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Well everybody else does it and I didn’t want to be the only blogger without a Top 10 so here you have them as they relate to the stories I have written about our time in Chiang Mai since November 2013.

My criteria for the things I have chosen is that they aren’t all on the Trip Advisor Top 10 list. I would hate to send you off where the first thing you see is a line of tourist buses and lots of people like you and me 🙂

If you are a reader of my blog you will know that Gaun and I are garden lovers so there is a little bit of weighting on that subject here but I have tried to avoid being too biased and mixed it up a bit. These are in alphabetical order not representing preference or anything else. One of them is not a specific destinations but a drive where the variety you will see along the way makes it worth a mention in my Top 10.

TOP 10 – 3D Chiang Mai


To kick things off this is totally non-Thai specific and totally aimed at the snap happy traveller but a fun time out. I challenge you not to get involved in at least one of the 3D scenes. Once you stop being too adult it can become a little addictive.

A 3D Outing HERE

Top 9 – Driving Mae Rim and Beyond


Mae Rim is on the edge of the city of Chiang Mai and this trip takes you into the hills, villages and countryside of rural Thailand. The round trip introduces you to some fantastic scenery with minimal traffic and lots of photo stopping points. You won’t follow exactly the route I did in this post but you can work it out from the map or email me and I will provide you with directions.

A Day Out in Mae Rim HERE

Top 8 – Boy Blues Bar


My next challenge is to meet Boy at the Boy Blues Bar and NOT to smile in response to his. If Thailand could bottle the smile as well as his effortless musicianship they would be onto something.

Boy Blues Bar HERE

Top 7 – Chiang Dao


This is cheating because Chiang Dao is an hour from Chiang Mai city but it is in Chiang Mai province! You could almost call it a satellite suburb. We had a wonderful time there exploring the caves, a super walk to a jungle Wat and great food and accommodation. It should be on your to do list for Chiang Mai

Chiang Dao HERE

Top 6 – Bhubing Palace Gardens


Ignore Wat Phra Doi Suthep, number 5 of the TA top 115 things to do in Chiang Mai, keep on driving until you arrive at Bhubing Palace and the gardens. A peaceful and beautifully maintained place with few farang. They have all stopped at the overrated – in my opinion – Wat Phra Doi Suthep further down.

Bhubing Palace gardens HERE and HERE

Top 5 – Lake Huay Tung Tao


A Thai only venue at the base of Doi Suthep. Grab a sala, a cold beer and order up a grilled fish and life is looking pretty cruisy.

Huay Tung Tao Lake HERE

Top 4 – Tweechol Gardens by Bike


Another place where you might never spot a farang. Beautiful rambling topiary gardens and ponds all viewed as you pedal around on your hired bicycle. Set your own pace. Lots of stopping points in shade. Say hello to the camels from us.

Tweechol Botanical Gardens HERE

Top 3 – Ratchaphruek Gardens


Extensive gardens including gardens of the world. A top class venue meticulously looked after.

Ratchaphruek Royal Gardens HERE

Top 2 – Terracotta garden


Included because it is unlike anything you will find elsewhere and so peaceful in the busy heart of Chiang Mai. These aren’t gardens in the traditional sense more a sculpture courtyard so I am being disciplined in my Top 10 mix.

Terracotta Garden HERE

Top 1 – Ladyboy Show at the Night Markets


The ladyboy show at the night markets are worth being included here. The show is pretty good and it is free. Pay a little more for drinks and tips but make up for it during the happy hour. Good music, enthusiastic performers and, because the venue is small, it is a far more intimate experience than say the one in Phuket. Let your hair down guys, so to speak, and give it a go. WARNING – you will be in a room of farang.

Ladyboy Cabaret HERE


Thanks for reading.

P.S. The dramatic photo at the top of this post isn’t in my Top 10 but you can find the post HERE The Road to Phrao.