Chiang Mai is a wonderful little city and one of our favorites stops of the whole trip. North of Bangkok, we traveled to Chiang Mai via night train. Not only were we quite impressed with the space and cleanliness of the train compared to our experiences in India (not to mention the guy that came to make our beds for us!), we also had the opportunity to meet two guys named Chad from the United States. One of the Chads had been living in Chiang Mai for nearly two years and it was great to be able to ask him some questions about Thai culture and what we shouldn’t miss on our visit to his adopted city. We later met up with the Chads several times over our next few days in town and got a little insight into (and visits among) the ex-pat community – which is thriving in Chiang Mai, and quite intriguing!

Meet Chad and Chad

This jazz bar is a popular ex-pat haven

After the business and chaos of Bangkok, Chiang Mai felt like the perfect spot to spend a few days and relax. And relax we did. We met some great fun people, did a couple amazing yoga classes, ate lots of amazing Thai (and Burmese! And Mexican!) food, and cruised the whole city on our rented motorbike.

Cruising Chiang Mai on our moto

Northern Thai specialties Chad introduced us to at his favorite local digs

I don’t know what it was about this little university town, but we grew to love Chiang Mai in a few short days. It was culturally exotic and rewarding while also feeling livable and comfortable. We had never imagined ourselves seeking out the opportunity to live in Asia before, but if we were to do it, Chiang Mai would be at the top of our list!

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