of the waterfall is a small pond where we relaxed after the climb.

What you should know before going to Sticky Waterfall in Chiang Mai

  • Entrance to the park is free
  • The park amenities include a restroom with showers, lockers for belongings and some picnic tables.
  • Bring a swimming costume, but make sure to have something to throw on top if you want to enter the Rainbow Spring as well
  • It is a good idea for children to wear a UV protection suit.
  • I found it handy to have a small pouch fastened at the waist to carry the car keys and phone
  • Don't forget a towel and a bag for wet clothes

Where to have lunch after the waterfall fun


After climbing Sticky Waterfall we were all very hungry and started looking for a place to eat.

Following the rating on Google, I chose The Garden restaurant. It is a small, local restaurant situated on the back road. The menu features typical Thai cuisine and many western dishes. The owners of the restaurant are very friendly and welcoming. The owner brought us a big slice of apple pie for takeaway. I recommend this place.

Our impressions of Sticky Waterfall

Sticky Waterfall is not the first waterfall we have visited and I thought the place would be just another pretty waterfall. However, the reality exceeded expectations. Not only is it a truly beautiful place, but we literally played like children. 

Don't miss other blog posts from our trip northern Thailand!

plan podróży Chiang Mai Tajlandia z dzieckiem
Chiang Mai and North Thailand Travel Itinerary

You can't get bored in the north of Thailand. See what else we visited.

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