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Chiang Mai + Marnadee Heritage River Hotel

Chiang Mai is a very well known city in Thailand in the northern provence. We took a short 1 hour flight from Bangkok to Chiang Mai for about $85 USD each which beats the 20 hour overnight train ride ($45USD) we originally planned on doing. After spending 17 hours on a plane just 3 days prior, we were way too tired to make that long of a trip Needless to say, the extra few $ seemed worth it. We met a super nice couple from Anchorage who told us they had taken the train and wished they had just flown so I was happy we had made the right choice provided the circumstances. 

We stayed at the Marndadee Heritage River Village, a tiny resort nestled against the west bank of the Ping River its a hidden gem and one of the most beautiful hotels I have ever stayed in. Lanterns wink in every tree branch, the crickets and tree frogs are harmonizing like a symphony every night, and the infinity pool is a perfect mirror reflection of the sky. 

The hotel is a boutique resort owned by an art and vintage furniture collector. Every room is different, filled with antiques collected on his travels and all of the shared spaces and areas are ever-changing. The resort prides itself on never giving the same experience twice. There is a wonderful little guide pamphlet that tells the history and origin behind each major piece which was fascinating to read! 

The resort is about a half hour from the airport and 20 minutes or so outside the city center. It was about a 400BHT taxi drive ($15) which is relatively expensive compared to what we had been paying but totally worth it … the hotel also has a complimentary shuttle service that drops you in town and picks you up so its really just getting to and from the hotel that is costly. 

Our first day we decided to “temple hop” and tour the old city by foot just wandering from Wat to Wat exploring the intricacies of this decadent ancient design. We loved this city for its immense collection of temples and things to see and photograph and really wish we could have spent at least a few more days here- we hardly scratched the surface of this place!