20 Things to do in Chiang Mai, Thailand Travel Guide

20 Things to do in Chiang Mai, Thailand Travel Guide


Today we’re taking you around a city that
we’ve been to many times before: Chiang Mai (เชียงใหม่). Located in the heart of Northern Thailand,
Chiang Mai is a growing city with laid back vibes, temples sprinkled around every corner,
and a foodie scene that will make you drool. This is a destination where you come to unwind
and that’s exactly what we did during our month long visit. Now let’s get started with this tour of
Chiang Mai (เชียงใหม่) so you can see what this city is all about: So this morning we’re going to visit Wat Srisuphan
better known as the Silver Temple and I have to say this is probably my favorite temple
in all of Chiang Mai (清迈). It is quite underrated and it is also located
outside of the walled city so very few people actually make it here. And it is just so incredibly ornate. Like I need to show you the details for you
to see what this place is like but it is pretty cool. It is amazing actually. The temple is located in the city’s silversmith
district, so its walls are covered in silver, nickel and aluminium panels created by the
local craftsmen. One thing to keep in mind is that only men
can enter the ordination hall, so ladies, you’ll have to enjoy this one from the outside. So Sam, what did you think of the Silver Temple? It was amazing. I love that it is so close to where we are
staying and also it is probably one of the most underrated temples in Chiang Mai (เชียงใหม่). Like we were literally the only people there. Yeah. Nobody else. Haha. So next up we’re visiting Wat Chedi Luang
(วัดเจดีย์หลวง) which is probably the best known temple in
all of Chiang Mai (清迈). It is located in the old city like right smack
dab in the middle and what makes this temple pretty special is that it used to house the
Emerald Buddha that is now in Bangkok. And we actually visited that a few weeks ago
so it was pretty cool. Um, now they have a buddha made out of a black
stone here instead. But it is really hard to see because it is
located kind of like in there. In there. Haha. And you can’t actually climb the stairs so
it is really hard to make it out. What did you think of Wat Chedi Luang (วัดเจดีย์หลวง)? It is a pretty impressive temple. Uh, it is definitely worth the 40 Baht admission. Yeah. Our biggest tip is to come early in the morning
and you get that nice soft light that is bouncing off of the old ruins. So next up we’re visiting Wat Phra Singh (วัดพระสิงห์วรมหาวิหาร)
and there is so much gold happening here that it is almost a little bit blinding. The sun is really hitting it at the right
angle from the other side. So I’m going to show you this. Seriously. It is like glowing. It is glowing. So Sam? have you ever seen this much gold
this much bling bling in your life? No and we picked the perfect time to come
here because of the way the sun is reflecting off it. Yeah. You know what? I just picked up these gold sunglasses. Woo hoo. Finally. Bye bye blue raybans. I’m dressed for the occasion. One of the best things you can do in Chiang
Mai is ditch the map and get lost inside the old city. It’s along the quiet back lanes that you’ll
find cozy cafes, terracotta gardens, unvisited temples, and a little flavour of the old Chiang
Mai (เชียงใหม่). So Chiang Mai has really grown and expanded
over the last few years and sometimes traffic can be a little bit crazy, a little bit overwhelming
but one thing we really enjoy is wandering around inside the moat. Inside the old city because sometimes when
you turn down the right Soi it almost feels like Chiang Mai is still a little village
and it is so quiet and peaceful until a scooter comes zooming past and honks at you to move
out of the way. Exactly. Then the spell is broken. RIght now we’re visiting Chiang Mai Park and
I have to say this is one of my favorite places in all of Chiang Mai (清迈). I get up almost every morning and go for a
jog here. So this is kind of my happy place. But it is just a great park for relaxing,
recreation, you can also come here and just lie on straw mats or get a massage. Yes, there is a great place to get a Thai
massage and in the morning it is not busy at all. There is just a few joggers out like me but
if you come in the late afternoon just before sunset that is when it is packed. That is when it is full of people out enjoying
the sun. The last few hours of sun in Chiang Mai. Also known as Nong Buak Haad, this park is
located in the southwest end of the walled city, and is a nice escape from the busy streets. So right now we’re in the Chiang Mai market
and this is a very lively area. In the mornings you have kind of like a clothes
flea market happening and they also have some stands for breakfast and then when you come
at night it is all street food so you can get noodles, soups, dumplings, shakes and
also right behind me you have the covered market area which is basically open all day
long but it is particularly busy in the mornings so we’re going to show you that next. If you’re looking for cheap yet delicious
street food, you can’t go wrong with the stalls at Chiang Mai Gate. We’ve had everything from wonton soup to
green papaya salad, but we had a bit of a sweet tooth on this particular outing. So this dish is a classic. Yep. We get it every time we’re at a Thai street
food market. We sure do. And it is the banana chocolate pancake. The banana chocolate roti. Thai roti. But but there is a but. We found one with raisins. Raisins! I’ve never seen that as an option. Yeah, that is a first. And I’m like yeah! Yeah. So of course. Who wouldn’t want raisins? Alright, so this is kind of like a pancake. It was fried in oil and then butter and it
has chocolate sauce drizzled all over it. This place is so good. We actually ate at that same vendor probably
like three or four years ago in Chiang Mai (เชียงใหม่). Yeah. Still just as good and the addition of raisins
is really nice. Oh lah lah. And extra little bit of a chewy sweetness. How much did you pay? Oh, it was 45 but I think you can get one
of the other ones for about 30 or 35 so it is roughly one US dollar or slightly a little
bit more. They do mango sticky rice over there. Ooh mango sticky rice. Yeah. So is that what we’re going for. I think we might. Okay. So no surprise here. Does anybody want to venture a guess at what
we’re having for dessert? Mmmmm. Mango sticky rice of course! We always go for the same thing but it is
just so good and I’m kind of addicted to this. And it is basically our last night in Thailand
(ราชอาณาจักรไทย) for a while. Yeah. So yep. We will dig in. Yeah, so we’ve got some sticky rice. The lady put a whole mango in here. We’ve got a lot of ripe mango. That was awesome. Yeah. And lots of coconut milk doused over top. Yeah. Why am I struggling with this. Normally you don’t get a whole mango. Usually you get like a half of one. So they were pretty generous. Mmmmm. Is that good? That is really good. You know what? I wish he had put like more coconut milk. I can never get enough of that. I know what you mean. It is so sweet and so good. That is so so good. But this is nice. And it was 60 Baht. So less than 2 US bucks. A dollar something. Pretty good value I’d say. So next up we have something called Kanom
Krock. Apparently. We just learned the name. So as you can probably tell we’re just basically
going for dessert tonight. Yes. Here in Chiang Mai (清邁). Just sugar. And these are kind of like coconut milk pancakes. They are miniature pancakes. Yeah. And it is kind of dark so it is hard to show
the detail but they’re just like mini-pancakes made with coconut milk and Sam got the pumpkin
kind. Really really crispy on the outside but then
like really milky and coconut milky on the inside. Ooh. Really sweet, really tasty. You want to hold one up? Yeah sure. I just dropped my stick. Dropping cutlery. Oh my gosh this is way too hot to hold. I can’t do it. Sorry. I’m sorry. Then you have the famed Saturday Night Market
along Wualai Road. We were kind of shocked by how crowded and
busy it has become – we were walking shoulder to shoulder and it wasn’t very pleasant
– so if you want to pick up souvenirs or sample some street food here, it’s best to go in
the afternoon before things get crazy. If there’s one dish that’s synonymous
with Northern Thailand, it’s khao soi (ข้าวซอย). This dish is made with both soft egg noodles
and crispy egg noodles, and it has a rich curry and coconut soup that is delicious. Squeeze a bit of lime on top and you’re
set! And if Thai food is your thing, you’ll be
happy to know that there are lots of cooking classes available in the city and out in the
countryside. This is a great way to take some of your favourite
Thai recipes back home with you. Going back to a bit of temple hopping, you
can also visit Wat Umong, which is spread out across a series of tunnels; Wat Pha Lat,
which is tucked in the jungle and feels like a bit of secret; and Wat Chedi Liam, which
sits in the ancient city of Wiang Kum Kam. If you’re looking for a fun day trip outside
of Chiang Mai, we’d recommend going to the Elephant Nature Park. This is a rescue centre and sanctuary where
former working elephants roam free. You’ll get to come face to face with elephants,
feed them fresh fruit, and even bathe them in the river. Now going back to food, again, one of the
things we like about Chiang Mai (清邁) is the restaurant scene. If we had to recommend a few of our favourites
we’d say: Salad Concept for healthy-build-it-yourself wraps, Baan Bakery for when you’re craving
French baked goods, and Dada Kafe for shakes! You need to try the shakes, because this is
the stuff we dream of when we’re thousands of miles away. Peanut butter lover! He’s a peanut butter lover. How good is that? Very. Very good. You can taste the crunchy peanut butter and
there is cinnamon. And it is natural peanut butter. The real deal. Dada Kafe has some of the best shakes you’re
going to have in Chiang Mai (เชียงใหม่). I’m having mango, coconut and banana. It is a life changing experience. It is called Energy Me. Energy me. We also really like Dash, which serves up
tasty Thai food and is always packed, especially at night! Okay so for a fancy meal in Chiang Mai one
of our favorite places is Dash. And the restaurant behind me is set in a Lanna
style teakhouse so it is pretty cool especially if you come here at night. Yeah. So at night it is all lit up and you can actually
go up to the second floor and you can feel the breeze blowing in and it is just really
relaxed. Really scenic. So we really like it here. We are purposely here in the middle of the
afternoon at like three thirty so that is why no one is around but we wanted to get
a table and not make a reservation. So we’ve placed our order. Now we’re waiting for food. Cooling down. You know what? For late January in Chiang Mai this is the
hottest I’ve ever experienced. So these mango smoothies are essential this
time of year. You know it doesn’t help that you’re looking
all furry like a bear. That is probably holding in the temperature. Wolverine in Chiang Mai. So I’m trying a dish that I only discovered
recently. If you take a look here this is called Swimming
Ramma and it is a peanut curry. We got it with tofu so it is really tasty
and it is served on a bed of morning glory. Yeah, we tried this for the first time about
a week ago. It looks really nice. Yeah, like I don’t know if this is actually
an authentic Thai dish or if it is just an invention they have at this restaurant. Any which way it is good. Mmmm. It is just so peanut-y. I’ve been missing peanut butter. So this is like as close as I’m going to get. Ticking off a lot of boxes here. Alright, so Chiang Mai is a city where it
really comes alive at night. It is worth just wandering around and seeing
what is going on. There is always something happening at Thapae
Gate though. And that is where we are right now. Music playing. As you’ve probably figured out, we’re
not really into nightlife, but Chiang Mai does have lots of bars where you can enjoy
a drink or two. We kept things light with a Chang beer. Alright, man on a mission. Man on a mission. So we’re going to go check out the nightlife
in Chiang Mai (เชียงใหม่) and there are a lot of different options you
can consider. But we’re just going to take you to a little
local neighborhood pub. It is just around the corner from where we’re
staying. Let’s go check it out. Decompressing with a Changy Chang. Yeah. Changy Chang. Oh, that really tastes good when you’ve been
walking around the moat for quite a while like we have. As for transportation, the most economic way
to get around is by songthaew (สองแถว). These red trucks can be seen zigzagging all
over the city. You just have to hail one, and if they’re
going your way, they’ll let you to hop in. So this is a really exciting moment for us. We are along in a Songthaew (สองแถว). And this is the most. Haha. Yeah, it is almost like our own private taxi. This is the most local type of transportation
you can take in Chiang Mai. It is just an amazing way to get around the
city. We use it almost daily whenever we’re going
somewhere that we can’t walk to. And the cool thing is you just hail it down. You hail it down, you tell the driver where
you’re going, you hop in the back of the truck and then when you’re finished
you go and pay the driver and it is usually 20 to 30 Baht. So you’re talking less than $1 US dollar. And that’s a wrap for our visit to Chiang
Mai, Thailand (ราชอาณาจักรไทย). We hope this video gave you a little taste
of what this city is all about. We’ll be the first to tell you that we barely
scratched the surface in terms of everything Chiang Mai has to offer, but that being said,
the goal of our time here was to relax, eat well, see friends, and catch up on work. As always, if you have any other suggestions
of things to do, places to visit, and restaurants to eat at, feel free to share those with fellow
travellers in the comments below. Until next time!

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