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Where to stay in Chiang Mai, Thailand – Best Areas and Hotels

what to viit in chiang mai

Are you planning a trip to Chiang Mai? That’s a great choice! Located in Northern Thailand and being the second biggest city in Thailand, Chiang Mai has so much to offer – from temples, delicious street food, cozy cafes, a fabulous night market and more. By the way, it’s also known as the cultural capital of the country, did you know that?

In case you are wondering where to stay in Chiang Mai, let me tell you that you are in the right place! During the 4 months I lived in Thailand, Chiang Mai was my base city and I really enjoyed my stay there. This also means that I got to really understand how the city is structured and what are the best areas to stay in, especially for tourists.

In the article below I will give you my personalized recommendations for areas to stay in this wonderful destination (spoiler alert: the Old City is the best choice!), as well as hand-picked hotels with fabulous reviews, divided by price range for your convenience.

Are you ready? Let’s go!

If you’re in the hurry..

night out thailand

The most convenient area to stay in Chiang Mai for first-time visitors is Chiang Mai’s Old City (Old Town). This is the place where all the most interesting tourist attractions are located, so if you want to see everything that Chiang Mai has to offer, this should be your base during your visit!

Best hotels in Chiang Mai in a nutshell

Which area should you choose?

First of all, here is a map of all 4 areas in Chiang Mai I will be talking about in this post, so you can easily visualize them:

best place to stay in chiang mai

And here is my list of personalized recommendations, broken down by budget and interests:

  • Where to stay in Chiang Mai for luxury hotels: Night Bazaar
  • Where to stay in Chiang Mai for budget travelers: Old City
  • Where to stay in Chiang Mai for nightlife: Nimmanhaemin or Night Bazaar
  • Where to stay in Chiang Mai for families: Riverside

1. Old Town – Where to stay in Chiang Mai for the first time

chiang mai old town

The most popular and best area to stay in Chiang Mai is definitely the Old City and around it. The Old Town is easily spottable because it’s an (almost) perfect square, surrounded by a beautiful moat. This is where most of the things are, from TONS of temples, museums and countless restaurants and cafes, as well as markets! The last time I went to the city we stayed in Chiang Mai Old Town because we wanted to be close to everything we needed. It was a perfect choice!

Some of the best attractions in the Old Town include Wat Phra Temple, Wat Chedi Luang, Wat Chiang and other unmissable sights. Because the Old City is my top choice, most of my recommendations below are located there or around, within walking distance. Regardless, all of them have fabulous locations and even better reviews!

Here are my hand-picked recommendations with the best reviews and facilities:

hostel chiang mai

Luxury (US$100 and up)

  • Tamarind Village Chiang Mai – This amazing 4-star hotel is another great upscale choice for your stay in the city. Tamarind Hotel in Chiang Mai is one of your best bets if you want to stay in the Old City area and you can choose from superb rooms and even suites for your stay! Truly one of the best places to stay in the most popular neighborhood out there!
  • Phra Singh Village – This four star hotel awaits you with free Wi-Fi, a friendly staff and amazing facilities such as a fitness center, spa, outdoor swimming pool and more! Be prepared, as you’ll feel spoiled here during a full day of exploring the city! Perfect for all types of guests!

Mid-range (from US$30 to US$100)

  • Bodhi Serene Chiang Mai Hotel – Here’s another great hotel in Chiang Mai in the Old City area that offers a great value for money! The rooms are super comfy and clean and the hotel is calm enough so you can get a great night’s sleep. This doesn’t mean you won’t be super close to all the attractions, though!
  • BED Phrasingh – This great 3-star hotel offers great service for its price! They have free Wi-Fi, daily housekeeping, luggage storage, an outdoor pool, and a nice garden where you can relax. Last but not least, you will be greeted by a super friendly staff!

places to stay in chiang mai

Budget (up to US$30)

  • Green Sleep Hostel – This beautiful hostel in Chiang Mai has an awesome location, right in the heart of the Old City. It awaits you with comfortable rooms, bike rental (yay!), Wi-Fi in your room and more! This one’s definitely among the best places to stay on a budget!
  • The Common Hostel – Last but definitely not least, this cozy and simple hostel is another great choice in the Old City and great for backpackers as well! You can choose from bunk beds and you’ll definitely enjoy the free Wi-Fi, laundromat (big plus!), shared kitchen and more!

Although the Old City is the most popular choice for travelers, the area just outside it is a great choice as well. All of the 3 areas below are located not far away from the moat, which means you will be close to the city center and all the temples and the best attractions in the city!

2. Night Bazaar area

chiang mai market

The Night Bazaar is another one of the best places for tourists traveling to Chiang Mai. It’s located very close to the Old City and it’s the perfect place if you’re looking for shopping places! Also, there are many upscale hotels in the area (but not only, you’ll find options for all budgets here) and it’s a great place for party people looking for nightlife as well.

That being said, if you want to stay near Chiang Mai Night Bazaar, here are the hotels I can recommend:

Luxury (US$100 and up)

  • Le Méridien Chiang Mai – If you are looking for a great luxury hotel in Chiang Mai located very close to the Night Bazaar, this is your choice! This hotel is part of the Marriott Chiang Mai chain, so you know you’ll get excellent service and amazing facilities. Of course, it’s super close to Chiang Mai Night Bazaar!
  • Na Nirand Romantic Boutique Resort – This is another great upscale choice located close to Chiang Mai Night Bazaar! You’ll have everything you need for a pleasant stay here and you’ll definitely feel spoiled. This one’s definitely among the top hotels in the city!

Mid-range (US$30 – US$100)

best hostels in chiang mai

  • Dusit Princess Chiang Mai – I stayed in this hotel during my last trip to Chiang Mai and I really enjoyed it, it’s a very good hotel! The service was on point and the room spotless clean! The location is one of its best advantages, as it’s one of the best Chiang Mai Hotels near the Night Bazaar. This is among the most beautiful hotels and they have gorgeous rooms and an outdoor pool.
  • Chedi Home Chiang Mai – This Chiangmai hotel in the Night Bazaar area has so many great facilities! Some of them include free parking, a great location right outside the Old City, an on-site restaurant, and a fitness center as well.

Budget (up to US$30)

  • OYO 528 Hai Hostel – This great hostel is located very close to Chiang Mai Night Bazaar and it awaits you with a delicious buffet breakfast each morning, nice and cozy rooms, room service, tour desk, free Wi-Fi and more! Truly one of the best places to stay in Chiang Mai on a budget!
  • Dawwin Hometel and Cafe – This is another amazing choice for any budget traveler that wants to be close to the Night Bazaar. This hotel has clean rooms, a bar, a shared lounge where you can relax, a terrace and, of course, free Wi-Fi!

3. Riverside – Where to stay in Chiang Mai with a family

chiang mai bridge

If you’re looking for a more relaxed stay, away from the hustle and bustle of the city center, the Riverside is your perfect choice! This area is located right next to Ping River (you can expect a beautiful view from your window!) and it’s a great choice for laid-back travelers, as well as families.

Here you’ll find beautiful streets full of old, authentic charm, a calm atmosphere, and tons of hotel options! You’ll find my hand-picked recommendations below:

Luxury (US$100 and up)

  • Anantara Chiang Mai Resort – If you’re looking for 5-star luxury hotels close to Ping River, you’re in luck, as this is one of the best Chiang Mai hotels! This gorgeous luxurious resort is perfect for laid-back travelers, as it’s located in the Riverside area, surrounded by great restaurants and cafes.
  • Empress Premier Hotel Chiang Mai – I’m continuing my list of recommendations with one of the best Chiang Mai resorts! Empress Hotel in Chiang Mai is a very popular choice for tourists and it’s located in Chang Khlan area, right outside of the Old City. I’m sure you’ll like it, as it is among the top hotels in the city!

Mid-range (US$30 – US$100)

  • Swiss-Lanna Lodge – This accommodation is decorated in an authentic Thai style! It has a great location with easy access to all the attractions in the city and it offers a great service for its price. They have a hot tub, golf course, a nice garden and more!
  • CHU Hotel Chiangmai – This 3-star hotel has different types of rooms that you can choose from, all of them super nicely decorated and clean! During your stay, you’ll have free Wi-Fi, housekeeping, complimentary tea and coffee, a welcome drink and much more!

Budget (up to US$30)

  • Mapping Hostel – If you’re traveling to Chiang Mai and want to stay on the Riverside on a budget, look no further! This 2-star hotel has amazing prices and a great service and some of its facilities include a garden, an on-site restaurant, free Wi-Fi and more! The rooms are rather small but the atmosphere is very peaceful and quiet!
  • Saithong House – This is another great choice, located very close to the river. They have an on-site golf course, tennis court, a relaxing garden, free Wi-Fi in the rooms and in the common area and more! A beautiful property and a top place to stay if you’re on a tight budget and want to enjoy a comfy night’s sleep!

4. Nimman (Nimmanhemin) – Where to stay in Chiang Mai for nightlife

chiang mai shop

When I lived in Chiang Mai, we rented a place in Nimmanhaemin (also known as Nimman Road or simply “Nimman”) and I really enjoyed it there, it’s truly the perfect place for young people. If you want to read more about the time I lived in Thailand and why did I move there, I recommend checking out this post. You’ll find great restaurants and coffee places everywhere you look, it’s trendy, modern and you’ll find plenty of malls and boutique shops there.

If you’re looking for a hip area perfect for youngsters, Nimmanhemin (or Nimman Road) is THE place to be! The area is also known as “Coffee Street”, so you can expect to find tons of cafes and restaurants there, as well as boutique stores, I assure you!

It’s a vibrant cool area that doesn’t lack great accommodation options for all budgets. Here is what I can recommend:

Luxury (US$100 and up)

  • Kantary Hills Hotel – This gorgeous 5-star hotel has large, cozy rooms, beautiful furniture, a delicious breakfast served each morning and more. Plus, you’ll find many cool places and restaurants within walking distance to this hotel! Trust me, this is among the best places to stay for a luxurious experience!
  • Yesterday Hotel – This is my second recommendation for travelers looking for a place to stay in the Nimman area and enjoy a spoiled experience! They have a very cool, vintage design, free bike hire, helpful and friendly staff, 24-hour front desk and more! Perfect for a comfortable night’s sleep!

Mid-range (US$30 – US$100)

  • BED Nimman – For those looking for a great value for the price, no worries, I got you! This great hotel awaits you with a great outdoor swimming pool, a sun deck, free Wi-Fi, a garden, beautiful rooms and a great location, close to many restaurants and cafes!
  • Sanae’ Hotel Chiang Mai – You can also book a room at this amazing 4-star hotel! They have free Wi-Fi, daily housekeeping, clean rooms, an outdoor pool and a garden. You’ll definitely have everything you need here!

Budget (up to US$30)

  • POR Santitham Chiang Mai – This one’s located less than 1 km from the city center and close to Nimman road, so you can easily walk anywhere you want and take in the sights of the city. During your stay here you will have free Wi-Fi, a 24-hour front desk, clean rooms, daily housekeeping – what more can you wish for?
  • Hug Home I – Wondering where to stay in Chiang Mai for a great budget experience and cheap prices? Located in Nimmanhemin, this hotel has a great location, not very far from the city center. The staff is super friendly, the rooms are clean, and they even have luggage storage and a convenience store there!

Best apartments in Chiang Mai, Thailand

chiang mai resorts

If you would rather spend your nights in the city in a cozy apartment that will help you feel right at home, no worries, I got you!

I have researched the top apartments in the city and I have selected 3 fabulous choices that will make you feel you just moved to Chiang Mai!

Here is what I can recommend for you:

  • (Luxury) The Golden Wells Residence– This is really an amazing serviced apartment that will make your stay unforgettable, I promise! This 3-star accommodation combines a luxury treatment with the coziness of having your own space. Some of the top facilities include a central location, airport transfers, on-site restaurant, yummy breakfast and more!
  • (Mid-range) Lux Rooms Night Bazaar – For those looking for mid-range places to stay in Chiang Mai, you’re in luck! This fab apartment is located very close to the Old City and some of its biggest pluses include a spacious and clean space for you to stay, free Wi-Fi, kitchen and more! Perfect for a comfortable night’s sleep right in the heart of the city!
  • (Budget) Hug Home I – No worries, I have an excellent recommendation for budget travelers as well! This cozy homestay in Chiang Mai is located in the heart of Nimmanhemin, the ideal area for young people (and party people as well). They have free Wi-Fi, fireplace, 24-hour security and more!

BONUS: Best hotels for families in Chiang Mai, Thailand

chiang mai drawing

In case you are traveling to the city with your family and kids, know that Chiang Mai doesn’t lack great family hotels! All the hotels below have child-friendly facilities that will make your stay unforgettable. Some of them are in the city center, while others are located a bit more far away, in calm, relaxed areas.

I’ve broken them down into price categories as well, so you can easily choose the ideal fit for you:

guest house chiang mai

Luxury (US$100 and up)

  • 99 The Heritage Hotel – This is truly one of the most gorgeous and iconic hotels in the city! If you want to choose a boutique hotel in Chiang Mai to stay with your kids, they’ll be happy to splash in the on-site pool, but they also have baby cots available, and a nice garden where you can relax.
  • Shangri-La Hotel, Chiang Mai – Their luxury hotel in Chiang Mai awaits you with a super cool outdoor pool with waterslides (great for the kids to enjoy), a playground, a kids club and babysitting service. Parents will be happy to enjoy the hot tub and sauna for sure!

Mid-range (US$30 – US$100)

  • The Echo Hotel Chiang Mai – This amazing hotel is located just a bit outside of the Old City, so you’ll be able to enjoy a calm atmosphere while also being close to the main landmarks of the city. During your stay you can enjoy the indoor pool, clean and spacious rooms and perfect service!
  • Villa Sanpakoi – This is a super cool 3-star hotel located in a calm area, away from the noisy city center. It offers an amazing service for an accessible price. They have an outdoor pool, free Wi-Fi and cozy rooms. They also have a super spacious room called “Family Trio”, perfect for a family of three!

Budget (up to US$30)

  • Sleep Guesthouse – Staying with your family on a budget is definitely doable, especially in this city! This guest house in Chiang Mai is a great option, for example. First of all, it has an incredible price. Then come the advantages – convenient location in the Old City, free Wi-Fi in all rooms, new facilities, spacious and clean rooms, and more!
  • Paapu House – This is one of the best hostels in Chiang Mai! It’s located right in the heart of the city and, besides this great bonus, the staff are super-duper friendly and nice!

BONUS 2: Best hotels near Chiang Mai Airport

thailand airplane

If you’re traveling for business or if you have a super early/late flight, staying close to the airport might be a better solution for you than going to the city center. Chiang Mai International Airport is located very close to the city, though – less than 6 km to the Old City, which is a great advantage.

Here are three of the best airport hotels in Chiang Mai (one for each budget category):

  • (Luxury) MyHouse BOUTIQUE / Airport & Landmark Attention – If an upscale place is what you’re looking for, then search no more! This accommodation has air conditioning, free Wi-Fi, airport transfer options, and more! By the way, this is actually an entire Chiang Mai guest house that you can enjoy together with your travel friends!
  • (Mid-range) [email protected] Hotel – This is one recommendation with a pool for all middle-priced travelers – if offers a great value for money! During your stay, you’ll have the breakfast included and you’ll be able to enjoy the great outdoor pool, sauna, steamroom and 4-star service!
  • (Budget) The Connect Chiang Mai – There are also plenty of options for budget travelers who want to stay close to the airport, such as this one! They have different types of rooms that you can choose from, as well as free Wi-Fi, laundry service, a coffee shop and more!


Conclusion

woman in chiang mai

You have reached the end of this complete guide about Chiang Mai accommodation, congrats!

I hope that by now you already found your best place to stay in Chiang Mai, regardless if you are visiting the city for a weekend or for a week. In the text I have described in detail the best areas in the city and some useful things to keep in mind when choosing your hotel. I also gave you hand-picked hotel recommendations based on my experience in the city and I compared the prices for them on different websites.

If you need help planning your vacation to Chiang Mai, I recommend you read my article about adventurous things to do in Chiang Mai, it might give you a bit of inspiration! You can find all my articles about Thailand here for even more inspiration!

As usual, if you have any questions or concerns, let me know in the comments below and I’ll be happy to help!

Have a great vacation in Thailand!

Yulia

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chiang mai hotels

Pin it for later!

chiang mai hotels

By |2020-04-10T13:32:11+04:00November 27th, 2019|Chiang Mai, Asia, Thailand|0 Comments
About the Author:
Yulia is originally Russian but truly is a world citizen in heart. She was traveling around the world for over 4 years now. Her blog MissTourist.com is created with the purpose to inspire people to travel more and to share her advice of how to travel "smart".

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