I decided to spend 48 hours in Chiang Mai despite just having visited about 3 months ago. Everywhere seemed much quieter this time round for obvious reasons. Flights and hotel prices have dropped drastically. The roads are less congested and malls doesn’t see much human traffic.
Which is also exactly why I thoroughly enjoyed myself. There was no need to queue at popular eateries and cafes are empty for picturesque moments.
For lunch, I decided to pop up Khao Soi Mae Sai. It is a small family operated eatery that probably has about 15 or 20 tables. You write your order on a small paper and pass it to an aunty whom I assume to be the mother, and a young man (I assume son) is the one preparing the orders beside all the large pots of gravy.
Each bowl of Khao Soi is filled with both flat and crispy noodle, and comes with a chicken drum stick. Although the servings are small, the price was very affordable. I could finish 2 bowls by myself. The 3 bowls together won’t cost more than $6. I planned to visit another Khao Soi restaurant for lunch on the second day but I was so satisfied with this and ended up returning here again.
Another place worth visiting is Lert Ros Restaurant. My friend recommended it because it is said to be a legendary haunt in Chiang Mai. I was quite puzzled when my Grab driver dropped me there because it looked to be in the middle of a neighbourhood. There was no store front or signages. My Grab driver then explained that the restaurant itself is actually inside the owner’s house. I walked through the living room and was greeted by a grandpa watching TV. He smiled at me and told me to go straight, walking past the kitchen and was led to a large dining area on the balcony.
I felt that the prices here were slightly on the higher side. It’s the kind of prices you would pay if you were dining in an air-conditioned restaurant in Bangkok. Nonetheless, it was still affordable. I recommend the black pepper crab and also the garlic pepper crayfish. They don’t serve the entire crab but only the pincers and the meatier parts. I guess some people prefer it this way because it’s less messy and easier to peel.
There are plenty of new cafes in Chiang Mai. I think there is at least a new one popping up every corner every week. The ones I went to are not new, but I have read reviews that they have good coffee and it is undeniably so.
Khagee is my favorite. It is also the smallest among the three that I’ve visited, but their coffee is amazing. Did not try anything from their bakery but they are apparently very good too.
Until next time.