Wednesday, 6 February 2019

Things I Did In Chiang Mai & Things I Wish I Did

Chiang Mai is a beautiful, vibrant, colourful city in the mountainous Thailand. Although I loved my time in Chiang Mai, I didn’t get to do everything that I wanted. I was about to move onto Vietnam to meet my boyfriend, he was flying out to see me on his travels. We had many activities planned, which cost money, so I had to tighten my purse strings whilst in Chiang Mai.

So, instead of just writing a post about what I got up to, I thought it would be better if I included things that I wish I could have done as well. 

Things I did….

Walked Around Old Quarter

One of my favourite things to do in a new city is just walk around and get a little lost. Luckily for poor old me, just walking around the old town was fun. Everywhere is bright and colourful, the people are friendly, and I even stumbled upon some back streets full of street art.

Ate All The Food

Chiang Mai has somany restaurants, I was spoilt for choice. I tried to hit as many goods one as possible. I recently wrote 6 of the places I managed to get to. If you’re veggie you’re in luck, there are a tonne of veggie/vegan choices too.

Visited Temples

There are a lot of temples you can visit in and around Chiang Mai. I only visited those within the old town, such as Wat Chedi Luang and Wat Suan Dok, so I didn’t have to pay for travel anywhere.  I didn’t make it to Wat Phra Singh, but it’s supposed to be beautiful. There are also a few further afield that are worth a visit.

Talked To A Monk

A few of the temples provide the opportunity to talk to a monk, completely for free. I was umming and erring whether to do it, then I stumbled upon them at Wat Chedi Luang. I made eye contact and a young monk waved me over, so I thought why not. I asked them about their day and what they liked to do. They asked me about my travels and what my preconceptions of monks were. They run the programmes to help the monks to learn English, so they ask everyone who visits to speak only in English. 

Headed To Buak Hard Public Park

I was looking for something to do for a couple of hours before the sun set, and I saw that there was a park in the old quarter. I tend to look for parks when I stay in busy cities, it’s good to get back to nature. People were doing yoga, working out, feeding the fish and just chilling on the grass with friends, it was lovely. I bumped into a girl I met in Ayutthaya and she had just finished the yoga, apparently someone runs it for free every Sunday. Wish I’d have known!

Took The Minibus To Pai

Pai is a common destination for people staying in Chiang Mai to go to. It’s a few hours and 762 turns on the road away, but it is definitely worth a visit. Pai is a very small town with bohemian and hippy vibes all around. Just remember, although it’s hot during the day it gets colder at night.

Weekend Market

I almost missed this. One night I walked out of my hostel to hunt for food and around the corner I stumbled upon the massive and impressive night markets. They are absolutely huge and sell everything, including magnets, paintings, purses, bags, ornaments, toys, fruit shakes, pad thai, waffles, dresses, tops, jewellery. There are lights dangling between each stall, lighting your way around the many streets it covers.

Things I wish I did….

Cooking Class

Chiang Mai is well known for its cooking classes, and I so wish I could have done one. There are plenty to choose from online or many hostels/hotels can arrange it for you. I was so tempted to blow caution to the winds and book onto one, budgets be damned, but I resisted at the last minute.

Elephant Sanctuary

Please do not ride elephants in Thailand, or any other country. Instead, visit a much more animal friendly sanctuary. There are lots in Thailand, you need to make sure you do your research beforehand to make sure they’re cruelty free. I went to one in Kanchanburi a couple of years ago, so I missed visiting the one near Chiang Mai.


A couple of people I met went trekking in some of the national parks around Chiang Mai and they really enjoyed it. I wish I could have gone to one myself, they sounded fun. And I wouldn’t mind chilling at a waterfall for a while.

Chiang Rai

Chiang Rai is a city not far from Chiang Mai, and it is home to some really beautiful temples. Wat Rong Khun, also known as the white temple, especially looks like it’s worth a visit. 

I would recommend people traveling around Thailand to make a stop in Chiang Mai if they have the time. There is a lot to do, eat and see, so you’ll always be entertained. Have you been before?

Check out my Instagram to check out my instastories from my time there, and all of my other travel posts are linked here


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