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The third highest peak in Chiang Mai; which draws regular hikers, birdwatchers and stargazers; has been added to a prestigious UNESCO natural heritage list.

Doi Luang Chiang, aka Doi Chiang Dao, yesterday was declared yesterday to join the world’s recognized biosphere reserves, which are meant to reconcile conservation with sustainable use.

The tall mountain became the fifth Thai biosphere reserve after Sakaerat (Nakhon Ratchasima province), Hauy Tak Teak Forest (Lampang province), Mae Sa-Kog Ma (Chiang Mai province) and Ngao Mangrove Forest (Ranong).

The 2,175-meter mountain in Chiang Mai’s Chiang Dao district is home to many rare and endangered species such as leaf monkeys, clouded leopards, Chinese gorals, lar gibbons and more. With limestone the main formation of the place, Chiang Dao Cave is one of the most visited attractions in the area.

There are about 730 biosphere reserves in more than 130 countries worldwide.

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This article, Chiang Dao declared UNESCO biosphere reserve, originally appeared on Coconuts, Asia’s leading alternative media company.

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