Our Chiang Dao Nest 2 Long Weekend Review
Last week Shelley and I celebrated being together for 13 years. I know it’s hard to believe right. We look so young! 🙂 We hadn’t left Chiang Mai for 4 or 5 weeks so were keen to get out of the city and celebrate in the surrounding mountainous countryside. Ideally staying at one of the many peaceful resorts found all over northern Thailand for some relaxation and a bit of walking. We didn’t want to pay too much but we wanted it to be special. After a bit of research, we found the perfect place – Chiang Dao Nest 2.
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Chiang Dao Nest 1 or 2
The first thing we noticed when visiting the website was that Chiang Dao Nest has two resorts. The resorts are only 700 meters from each other but they each offer something different. Here is what we found to be the main differences.
- Chiang Dao Nest 2 serves Thai food while Nest 1 serves western dishes.
- Ching Dao Nest 2 is newer than Nest 1.
- Chiang Dao Nest 2 is more spacious with fewer huts.
- Chiang Dao Nest 2 offers better views due to its openness. Nest 1 is more shaded and cosy under jungle.
- Chiang Dao Nest 1 has a swimming pool while Nest 2 does not.
We opted for Chiang Dao Nest 2 due to its spacious feel and mountain views. As guests at Chiang Dao Nest 2, we were still able to use the pool and western restaurant at Nest 1 if we wanted.
Our Room at Chiang Dao Nest 2
All the rooms at Chiang Dao Nest 1 and 2 are separate beautiful bamboo huts. Almost the entire structures are made from bamboo. It’s just the flooring and roof where alternative materials are used. Even all the furniture inside, aside from the bed, is bamboo! This makes the resort feel like an authentic Asian retreat and does not look out of place in its jungle surroundings.
On the inside, our spacious hut had all the comforts of a modern hotel room. A very large and comfortable double bed. Hot and cold shower. Selection of useful toiletries. Bottled drinking water. Security safe for our valuables and air conditioning which we didn’t use once over the weekend due to the cooler climate
The room was super clean and smelt wonderful because of the automatic air freshener that shot it’s vanilla smelling fragrance every few minutes. We thought that was a nice touch as bamboo huts can often smell damp after years of monsoon rain and humidity.
The room was also very quiet due to being set back into the landscaped garden away from the road. The road is not busy but is frequently used by locals and tourists. At night we’d fall asleep to the sounds of gecko chat and be woken by bird call in the mornings.
The Service at Chiang Dao Nest 2
The all-female team at Chiang Dao Nest 2 were very lovely and polite. We arrived the day after the death of Thailand’s beloved King Bhumibol Adulyadej. The country was in the very early stages of mourning but even then they still managed to make us feel welcome. They apologised on occasion for not having their usual constant Thai smile but we of course understood. On arrival, we were served a delicious Lemongrass mocktail welcome drink. So delicious in fact that we ordered more later that weekend.
Their English language was very limited but the head chef spoke it well so was able to offer advice on what to see in the area. She talked us through their own quirky Chiang Dao map which creatively showed the sights and other useful locations.
Our room was cleaned and bed made every day while we were out walking. They also replenished our room’s free bottled water and sweets. Upon checking out we were given more free bottled water and biscuits for our journey home. A very sweet touch. It was generally the same team from breakfast through to dinner. Even with the long hours, they were always very friendly and attentive.
The Food at Chiang Dao Nest 2
One of the big USPs for Chiang Dao Nest 1 and 2 is the fantastic food they serve. We’re not just talking good food here, we’re talking world class cuisine. Well in our opinion anyway. The owner of the resort was professionally trained to cook in the UK and she then bought her perfected craft back to Chiang Dao. She’s trained other chefs at Chiang Dao Nest making them award winning restaurants! You can read an interesting interview with owner and Nest 1 head chef here – The Nest Brings Western Food to Thailand
Like we mentioned before, Chiang Dao Nest 2 serves Thai food and Nest 1 western dishes. Because we loved the Thai food at Nest 2 so much we never actually made it to the Nest 1 restaurant. The Thai cuisine at Chiang Dao Nest 2 was some of the best food we have ever eaten. The flavours were out of this world. Dished we enjoyed included:
Kang Om. Slow cooked Buffalo in Northern spices and fresh herbs served in a hot clay pot.
Pla Samoon Pil. Fish fillet with crispy Thai herbs, lemongrass, kaffir lime leaves, shallots, garlic, basil, ginger and cashew nuts.
Sweetcorn Fritters. With coriander, sesame seed and sweet chilli dip.
Breakfasts were also tasty offering everything from a full English to fruit pancakes to simple eggs and warm freshly baked bread. And of course being in Thailand, the coffee was awesome.
Prices at Chiang Dao Nest 2
We found the prices at Chiang Dao Nest 2 to be very reasonable. The rooms (family rooms aside) at both Nest 1 and 2 all fall under the same price. But note that dinner food prices at Nest 1 are twice the price of Nest 2 because of the western ingredients needed.
Room – 995 baht per night
Breakfast – 100 to 250 baht
Lunch – Average 125 baht
Dinner – 150 to 200 (main)
Desert – 115 baht
Beer – 95 baht (large Chiang)
Glass of wine – 125 baht
Coffee – 65 baht
Our Verdict of Chiang Dao Nest 2
We were so impressed by Chiang Dao Nest 2’s authentic Thai flavours in its restaurant. It was something we looked forward to every day. We couldn’t get enough of the tranquil setting at the foot of Chiang Dao mountain. It was the perfect location for laid back late afternoons while drinking iced coffee. And the homely and clean bamboo huts were a joy to come back to at the end of the day.
If you want the feeling of being somewhere special but without the huge price tag then we strongly recommend a stay at Chiang Dao Nest 2. At just 1 and a half hours away it’s the perfect weekend getaway from Chiang Mai. We’re sure you’ll have the same amazing experience at Nest 1 but after visiting both sites to compare, we’re glad we chose Nest 2.