For authentic, good value and delicious food, head to the top floor of the Chiang Mai Airport Plaza. There's an excellent food court where you can get light meals freshly cooked for 30-50 THB ($1-$2) in addition to a range of quality restaurants which are very popular with the locals. Most tourists eat around the night bazaar or downtown but the food is more authentic and it's much better value where the locals eat - at the Airport Plaza.
We paid 700 Baht (£14) for a four-hour evening class from 4.30pm which is plenty of time and doubles up as your evening meal. The school is based in the centre of town and you walk to a local market to look around and learn about ingredients such as herbs and vegetables. It feels as if you are cooking in someone’s home as it is very informal and also not a modern building with immaculate surroundings so don’t expect spotless new classroom facilities but there is enough equipment to go round so you’re always involved. Our session was split into two groups of about eight students. We were given an apron but a word of warning, wear socks as you remove your shoes on entering the house and hot oil splashing out of a wok hurts when it lands on your bare feet! Health and safety is perhaps not the main priority as you are given a big knife to work with and aren’t ever told to wash your hands before handling the fresh ingredients so I just made sure to pop to the sink between courses. We each chose which four dishes to cook from the menu and my husband and I chose different options to give us a wider repertoire and more to taste although you are given a good colour cookbook with all the recipes anyway. We made starters of spring rolls and fish cakes, a soup, a stir fry and a curry including fresh paste. You each make a portion for one then return to the dining table after making each course and eat together with the group which is sociable and gives you the chance to try other dishes. Some of the prep is done in advance by the staff but you still chop vegetables and herbs and learn how to assemble each dish following step-by-step instructions from the tutor. It is easy and really just cooking-by-numbers and requires no skill or experience. The teachers are doing a job and obviously run through the same process repeatedly so it’s not a labour of love and they don’t have an obvious passion for food or desire to share more knowledge about the dishes but it is a fun activity more than a serious learning exercise. We hope the authentic ingredients are available to buy in the UK so that we can recreate the Thai meal and show off to friends and family. The food did taste delicious and the class was an enjoyable way to spend an evening.
What a breath of fresh air this place is, a really laid back, cool and hassle free bar in the pulsating heart of the Chiang Mai city.
Designed by renowned UK designer 'Simon somebody' (sorry I forgot his surname) The What Bar is super easy to relax and unwind in.
As a play on words, The What takes its name from The Thai word for Temple (Wat) and like a temple to cool, it welcomes travelers and expats in to the warmth of its embrace.
The food is excellent, the atmosphere tolerant and arty, it really is worth stopping in for a meal or one of its famous pool tournaments. I highly recommend checking this place out if you are within 50 km of Chiang Mai.
The What is located on Loy Kroh road, within walking distance of the Night Bazaar and Thapae Gate. Look for the sign which is a play on the symbol used by the UK band The Who.
Well worth a visit.
Take any Tuk Tuk to Loy Kroh road, 'The What' is located near the 7/11.
This is the first pub to open its doors in Chiang Mai and was voted one of the best bars in the world. It is an olde worlde English pub in the true tradition. Has a great selection of food and drinks including roast dinners on Sundays.
It recently had a makeover and extended the bar and the restaurant but has kept its old charm. There is also an outside area where you can sit and enjoy the tranquility of a tropical garden. And now has new bungalows added for those wishing to linger a while. A must to visit when in Chiang Mai.
On a recent trip to Thailand, I finally made my way north and on a visit to the night bazaar in Chiang Mai, I found a good English pub - the originally named Red Lion.
They had a great range of beers (Strongbow and Blackthorn Cider) and I was quite surprised that they had draught Kilkenny and Guinness. Despite that, I went for the local brew - Singha.
They had a big screen showing the Premiership and my team was on, so I was well happy. I love Thai food but after a week in Thailand I was ready for some old-fashioned English stodge. They had steaks, and the likes, but I tried the chicken pie and chips and I was not disappointed.
The staff were very friendly and the service was good. Well worth a visit.
Tuskers is a great pub and restaurant in Chiang Mai. I was recommended it by the Elephant Nature Park as they give a 10% donation to elephant conservation.
It is a huge place with a great open bar, big garden, pool room and a separate sports bar so something for everyone. I had a relaxing meal listening to music in the garden while a big crowd was watching rugby upstairs.
The food was excellent, they have a western and Thai menu and serve cocktails. The staff were very friendly and gave advice on where to go in Chiang Mai.
Really recommend highly!
Khao Soi is a speciality of northern Thailand. It's a rich curry soup with soft yellow noodles. Usually served with chicken, sometimes pork, it will be topped with crispy-fried noodles.
At my favourite place at the top of Rachamankha Road you get Khao Soi with a chicken drumstick for 30B.
Try it at a few places so you get a feel for the different variations. Don't order it in a 'restaurant' though - this dish is strictly street food!
ChefMoz lists restaurants, cafes and bars. You can browse for what you're looking for by cuisine, rating or location and then you can come back and provide a rating and review. Or you can upload new places you come across. It also links to selected reviews and online resources.
The sections for Chiang Mai, Bangkok and Phuket are the most active.
...and other cities in Southeast Asia
It is a bar/restaurant on Loi Kroh road, the menu is superb taste- and pricewise (i recommend the gammon steak, a bargain at 190 baht). The staff is Thai and Western friendly,which is standard in the entire country.
They have a big screen for football and a wide selection of beers (Thai and Western). This is the sister bar of the Queen Victoria which is on Propokklao road (bad location) and also a great place.
Near the end of Loi Kroh road, on the left if you are coming from the night bazar.
Run by the very friendly Yui in her house, you get picked up in the family camper van, taken round the local markets to buy ingredients and then taught to cook (and eat) a whole range of classic Thai dishes.
Courses are from half to 4 days (1 day course is 800 baht - £12) and are in small groups (max 8) and you also get given a recipe book so you can try it out when you get back home.
165 Soi 9 Lampoon Rd;
Tel: (66) 053 800724;
Everyone likes to do some bargain shopping. In Chiang Mai, the night market is almost a “must see” place. But, if you can, save all your shopping for the Sunday market. When I was there (January - April 2004), it operated almost every Sunday. It is open from noon to late night.
It's just outside the Thai Pat Gate. The Nerve Touch Massage Studio is near the Gate entrance. You will be surprised what you can buy there
The You Sabai is a guesthouse located in the heart of Chiang Mai. It has 8 comfortable, clean and affordable guesthouse rooms (150 – 250 Baht per night), a charming outdoor restaurant that serves up healthy authentic Thai dishes and western breakfast favourites, and assists with a wide variety of traveller arrangements.
Visitors staying at the You Sabai guesthouse can avail of free use of an open space to practice Thai massage, yoga, or to meditate in privacy.
I kept going back to the same Guest House in Chiang Mai because the people that owned it were really friendly, honest and fun. Now I am lucky enough to be good friends with them. And I wish to tell anyone that is going to Chiang Mai that they should call in and see for themselves.
A great place for a late breakfast. Very clean and friendly.
Wake up to the day with coffee, museli, yoghurt and a free newspaper. The vegetable and cheese omlettes are highly reccomended.
Thapae Gate (cross over the lights at the Art Cafe, turn right as if you where heading to the river and walk for 1 minute
Just off the night Bazaar in Chiang Mai, in the same square as O'Mally's Pub. There are strings of open restaurants - they are very cheap and serve excellent food. However be warned, if you attempt to walk through you will be jumped on by a hoard of waitresses that all belong to the first resturant which is not surprisingly, the most expensive with the poorest quality food.
Walk round to the second or any other for excellent customer service and envious looks from everyone that is stuck at the first one.
Aunsarn Market - open-air market of Thai restaurants and small shops. Anusarn Market is at the south end of the famous Night Bazaar on Chang Klan road
Trekking around Chiang Mai can work up a hunger, and here's a place to satisfy it. Not necessarily the best falafels outside Israel, but a pretty good bet for a lazy lunchtime in Chiang Mai. Mains from around 120 Baht
35/3 Moonmuang Road
Tel: +66 53 27 0208
Send your feedback or queries to firstname.lastname@example.org