Why Visit Chiang Mai Thailand?
Kelli and I have spent over a year in Chiang Mai, Thailand, between each of our trips.
We love the place more each time.
Biased as hell; I know.
Chiang Mai is our favorite place on earth.
No Utopia exists. Chiang Mai has its strong and weak points. But the sweet far outweighs the sour in this brilliant Northern Thailand city.
Here’s why you should visit Chiang Mai.
The food in Chiang Mai is first rate.
Kelli and I enjoy lunch at a Buddhist vegetarian restaurant daily. But we also explore other eateries including stalls serving Thai fare, Western restaurants and all types of food stuffs.
Even the 7-11 serves a mean frozen veggie dinner, which is quite delightful after 3 minutes in the microwave.
The Thai food in Chiang Mai is among the best on earth.
Stupid cheap, too.
Even if you show up in Chiang Mai sans friends you can meet friends easily over the first few days of your trip.
Thai locals are friendly folks. Ex-pats dot this area too, which some 60,000 of these people calling the region in and around the city home.
Kelli and I have befriended a slew of awesome people in Chiang Mai, including kind locals Thai, colorful ex-pats and inspired world traveling types like ourselves.
Easy to Get Around
Rent a motorbike for around $100 USD a month.
Hop on a Songthaew for dirt cheap transport around the city.
Tuk tuk’s still exist but with the rising popularity of underground Ubers (technically illegal in Thailand) I noted fewer of these guys and gals tuk-tuking around during our visit in 2017.
Rent a car for a more expensive option.
If you do stay in the center of town you can easily walk anywhere in the city without breaking too much of a sweat. OK; you may break a sweat because the heat and humidity rises a bit in March-April but can still get around via foot fairly easily.
Cyclist nuts, enjoy the flat roads and stunning scenery on the outskirts of town. Kelli and I often saw bikers getting their cardio on in and around the village where we house sat, bordering Doi Suthep National Park.
For an excellent resource peep this fabulous article on how to get around Chiang Mai:
Temple hop to step back a few centuries.
Grab a cold banana shake to wet your whistle, take a deep breath and feast on the stable, relaxed, peaceful energy permeating throughout the Old City.
Do your own walking tour. Enjoy a leisurely morning or afternoon amid these calming influences.
Learn the way of wise monks. Snap brilliant shots of eye-popping temples.
Chiang Mai center is urban. Not a nature lover’s paradise.
The surrounding scenery is jaw-dropping.
Rent a motorbike. Mosey out of town, toward Doi Suthep. Or journey toward Mae Rim. Or perhaps a little excursion to Hang Dong is in the works for you.
Nature abounds in Chiang Mai proper. Soak up the sights, sounds and pristine scene in the villages surrounding the city.
Thai people are friend.
The face-saving culture and overall detachment of this Buddhist culture makes for a delightful duo of serenity.
Thai in Chiang Mai are laid back, pleasant and inviting. I have befriended more than a few locals throughout town, all always eager to meet me with a smile and wai.
Talk to people. Get off your freaking phone. Smile. Bend with a wai. Learn a few words of Thai.
Getting down a few basic greetings in the native tongue forms a bridge that you could never build if you only speak English during your travels.
Mix of Culture and Convenience
Chiang Mai is my favorite place on earth because the city and surrounding villages offer travelers the perfect mix of culture and convenience.
At 4:45 AM you see monks on their alms runs, chanting beside a 7-11. Street stalls dot the road next to chain convenience stores.
Movie theaters, big box retail outlets, modern malls and all manner of creature comforts are available throughout Chiang Mai. But a 10 minute motorbike ride brings you to sleepy Thai villages where locals adopt a slower, relaxed pace of live versus the hustle and bustle of the city.
Why Visit Chiang Mai Thailand?
Have you visited Chiang Mai?
Did you enjoy your trip?
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