Chiang Mai tips

Chiang Mai tips

So many friends ask me for tips for Chiang Mai, so I made this list of things I love doing when I’m there. It’s work in progress, let’s say that 50% is here, but there are many many things I must add later. But to start, I hope it helps. I’ll have to make a separate one for the islands, Koh Phangan is my favorite but Koh Samui has a special place in my heart, too. Koh Phiphi of course is a must see for a few days, but not to live, in my opinion. If you want diving, you must include Koh Tao.

Chiang Mai is one of my favorites cities in the whole world. So much variety, quality of life, low costs, massages, rich food and amazing people from all over. I lived there for over a year, 3 to 6 months at a time and it’s always very hard to leave. I try to go back every year for a couple of months cause I learn so much when I’m there and I cure myself with massage and meditation.

Most of the places I mentioned are in google maps, so you can find it easily. Have fun!!

– Schedule a 2 hour massage with Mr Sinchai,   its super cheap so don’t forget to give him a fat tip cause he deserves it. He is 73 years old, blind and one of the best masseuse in Chiang Mai. He worked for decades in the hospital curing injured people with his massage.   This is the location of his house where he gives the massages and also courses.  Address: Pa Daet, Mueang Chiang Mai District, Chiang Mai, Thailand

Phone:+66 86 924 3210

– Visit the Huay Tung Tao Lake and have a beer in one of their huts by the lake. You can also eat there. But on weekends after 12pm they are all taken, so go early or after 4pm.

– Wat Lok Moli is one of my favorite temples in town, simple and beautiful. But there are hundreds and hundreds of temples, some of the ones in old town are amazing, too.

– Get lost inside old town. By foot, by bike, but do get lost. You’ll find precious gems in various corners.

– Doi Suthep is one of the biggest temples, amazing drive up there, you can also hike there if you’re in the mood for some exercise. At 6pm they have the little monks singing, which is a must see.

– Visit Maya Mall, after 4pm there is a huge terrace with many bars that have a great view of the city and the hills that surround it.

– Make sure you go to the lower floor of the Mall and checkout their food court with many cheap tasty options and visit my favorite supermarket that has great variety of local food and the best wine variety you can find.

– Also visit CAMP, the 24 hour cafe on the upper floor of the Mall where many students and digital nomads gather to work or study. Buy yourself a a sim card from AIS internet so you can enjoy their amazing super wifi that reaches more than 200 in speed. They have a store inside the mall and the sim card is cheap. Ask them for your user name and password for the AIS Super wifi and they’ll give it to you, then you can go to CAMP and you don’t even have to consume anything if you don’t want to because you already have your own internet card.

– Rent your scooter with  my friend Jake. He is great and super trustful. This is his whatsapp, tell him you’re Mari Pimenta’s friend and give him a hug for me. +66835740939. Also visit his store, they have very nice gifts.

– Canyon is a cliff that we love to jump, although last time I was in Chiang Mai I noticed it’s totally touristy, they are charging and make you wear life jackets. Which I guess is safer because some people have died there from cramps or jumping drunk. It’s super fun and even if you don’t want to jump, you can just go hangout, eat there, sunbathe near the water and enjoy the amazing views. If you put “canyon” in google maps you’ll find it.

– Go to North Gate Jazz bar on tuesday evenings, they have an open mic. Check this interview I did with Pharadon, the founder and owner of the bar. Who also owns other cool places in town and has an amazing project to plant trees.

– Happy Elephant is one of the best elephant companies to go because they apparently take care of their elephants by not allowing people to ride their elephants. You can feed them, swim with them, walk around, eat there. Take the half day tour, it’s enough.  If you see any company that allows you to do that, they are not respecting the animals.

– North of old town, near Chang Phuak Gate, at night, there is a night fair, every night, where they serve pork meat with vegetables. You must try it! It’s delicious!

– Along Ping river, there are many restaurants and cafes with a river view

Ginger House restaurant is very nice, probably the best restaurant decor in Chiang Mai I saw. Their food is good and the prices  super fair. Don’t forget to book your table during high season.

Small House Cafe is my favorite pub where all the expats hangout.

– Right next to it, you can find my favorite local restaurant, where I eat lunch every day. it’s called “TAM jai sung” and it’s in one of my favorite neighborhoods in Chiang Mai, where I lived for a long time. The owners are from Myanmar and China and although they don’t speak English, they are very sweet, always.

– have breakfast at my favorite vegetarian place. I mean, they serve all meals and it’s great to work from there, too

– My coworking in Chiang Mai is PUNSPACE. They have two units, I always used the Nimann one cause it was closer to my house. Even if you’re not planning to work from chiang mai, it’s worth getting a one day pass (when it’s high season they don’t sell these) to see the digital nomad scene working 24 hours from there. And meet some cool people around.

– If you’re there around January or February go to the Nomad Summit, it’s a really cool conference for Digital Nomads and Johny is the one who makes it happen. I interviewed him for my podcast on “exciting careers” but still haven’t managed to publish the interview. So ashamed of myself…

– If you’re planning to stay longer, you should totally join the Entrepreneurial Women of Chiang Mai group. My friend Barbara is the founder of the group and one of my best friends in chiang mai.

– If you’re interested in the startup scene, go checkout IGLU, they do amazing work, employ hundreds of digital entrepreneurs and Ozzi, their founder gave me this amazing interview where he tells his story and how he managed to show the immigration minister of thailand to approve a business visa for this kind of people, like us, digital entrepreneurs.

– Go to PAI, a village 3 hours by van from Chiang Mai. You can book the vans by phone or just go to the bus station and there are many there, they leave every hour. Pai deserves a whole new article with tips but …. once you get there make sure you go check the Buddha

– If you get tired of thai food, go to Salsa Kitchen, my favorite mexican. Great food and atmosphere at night!

– If you’re a girl and you need some waxing i found the best one and probably one of the cheapest and yes I did have a brazillian wax. Robyn Beauty and Barber. Moon Muang Road Soi 8. moblie number is 0831521971

– Some interesting articles/links/FB pictures  on Chiang mai and Thailand

– loy khratong – festival of lights

some pictures in a FB post

 article forbes on chiang mai

video on chiang mai

– why I went to Thailand to start with

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