Introducing Fang & Tha Ton
For most people Fang is just a road marker on the way to Tha Ton, the launching point for river trips to Chiang Rai. If you do hang around this large, bustling town, there are some quiet backstreets lined with little shops in wooden buildings and the Shan/Burmese-style Wat Jong Paen (near the New Wiang Kaew Hotel), which has an impressive stacked-roof wí·hăhn. The city of Fang was originally founded by Phaya Mengrai in the 13th century, although the locale dates back at least 1000 years as a stop for jeen hor caravans. Being so close to Myanmar (Burma), the surrounding district is an 'underground' conduit for yah bâh (methamphetamine).
Along the main street in Fang there are banks offering currency exchange and ATMs.
Tha Ton is a petite settlement plonked on the banks of a pretty bend in Mae Nam Kok, which is lined with a few riverside restaurants and the boat launch for river trips to Chiang Rai.
In Tha Ton, there is a tourist police office near the bridge on the boat-dock side.