Chiang Mai Guest Houses Guide

Guesthouses can be boutique alternatives

Guesthouses can be boutique alternatives

The old town lanes of Chiang Mai are ideal for guesthouses and many visitors opt for the down-to-earth character of these rather than hotels. Certainly the budget traveller will be pleased with the large selection of cheap guesthouses in Chiang Mai, but those with more discerning taste can also find upmarket boutique places.

See accommodations near Chiang Mai International Airport

There are numerous guesthouses of varying quality scattered around the Old Town, as well as the leafy lanes closer to the Night Market, or south of the moat. A few are located on the riverfront, and some long-stay or more peaceful places are located out in the suburbs. Rates range from 150 to 800 baht per night, and it’s worth paying a bit more for an atmospheric place. Many of the guesthouses double as a one-stop shop for trekking, tourist services and even offer cooking courses.

Read our tips further down the page on choosing a guesthouse.

The following is a selection of trusted guesthouses in Chiang Mai, grouped by location, price, and gay-friendly. Out of season (May-October) rates drop by as much as 30-40 per cent. Note! In Thai, a soi is a lane.

Chiang Mai guest houses in the Old Town

Julie Guesthouse: A labyrinthine place popular for its cheap rooms, and bohemian atmosphere. Situated in a quiet section of Chiang Mai's old city. 7/1 Soi 5, Phrapokklao Rd., Dormitory: 90 Baht per bed, Single room: 150-200 Bath, Double room: 260 Baht, Triple Room: 330 Baht.  Tel: (053) 274 355, Email: Juliecnx1999@gmail.com, Website: www.julieguesthouse.com.

Chiang Mai White House: Lonely Planet favourite with clean rooms, good security, quiet location and nice garden. 12 Soi 5, Ratchadamnoen Rd. Room with Fan: 350 Baht, Room with Fan+Cable TV: 400 Baht, Room with Air Con+Cable TV: 500 Baht, Family room (6 guests): 1,800 Baht. Tel: (053) 357 130, Email: thecmwhitehouse@gmail.comWebsite: www.chiangmai-whitehouse.com.

Eagle House: 16 Soi 3, Chang Moi Gao Rd. Room for 1 Person: 250-450 Baht, Room for 2 Persons: 300-500 Baht, Room for 3 Persons: 450-550 Baht, Room for 4 Persons: 500-600 Baht. Tel: (053) 874 126, Email: mail@eaglehouse.com, Website: www.eaglehouse.com.

Gap's House: Lovely leafy place in a sprawling antique teak house complex, good mid-budget choice, no advanced bookings, often full. Cooking classes on offer. 3 Soi 4, Rajadamnern Rd. Room for 1 Person: 370-600 Baht, Room for 2 Persons: 500-800 Baht, Room for 3 Persons: 850-1,000 Baht. Tel: (053) 278 140, Email: info@gaps-house.com, Website: www.gaps-house.com.

Gord ChiangMai: One of the best lodging choices in the heart of the city for its friendly hospitality. They offer airport pick-up/drop-off, complimentary breakfast, daily room clean, free WiFi and bicycles for exploring. 29/8 Soi 6, Ratchamanka Rd. Twin room (High season/Low season): 1,290-1,490 Baht, Triple deluxe room: (High season/Low season): 1,990-2,190 Baht, Duplex room (High season/Low season): 2,390-2,690 Baht. Tel: (053) 280 923, Email: happy@gordchiangmai.com, Website: www.gordchiangmai.com.

Jungala House (Formerly Eagle House II): Is under new management from a Thai/German couple with plenty of experience in the trekking business. It's a centrally located guesthouse, near the popular bars on Ratvithi, but quiet with 20 modest/affordable rooms, mostly fan although some are air conditions. All have en-suite bathrooms. It has a spacious and shady courtyard, wifi, and plenty of parking. Of course you can arrange your trekking from here also. 26 Soi 2, Ratvithi Rd. Double room: 300-450 Baht, Triple room: 440-540 Baht. Tel: (053) 210 620, Email: info@jungalahouse.com.

Smile House #1: Very convenient yet quiet location near Thapae Gate, includes a pool, various styled/priced pokey rooms and has atmosphere, but gets full. 5 Soi 2, Rachamankha Rd. Room with Fan: 350-500 Baht, Room with Air-Condition: 700-900 Baht. Tel: (053) 208 661-2, Email: smile1@smilehousechiangmai.com, Website: www.smilehousechiangmai.com.

Lamchang House: Nice wooden house with small garden restaurant, run by friendly old couple. Fan rooms (shared bathroom): 150-250 Baht. 24 Soi 7, Moon Muang Rd. Tel: (053) 210 586.

Chiang Mai Kristi House: Decent rooms but lacks atmosphere our common area, convenient and quiet location. Aircon rooms: 200-350 Baht. 14/2 Soi 5, Ratchadamnoen Rd. Tel: (053) 418 165.

Giant Guest House 2: Cheapest in town, dorm beds or rooms, popular with Japanese backpackers. 4 Rachamankha Rd. Dorms: 120-140 Baht, Single rooms (sharebath room): 180 Baht, Twin rooms (private bathroom): 280Baht, Triple rooms (private bathroom): 400 Baht. Tel: (053) 280 767, Email: giantguesthouse@gmail.com, Website: www.facebook.com/GiantGuestHouse2.

Safe House Court: Resembles a small apartment block, popular long-stay venue with all mod cons. 178 Ratchapakhinai Rd. Website: www.facebook.com/SAFE-House-Court.

RCN Court & Inn: Tucked out the way but popular for long-stayers, offering full amenities, a gym and decent sized rooms with cable TV, better value on long stay. 35 Soi 7, Moonmuang Rd. Fan rooms: 450 Baht, Air-condition rooms: 700 Baht, Weekly rate: 3,500 Baht, Half month rate: 5,300, Monthly rate: 9,000 Baht (Excluded electricity and tap water). Tel: (053) 418 280-2, Email: booking@rcnguesthouse.com, Website: www.rcnguesthouse.com.

Top North Guest House: Located in southeast corner of moat among quaint lanes, a large popular place with great pool area and atmosphere. 15 Soi 2, Moonmuang Rd. Room rates:  500-800 Baht. Tel: (053) 278 684.

Britannia Guest HouseIn the heart of a lively backpacker section of town, this apartment block is comfortable with clean and new rooms, a professional staff and cooking classes. 27/3-4 Soi 9, Moonmuang Rd. Deluxe fan rooms: 550 Baht, Deluxe extra rooms: 700 Baht, Deluxe share Twin: 750 Baht. Tel: (053) 418 994.

Minicost Apartment & Guesthouse: Centrally located, new building with clean comfy rooms and efficient Australian run services, wifi in rooms, bikes for rent, internet café, excellent choice for those expecting comfort levels and can afford a bit more. 19-19/4 Soi 1, Rachadamnoen Rd. Tel: (053) 418 787-8, Website: www.minicostcm.com.

Guesthouses East of the Moat

Sarah Guest House Chiang MaiLong running, established guest house offering cheap and convenient accommodation, in the very centre of Chiang Mai. Only 2 mins walk from the Night Bazaar or Tapae Gate. Trekking and cookery courses run from the guest house. 20 Soi 4, Tapae Rd. Single/Twin (with fan): 250/300 Baht, Single/Twin (with air-conditioned): 400/450 Baht. Tel: (053) 208 271, Email: sarahguesthouse@hotmail.com.

Thana Guesthouse: Israeli house of choice, with signs in Hebrew, Kosher food in the restaurant and good rooms. 27/8 Soi 4, Thapae Rd. Double/Twin: 600 Baht, Extra bed: 200 Baht. Tel: (053) 279 794, Email: info@ThanaAdventure.com, Website: www.thanaadventure.com.

Parami Guest House: Charming guest house in an authentic Lanna-Thai teak wooden house which is over a hundred years old and surrounds a private and breath-taking tropical garden. Parami is located in the centre of Chiang Mai, and close to the river. 210-212 Charoenrat Rd. Single/Twin (with fan): 350/400 Baht, Single/Twin (with air-conditioned): 580-620 Baht. Tel: (053) 266 139, Website: www.paramiguesthouse-chiangmai.com.

Galare Guesthouse: First class accommodation on riverfront, with all mod cons and hotel service. 7 Soi 2, Charoen Prathet Rd. Room rate (Low season/High season): 1,210/1,420 Baht. Tel. (053) 818 887, Email: info@galare.com, Website: www.galare.com.

River View Lodge: Well appointed rooms in spacious building with pool and lovely garden on riverfront. 25 Soi 4, Charoen Prathet Rd. Room rate: 1,800-2200 Baht, Extra bed: 500 Baht. Tel: (053) 271 109-10, Email: info@riverviewlodgch.comWebsite: www.riverviewlodgch.com.

Lai Thai Guest House: Popular place, alongside the moat (so noisy) with restaurant and pool. Plenty of rooms finished in wood but slightly overpriced. 111/4-5 Kotchasarn Rd. Standard rooms: 890 Baht, Deluxe rooms: 990 Baht, Private rooms (share bathroom): 590 Baht. Tel: (053) 271 725, Email: mail@laithai.com, Website: www.laithai.com.

Little Home Guesthouse: Near the Moat in modern Thai-styled building with private balconies. 1/1 Soi 3, Kotchasan Rd. Tel: (053) 206 939, Email: littlehomegh@hotmail.com, Website: www.littlehomegh.com.

Upmarket Chiang Mai Guesthouses

A9 Place Boutique House: This charming garden apartment comes fully serviced with breathtaking views of Doi Suthep. It is great for both tourists and business travellers being around ten minutes from the town centre and boasting free WiFi. 51 Soi Lanna Hospital, Sukgasem Rd. Fan room: 380-450 Baht, Air-con room: 550-650 Baht, Monthly rate: 3,000-4,500 Baht. Tel: (053) 224 288, Mobile: (086) 431 6788, Email: info@a9place.com.

Doi Luang Private Resort: This is very large holiday home in the foothills of Doi Luang is perfect for a relaxing family vacation amidst the hot springs and waterfalls of this picturesque national park. There are six en suite bedrooms and ten acres of private grounds with an additional separate cottage and acres of land to pitch tents, but within easy access all the entertainment and cultural attractions of the Lanna capital. Weekly rates from 50,000 baht including maid service and free 4x4 rental. Chiang Dao.

Baan Suay Jan: Luxury family holiday home and villa in Chiang Mai with private swimming pool, park and sports complex. Enjoys the peace and tranquility of a country home yet is ideally located for all amenities and tourist attractions. The lounge, dining and kitchen area leads out through a covered terrace to the swimming pool area where guests can relax during the day and enjoy open fire bbq's under the crystal clear starlit nights. San sai.

Baan SabaiActually a resort and spa with a homely feel, certainly upmarket and comfortable with soothing pool and suburban gardens, 10 minutes from Chiang Mai city. Spa and wellness facilities a speciality, under Swiss management. 219 Moo 9, San Pee Sua. Room Rate: 1,900-10,600 Baht (includes breakfast). Tel: (053) 854 778-9, Email: bansabairesort@gmail.com.

Sang Serene HouseA lovely low-rise apartment building out in the leafy suburbs near Doi Suithep mountain, especially ideal for long stays. Rooms are new, comfy and tastefully decorated, with apartments also offered at monthly rates, plus a range of facilities. 146/20 Moo 1, Changpuak. Room rates: 12,060-24,000 Baht (1 Month), 10,360-21,900 Baht (3 Months), 9,000-18,900 Baht (1 Year). Tel: (053) 327 750, Mobile: (081) 881 8058.

Club One Seven Chiang MaiLovely, quiet riverside location in old teak house, with creative food and friendly staff, but remote from the city centre. 385/2 Charoen Prathet Rd. Standard rooms: 1,200-1,600 Baht, Superior rooms: 1,700-2,300 Baht, Deluxe rooms:  2,300-3,200 Baht. Tel: (053) 274 317, Email: chiangmai@cluboneseven.net, Website: www.clubonesevenchiangmai.com.

Pha-Thai Guest House: A lovely boutique place with surprisingly cheap rooms, and a range of options to suit all comfort levels. Nice gardens, brand new and highly recommended for mature travellers. 48/1 Rachaphakinai Rd. Room rates: 700-2,000 Baht. Tel: (053) 278 013, Email: phathaihouse@yahoo.com, Website: www.phathaihouse.com.

Bann Hanibah: Lovely colonnial teak styled place with private home atmosphere, trendy boutique finish and professional management. Quiet, discerning and well placed in a quiet area, with pretty patio garden. 6 Soi 8, Moonmuang Rd. Single rooms: 1,000 Baht, Double/Twin rooms: 1,650 Baht, Family rooms: 2,600 Baht. Tel: (053) 287 524, Email: baanhanibah@gmail.com, Website: www.baanhanibah.com.

Galare Guesthouse: First class accommodation on riverfront, with all mod cons and hotel service. 7 Soi 2, Charoen Prathet Rd. Room rate (Low season/High season): 1,210/1,420 Baht. Tel. (053) 818 887, Email: info@galare.com, Website: www.galare.com.

River View Lodge: Retro rooms in spacious building with pool and lovely garden on riverfront. Rates reflect the location rather than comfort of the rooms. 25 Soi 4, Charoen Prathet Rd. Room rate: 1,800-2200 Baht, Extra bed: 500 Baht. Tel: (053) 271 109-10, Email: info@riverviewlodgch.comWebsite: www.riverviewlodgch.com.

Ping Nakara Hotel & Spa: This hotel is only five minutes walk from the famous night bazaar and features graceful gingerbread architecture and hand-carved fretwork throughout its nineteen rooms. A welcome retreat for the tired traveller. 135/9 Charoenprathet Rd. Tel: (053) 252 999, Email: info@pingnakara.comWebsite: www.pingnakara.com.

Gay Friendly Guesthouses in Chiang Mai

SevenSuns ResidenceA friendly and comfortable place, centrally located in the old town with sociable restaurant and nice staff. 155 Ratchamanka Rd. Room rate (Low Season/High Season): 1,290-1,390/1,950-2,150 Baht. Tel: (053) 814 325, Email: sevensunsresidence@gmail.com.

Sang Serene House: A lovely low-rise apartment building out in the leafy suburbs near Doi Suithep mountain, especially ideal for long stays. Rooms are new, comfy and tastefully decorated, with apartments also offered at monthly rates, plus a range of facilities. 146/20 Moo 1, Changpuak. Room rates: 12,060-24,000 Baht (1 Month), 10,360-21,900 Baht (3 Months), 9,000-18,900 Baht (1 Year). Tel: (053) 327 750, Mobile: (081) 881 8058.

Santitham Guest HouseA nicely appointed, upmarket guesthouse, Northwest of the moat in a nice quiet suburb, but within walking distance of Kad Suan Kaew mall and conveniently located for biking to the Old Town. Offer massage and food. 61 Santitham Rd. Standard rooms (Single/Double): 350/750 Baht, Deluxe rooms (Single/Double): 1,750/1,750 Baht, Executive Deluxe rooms (Single/Twin): 2,000/2,225 Baht. Tel: (053) 406 449. Email: info@santitham.com.

Tokyo Vender Hotel : Located on the Northwest corner of the moat, this isn’t a guesthouse but a five storey hotel that offers the largest and liveliest gay accomodation in town. Recently refurbished and opened, with the Power Boys caberet and revue bar in the basement, pool, restaurant and friendly atmosphere. 6 Bunrueangrit Rd. Room rates: 599/699/1,000 Baht. Tel: (053) 211 100-3.

More on gay listings in Chiang Mai.

Tips for Choosing a Guesthouse in Chiang Mai

There are plenty of guesthouses in the city and even during the busy season you can find a place to stay by just showing up, although it’s best to book in advance to ensure your stay is a memorable one. Some guesthouses provide a friendly and relaxed atmosphere, while others put little effort in other than providing a cheap place to stay. Taking the time to find a good one will make all the difference to your Chiang Mai stay.

Those arriving by train will undoubtedly be approached by touts at the station and there’s no harm in following them to see the place, but do ‘shop’ around to appreciate the difference between a fun or dull Chiang Mai guesthouse. The nicer ones have a small garden area, well-maintained rooms, and other guests for company. Trekkers will find many guesthouses offering trips to their guests and this is a good way to get to know your trekking company before you decide to set out into the mountains. A good restaurant and common areas also adds to the appeal.

Noise is another factor to seriously consider and is generally inescapable in Thailand. The upmarket places will have seen to it that the environment is peaceful, but in the built-up old town, you never really can tell when an angle-grinder will fire up. The Old Town lanes are peaceful and quiet the further you get away from the Thapae Gate area.

For central convenience, the areas nearer Thapae gate are best, but most guesthouses in Chiang Mai are within walking distance of the sites. There are clusters of backpacker-friendly places in the south-eastern and north-eastern corners of the Old Town, while the windy lanes between the east flank of the moat and the Night Market are leafy and quiet.

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