Best Chiang Mai Highlights & Travel Tips

Today I want to tell you about our recent visit to a city in Thailand. The city I am talking about is Chiang Mai and it is located to the north of Thailand. This post is a summary to capture the Best Chiang Mai highlights and also travel tips in our recent visit. We’ve been there before but this time we had a little more time to soak up the area and really experience what it’s like in this city.

If you’re ever going to Thailand, you absolutely have to add Chiang Mai on your list there is so much beauty in this place (and not to mention it’s way cheaper compared to other places such as Bangkok or Phuket). Read here about our recent visit to Phuket.

best Chiang Mai Highlights



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So here is a list of the top 5 best Chiang Mai Highlights

Chiang Mai is filled with plenty of things to do, whether you’re a family, a group of friends, a couple or just backpacking by yourself. These top 5 bucket list things to do, is what I’m recommending you could do but you’re free to mix and match with other things I may have not mentioned.

1. Enjoy the City

Chiang Mai Highlights

Enjoy the City

Chiang Mai is filled with beautiful artwork, scenery and temples. There is plenty of ways to get around, Ashley and I got around with tuk-tuks (which only cost 100 Baht typically). We did walk about on some days and that gave us the opportunity to get familiar with our surroundings. The weather is generally hot, so slap on some sunscreen before you hit the road.

2. Maya Shopping Mall

Chiang Mai Highlights

Maya Shopping Mall

If you feel like having some restaurant quality food or just want to do some shopping for some new shoes, find a new suitcase (as in my case) or want to see a cinema movie then head to Maya Shopping Mall. It’s huge and sometimes they have night markets selling good food right outside. The locals seem to enjoy spending time with their families here and school kids come to hang out and kick back in this nice air-conditioned building.

3. Visit the Night Bazaar

Chiang Mai City Tour

Night Bazaar

While there on our first night we took a trip to the Night Bazaar. The photo above is of all the food stalls with the main selection of choices being Thai food. There are other stalls there such as a fruit juice stall, dessert stall, kebab stall and a burger joint. Food and drink are very cheap in this place you can expect the average price of food to be around 60 Baht for a full meal ( $1.80USD) so its a great place to feed a family of hungry campers.

best Chiang Mai Highlights

Before you get to the seated food stalls you see in the photo above, there are people selling street food on the main road along with stalls selling fake branded shoes, clothes, underwear and some non-branded electronic things such as Bluetooth speakers, headphones, USB cables, chargers and more…

4. Thai Cooking Class

5 Bucket List Things to do in Chiang Mai

Thai Cooking Class

If you love cooking (especially Thai food) then this is the activity to do, our cooking class was a morning cooking class which saw us do about 6 courses – I prepared;

  • Green Curry Paste;
  • Green Curry;
  • Boiled Rice with Pork;
  • Deep Fried Spring Roll;
  • Pad Thai; and
  • Mango Sticky Rice Dessert.

The class was great, I learnt a great deal about what vegetables and condiments Thai people use in their food. To top it off I got a free cookbook with all the other recipes. The class itself was only 900 Baht ($28 USD) so it didn’t really break the bank.

5. Phae Gate Market (Sunday Markets)

5 Bucket List Things to do in Chiang Mai

Phae Gate Market

Another favourite of my Chiang Mai Highlights the Phau Gate Market. We have been to many markets in Chiang Mai but after a while, you get the feel of them all (mainly gadgets, fake brand shoes and underwear etc).

However, we discovered one market that was on Sunday evening called the Chiang Mai Sunday Markets near the Phae Gate. Find out where exactly it is here.

This market is dedicated to the artistic/crafty type of people. They hand make bags, Thai wrap skirts (good for the woman to wear at temples), bags, wallets, candles, soaps or even paintings.

I loved the vibe this market gave, it felt more authentic than your typical street market. I highly recommend checking this area out if you’re in Chiang Mai on Sundays.

If you’re planning to stay in Chiang Mai for a week or more I suggest using to find a place you may like. My Fiance and I used a website called to find a place that we liked there are many benefits to using them for booking accommodation.

best Chiang Mai Highlights

So that is the 5 Best Chiang Mai Travel Tips

Chiang Mai is a very nice place and it’s actually less packed with tourists compared to Bangkok. My favourite experience of Chiang Mai was actually just walking around the city and enjoying the scenery.

If you have some Chiang Mai Highlights why not share them in the comments below! I’d love to hear where you have been and what you got up to.

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Marco B @ Bottom Line Cents

Marco is the founder of Bottom Line Cents, a blog about travel and personal finance. He primarily talks about ways to make money online with side income. He has paid off over $40,000 in student debt due to his side gigs and his thriving nature to succeed.