several clothing vendors selling at their stalls and foods in the distance at the Chiang Mai Night Bazaar

Chiang Mai Night Bazaar: Is it Worth Visiting?

The popular Chiang Mai Night Bazaar all started back in the 1980s. A small night market formed by a few vendors catering to locals.

But today, the Night Bazaar in Chiang Mai has grown to become a large, vibrant night market loved by both locals and tourists. In fact, it’s one of the largest night markets in all of Southeast Asia today.

The Chiang Mai Night Bazaar is open daily from 5:00 PM till 12:00 AM, though most vendors start closing shop at 11:00 PM. Like most night markets in Thailand, It’s free; there isn’t an admission fee.

TIP: Don’t come on Sundays to the Night Bazaar in Chiang Mai because there are very few vendors here on Sundays. The reason is all the vendors from the Bazaar go to the Chiang Mai popular Sunday Market at The Phae Walking Street instead!

several various clothing items on display by many vendors at the Night Bazaar in Chiang Mai

Where is the Chiang Mai Night Bazaar

Located in the heart of the city but outside of the Old City of Chiang Mai. The start of the market is at the intersection of Chang Khlan Road and Loi Kroh Road.

The main road market is Chang Khalan Road. There, you can cross the street from side to side, exploring the many areas of the Chaing Mai Night Bazaar.

As you walk along Chang Khalan Road, the Chiang Mai Night Bazaar lasts almost until the intersection of Chang Khalan Road and Tha Phae Road.

Chiang Mai Night Bazaar Opening Hours

The Night Bazaar officially opens at 5:00 PM, but sometimes you will notice some vendors set up slightly before 5:00 PM.

Officially, the night market closes at 12:00 AM, though most vendors close shop just after 11:00 PM.

It’s a great idea to come early, especially if you’re coming for the first time or you’d like to do some shopping, that way you can skip the crowded part of the evening.

After 6:30 PM, the Night Bazaar Chiang Mai gets quite busy with crowds of locals and tourists!

several hand crafted wooden items on display at the Night Bazaar Chiang Mai

Food at Chiang Mai Night Bazaar

At the Chiang Mai Night Bazaar, the food options are endless, from local Thai foods to Western cuisine, many other international cuisines, like Mexican and Korean, and too many desserts to count!

There are several drink stands selling ice-cold beer, freshly squeezed juice, water, and soda with lots of ice!

Here are a few must-try foods at the Chiang Mai Night Bazaar, especially if it’s your first time at a night market in Thailand!

Khao Soi: The most iconic dish from Chiang Mai, an aromatic coconut milk-based curry soup with egg noodles topped off with crispy noodles, meat of choice, and pickled greens on the side

Mango Sticky Rice: Sweet sticky rice topped off with ripe mangos, Thailand’s most famous dessert

woman cooking a fresh pad thai at the night market in Chiang Mai

Pad Thai: Stir fried rice noodles flavored in a tamarind paste/fish sauce with either seafood or chicken/beef, garnished with peanuts and fresh green onion on the side

Pad Kra Pao: A famous Thai stir-fry dish cooked with Thai holy basil, garlic, and chilis featuring pork or beef.

Grilled Meat Skewers: Every night market you visit, you’ll notice countless stalls selling various grilled skewers ready to be cooked at order

Fresh Seafood Dishes: From crab to squid, octopus, and many fish types, many stalls display their fresh seafood offered to be cooked in many various ways

Thai Banana Roti: Another iconic Thai dessert, a flakey fried pastry topped usually with bananas and condemned milk; other options feature nutella or honey

meat skewers being sold by a vendor at the a Chiang Mai night market

Shopping at Chiang Mai Night Bazaar

The Night Bazaar in Chiang Mai has a wide variety of items to purchase, from shoes to suitcases, souvenirs, housewares, elephant pants, bags, jewelry, and even fine art.

When buying goods/souvenirs at the Night Bazaar, can you haggle/negotiate on price?

You certainly can; most tourists aren’t experienced in price haggling, so they won’t attempt it. But this is a common practice at most night markets in Thailand.

CLOTHING: You’ll find a wide variety of clothing at the night bazaar, from the famous elephant pants, Thai branded t-shirts, traditional clothing, bohemian dresses, and tailours looking to sell you custom suits.

SOUVENIRS: For souvenirs, expect to find Buddha decorations, elephant charms, key chains, coconut shell-made art, puzzles, and much more. When it comes to souvenir buying in Chiang Mai, there’s no better place than the night bazaar to do so!

JEWELRY: Plentiful jewelry items, including handcrafted anklets, bracelets, rings, and much more, can be found at the night bazaar. You’ll also spot many vendors selling replica watches and other replica designer jewelry items.

various bohemian clothing, hand crafted wooden elephants and more being sold at the Night Bazaar in Chiang Mai

BAGS: Are you looking for a new suitcase or beach bag? Look no further; here, you’ll find any type of bag you can think of. Suitcases of all sizes, beach bags, small purses, coin pouches, and more!

HOUSEWARES: The Chiang Mai Night Market offers a diverse range of home decor treasures.

From exquisitely crafted ceramics and pottery to intricately woven textiles and cushions. In addition to these, ornate lanterns, wooden carvings, and various other delightful items are available.

For those who enjoy cooking, you’ll find a few items being sold that are used to make popular Thai dishes, like stir-fry dishes and papaya salad bowls.

Other items can also be found for your home, like naturally made soaps, candles, and more.

ART: Walking around the night bazaar, one will find a wide range of art for purchase, from sculptures and paintings to traditional Thai artwork. Many local artists there also do custom drawings as well.

Whether you leave with a large piece of artwork or a small one, it’s nice to take some art home to display at home!

art work on display by local artists at the night market in Chiang Mai

Entertainment at Chiang Mai Night Bazaar

Last but not least, along with all the shopping and many foods/desserts to try at the night bazaar in Chiang Mai, there’s also entertainment!

Visitors can enjoy performances and live music, including both traditional Thai and Western live music.

On some nights, you may catch a glimpse of a Muay Thai fight in the ring at the bazaar.

Other entertainment options include various carnival-like games for all ages and a sports bar!

popular carnival game at the night market in Chiang Mai

How to Get Around Chiang Mai

There are a few different ways to get around Chiang Mai, but there’s only one public transportation option, and that’s the Songthaew (shared red taxi pickup trucks).

The average cost for a trip around Chiang Mai using Grab/Taxi/TukTuk tends to range around 80 – 120 Baht / $2.27 – $3.50 US per trip.

Chiang Mai Songthaew: These are shared red pickup truck taxis that drive around Chiang Mai, picking up passengers along the way.

They’re the cheapest way to get around from around 30 – 70 baht per ride. But understand your 15-minute trip may take 40 minutes due to other passengers’ destinations.

Use Grab/Bolt: Both Grab and Bolt are similar to Uber; both are popular apps for ride-sharing in SE Asia. It’s usually cheaper to use both apps than to take a taxi.

Rent a Scooter: There are several scooter rental shops around the city where you can rent a scooter per day to get around Chiang Mai.

Taxi or TukTuk: Walking around Chiang Mai, you’ll notice several taxis and tuk-tuks ready to take you around the city. Both are great ways to get around but avoid any scams that may occur.

Walking: Many areas in Chiang Mai are perfect for walking around; if you stay in one of the main areas around the city, you can walk everywhere. Unless you’re looking to explore other parts of the city, then you’ll be looking at a 20+ minute walk.

Where to Stay in Chiang Mai

Cheap Hotels in Chiang Mai

Hidden Garden Hostel – Top-ranked hostel offering exceptional clean and beautiful decor, with a pool, working space and located right by a night market

Revolution Hostel  Known for its vibrant communal space, offering both private and dorm-style rooms. Located a minute’s walk from many night markets and Old City Chiang Mai

Mid Range Hotels in Chiang Mai

Pingviman Hotel – A stunning relaxing boutique hotel near Nong Buak Park in the Old City, it’s also near the Old City River and many restaurants/shops

Phor Liang Meun – Well-decorated hotel with a modern and old-school look, located on the edge of the Old City in an excellent location

Luxury Hotels in Chiang Mai

Shangri-La Chiang Mai  Swanky hotel with excellent amenities in a fantastic area; a few minutes walk away from many restaurants and the city’s vibrant night markets

InterContential  A contemporary, luxurious modern hotel located in the Old City of Chiang Mai, with nearby shops, restaurants, and massage parlors

enterance gate into Old City Chiang Mai in the as the sun is shining onto the clouds / Is Chiang Mai Expensive

Chiang Mai Night Bazaar — Final Thoughts

The famous Chiang Mai Night Bazaar is an absolute must-visit when you are in Chiang Mai; it shouldn’t be missed!

There’s plenty to do, many tasty foods to try, and several types of goods to purchase. For those looking for a laidback evening of exploring and eating, there’s no better than the Night Bazaar in Chiang Mai.

So come by, try many different foods, buy a souvenir or two to take home, and enjoy yourself! And don’t forget to bring enough cash!

TIP: It doesn’t happen in Chiang Mai, but keep an eye out for pickpocketing at night markets

beer and cocktail bar vendor at the Chiang Mai Night Bazaar

How to get to Chiang Mai night bazaar?

You can take the local Songthaew or take a Tuk Tuk/Grab to get to the night bazaar.

What day is the Chiang Mai Night Market?

The famous Chiang Mai Sunday market is on Sundays at the Pha Gate Walking Street. Besides Sunday, the daily market is the Chiang Mai Night Bazaar, which opens every day from 5:00 PM to 11:00 PM.

Is it normal to haggle in Thailand’s Night markets?

For goods and souvenirs, yes, especially if you’re purchasing more than one. However, there are some vendors that display prices sometimes and refuse to.

What is the most famous night market in Chiang Mai?

The Sunday night market at the Pha Gate Walking Street in the Old City of Chiang Mai is the most famous night market in the city.

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