The capital of Northern Thailand, Chiangmai is an attractive alternative to Bangkok’s crowded and busy atmosphere. A balanced mix between traditional and the contemporary, Chiangmai has much to offer the avid traveler, from great shopping options to activities galore. The fun doesn’t just end when the sun sets though, Chiangmai transforms into a buzzing city full of entertainment where you can have a great night either partying or having a leisurely dinner.
1. Go shopping at the Weekend Night Walking Streets
The Saturday and Sunday Walking Streets are very popular amongst travelers and as the name suggests, only open on weekends. The Saturday Night Walking Street, which starts off at Wualai Road, is the place to catch the many local silversmiths in action and take your pick from the many artisan items, street food and clothes. The Sunday Night Walking Street holds a bigger crowd than the Saturday one. Located at Rachadamnoen Road, you will have more options and stalls to choose from. Make sure to have your fill of kanom jim (curry rice noodles) and gaiyang (grilled chicken) before you leave! Crowds tend to swell later into the night so get there early to avoid the hassle of navigating through crowds.
Sunday Night Walking Street
Address: Rachadamnoen Road
Opening Hours: 5pm-10pm, Sundays
2. Catch a Muay Thai fight at the Kalare Night Bazaar
Besides the food and the shopping, you can also catch a real ferocious Muay Thai fight at the Night Bazaar. It is said that the Muay Thai ring at Kalare is the real deal where competitors give their all, making the fights extremely intense and exciting. You can also catch some international Muay Thai fighters in the ring as well. Fights are scheduled every Friday night and the seats are haphazardly arranged so be early if you want to get the best view of the match! Do look out for posters around the area for the competitors and ticket prices.
Muay Thai Fight at Kalare Night Bazaar
Address: 89/2 Chang Khlan Road, Chang Khlan Subdistrict, 50100 Chiang Mai, Thailand
3. Get a drink at the Blue Bat Rooftop Bar
On the days when you’re too tired to keep constantly bumping into sweaty bodies, get off the crowded streets and chill at a rooftop bar instead. Located on the 24th floor of Pornping Tower Hotel, the Blue Bat Rooftop Bar is the highest rooftop bar in Chiangmai. Enjoy the mesmerizing panoramic night view of Chiangmai, have a drink and take in the live music. You can also enjoy a barbecue buffet dinner to go with your drinks.
Blue Bat Rooftop Bar
Address: 46, 48 Charoenprathet Rd. Muang, 50100 Chiang Mai, Thailand
Opening Hours: 11 a.m. to midnight
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4. Enjoy the Chiang Mai Ladyboy Cabaret Show
If you are strolling through the night bazaar and looking for some unique fun, then make sure to catch the Ladyboy Cabaret Show! Have some good fun watching the gorgeously dressed and dolled up ladyboys dance and put on a good show. It’s all safe and in good fun and always draws a lot of laughter from the crowds. Don’t be scared to go up on stage if the dancers pull you up! Tickets usually come with a drink or a snack but you can get more of these at the bar as well.
Ladyboy Cabaret Show
Address: Anusarn Night Market, Night Bazaar, Chan Klan Road
Price: from 290 THB
Opening Hours: 9:30 p.m. and 11 p.m.
5. Party the night away at Warm Up Cafe
If you’re thinking about a small quaint café for a cup of coffee, think again! Warm Up Café is a pub-club experience and is the place to be in the music and clubbing scene of Chiangmai. It is the city’s biggest club and is so large that it has sectioned venues to play different music, whether it be local Thai bands or heavy foreign house and techno music. The Warm Up Café is the most frequented by Thai university students so you definitely know that this is a local favorite.
Drinks served at Warm Up Café can be a little overpriced and there is an additional charge. However, you can bring your own bottled drinks in, if you prefer. You can also get the usual Thai food such as tom yum kung at the alfresco dining area for dinner or just to fill your stomach before you start all that partying. A little tip: a full house is usually expected on weekends so make sure you arrive early!
Warm Up Cafe
Address: 40 Nimmanhaemin Rd, Chiang Mai
Opening Hours: 6 p.m. to 2 a.m. daily
6. Have dinner by the riverside
If you’re not a fan of fast-paced parties and crowds, the Riverside is the perfect place for you to grab dinner and enjoy the night view of the Ping River accompanied by live music. The Good View Bar and Restaurant serves Thai, Japanese and Western food. The bar is also air-conditioned so it’s a great place to cool down with drinks on a warm summer night. Since Good View is a popular night destination, seats could be fully occupied on weekends so make sure to get there early.
The Good View Bar and Restaurant
Address: 13 Charoen Rajd Rd, วัดเกต Mueang Chiang Mai District, 50100 Chiang Mai, Thailand
Opening Hours: 10 a.m. to 1 a.m.
Explore another side of Chiang Mai
Chiangmai in the day has a completely different ambiance when compared to when the sun goes down and the street lamps start to light up. Do your last minute shopping, eat from street vendors or just enjoy the unique performances. Whatever it is you choose to do, you can be sure to have a good time. As always, when wandering around at night, do be cautious!
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