During our 3 months living in Chiang Mai with kids, we made sure we took advantage of all that the city had to offer a family. We found that things are well documented for singles and couples, but there just wasn’t much on the internet for families. So if you are looking for short-term rentals in Chiang Mai, places to eat in Chian Mai or Things to do in Chiang Mai with kids, then you will love our Family Friendly Chiang Mai guide. Here are some of our favorite activities in Chiang Mai, which are great things to do in Chiang Mai with kids or without. So if you don’t have kids, this is still a great guide to Chiang Mai for you too!
We will review Things to do, Places to stay, Places to eat and a few extras as well. We lived in the Nimman area, so it may seem heavily weighted to that area. We loved our Chiang Mai neighborhood and the entire city! There is so much nature, activities, cheap eats, cheap movings, and education all around, we wanted to do it all. Of course we didn’t have time, but we shared with you what we could do. Each title highlighted in Blue should be a link to more information.
- 1 Things To Do In Chiang Mai With Kids
- 2 Yi Peng Festival
- 3 Loi Krathon Lantern festival
- 4 Visit the Hilltribes
- 5 Elephant Nature Park
- 6 The Chai Lai Orchid Nature Bungalows & Eco Resort
- 7 Doi Suthep at Sunrise
- 8 Saturday Night Market & Silver Temple
- 9 Sunday Night Market & Wat Chedi Luang Worawihan
- 10 Bo Sang Handicraft Village
- 11 Elephant Poo Poo Paper Park
- 12 Scorpion Tailed River Cruise
- 13 Huay Kaew Waterfalls
- 14 Monk Chat in Chiang Mai
- 15 Fish Pedicure or Fish Spa in Chiang Mai!
- 16 Meditation Retreat
- 17 Catmosphere! What better than the Chiang Mai Cat Cafe?
- 18 Chiang Mai Zoo & Aquarium
- 19 Thai Cooking Class
- 20 Fruit Carving
- 21 Thai Massage
- 22 Buak Hard Park
- 23 The Chiang Mai Night Safari
- 24 The historic city of Wiang Kum Kam
- 25 Organized Tours
- 26 Family Friendly Places To Stay In Chiang Mai Thailand
- 27 Holiday Rental in Chiang Mai (1-4 weeks)
- 28 Short-term Apartment in Chiang Mai (1-6 months)
- 29 Unique Family Friendly Places to Stay, just outside of Chiang Mai
- 30 Family Friendly Trips from Chiang Mai
- 31 Family Friendly Places To Eat In Chiang Mai Thailand
- 32 Costs in Chiang Mai
- 33 Cost For One Month In Thailand with Kids!
- 34 Transportation
- 35 Other Family Friendly Info around the Nimman area
- 36 More Things To Do in Chiang Mai with Kids
Things To Do In Chiang Mai With Kids
Yi Peng Festival
Held each year in late October or early November. Imagine thousands of candles lit lanterns released into the air at the same time. I would not recommend this for small children, as there are thousands of people and upon exit, the crowds can be thick.
Loi Krathon Lantern festival
Usually held early November each year.
An amazing cultural experience for the whole family – get out into countryside to visit northern Thailand’s ethnic minorities otherwise known as ‘Hill tribes’.
There are few words to describe how magical and special this place is. If you don’t do anything else in Chiang Mai, you really need to visit Elephant Nature Park.
(Awesome Experience!) I know this is a place to stay, but wait until you see all of the things to do! Very family friendly and educational too!
Of course it is good to visit any time of day, but sunrise is particularly spectacular.
Free! (Unless you buy goodies at the market). The Market starts on Bumruung Buri Road, near the south gate (Chiang Mai Gate) of the old city, and runs along Wua Lai Road.
Free! (Unless you buy goodies at the market). The Market starts at Tha Phae Gate on the East side of the Old city and runs down the center road (Rachadamnoen Road), feeding into many side streets and even into the courtyard of Wat Chedi Luang Worawihan.
Saa Paper Umbrella Making Free! Very interesting, colorful and educational. We all enjoyed the afternoon out.
Really a pleasant surprise and only $3 a person. This is a very interactive and educational experience, and the kids had a blast.
90 minute Ping River Tour Don’t forget the Adventures with Anya on this one. This was a fun afternoon out and you get more than just a cruise on the river. The kids really enjoyed this as well as the stop over.
Free! This is a great place for a hike and a picnic. Beautiful surroundings and the kids loved being free and running around. There are snack stands at the enterance and it is also a good spot to find a cold drink. The Huay Kaew waterfalls are very refreshing.
Free! Visit with the monks and ask anything you like. This was great fun for the kids, as they were full of questions. You can click on the heading to read more about our Chiang Mai Monk chat and they also offer a great mediation session at Wat Suan Dok. You can get the information at the same location as the Monk chat.
Once you get over the mental aspect of what is going on, this was a great and inexpensive experience. Anya just loved it. Of course you can read more by clicking on the title. Some people have concerns about the safety and cleanliness. We loved it and it was so cheap.
This is really for the older or more mature kids or any adults. This is a 2 day/ 1 night retreat to learn the art of mediation with the Monks. You can obtain more information at the Wat where the Monk Chat is held.
Do you love cats? We have the purrrfect thing for you to do in Chiang Mai. Visit a cat cafe! Sit back, relax and enjoy a cup of coffee, tea or another drink, while the little furry lovies give you loads of attention. This is great for us, becuase we travel and don’t own any pets. So visiting a cat cafe and doing housesitting is a way for us to get a little time with pets.
This wasn’t a San Diego Zoo, but if you have little ones, they will enjoy the animals.
We just never made the time for this, as we have done cooking classes in Morocco and Budapest. Had we stayed longer we would have. We are going to share the thoughts from Elliot, a 10-year-old traveling with his parents “All 7 in 7”. He enjoyed his cooking class in Chiang Mai.
We just never made the time for this, as we have done cooking classes in Morocco and Budapest. Had we stayed longer we would have. We are going to share the thoughts from our friends from “An Epic Education”, who loved their fruit carving class in Chiang Mai.
This may not be for the kids, but parents will appreciate a massage. Thai is twist and turn, poke and prod. If you don’t like the Thai massage, just ask for an Oil massage, which is more like a rub.
Free! This is a relaxing park on the southwest corner of the old city, just inside the moat.
The Chiang Mai Night Safari
We didn’t experience this activity, but we did hear it is best to go at night or dusk.
The first capital of Lanna and an ancient village, now a ghost town. Due to the change in the flow of the river, this town was abandoned and sometimes floods. It is about 600 x 850 meters big and a neat experience.
There are also many organized tours for you to enjoy from being active on walking or biking tour, to enjoying a food or wine tour. There is so much to do and Viator has so many great offers for you. Click here to see their latest Chiang Mai Deals!
Family Friendly Places To Stay In Chiang Mai Thailand
Holiday Rental in Chiang Mai (1-4 weeks)
– We haven’t stayed at all of these, but have walked around to check them out. Of course prices vary by date and number of people.
For a general search within Chiang Mai, we do recommend using Agoda, as they really do have the best deals. Click here to find the best prices and availability for Chiang Mai.
- Old City
- Chiang Mai Thai House – See the current deals now!
- Raming Lodge Hotel & Spa – See the current deals now!
- Chiangmai Bupatara Hotel – See the current deals now!
- Top North Hotel – See the current deals now!
- Wangburapa Grand Hotel – See the current deals now!
Chana Place – See the current deals now!
- Swiss-Lanna Lodge – See the current deals now! It is located near train station and we also can offer you our personal review.
- Old City
Short-term Apartment in Chiang Mai (1-6 months)
Unique Family Friendly Places to Stay, just outside of Chiang Mai
- The Chai Lai Orchid Nature Bungalows & Eco Resort Awesome Experience! and about 1 hour SW of Chiang Mai.
- How about staying in a Treehouse? The Rabeang Pasak Tree House Resort is about 1 hour NE of Chiang Mai. See current deals now!
- A Mongolian Yurt, called The Post Card, It is about 1 hour NE of Chiang Mai. See current deals now!
Family Friendly Trips from Chiang Mai
If you do nothing else around town, at least enjoy Chiang Mai on a stick!
Costs in Chiang Mai
- Two months in Thailand for a family of 4 – We share all of our expenses with you, every single penny. If you want to know the cost of living in Chiang Mai for our family of 4 then, you have come to the right place. We even talk about the dentist, orthodontist, and eye docotor in Chiang Mai.
- Cost of everyday things around Chiang Mai. If you want to get a feel for how much food costs in Chiang Mai or maybe it is just the everyday expense, we have it all here for you. It is of course just a guide for you to get an idea. Prices can change and well, what you choose to buy may be different from what we selected as far as the brands.
Once again, we share all of or costs for a family of 4 to live in Chiag Mai. Again, you may have a different comfort level or budget, but feel free to use this as a cost of living in Chiang Mai guide.
- Costs for a couple in Chiang Mai (our friends, the Grants)
- Songthaew – Red Truck with 2 benches (Song = 2, Thaew = Bench) are 20 Baht ($.60) per person for each trip within the city (roughly, within the superhighway).
- Tuk Tuk – Scooter usually with a 3 passenger seat in the back. Prices vary, but usually around 80 Baht ($2.50) per trip
- Driving in Thailand? Are you crazy? Actually, we really enjoyed renting a car and taking a road trip. Driving wasn’t bad at all, so get over your fear and explore. At times this is more cost-effective for families than public transportation. Check out our Driving in Thailand Tips and Tricks. Scooter rentals can run from 150-200 ($5-$6) Baht a day and car rentals can be found from 500-1000 Baht ($15-$30) per day. Usually Avis Thailand has good deals.
- Bus – The main bus station is the Arcade bus station on the NE outside of the old city. There is also a small bus station in Chang Phuak outside the North Gate.
- Train – Many people come and go from town via the train. The train station is located along the east side of town. We took the night train from Bangkok to Chiang Mai.
- Air – Airport Code CNX – Flying is obviously the easiest way to arrive and depart from Chiang Mai.The airport is just outside of the city center on the southwest corner.
Other Family Friendly Info around the Nimman area
- Dentist Our friends the Grants wrote up something about their dental experience and provide the location in the old city as well. We visited the Nimman Dental Clinic, off of Nimman Soi 2
- Rental Car
We hope this helps you out for your Family Friendly time in Chiang Mai. It doesn’t matter if you are in Chiang Mai for a week or a year, there is loads to do in Chiang Mai. There’s so much family fun around every corner. We didn’t have time to do it all, so we may just need to come back.
More Things To Do in Chiang Mai with Kids
- The Family Travel Scoop – Best Things To Do in Chiang Mai with kids
- Escape Artistes also loved all of the things to do with kids in Chiang Mai
- The Travelling Apples share their Things to do with a toddler in Chiang Mai
If you have a cool family activity or other things to do in Chiang Mai you would like to add to the list, just put it in the comments below or contact us to add it.