The Only Chiang Mai Park in the City Centre
It’s Sunday afternoon in Chiang Mai; you’ve been to all the temples, you’ve shopped until you dropped in all the markets and you’ve eaten enough Pad Thai to feed an army of Monks. You now just want to chill out, read a book and enjoy some peace and quiet. One of our favourite things to do when we want some mellow time at home, is visit one of London’s many city parks. However parks are sometimes hard to come by in South East Asia. Thankfully there’s a Chiang Mai park right in the city centre to enjoy.
Suan Buak Haad park in the bottom left corner of the old town is a beautiful space to enjoy a bit of downtime. It’s the only Chiang Mai park situated within the inner city. Though this doesn’t mean it’s overcrowded. It’s far from it in fact.
The Chiang Mai Park is a small oasis of fountain filled lakes, ornate white bridges, swaying palm trees and immaculately pruned greenery.
A Chiang Mai Park to Relax
Suan Buak Haad park is the perfect spot to unwind. Join the locals, expats and tourists by hiring a rattan mat for just 10 baht and grab your spot of grass. We didn’t bother with a mat the first time we visited this Chiang Mai park, but we both got some sort of rash from the grass. Nice! We’re all about the rattan mats now. They’re like an Asian version of a checkered picnic rug in the UK.
A Place to Stroll
Suan Buak Haad park has some nice walking paths circling the perimeter and internal lakes. There are also some romantic pretty bridges to cross where you can spot many colourful fish in the lake. The locals seem to adore feeding the pigeons, especially children. So if you want to join them, you can purchase bird food pellets from one of the vendors.
Go to Suan Buak Haad Park to Eat and Drink
There are two air conditioned cafes located inside the park serving hot and cold drinks and light snacks. There are also many other food and drink vendors either inside or just outside the park gates. Some are static stalls but others have portable trolleys that they push around this lovely Chiang Mai park.
We bought lunch from a couple of food stalls just outside the southern gate. I had a selection of spicy grilled meats while Shelley enjoyed a fresh papaya salad. Then of course we couldn’t visit the park without eating ice cream! We found a guy serving ice cream inside two slices of white bread with sweet sticky rice and chocolate sauce. Yes please!
A Place to Exercise
You won’t catch us doing this but the Chiang Mai park has mini gyms scattered around it’s edge. From workout benches to static bikes to full on machines which use your own weight for resistance. There’s also a basketball court but we’ve never seen anyone use it to date. We’re usually there in the afternoon when it’s too hot for anything like that!
Suan Buak Haad park is one of Chiang Mai life’s small pleasures. A nice place to spend a few hours on your own or to have some fun with friends. It’s popular all year round but we wouldn’t recommend it in the rain 🙂