Jump to content
Thai Visa Forum

Chiang Rai: Hidden Gem of Thailand?


Recommended Posts

Ponchop, you have a real knack for relating what many feel but lack the ability to express. Your appreciation for life in the Rai is enviable and eloquent. I always look forward to your loving descriptions of Chiang Rai.smile.pngwai.gif

Link to post
Share on other sites

Last October, I visited Chiang Rai for the first time.

(A friend got a job at an elementary school there

so I went to visit him.) I stayed 4 days- I was supposed

to stay 6. I didn't like it. I didn't find the people at

all friendly and I guess I am too accustomed to

the non-stop "action" of Bangkok. As a "farang"

walking about, I was solicited for every little

"Massage Parlor" - that invariably was staffed

by middle-aged and above employees. Of course,

only "Traditional Thai Massages" were

available.

Granted, outside of town is a quiet, pleasant,

rural setting if you're already "attached" and

just want to settle-in with her.

Link to post
Share on other sites

I have been through Chiang Rai many times on my way to Mae Sai, and I really like it (though I have only stopped over for an hour at most). Pomchop sums it up well as a desirable place to live. If I could get a good job there. I would rather move the family there than live in CM.

Link to post
Share on other sites

Last October, I visited Chiang Rai for the first time.

(A friend got a job at an elementary school there

so I went to visit him.) I stayed 4 days- I was supposed

to stay 6. I didn't like it. I didn't find the people at

all friendly and I guess I am too accustomed to

the non-stop "action" of Bangkok. As a "farang"

walking about, I was solicited for every little

"Massage Parlor" - that invariably was staffed

by middle-aged and above employees. Of course,

only "Traditional Thai Massages" were

available.

Granted, outside of town is a quiet, pleasant,

rural setting if you're already "attached" and

just want to settle-in with her.

To each his own...

40 years ago, both Chiang Rai and Mae Chan were quiet little cities that far outclassed Bangkok and the resort towns. Currently, I live in Udon Thani, selected for the same reasons, butevery city suffers growing pains. Yes, the BIB were then quite nice, but that was when the police were boys in Khaki (municipal police) and even Immigration was run locally. In those days, an overstay or extended stay didn't create problems of the magnitude we see today.

Link to post
Share on other sites

Last October, I visited Chiang Rai for the first time.

(A friend got a job at an elementary school there

so I went to visit him.) I stayed 4 days- I was supposed

to stay 6. I didn't like it. I didn't find the people at

all friendly and I guess I am too accustomed to

the non-stop "action" of Bangkok. As a "farang"

walking about, I was solicited for every little

"Massage Parlor" - that invariably was staffed

by middle-aged and above employees. Of course,

only "Traditional Thai Massages" were

available.

Granted, outside of town is a quiet, pleasant,

rural setting if you're already "attached" and

just want to settle-in with her.

Maybwe you would be better in Pattaya....you obviously asked for more....

  • Like 1
Link to post
Share on other sites

I think I will mount my bicycle and go there to see for myself!Thanks for the info!

Chiang Rai is a great place to ride a bicycle, but don’t take my word for it, by all means come and see for yourself. I prefer a mountain bike on dirt but there are lots of road bike enthusiasts on the roads.smile.png

Link to post
Share on other sites

Pomchop, very well said!

I find that when I come back to C.R., it takes a while to slow down to the pace.

That's kinda the whole point isn't it.

No, I can't alway's find what I want, when I want it. (If at all!) It takes a while to realize that it is not so important.

No, the quality of what I want done/built/purchased may not be what I am accustomed to, once again, not so important.

Yes, I wake up every day, smile, kiss my wife and slow down just a little bit. That IS so important.

Yes, life in Chiang Rai is NOT life in the city. We all have our "d'ruthers".

I d'ruther be here in the Rai than "back at"!

Cheers to Chiang Rai and it's calming effects.

  • Like 2
Link to post
Share on other sites

OP forgot to mention the smoke, which makes Chiang Rai and most of the north very undesirable for a few months each year.

The climate is near perfect from about Sep to March. You can enjoy some nice clear cool weather especially Nov to Feb...cool but never really what most farangs would call COLD. There are a few months from March to about June when it is way too smoky and hot as hell.

Link to post
Share on other sites

OP forgot to mention the smoke, which makes Chiang Rai and most of the north very undesirable for a few months each year.

As I have said elsewhere.
"No snow or blizzards, no tornados, no major earthquakes, no volcanos, no dust storms, no tsunamis, no mega-floods like Bangkok, no wars, no famine, no gang violence, and the list goes on. Yes, we have to deal with a little smoke most years but as far as I am concerned, it could be a whole lot worse. Then again maybe I am just a bit peculiar and don’t have enough outrage in my bones.
Life is good as far as I am concerned, here in the Rai."

You can say that about most places in the world.

Chiang Rai is a great place but I was just trying to keep it real

(now if only I could find where I put those rose colored glasses smile.png

Link to post
Share on other sites

OP forgot to mention the smoke, which makes Chiang Rai and most of the north very undesirable for a few months each year.

As I have said elsewhere.
"No snow or blizzards, no tornados, no major earthquakes, no volcanos, no dust storms, no tsunamis, no mega-floods like Bangkok, no wars, no famine, no gang violence, and the list goes on. Yes, we have to deal with a little smoke most years but as far as I am concerned, it could be a whole lot worse. Then again maybe I am just a bit peculiar and don’t have enough outrage in my bones.
Life is good as far as I am concerned, here in the Rai."

You can say that about most places in the world.

Chiang Rai is a great place but I was just trying to keep it real

(now if only I could find where I put those rose colored glasses smile.png

I have several, you could always borrow one of mine. My eyes have adjusted and I don’t need them anymore.thumbsup.gif

  • Like 2
Link to post
Share on other sites

Sure life is good in Thailand but the Thai apologists should take off their glasses once in a while and also see how it could improve! By saying CR suffers from 'a little smoke' is a bit silly, for around 3mnths every year there is a blanket of carcinogenic smoke covering CR and the surrounding area which affects each and every person living there with thousands needing medication!

  • Like 1
Link to post
Share on other sites

Sure life is good in Thailand but the Thai apologists should take off their glasses once in a while and also see how it could improve! By saying CR suffers from 'a little smoke' is a bit silly, for around 3mnths every year there is a blanket of carcinogenic smoke covering CR and the surrounding area which affects each and every person living there with thousands needing medication!

From the OP:

There are a few months from March to about June when it is way too smoky and hot as hell.
Is Chiang Rai perfect? Of course not and there will always be farangs who can find something to whine about. But overall I continue to think that it is a hidden gem.
Not sure I am a "thai apologist"....whatever that is suppose to be. Rather I do get very weary of reading the constant bashing and prefer to focus more on the positives than on the negatives. Nobody is suggesting that the smoke is desirable but it is certainly not limited to the north of Thailand....check out the pics of Singapore TODAY......

Last week - June 19, 2013 in the morning

indonesia_tmo_2013170.jpg

morning (Terra MODIS)
and in the afternoon
indonesia_amo_2013170.jpg
afternoon (Aqua MODIS)

http://earthobservatory.nasa.gov/IOTD/view.php?id=81431&src=eoa-iotd

Link to post
Share on other sites

Given the choice of extolling the virtues or blathering on about the deficiencies of our adopted home (or anything for that matter), I choose the former.

No person/place or thing is absolutely perfect, but the ability to see and appreciate the beauty is up to the individual.

If you choose to look for and only discuss the negative, soon that is all that you see.

In my time "lurking" here on T.V., that propensity to the negative has been something that always surprised and confounded me.

Are there "things" (cultural/political/environmental/etc.) that have me scratching my head here? Many times, everyday!

But I CHOOSE to be here. So it's up to me to make a positive difference in my circle of friends and family.

As the OP said,

"CR is certainly not for everyone. Some may be bored to tears. Others may struggle a lot with the lack of English.
Some may well miss the bright lights and non stop action of the big city.
Is Chiang Rai perfect? Of course not and there will always be farangs who can find something to whine about. But overall I continue to think that it is a hidden gem."

Finding a positive group that choose to discuss the positive aspects of our home in a positive manner is a positive thing.

Of that..............wait for it............"I am positive."

Perhaps another reason to be happy I'm in The Rai

Cheers from here. drunk.gif

  • Like 2
Link to post
Share on other sites

I haven't visited CR in 10-12 years or so. The OPs post brought back some good memories and I will see what the years have brought when I relocate to LOS in August.

Link to post
Share on other sites

Nice post. Is Chiang rai any good for getting out to see some mountainous regions? I'm not wanting to do any trekking so day trips ect.

Chiang Rai is a great place for getting out to see some mountains, rivers, waterfalls and reservoirs. Take a look at our pinned topic, Images of Chiang Rai at the top of the page and you will get a sampling of what Chiang Rai has to offer. Many day trips on offer and if you are willing to spend a night or two away, you can go as far as Nan or even Pai. Come and enjoy.

  • Like 1
Link to post
Share on other sites

Nice post. Is Chiang rai any good for getting out to see some mountainous regions? I'm not wanting to do any trekking so day trips ect.

Just look at Google Maps (including Streetview) ChiangRai has mountains (or more acurately high hills) all around.

Good roads too on the main. Just rent a scooter...fill the tank...check you have 100 baht for a day trips food and drink in your pocket and off you go.

Great people too. Just stop where you see them and even if you do not speak their language they will show how nice Thai people can be.

If you have enough muscles you can even do this on a pushbike.

  • Like 1
Link to post
Share on other sites

Every time I try ascending one of those “hills” my body screams “mountain”. From the top if feels and looks every bit a mountain. Maybe not the Himalayas but still mountains in my book.biggrin.pngthumbsup.gif

  • Like 1
Link to post
Share on other sites

Create an account or sign in to comment

You need to be a member in order to leave a comment

Create an account

Sign up for a new account in our community. It's easy!

Register a new account

Sign in

Already have an account? Sign in here.

Sign In Now
  • Recently Browsing   0 members

    No registered users viewing this page.

×
×
  • Create New...