Visiting Chiang Mai With A Toddler
We recently spent two months this summer with our toddler in Chiang Mai. Before going we were a bit scared about how things would go. Once or twice we questioned our sanity for evening thinking of visiting Chiang Mai with a toddler. I’m happy to say that despite a few stomach bugs and a nasty cold, we had an amazing time! We are actually in the process of planning our return to Chiang Mai this winter. Here’s a few of our favorite toddler appropriate activities while visiting Chiang Mai.
I think every shopping mall that we visited had some sort of giant indoor play area for young children. The play area in Central Festival is the best, by far! Like most places, the weekdays are often tame and weekends can get a bit out of control. We also found kids’ play areas in MAYA, The Promenda and Airport Plaza. Don’t forget to bring socks!
The site of many playdates, iBerry off of Nimman Soi 17 is a beautiful spot to unwind with the kids. They served a wide variety of ice cream and desserts, as well as a few savory dishes. The surrounding garden has hilarious sculptures, lots of outdoor seating, a hammock and luscious greenery.
Chiang Mai is blessed with over 300 Buddhist temples. Basically, if you pick a direction and start walking, you are bound to run into one. On a hot and sunny day, some of the larger temples were a great retreat from the heat. We’d take off our shoes and spend hours marveling over the details of the structures. Our son almost lost his mind over the beauty of the temples in Chiang Mai. The look on his face definitely read ‘WHY DOESN’T OUR HOME LOOK LIKE THIS?!’ Our favorite temple to visit was Wat Suan Dok because we could sneak away to have lunch at Pun Pun when we were done exploring.
Take A Half Day Trip To Monchom
Monchom (Mon Jam!) is an absolute paradise. This mountain top retreat is roughly 1 hour from Chiang Mai. There are 2 small cafes built on top of the mountain where you can orders lunch, sweets or a variety of beverages. When we visited in July the entire mountain was covered in fields of vibrant purple flowers. There’s lots of little areas to explore throughout the gardens and many places to rest and enjoy the surrounding scenery. I believe you camp even camp there. We will definitely be returning to this spot.
Go Out To Eat
Perhaps the absolute best thing to do in Chiang Mai is EAT! Don’t be afraid to go to a restaurant while visiting Chiang Mai with a toddler. Thai people are so friendly and helpful. No one never seemed annoyed that our screaming toddler was trying to sneak into the kitchen to steal bananas.
- Salad Concept – A quick and healthy restaurant that is usually so busy no one will notice if your child is getting cranky. There’s several locations throughout Chiang Mai but we always loved the one on Nimman.
- Anchan’s – An amazing vegetarian restaurant off of Nimman Soi 6. We had an impromptu playdate here once and all the kids went nuts. No one cared.
- Smoothie Blues – They have lots of Western breakfast and lunch items on the menu here. Our son was especially fond of this joint during avocado season.
Visit Mae Rim
If you’re anything like me, after a while the city can get overwhelming. It’s always nice to retreat to somewhere hidden in the mountains. We especially love Panviman Chiang Mai Resort & Spa. The hotel is extremely kid friendly. The food is wonderful. The management is superb. There’s lots of play areas and activities for young kids. It’s definitely worth checking out if you are ready for some fresh air.
A little planning and prep work goes a long way towards enjoying your holiday in Chiang Mai with your toddler.
Have you traveled to Thailand with a young child?
How was your experience?
Where is your family visiting next?
Here’s a few of our ABSOLUTE necessities while traveling Chiang Mai with a toddler: