Get a Real Bamboo Tattoo in Chiang Mai Thailand

How to get a Bamboo Tattoo in Chiang Mai Thailand | Sak Yant

Looking the Best Bamboo Tattoo in Chiang Mai Thailand? The Best Place to get a Bamboo Tattoo is one that does REAL Bamboo Tattoos. Sak Yant Chiang Mai is a Cop-op of Local Sak Yant Monks and Masters who have joined together to offer the Authentic Sak Yant Experience for Western Tourists

Are you planning to get a bamboo tattoo in Thailand.  If you’re looking for a bamboo tattoo in Chiang Mai, then get one that has real spiritual and cultural significance. The Best Bamboo Tattoo in Chiang Mai is not found at a Tattoo Shop – not then they make fake replicas of Traditional Thai Tattoos and do not include a Blessing.

The Sak Yant, also known as Yantra Tattoos, Traditional Tattoo, Poke Tattoo and  Bamboo Tattoos are sacred and traditional tattoos that have been practiced in Thailand for centuries. In this article, we will guide you through everything you need to know about getting a Sak Yant Bamboo Tattoo in Chiang Mai.

It is important to know that Tattoo Shops can not do real and authentic Sak Yant Tattoo.  They might call it a Traditional Thai Tattoo or a Bamboo Tattoo hoping tourist are confused enough to think these things are the same as a Sak Yant.  But they are not.  You can find out more at Bamboo Tattoo’s Thailand’s Biggest Tourist Scam

The Difference between a Bamboo Tattoo and a Sak Yant

History of the Bamboo Tattoo in Thailand

Throughout most of Thailand’s history the vast majority of Traditional Thai Tattoos were a magical and spiritual Sak Yant Tattoo performed by Monks at Temples.  These Traditional Thai Tattoo’s were reportedly done using a Bamboo Needle using the hand poke method and were sometimes known as a Bamboo Tattoo.

In reality Thailand’s Temples (where Sak Masters learned their trade) has had access to bronze, copper and Jade as well as heavy woods that would make a much better Tattoo device than a bit of Bamboo.  The term Traditional Thai Hand Poke Bamboo Tattoo began around 2003 after Angelina Jolie got her Sak Yant.  Western media reported this as a ‘Bamboo Tattoo’  and this name was adopted by Tattoo Shops as demand for Sak Yant Tattoo’s increased with tourist. 

Tattoo Shop Bamboo Tattoo’s are not at all related to the Traditional Thai Tattoo or Sak Yant despite the the common internet based misconception.

1) What is a Bamboo Tattoo?

Since the early 2000’s the Bamboo Tattoo is a term used almost exclusively by Tattoo Artists in Thailand.  Initially Tattoo Shops would proudly promote the use of modern western tattooing machines and hygiene standards.  Wanting to distance themselves from the Traditional Thai Tattoo and the Hand Poke Method

Tourist demand for a Sak Yant which they knew from media as a Bamboo Tattoo started to increase.  Tattoo Shops would adapt and attach a machine needle to some wood and give the tourists Sak Yant Designs using this hand poke method.

As time progressed additional non Sak Yant related designs were included, and promote the hand poke method under the new marketing term of Bamboo Tattoo.

While this started as a Tourist Scam, Tattoo Artists in Thailand did become very skilled at creating body art using the traditional hand poke method which they referred to as the Bamboo Tattoo.

Bamboo Tattoo in Chiang Mai
Tattoo Artists can make some beautiful looking designs using what they call a Bamboo Needle.

2) What is a Sak Yant Tattoo?

Sak Yant Tattoos are traditional tattoos in Thailand that have been practiced for over 2,000 years. These tattoos are often created using a long metal rod with a needle attached to the end by a Monk or Sak Yant Ajarn and then blessed with magical incantations

These tattoos are more than just body art; they are considered sacred and are believed to offer spiritual protection to the wearer. The designs of Sak Yant tattoos are based on ancient Buddhist and Hindu traditions and are said to have magical powers that can bring good luck, success, and protection from harm.

The traditional Thai Sak Yant Tattoo consist of 3 components

1) The Design (Which a Tattoo artist can copy)
2) The Magic Script (Tattoo artists can’t read or change this)
3) The Activation Blessing (Tattoo shops don’t even attempt this)

Monk Tattoo Full Back
Sak Yant Tattoos require a Master trained in creating the magical Spells

Getting a Real Bamboo Tattoo in Chiang Mai Thailand - Video

Prefer not to read? You can watch this Video which explains how to get a Real Sak Yant Bamboo Tattoo in Thailand

Getting a Real Bamboo Tattoo Sak Yant in Chiang Mai Thailand

You can get a Bamboo Tattoo in Thailand at almost any Tattoo Shop, so why would you choose Chiang Mai?   It’s a great question to ask especially if you had no intentions of leaving the Islands and tropical beaches of Thailand. 

If you want a real Sak Yant Tattoo in Thailand, following are 4 reasons you might consider getting a Sak Yant in Chiang Mai

1) Getting a Sak Yant Bamboo Tattoo in Chiang Mai is Cheaper

The cost of living (including holiday stays and tourist activities) is as much cheaper than the more common holiday destinations of Bangkok, Phuket and the Southern Islands like Kho Pi Pi.  Many people actually fly to Chiang Mai and spend a couple of days holiday while getting a Sak Yant – for the same costs as getting a Traditional Thai Tattoo from Bangkok or Phuket

2) Chiang Mai is Beautiful and Spiritual - The Best Bamboo Tattoo in Chiang Mai

Chiang Mai has the beauty of mountain forests and over 300 Temples in the local area – the culture is steep in Buddhist Spirituality.  If you are getting a Spiritual Sak Yant, the experience of a rural temple surrounded by countryside is a much more appealing option that the noisy and busy streets of Bangkok or Phuket.

3) Sak Yant Masters in Chiang Mai have more Knowledge

The Sak Yant Masters in Chiang Mai know almost every other Sak Yant Monk or Ajarn in the area and beyond.  You will often find that the Chiang Mai Master can identify previous Sak Yants you have and who did it.  In areas like Bangkok and Phuket, Sak Yant Masters often don’t mingle outside of their lineage. This can result  in limited and selective knowledge and magical wisdom and subsequent strength of the power of the Yant

4) Lanna Sak Yant Bamboo Tattoo in Chiang Mai is usually nicer looking

Getting a Sak Yant Tattoo in Chiang Mai usually means use of the local Lanna Script.  The Sak Yant Masters believe that the magic contained in Lanna is more powerful than the Pali script used elsewhere.  Not only More Powerful Sak Yant’s, the Lanna script is a much nicer looking script – something that is especially important when you want your lifetime Sak Yant Tattoo to look good as well.

Finding a Sak Yant Master in Chiang Mai Thailand

What is the difference between a Sak Yant Monk and a Sak Yant Ajarn?

Sak Yant Tattoos are done by Sak Yant Masters, which can be either a Monk or an Ajarn.  Both Monks and Ajarns must follow a lifestyle of spiritual dedication, including daily meditation, and hundreds of ethical rules.  Almost always this spiritual training starts at Buddhist Monasteries as a Monk.  Those Monks that show a particular aptitude or interest are able to go to special Temples where in-depth knowledge of spiritual and magical blessings are taught.  Almost every Sak Yant Master, becomes a Master while they are still a Monk at a Temple.

The life of a Monk, is not something that appeals to every person as a long term profession.  Some men want families, children or a life that offers fulfilling other innate potential.  When a Monk decides to move on, but decides they wish to continue living a spiritual life, and one of service to the community –  they can become Ajarns.

Sak Yant Bamboo Tattoo from Ajarn Master

  • Former Monks, now full time Shamans
  • Females OK
  • Less formal and more relaxed situation
  • Able to take photos and videos
  • Sak Yants for personal desires allowed
  • Wider range of Magical skills
  • Include Thai Magic as well as Buddhist Blessings
Where to get a Sak Yant Tattoo in Chiang Mai

Sak Yant Bamboo Tattoo from Monk

  • Unable to preform Sak Yant on Females at a Temple (work-arounds available)
  • More formal approach, requiring stricter protocols
  • Can not take photos of the Sak Yant getting done
  • Sometimes busy preforming Monks duties at Temples
  • Some designs are off limits due to personal over spiritual magical blessing

Choosing your Sak Yant Bamboo Tattoo Design

Choice Sak Yant Tattoo in Chiang MaiBefore getting a Sak Yant Tattoo, it’s important to choose a design that holds personal significance for you. There are many different designs to choose from, each with its own unique meaning and purpose. Some of the most popular Sak Yant designs include the Hah Taew, Gao Yord, and Paed Tidt.

It’s also important to note that certain designs are only meant to be tattooed on specific parts of the body. For example, the Hah Taew design is typically tattooed on the back, while the Gao Yord design is can also be tattooed on the chest.  Only animal design Traditional hand poked Bamboo Tattoos can be applied below the waist and no Sak Yant Tattoo can be applied to the foot.

Normally discussion with the Sak Yant Master is recommended so that you are able to find a design that best suits the magical purpose of receiving a Sak Yant.  Luckily if you choose Sak Yant Chiang Mai – all the Staff have been trained by the Sak Yant Masters to be able to help you with this.

Where to get a Bamboo Tattoo Sak Yant in Chiang Mai - Thailand

Why is Sak Yant Chiang Mai the Best Place to Get a Bamboo Tattoo in Thailand?

Jeremy Gleeson
Jeremy Gleeson
I hadn’t planned anything when I came to Thailand as far as a tattoo but I knew I wanted one. When I found the shop it was closed so I came back the next day and the staff were immediately super friendly and very helpful. I wasn’t going to have time to book a full temple visit as they were booked out till after I left but the master said he would be able to do the design after hours. When I came back for the appointment they were so hospitable and engaging. They were wonderful throughout the whole process, they would translate to me when having conversations in Thai, in general the whole thing was an amazing experience. I will definitely be coming back the next time I make it to Thailand. 12/10 would recommend.
nicolas audet
nicolas audet
Amazing experience ans staff ! If you want to live the real thing and not just getting a cheap tattoo in thailand, that's the place to go.
Sophie Struthers
Sophie Struthers
One of the best experiences of my life! everything was very clear and explained well, very welcoming staff who made me feel comfortable and cared for the entire time. I will definitely be back the next time I am in Chiang Mai <3
Kees Elling
Kees Elling
The best and real Sak Yany tattoo in the city, everywhere else is fake.
Felix Allen
Felix Allen
I got my first Sak Yant done here and had a great experience. I received the Gao Yord design by Ajarn Beer, who was extremely quick and produced a great looking tattoo which I am very happy with.
Miriam Lam
Miriam Lam
Absolutely amazing experience getting Sak Yant tattoo here. They were able to accommodate and squeeze me in last minute into my boyfriend’s booked appointment when I decided I also wanted one :) The ajarn was very talented and the staff was so friendly and helpful throughout the process. Such an unforgettable experience. Highly recommend!
Dylan Dauvois Gil
Dylan Dauvois Gil
Merci à vous 😊
  • Authentic bamboo tattoos and magical blessings with Monks and Ajarns
  • Half the price of traditional tattoo shops or Bangkok/Phuket Sak Yant masters
  • Choice of Over 200 Bamboo Tattoo designs and meanings
  • Over 10 Sak Yant Masters available (other services only have one)
  • Central location for a peaceful and spiritual experience
  • Full personal customization of design and blessing of the Bamboo Tattoo
  • Standardized pricing with no tourist sliding scale or kickback commissions
  • Thai-owned co-op exclusively providing Sak Yant bamboo tattoos
  • Beautiful traditional Thai tattoo artwork from Sak Yant Masters
  • Consultation to determine your Sak Yant design and magical blessing
  • Personal reasons translated to the Monks or Ajarns
  • Personalized design or blessing arranged if required
  • Safe and hygienic practices with new ink and needles for each guest
  • Pre-booked appointments available for tour to temple Monk or in-house services
  • Explanation of protocols and etiquette for visiting a real Thai Monk
  • Medical aftercare provided for Sak Yant tattoos
  • Only Sak Yant service in Chiang Mai where Monks and Ajarns work together
  • Females able to receive Sak Yant tattoos from Temples.
Best Tattoo Chiang Mai Bamboo Tattoo Monk Tattoo
Wondering Where to get a Sak Yant Tattoo in Chiang Mai? Sak Yant Chiang Mai Masters are well known and highly regarded by the Monk community

Types of Bamboo Tattoo in Chiang Mai

All of the various options available offer something different and specialized to the person wanting to get a Sak Yant Tattoo.  Whether you want to know where to get a Sak Yant in Chiang Mai, from a lessor known Master who only does Sak Yants on occasion, or you want to earn a commission on affiliated marketing of your blog-post, or you want to use a co-op of many different Sak Yant Masters – the choices are many.

Each experience will however be a variation of one of the following options.

1) Sak Yant Bamboo Tattoo from a Monk at a Temple

This option is available only for Men, as a Monk will not provide a Sak Yant for a female at a Temple.  Females will have to consider options 2 and 3.

For those wanting the full on experience there is a half day tour where you are driven to a Monk at their Temple. 

The tour option will require following stricter protocols of behavior, standard of dress.  Out at the Temples, it is physically less comfortable (concrete floors and no AC) and a tour will take about 3 hours, where you may need to wait for other people who arrived before you.

This service is available at Sak Yant Chiang Mai and on occasion on Airbnb

Get a Sak Yant from a Temple in Thailand
Where to get a Sak Yant Tattoo in Chiang Mai - Monk at a Temple

2) Sak Yant Bamboo Tattoo from Sak Yant Chiang Mai In-House

This option is available for Men, Females and Couples; and is only available at Sak Yant Chiang Mai.  This service is similar to both the Monk at Sumnak and Ajarn at Samnak service but done in the old city at Sak Yant Chiang Mai – without the additional costs of the tour service.

Here females can get a Sak Yant Tattoo in Chiang Mai by a Monk, as the Samnak is not located at the Temple. Generally quicker (one hour appointments can be made rather than half day tours, more comfortable (carpet and AC rooms) and is cheaper since there is no tour or travel involved.

More Details

Where to get a Sak Yant in Chiang Mai In House
Where to get a Sak Yant in Chiang Mai - In-House Service is cheaper and quicker

3) Sak Yant Bamboo Tattoo from Ajarn and Monk Blessing at Temple

This option is available for Men, Females and Couples; and only available from Sak Yant Chiang Mai. Here a Female is able to get a Sak Yant in Chiang Mai at a Temple.

The Sak Yant itself is performed by a Sak Yant Ajarn and then the Sak Yant is blessed by the Monk at the Temple.

This option for for Females that really wish to experience the Sak Yant in Chiang Mai at a Temple or couples that want to share the experience together.

Best place for a Sak Yant in Thailand - Sak Yant Chiang Mai
Where to get a Sak Yant Tattoo in Chiang Mai - Monk and Ajarn at a Temple

4) Sak Yant Bamboo Tattoo Ajarn at Their Samnak

This option is available for Men, Females and Couples; and is a common option available by most individuals who provide a Spiritual Sak Yant Experience and Airbnb Sak Yant with a single Ajarn.

Here you will get picked up from your hotel or meet the guide at a predetermined location to be taken to the Sak Yant Master at their Samank. The tour guide or service will charge a service fee for the transport to the Ajarn which like the visits to the Monks will add to the total cost of getting a Sak Yant in Chiang Mai.

This service is provided by most independent Sak Yant guides and tour services including Spiritual Sak Yant, TripAdvisor (although they often remove this service as a tattoo is against their no harm policies) and at Sak Yant Chiang Mai

Where to get a Sak Yant in Chiang Mai - Ajarn
Where to get a Sak Yant in Chiang Mai - Ajarn at a Samnak

5) Sak Yant Bamboo Tattoo Monk at Samnak | Ajarn Rung

This option is available for Men, Females and Couples.  In Chiang Mai, Rung Monk is a Sak Yant Master who spends most of his day at his Sak Yant Samnak providing Sak Yant in Chiang Mai for a variety of service providers.

A Samnak if the name given to the holy room where the Sak Yant is performed and is usually off Temple grounds which allows the Monk to perform Sak Yants on Women.

A Visit to Rung Monk is available from Where Sidewalks End for $250 for a small design (Almost all the Blogs on ‘How to Get a Sak Yant in Chiang Mai’ will have used or promoted WSE travel agency).  Or you could used Sak Yant Chiang Mai for the same service for $90

Rung Monk Sak Yant in Chiang Mai
Where to get a Sak Yant in Chiang Mai - Monk at a Samnak

Getting a Sak Yant Bamboo Tattoo in Chiang Mai Customer Experiences


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Get a Sak Yant Tattoo in Chiang Mai

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