Chiang Mai Silk Factory

As a popular tourist destination, Chiang Mai has its share of tourist traps. Take a few rides on a tuk-tuk and soon you will be offered all sorts of "special tours", many of which will include numerous side trips to tourist shops. Beware of the prices and quality, especially the more expensive items like gems and jewelry. The quality and authenticity are sometimes not what you have bargained for. That aside - many of these shops have their workshops attached at the back, and these visits can be quite educational. It is interesting to see how silk fabric is made traditionally, how gems are polished, and how the famous Chiang Mai umbrellas are made.

Chiang Mai is one of the main silk production centres in Thailand, and there are still many skilled hand-weavers here. If you are a fabric lover, a visit to one of the silk factories is a must, as you will be able to see first-hand how the fabric is made. Prices in Chiang Mai are also much more reasonable compared to other parts of Thailand.

The silk worms. These displays are for the benefit of tourists. The actual silk production is in silk farms elsewhere.

The worms transforming into cocoons.

The traditional weavers.The work is quite tedious and time consuming, but the results are beautiful. It is good to see that the work conditions are at least decent.


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