TheLoneRider
a nomad in search of...
Chiang Mai, Thailand

CHIANG MAI

Chiang Mai, Thailand

Chiang Mai is a sprawling mountain city with the backpacker areas scattered within the Old City where remains of 30 ancient temples were preserved. The city is more laid back and placid compared to Bangkok - but a vibrant city nonetheless! The most animated time to come is in mid-April for the Songkran Festival - and be prepared to get wet for 3 days! The Night Bazaar is an experience...get lost inside equipped with good bargaining skills. Walk into different neighborhoods and discover a great eating place! Chiang Mai is also the gateway to Thailand's north - Chiang Rai, Pai, the Golden Triangle, etc.

Chiang Mai, Thailand events !!!

Kundalini Yoga, Chiang Mai, Thailand

Ecstatic Dance, Chiang Mai, Thailand

learning Thai, Chiang Mai, Thailand

Chiang Mai Blogs by TheLoneRider

Learning Thai with Cee teaching

Learning Thai with Cee

(Oct 13, 2019) Learning Thai from a white guy? Yes, and it couldn't be better. Cee knows and speaks Thai by heart with even a local accent. But as a fluent English speaker, he can articulate the nuances of the Thai language and answer our questions in a way a Thai teacher (with limited English) cannot...more »»

Movie Review: Joker (2019) movies

Movie Review: Joker (2019)

(Oct 8, 2019) After Heath Ledger's benchmark-busting portrayal of the Joker, what actor in his right mind would attempt to fill-in those unfathomable shoes? Who is he who dare say he is worthy? Joaquim Phoenix? Let's see if he measures up....more »»

20 Essential Mudras by T. Krishnamacharya yoga

20 Essential Mudras by T. Krishnamacharya

(Oct. 6, 2019) T. Krishnamacharya, the father of modern yoga, prescribes 20 essential mudras consisting of hand, head, postural, lock and perineal positions to ward-off disease and clear the energy channels.....more »»

The Mudra Project meditation

The Mudra Project

(Sep 13, 2019) Mudras are hand/finger gestures designed to balance the energy flow within the body. The 5 fingers represent the 5 elements within the body - fire, air, sky, earth and water. Any imbalance within the 5 cause dis-ease. The many ways fingers touch each other in mudras help in restoring balance and healing the body, mind and spirit.....more »»

Movie Review: Hail Satan? (2019) movies

Movie Review: Hail Satan? (2019)

(Sep 29, 2019) This documentary is about the growing cult of the Satan Temple in the US. The members, mostly outsiders who function on the fringes of society, engage in public fornication and other attention-catching activities, to call attention to their cause, but largely to call attention to themselves. In my humble opinion, the movie is a good fyi, but the temple members are a complete joke.....more »»

Visa-Run to Tachileik, Myanmar traveling

Visa-Run to Tachileik, Myanmar

(Sep 28, 2019) It's that recurring episode again - the visa-run. Where to go? What if I get denied entry? Worse, what if I'm blacklisted? My last visa-run to Hanoi proved difficult and there was no reprieve on the horizon as far as Thai Immigration was concerned.....more »»

Movie Review: Ad Astra (2019) movies

Movie Review: Ad Astra (2019)

(Sep 25, 2019) Ad Astra is a spacey movie, both literally and figuratively. It has a subdued, solemn and introspective feel in its entirety. Brad Pitt under-acted superbly as he took us inside his head for most of the movie's narrative. The movie was remiscent of an iconic classic, 2001 A Space Odessey. Watch it!....more »»

Eye-Gazing at Heart Space cc

Eye-Gazing at Heart Space

(Sep 20, 2019) I was first told that you can fall in love just by eye-gazing. Really? That got my attention. When I attended Gab's Cacao Ceremony with a brief eye-gazing moment, it got me uncomfortable. It was too intimate. Now, I get to finally do the real thing.....more »»

Vayu (Pranic Wind) yoga

Vayu (Pranic Wind)

(Sep 20, 2019) Vayu (or Prana Vayu) is not widely known in yoga, but I keep encountering this word as I do my readings in yoga and pranayama. It seems to be an energetic wind element that is both powerful and obscure. Time to roll up my sleeves and find out more about it.....more »»

2-Week Yoga Challenge by Agnese Erba yoga

2-Week Yoga Challenge by Agnese Erba

(Sep 17, 2019) Agnese just arrived in Chiang Mai with a 2-week time frame. What to do? Without missing a day, she initiated a 2-week daily yoga challenge at Nong Buak Hard Park for anyone interested in taking up the challenge. Whoa! What derring-do!...more »»

Sunday Vinyasa Flow with Marina Forster yoga

Sunday Vinyasa Flow with Marina Forster

(Sep 8, 2019) It was Marina's debut yoga teaching class. Definitely a big step in the right direction. Steeped in athletics and classroom teaching, she was fit and able to articulate clear instructions with a little chutzpah to wit....more »»

The Conscious Peoplescape of Chiang Mai peoplescape

The Conscious Peoplescape of Chiang Mai

(Aug 31, 2019) Returning from Hanoi from a visa-run, I resumed my life back in Chiang Mai and consequently take part in its shifting peoplescape...familiar faces, new ones and distant ones....more »»

The 9 Jhanas of Buddha meditation

The 9 Jhanas of Buddha

(Aug 22, 2019) The story has it that in Buddha's quest for enlightenment, he reached up to the 9th Jhana but still came short of liberation. This word Jhana kept coming up in my readings. Curious, I devoted quality reading time to learn more about Jhana.....more »»

Full Moon Ceremony at Heart Space meditation

Full Moon Ceremony at Heart Space

(Aug 15, 2019) The theme for this monthly ritual is to let go of everything that held us back and open ourselves in surrender to the bigger forces at play. The rite was done through sharing, chanting, fire ceremony with every participant in a highly interactive and safe space with no judgement.....more »»

Yin Yoga - Water Element by Martina Barabas yoga

Yin Yoga - Water Element by Martina Barabas

(Aug 15, 2019) Martina's Yin Yoga sank us into the pose in complete surrender, allowing ligaments and connective tissues to get a full stretch to restore a fuller range of motion. It was a perfect harmony of asana and meditation.....more »»

Hatha Mix Yoga with Christin yoga

Hatha Mix Yoga with Christin

(Aug 13, 2019) It was Christin's debut yoga class as a teacher, which was attended to by myself and Nadja. The threat of continuing rain detered others who would have joined. While she referred to her notes on a few occasions, her class was heartfelt and authentic. It was obvious she loved yoga and wanted to impart her practice and level-up her teaching...more »»

Boy Blues Bar Rocks Chiang Mai music

Boy Blues Bar Rocks Chiang Mai

(Aug 5, 2019) Frank, a street musician I met at yoga in the park suggested I check out a "Blues bar on the second floor of the Night Bazaar" on a Monday night for the open mic jam. That changed my life in Chiang Mai!....more »»

Back to my Beloved Chiang Mai traveling

Back to my Beloved Chiang Mai

(Aug 1, 2019) After a disruptive 5-day visa run to Hanoi, I'm glad to be back again at Nawa Saraan Hotel in my beloved Chiang Mai. As a seasoned traveler, I didn't think I'd feel this way about a place, but given a new lease on life I have here in Chiang Mai, it's one place I'd love to call home.....more »»

Kaleidoscope of Chiang Mai's Peoplescape people

Kaleidoscope of Chiang Mai's Peoplescape III

(July 27, 2019) As I continue my new lease on life here in beautiful Chiang Mai, I take ringside seat to a kaleidoscope of its wonderful denizens as we cross paths - some for the here-and-now, and hopefully, some for the long term.....more »»

Secret Sunrise: Water counter culture

Secret Sunrise: Water

(July 3, 2019) What makes Secret Sunrise special is for once, I am taken out of my head and into my heart - just feeling the freedom, feeling the good vibe and feeling good about everything. Here, there is no intellectualizing and no rationalizing. The clever mind is simply out of place. Thus, it takes a back seat and let the heart take its rightful place...more »»

Hotel Review: Arun Suite hotelreview

Hotel Review: Arun Suite

(June 27, 2019) Arun Suite just opened up and I'm the first guest in the room I've occupied. It's more like a well-appointed house with 3 bedrooms in a 3-storie building. It has a living room with flat screen tv, dining table, full kitchen and a sizeable outdoor bathtub. Every thing is new and functional.....more »»

Bruce Lipton: Epigentics to Transcend Genes people

Bruce Lipton: Epigentics to Transcend Genes

(June 24, 2019) Bruce Lipton is a stem cell biologist who discovered that we are not trapped within the limitation of our genes - contrary to conventional science. He proves through repeatable experiments that environment and our thinking can transcend our biology. This paradigm opens up the floodgates on how we can architecture not just our health, but reality itself.....more »»

Optimizing Life thru Heart Math quantummechanics

Optimizing Life thru Heart Math

(May 8, 15 and 22, 2019) I've always made decisions from an intellectual perspective, often times neglecting input from the heart. While I know I'm right, sometimes, it doesn't feel right. What am I missing? When Alan Strydom, coach trainer for Heart Math, invited me to try the Heart Math approach, I signed-up, curious to where it may take me......more »»

Connective Cacao and Sound Journey meditation

Connective Cacao and Sound Journey

(June 12, 2019) I first heard of a cacao ceremony in Ubud, Bali. I was curious but never had the chance. Here in Chiang Mai, Heart Space offers the ritual on a regular basis. Now, I finally get my chance to see what it's all about.....more »»

Chiangmai BLUES music

Chiangmai BLUES

(June 6, 2019) Chiang Mai is the 2nd largest city in Thailand so you would think there's more than a few guys playing Blues music. Maybe before. But now, only one guy is single-handedly taking care of the Blues scene here - Mai!....more »»

Hatha Slow Flow with Neil Jefferson yoga

Hatha Slow Flow with Neil Jefferson

(June 3, 2019) Neil's knowledge of anatomy became increasingly clear as we dived deeper into the stretches - no power asanas or Warriors or one-legged balancing asanas. Just carefully articulated slow flow, as Neil kneaded all our muscle groups as he inched his way into our bodies part by part, asana by asana...more »»

Meditating with One Million Meditators Movement meditation

Meditating with One Million Meditators Movement

(June 1, 2019) June 1 celebrates One Million Meditators Day that happens simultaneously across the planet. The goal is to have at least one million people meditate from the corner of the world as collective in shifting consciousness. Here in Chiang Mai, this event was hosted by Gabrielle Nagy of Heart Space.....more »»

Vinyasa Happy Flow Series by Vaida yoga

Vinyasa Happy Flow Series by Vaida

(May 31, 2019) Vaida is the newest teacher who came into Chiang Mai with her unique brand of yoga. As a fitness personal trainer with a dance background, she conducts her classes with unmistakable elements of fitness and dance...more »»

Muay Thai at the Chiang Mai Boxing Stadium traveling

Muay Thai at the Chiang Mai Boxing Stadium

(May 30, 2019) You simply cannot visit Chiang Mai and not see a Muay Thai fight. Muay Thai is simply part of Thai culture and a must-see for travelers. One venue close to Old City is the Chiang Mai Boxing Stadium where you see Muay Thai fighters deliver punches, elbows and knees....more »»

Yoga Flow Through the 7 Chakras yoga

Yoga Flow Through the 7 Chakras

(May 30, 2019) Sabrina has been conducting a series of yoga classes themed on the 7 chakras - or energy centers of the body. Both body and mind go into a Vinyasa flow underscoring the individual chakras from head to foot. She incorporates guided meditation and affirmation in the 90-minute practice.....more »»

The Outsiders people

The Outsiders

(people you need to push out of your sacred circle)

(May 31, 2019) The world is full of magnificent lives that have enriched my life - fascinating people who make up my peoplescape as I cover ground in my travels. As a general rule, everyone is a friend I haven't met yet. But inevitably, I also come across those who need to be pushed out of my sacred space to keep my peace and bliss...more »»

Fascinating Peoplescape of Chiang Mai II people

Fascinating Peoplescape of Chiang Mai II

(May 22, 2019) Chiang Mai's peoplescape continues to be shaped by people who come in and out of Chiang Mai, much like a revolving door. As old people leave, new ones come in, painting a vibrant picture of this wonderful place many call home.....more »»

World Meditation Day at Heart Space meditation

World Meditation Day at Heart Space

(May 21, 2019) Heart Space celebrated World Meditation Day by offering free meditation to the public. In attendance were people mostly from the Conscious community of Chiang Mai. Gabriella Nagi hosted the event and led the meditation instilling a profound sense of connection with everyone within the circle.....more »»

Abs Yoga yoga

Abs Yoga

(May 12, 2019) Core is widely coveted but seldom achieved. A well developed core is not only pretty on the beach, but also functional. I conducted my usual yoga practice into the class with more emphasis on a 360° core....more »»

Kundalini and Vinyasa Yoga with Nicola Symons yoga

Kundalini and Vinyasa Yoga with Nicola Symons

(May 10, 2019) Odd, but I only attended 2 classes by Nicola - Kundalini and Vinyasa. But those were enough to leave a lingering impression that reminded me of the rock star yoga teachers in Ubud, Bali. No, it's not about Hollywood but being up in your game to command the stage and be globally in demand.....more »»

Secret Sunrise Interactive Dance cc

Secret Sunrise Interactive Dance

(May 9, 2019) Secret Sunrise is an outdoor interactive dance where people wear headphones while a DJ guides them through the session as the music plays. Participants dance their hearts out but only they hear the music. To the curious onlookers, they could only speculate what the madness is all about.....more »»

Tok Sen Massage from Ying massage

Tok Sen Massage from Ying

(May 8, 2019) Tok Sen is an unusual massage Thai practice that uses a wooden hammer and wedge from the tamarind tree. The wedge is rhythmically tapped into energy lines of the body (Sen lines) to promode healing and restoration. I had such therapy from Ying who has been doing this for over 10 years.....more »»

Bruschetta: Nawa Saraan Style recipes

Bruschetta: Nawa Saraan Style

(Apr 22, 2019) Bruschetta is a long held Italian tradition - plum tomatoes, olive oil, basil, garlic and baguette. But here at the Nawa Saraan kitchen, things are done with a little flair for innovation....more »»

Thai Cooking at Pra Nang Thai Cookery School food

Thai Cooking at Pra Nang Thai Cookery School

(Apr 20, 2019) One of the touristy offerings of Thailand is to learn Thai cooking. Many cooking schools offer a hands-on experience in preparing Thailand's staple dishes - pad thai, khao soi and tom yum soup. I tried the Pra Nang Thai Cookery School to see how I could surprise friends with authentic Khao Soi....more »»

Bonding with the Elephants in Chiang Mai traveling

Bonding with the Elephants in Chiang Mai

(Apr 11, 2019) Riding elephants, because of the cruelty in training them, has been taboo in the tourism trade. This time, elephant tours consist of feeding, bathing and petting the elephants which were claimed to be rescued from shows and labor camps. I tried one of them.....more »»

Getting Thai Massage from Chiang Mai's Best (Lar Thanakrit Khamtanong) massage

Getting Thai Massage from Chiang Mai's Best (Lar Thanakrit Khamtanong)

(Mar 21, 2019) When I heard a senior Thai massage teacher that she was going to receive a massage from Lar (Lar Thanakrit Khamtanong), one of Chiang Mai's best massage therapist, my immediate question was, 'how good can you be to be the masseuse of the massage teachers?'. My question would soon be answered by going to the end of a long list to get such treatment from Lar.....more »»

Being the Soul of Nawa Saraan Hotel lucid thought

Being the Soul of Nawa Saraan Hotel

(Feb 18, 2019) Among the hotels of the Nawa hotel chain, Nawa Saraan comes closest to my heart. I've stayed here 3 years ago and I keep coming back here every time I stay in Chiang Mai. So, when the owner and friend told me that Nawa Saraan needed a soul, I thought to myself that I could be that...more »»

Peoplescape of Chiang Mai people

Peoplescape of Chiang Mai

(Jan 24 - Mar 13, 2019) Once again, being in Chiang Mai brought me back to good friends and introduced me to new people who drifted into my peoplescape as I begin to settle down and make a new life.....more »»

Curing Cancer with Yoga? yoga

Curing Cancer with Yoga?

(Feb 21, 2019) A lady who once did yoga with me approached me again for a series of daily private one-on-one practice during her entire stay in Chiang Mai. Apparently, she liked my yogic philosophy and approach entailing asanas, calisthenics, pranayama, meditation and Thai massage. But in our conversation, she also intimated that she has cancer and was hoping that my brand of yoga would supplement her treatment. I lost my Mom from that same cancer she's afflicted with. Hearing that changed my game plan...more »»

International Training Massage School (ITM): LEVEL I: Foundation of Thai Massage massage

International Training Massage School (ITM): Level 1

(Feb 11-15, 2019) Thai Massage is world-famous and there's no better place to learn it than at Chiang Mai's most prestigious massage center, the International Training Massage School. This is my first day to earning my Level 1 Certification Course in Thai Massage. 30 hours altogether. Time to roll up my sleeves.....more »»

Sandesch Album Launch by Christoph Joerg chill

Sandesch Album Launch by Christoph Joerg

(Feb 13, 2019) Yoga teacher Christoph Joerg invited me to Sandesch, his album launch at Heart Space. I didn't really know Chris was also a singer. Whoa! I didn't know what to expect, but I went, curious. It would be my first time at Heart Space.....more »»

Reiki Share at the Mastermind Brain Spa meditation

Reiki Share at the Mastermind Brain Spa

(Jan 26, 2019) I saw a posting on Facebook about a free Reiki Share and got curious. I've received reiki twice but I don't know much about it. As a self-healer, I wanted to know more. Perhaps there would be elements I could integrate into my self-healing practice.....more »»

Resuming Life in Chiang Mai traveling

Resuming Life in Chiang Mai

(Jan 24, 2019) With a proper tourist visa to stay in Thailand, I am back in Chiang Mai (from Hanoi) to start a 60-day mini-life. It will be a different life from most of what I experienced in 2018. This time, I have sufficient cash for a few months (instead of landing on a country with only $50) and a rood over my head. These are 2 of my most pressing concerns - but now, I can put those worries away and be more open to other things that land on my plate.....more »»

4 Days in Chiang Mai at Nawa Saraan Hotel traveling

4 Days in Chiang Mai at Nawa Saraan Hotel

(Jan 2-6, 2019) After Pai, Mike and I headed to Chiang Mai where he checked me in at his luxurious Nawa Saraan Hotel. With 4 days before my Thailand visa expiration, I had to plan out my next move. Mike suggested I apply for a 60-day tourist visa with Thai Embassy in Hanoi and I could stay at a room in Nawa Saraan. Whoa!....more »»

Mike Chong people

Mike Chong

(Aug 8, 2018) There are people who will kill you with kindness. But you don't meet these kinds of people everyday. Indeed, they happen once in a blue moon. I am lucky to have come across one - Mike Chong...more »»

Kneaded and Pampered at Zira Spa traveling

Kneaded and Pampered at Zira Spa

(Aug 4, 2018) A few days ago, I feigned an excuse to a B150 foot massage with some friends to conserve my cash. But I wanted a Thai massage in Thailand! My white knight (my universe!) comes to the rescue and gives me (and Mike) a luxurious B2,400 spa package at Chiang Mai's most prestigious spa resort - Zira Spa....more »»

Laughter Yoga with Saffiya Arnous yoga

Laughter Yoga with Saffiya Arnous

(July 31, 2018) Laughter Yoga with Saffiya Arnous is a combination of laughter, breathing, and just being silly. Laughter is the best medicine to heal, recover and to be happy. This class gets you started on that path...more »»

Yoga with Adam at Hidden House Yoga, Chiang Mai yoga

Yoga with Adam at Hidden House Yoga, Chiang Mai

(July 29, 2018) Hidden House Yoga was the new kid on the block in Chiang Mai after having opened just a year ago. Adam conducted an Evening Yoga Flow that was challenging and well articulated with a slow enough cadence to sink into the pose.....more »»

2 Weeks in Chiang Mai traveling

2 Weeks in Chiang Mai

(July 25 - Aug 7, 2018) When I landed in Bangkok, I thought I would spend my entire 30 days there. As a general rule, I do a 30-day mini-life in any destination before I move on. But Mike offered his hotel in Chiang Mai for 2 weeks. On top of that, I couldn't find an extension in Bangkok beyond my 15 days. The die was cast for Chiang Mai. Why? Only one way to find out.....more »»

A First Timer in Chiang Mai traveling

A First Timer in Chiang Mai

(Apr 9-23, 2016) I long heard about Chiang Mai as the mountain town of Thailand where the air is cool and crisp. Somehow, images of Sagada came to mind. Finally, upon arrival, it was a surprise awakening for me. Chiang Mai is a big city!....more »»

Chiang Mai's Amazing Peoplescape people

Chiang Mai's Amazing Peoplescape

(Apr 9-23, 2016) A place's energy resonates with the people it keeps. This holds especially true for Chiang Mai. What can I say? Great place to visit, great people...for just these 2 alone, it's enough reason to come back and revisit.....more »»

Dance Mandala in Chiang Mai at The Yoga Tree yoga

Dance Mandala in Chiang Mai at The Yoga Tree

(Apr 19, 2016) When I asked The Yoga Tree studio owner, Areeradh, if I can teach free yoga in her studio, she invited me instead to attend the Dance Mandala...didn't have a clue what that was, which got me even more excited. This would be my first in Chiang Mai....more »»

Songkran Waterfight Festival in Chiang Mai traveling

Songkran Waterfight Festival in Chiang Mai

(Apr 13-15, 2016) Thailand celebrates its New Year with Songkran Festival - a 3-day wet-and-wild mayhem that is sure to bring out the child in you. While Songkran is celebrated in all of Thailand, Chiang Mai is ground-zero. Be there or be square!....more »»




Google Map

Chiang Mai, Thailand

important places in Chiang Mai IMPORTANT PLACES
Chiang Mai Bus Station Bus Station
Chiang Mai Train Station Train Station
Chiang Mai airport Chiang Mai International Airport
Nong Buak Hard Park Nong Buak Hard Park - free yoga classes daily

hotels in Chiang Mai HOTEL
Chiang Mai Arun Dara Villa Arun Dara Villa - 7 exclusive rooms, 1 swimming pool for every room, grand opening
Chiang Mai Nawa Sheeva Hotel Nawa Sheeva Hotel - big rooms, high ceiling, salt-water pool, restaurant, cafe
Chiang Mai Nawa Saraan Hotel Nawa Saraan Hotel - low density (4 spacious rooms), stone garden setting, Koi fish pond, Old City location
Arun Suite, Chiang Mai Arun Suite - 3 bedrooms in a 3-storie guesthouse within Old City, ideal for families

birds nest restaurants in Chiang Mai RESTAURANT
La Pizza Chiang Mai La Pizza Chiang Mai - Italian pizza, pasta, wine, dessert, coffee
Chiang Mai birds nest restaurant Natural Bird Nest by Burapa - authentic bird's nest soup

Thai massage in Chiang Mai WELLNESS
ITM  International Training Massage School ITM - International Training Massage School - Chiang Mai's most prestigious massage school
Float Chiang Mai Float Chiang Mai - sensory deprivation float pod
Chiang Mai, Royal Thai Lanna Massage Zira Spa - upscale authentic Thai massage and spa treatment

motorcycle rental in Chiang Mai MOTORBIKE RENTAL
Chiang Mai birds nest motorcycle Tawan Bike - motorcycle rental | +66 91 635 2863 | Si Phum, Mueang Chiang Mai District, Chiang Mai 50200



USEFUL INFORMATION

Chiang Mai FYI / Tips
  • crop-burning season in Chiang Mai is between late Feb to early April. But laws change everytime. This year, 2019, there is a 61-day ban on burning so the farmers started burning early. When my plane was approaching Chiang Mai on Jan 24, 2019, there was already a thick blanket of smog covering the entire city (and beyond). But within the city itself, you won't feel it (but that doesn't mean the air is healthy). To monitor air conditions in real time, refer to site: Chiang Mai Air Pollution: Real-time Air Quality Index (AQI)
  • hot season begins March and lasts until June
  • wet season begins July and lasts until September
  • best time to visit Chiang Mai is mid-September to mid-February - after the monsoon and before the burning
  • you have to try Khao Soi, this is north Thailand's culinary staple
  • the tourist area where most of the hotels, restaurants, ticket offices, tour operators are, is located in the Old City
  • to exchange your dollars to Thai Baht, the Super Rich Money Exchange give the best rates. There are many branches scattered around Chiang Mai
  • get a red cab (songthao) outside the train station for Baht 50 (instead of paying B100 if inside the train station) to Old City - if you haggle nicely enough...I did!
  • shared red taxi (songthao) - B30 standard fare plying all over Old City
  • for only B50/day, best to rent a bike to go around the Old City - it's a 2.5km2 with lots to discover
  • FREE daily yoga classes from 9:00am to 10:15am at Nong Buak Hard Park (southwest corner of Old City). Resident and passing-through teachers take turns conducting yoga classes.
Blues/Jazz Bars in Chiang Mai
  1. North Gate Pub - at Chang Phueg Gate, great Tuesday jam session, Blues on Sundays by the 11pm band
  2. Taphae East - 88 Thapae Rd. (just north of Night Bazaar). Fridays at 9:30pm by Chiang Mai Blues Band
  3. Boy Blues Bar - at the Night Bazaar. Mondays at 9:30pm is open mic
Chiang Mai Cost Index
  • B60 Chiang beer
  • B250 1 hour drop-in yoga session
  • B200 one hour Thai body massage at WAYA Massage (highly recommended)
  • B50 noodle soup with meat
  • B50 coffee
  • B40 pad thai
  • B30/kilo wash-only laundry
  • B50/kilo wash+iron laundry
  • B100-150 dorm bed/night
  • B250 fan room/night
  • B30 internet cafe/hour
  • B170-190 Movies Sat-Sun and public holidays
  • B130-150 Movies weekdays
  • B100 Movies Wednesdays (movie discount day)
  • B750 1/2 day Thai cooking lessons
  • B900-1000 1 full day Thai cooking lessons
  • B400 Muay Thai boxing ticket
  • B2500 starting room rate at the luxury hotel, Nawa Sheeva (highly recommended)

  • Transportation
  • B450 bus, Chiang Mai to Bangkok
  • B160-180 bus, Chiang Mai to Pai
  • B1250 bus, Chiang Mai to Luang Prabang
  • B1650 slow boat, Chiang Mai to Luang Prabang
  • B210 bus, Chiang Mai to Chiang Rai, 3-4 hours
  • B360 Green VIP bus, Chiang Mai to Mae Sai (Thai border town for visa run to Tachileik, Myanmar)
  • B50 bicycle rental, 24 hours
  • B200 motorbike rental, 24 hours
  • B273 #51 sleeping train from Bangkok to Chiang Mai
  • B638 #7 a/c train from Bangkok to Chiang Mai
  • B50 red taxi fare from point to point
  • B100 red taxi fare from train terminal to city

  • Tours
  • B2000 full day elephant sanctuary
  • B750 Chiang Rai one-day tour
  • B1500 mountain biking scenic ride
How to Get to Chiang Mai from Bangkok by Train from Bang Sue Train Station

For more train info: Bangkok to Chiang Mai trains - departing from Hua Lamphong - MRT (Bangkok)

(I'm using Bang Sue as a starting point because I was closer to it, but you may be closer to the Hua Lamphong station)

  1. take the MRT train to Bang Sue Station. Take the #1 Exit to the north provincial trains
  2. Proceed to Counter 2. You will see an information booth, a train schedule chart and the ticket counter. Choose the train and pay at the ticket counter.
  3. daily train schedule:
    • 8:48am - #7 Train, arrive Chiang Mai 7:30pm, not sleeper, B638
    • 2:06pm - #109 Train, arrive Chiang Mai 4:05am, sleeper
    • 6:31pm - #9 Premium Train, arrive Chiang Mai 7:15am, sleeper, B938 upper deck, B1038 lower deck
    • 7:56pm - #13 Train, arrive Chiang Mai 8:40am, sleeper, B768 upper deck, B838 lower deck
    • 10:22pm - #51 Train, arrive Chiang Mai 12:10pm, sleeper, 3rd class B270 (non sleeper), 2nd class B438, B728 upper deck, B798 lower deck

Travel Tips for Thailand

How to Get a 60-Day Thai Tourist Visa and then Extend by another 30 Days

    60-Day Thai Tourist Visa

    NOTE: There is no need to go back to your country to get the Thai tourist visa. Any major city with a Thai Embassy will do. Apparently there is also no need to have an invitation from a Thai establishment to justify the visa.

  1. Bring the following to the Thai embassy:
    a) proof of money (bank statement will suffice)
    b) flight booking to Thailand
    c) onward flight back to your country from Thailand
    d) filled-in tourist visa form
    e) 2 passport pictures
    f) hotel booking in Thailand (they didn't ask me for this but better be safe)
    g) passport with at least 6 months validity
  2. After handing over all the documents, they will ask you to come pick your passport with the visa the following day from 4 to 5pm. That's it!
  3. NOTE: after 2 successful attempts, I was already questioned the 3rd time.

    30-Day Extension

    NOTE: When your 60-day visa is close to expiry and you want to extend your stay. No need to leave Thailand.

  1. bring the following to the Immigration Office:
    a) passport (make sure your Tourist Visa hasn't expired yet)
    b) Baht 1900
    c) photocopy of your passport + visa duration date stamp + TM6 card (white immigration card) and sign all the copies
    d) completed TM7 visa extension form (available at the Immigration Office)
    e) one 4cmx6cm passport picture
  2. submit the above to the Front Desk. They will give you a stub with your number on it. Take a seat and wait for your number to be called
  3. when your number is called, your picture will be taken. Then go back to your seat. They will call you again.
  4. when they call you again, they'll give you your passport with your extended visa. That's it!
  5. when there are no lines, the whole process can take only 10 minutes
General Travel Tips
  1. arrive early - in case there is a snag (visa snag, documentation snag, transport ticket snag, etc.), you will have ample time to troubleshoot the problem if you arrive early (to the airport, to the bus terminal, etc.)
  2. put detailed itinerary on the Calendar apps of your smart-phone according to timelines - this is where you do all your thinking and planning. Once written down, you don't have to think anymore while you are on the journey...you just follow the steps. This frees your mind for something else that might happen while you are already en route
  3. avoiding scams - as a general rule, I ignore the touts or anyone I don't know who call out to me. The calling comes in many forms - "Hi! Where are you from?", "Excuse me! Excuse me!", "Where are you going?". I don't look them in the eye and I remain non-verbal with them. If you reply to them, you just gave them an 'in' to hound you. In order not to look rude, I smile and wave the 'not interested' hand to them, without looking at them.
  4. power bank - hand-carry your power bank. Do not check it in. You can be called in when you are already inside the plane to go all the way to the loading dock so you can personally remove the power bank...and chances are, you'll have to surrender it to them. And you might delay the plane departure!

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