This week, we’re sticking with Thailand and chatting to Christine Knight from Adventure Baby about her favourite family travel destination in Asia – Chang Mai, Thailand. I absolutely love Christine’s photos of all the temples which she has shared with us. So many people head straight from Bangkok to the islands, but it’s certainly worthwhile taking the train north to experience the rich culture and history of Thailand.
So let’s hear from Christine why Chang Mai is so fantastic for kids…
1. Tell us a bit about yourselves. Where are you from and how often do you travel as a family? How old are your children?
We are a family of three who are currently based in Sydney, Australia. My husband and I both grew up here, but were living in New York when our daughter was born six years ago. Our daughter took her first flight at eight weeks old and has been on over 30 since. We moved back to Sydney just before her third birthday. We travel as a family internationally around twice a year and domestically during school holidays.
2. How many times have you travelled to Asia and why do you love travelling there?
I’ve been to various countries in Asia about 10 times. I really enjoy the rich culture, delicious food, incredible history and natural beauty.
3. Why is Chiang Mai your favourite destination?
We had a wonderful time visiting Chiang Mai with our daughter when she turned five. It still has a very “local” feel about the place as opposed to other parts of Thailand that are a lot more touristy. The city is steeped in history, as evidenced by the beautiful temples that are dotted all around the streets, and the residents are incredibly friendly.
4. What were your top 3 activities for kids in Chiang Mai?
We loved visiting the temples – in fact, we spent our entire time in Chiang Mai walking around the old town exploring all the temples we could find, sampling food from the local markets and buying handicrafts.
5. Where did you stay and do you recommend it?
We stayed at the Shangri-La Hotel Chiang Mai and absolutely loved it. It’s one of our favourite hotels we’ve ever stayed in. The staff are fantastic, the hotel immaculate, and it has the best swimming pool in Chiang Mai.
6. What did the kids eat?
A lot of rice! It was a bit of a struggle to get my daughter to try new foods, but we managed.
7. How did you get around?
A combination of taxis, the local bus and tuk tuks.
8. What is your top tip for families travelling to Chiang Mai?
Go with an open mind and intend to just soak it all up rather than plan out a “to do” list of attractions.
9. What item could you not have done without in Chiang Mai?
A long scarf! The temples require women to cover their shoulders and knees. I used a scarf every day to cover one or the other areas.
10. Where are you off to next?
San Francisco, Los Angeles and Disneyland!
Where would we be without our trusted Lonely Planet?
You may also like to read:
A day in Bangkok with young children
Ten day Thailand itinerary with young kids and no internal flights or overnight trains
THE ASIA INTERVIEWS: Milana’s Travels chat about Koh Samui, Thailand