Chiang Mai is my type of town. It’s bigger than a village but smaller than a city. It’s a bustling big town with a small town attitude. It feels like an artist’s haven or an entrepreneur’s dream. It has all you need if you wanted to pick yourself up and move to a foreign country, and this is why many expats move to Chiang Mai.
Once you experience Bangkok for the first time, the frenetic energy and 24/7 action can become wearisome. The constant hustle and bustle of Thailand’s capital can grow frustrating. But up in Chiang Mai, the activity is more subdued. Of course, you can find many nighttime activities to keep you busy, but you can also relax and chill out in relative solitude if you so choose.
I enjoyed the vibe of Chiang Mai so much that I extended my stay and simply lived. I went to the mall or checked out a movie. I went into town for some Mexican food (the first decent Mexican in ages), then wandered through tiny lanes on my way back home. I picked up some ice cream from 7-11 or waited patiently while the guy around the corner stir fried up my late-night meal. This existence was glorious and one that I could easily continue endlessly.
However, far too soon it was time to return to Bangkok in preparation for my flight to Europe. I was excited to go to continental Europe for the first time, but I definitely hated to leave Thailand. Over the weeks I’ve been here, it has somehow grown on me without my realizing it. The “land of a thousand smiles” will leave me smiling until I return.