Chiang mai is one of the northern cities in thailand known as ” the rose of the North”
It is located at 700 Kms from Bangkok at the bank of Ping river.It is founded in 1296 by King Mengrai as the capital of Lanna kingdom so no wonder that this city is rich in culture and architecture dated in history.
City Attractions: Chiang Mai is known for its natural beauty and several buddhist temples named as Wat( temple) such as Wat Phra Sing, Wat suan Dok and Wat Chedi Luang.
How to get there: You can take a domestic plane from Bangkok which normaly costs between 3000 to 5000 BHT.the journey takes about 1 hour. You always can find better deals by buying your air ticket in advance. ( visit: www.airasia.com or www.thaiairways.com)
you also can take a bus from bkk the bus terminal on Kamphaeng Phet II road.
also visit( www.transport.co.th) the journey takes about 10 hours.
You also can take a train ( visit www.railway.co.th).
where to stay: You can stay in one of the relatively cheap hotels in the city or rent a guest house the hotels are from 600 BHT which may also have a swiming pool and a fridge.
you can book your hotel in advance or when you reach at chiang mai airport or through many travel agents in the city.
a taxi to the city normaly takes 60 BHT and a 50 BHT extra for the airport charge but the journey back on a took took takes about 80 BHT.
if you come in a group you can get a van which 6-8 ppl can fit in.
in a took took normaly only 2 can fit and if you have more than 2 luggage maybe only one person.
through out the city there are cars which are shared taxis which normaly charge 20 BHT for a cewrtain distance but you also can get a map and walk throughout the city because the city center is quite small and convinent to walk.
you may get a bit confused by the one way streets and the mot.keep in mind that there is a square shape mot all around the city center which you can locate your self easily by taking a free map from any hotel or travel agent shop.
what to do : the first advice is to get familiar with the directions and get a map then depends on your time and budget and ofcourse your interest you can enjoy a variety of functions in CM.
you can wake up early in the morning visit the flower market at the bank of the Ping river. Go down to the post office at the corner if the intersection is the chiang mai tourist information office.
I always get temptated to send a post card to my friends when ever i see a post office. you can buy a post card 6 BHT and put a 15 BHT stamp to any part of the world.
going down the road to the south at the bank of the ping river there are some bars and resturants all around and some ancient lanna style houses which you can take pictures and keep in your phot album.you can walk down to the chedi hotel and the
french ecole on the left and Alliance francasie on your right. furthur down on your left side there is a temple named chaimongkol where you can see poeple feeding pigons and release birds and letsmall turpines to the water.
You may like to take a boat ride over the ping river it will take 2 hours and you shall be minimum 2 people.you may also visit few places on the way : local farmer’s house, fresh fruit garden and rural greenery.
( for more info check: www.maepingrivercruise.com also call 053-274822) you may take the cruise for night time also.
paralel to the road i just described ( Charoen Prathet and Charoenrat rd.)is changkiang road which the Cm night market is located there. the market starts shortly after 7 and is alive throughout the nigth until midnight.
you can experience the thai foot,neck and back massage at the rate of 150 BHT/hour at the night market.Do nt worry! You dont have to take out your cloths!
at nigth market you can find good deals for thai sovenier bags and silk scarfs, lamps,purses and … You may need to bargain sometimes.
If you are advanterous dont forget to taste real thai Tom Yam Soup on a steam boat. It may be too spicy but worth trying.
there are many sea food resturants at night market.for those who are so conservatrive maybe you can find a delicious meal at one of the italina resturants or go to Mac Donauld just few blocks away from the CM Night market.
If you like to do shopping you can either buy from many night and morning bazars in the city or go to one of the shopping malls.there is one at the north-west corner of the mot called Kas swan Kaew.you also may like to visit the brand out let shop down Changkalun road just after
Shangri -La hotel to the south on your left side.There is one computer Mall just near night market.
Some USefull Thai words and sentences: hello : Sa-wat -dee-jao ( sa-wat dee kap ( guys) sa-wat-dee ( ka)gals.)
Thank you : Khob -Koon-jao How much :Tao dai jao very good: Dee-tae – tae-jao chicken : gai