Most of the very popular historical attractions can be found in the old city of Chiang Mai which is surrounded by a large moat where in historical times provided protection from invading armies.
This historical area is the centre of Chiang Mai city and a good location to find cheap rooms for backpackers and people on a budget.
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Find modern nightlife in "Nimman", located to the north west just outside the old city. This is the more trendy area with upmarket style shopping malls, restaurants, cafes, cinemas and galleries. The huge Maya shopping complex is on the main road.
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The Wiang Phing village area is in Chiang Mai city and just south of the old city moat on the main 108 highway. It is very close to the International airport and the huge Central Plaza shopping mall. Nearby places to visit is the Old Chiang Mai Cultural Center.
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A very vibrant and busy area every night with many night markets, cheap and expensive restaurants, food halls, shopping arcades and lively entertainment. Very quiet during the day with some stalls and touts with private cars on the main road offering day tours.
The Chiang Mai Night Bazaar and Markets area is mainly located on Changklan road east of Chiang Mai old city between the river and the moat. This location is a very popular tourist district and regarded as the best location for food, shopping and entertainment. It is packed with tourists and tuk-tuks even in the off-season . Hundreds of small stalls line the sidewalk edge between the shops and the roadway.
Several luxury hotels, cheaper older hotels and other cheap rooms can be found around the night bazaar area. The higher hotels have magnificent views and great sunsets with the mountain in the background.
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Luxury hotels on the Mae Ping River located on the east side of Chiang Mai city. You can find markets, parks and museums in this more authentic style area.
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Quieter natural surroundings located to the west and south west of Chiang Mai city with resort style accommodation in areas around the base of the mountain. Ideal for a family vacation.
The areas of Hang Dong, Doi Suthep and near Doi Kham have many resorts and villas. Booking.Com
Away from touristy area and located in the north west city district of Chang Phueak. Ideal for museums, galleries, restaurants and adult nightlife district.
Santitham is between the old city north west moat corner and the main highway 11 road that skirts around the north of the city.
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