The Chiang Mai nightlife may look limited to newly arrived tourists and they do not know where the happening bars and pubs are. Though not as plentiful or varied as the scene in Bangkok, Chiang Mai does have its own cool party venues. Choose from these nightlife places that target farangs (Westerners), or those that attract hordes of locals every night. Check out these popular bars and pub/restaurants.
Dining and drinking are probably the first things that come to mind. Fear not, the food in Chiang Mai is not only delicious and the helpings large, but the cost is amazingly low. Filling meals can be found from street stalls and vendors in Chiang Mai for less than 25 baht – that’s about sixty cents! Eating at restaurants will cost a bit more, but if you stick with the local Thai food establishments and avoid the hotel restaurants, you’ll still be amazed at the serving sizes and the prices.
As far as drinking goes, imported beer at the expat pubs is very reasonable, but if you’re not picky, a large bottle of the local spirits will last you and your friends the night and will only set you back around 120 baht ($2.90 US). Of course, if you overdo it you may continue to pay for it the next morning.
Another favorite nightlife activity in Chiang Mai is shopping at the famed night bazaar in the middle of the city. Here you will find all kinds of foods, crafts and other goods from the region. There are plenty of bargains to be had here, but be ready and willing to haggle. A word of warning though, so called antiques here are often fakes.
Finally, if you like to dance, there are many popular discos in Chiang Mai. Cover charges are reasonable, and if you practice basic caution and stick with the more well known ones such as Bubbles disco at the Pornping Tower, they are also very safe and friendly places to relax for the night.