Finding Food and Transportation in Chiang Mai

Chiang Mai is our first extended stop. We’ve rented an apartment at The Grand Napat for one month, in hopes of creating regular family living in a strange city.

Our first order of business was to find a grocery store. The apartment concierge sent us to Tesco, which is the Thai equivalent of Walmart.

Tesco Market Chiang Mai

I was so overwhelmed by the choice and size that we left with an odd mix of goods:

– 36 eggs. That was the only size available.
– $5 jar of peanut butter. Some things are necessities no matter how much we try to integrate.
– No salt. We gave up looking after isle 22.

After discovering some local markets brimming with fresh produce, I’ve decided that one run to Tesco is enough.

Wararot Market Chiang Mai

Eating out can get tedious, but the food here is so fresh and reasonably priced that we may cook in less than anticipated. No meal has cost the family more than $5. That includes fresh juices, soups and main dishes. I feel really silly about that jar of peanut butter, but it works when in a bind.

We were told Tesco was a 5 minute walk, but with kids everything takes three times as long and double the hassle. We opted for transportation back. This brings us to task two of Chiang Mai – figuring out transportation. One way is a songtaew, which means ‘two rows’. Songtaews are are semi-covered mini vans with fixed routes and rates. We did this after the grocery run as it was our only option.

Songtaew Chiang Mai

Sandeep was a little nervous of the kids sliding out and somehow thinks a tuk tuk is safer (??). We tried a couple of drivers for shorter routes and think we will pledge allegiance to Khayan. Ava is very confused that his name is the same as her brother’s. We don’t meet any Kayans in New York City. It must be a sign.

Kayan meets Khayan

Check out the back of Khayan’s tuk tuk. It’s loaded with Yi Peng Lanterns for the festival on November 10th.

Chiang Mai Tuk Tuk

Stay tuned for more on that. It is the reason we chose to come to Chiang Mai in early November. Here is a quick preview.

Yi Peng Festival Chiang Mai

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Filed under Food, Thailand

9 Responses to Finding Food and Transportation in Chiang Mai

  1. Mary

    Diya, I absolutely love reading about your trip and seeing the photos! Everything looks and sounds fantastic. What a great adventure. Hold on to the kids tight in the songtaew! Safari njema!

  2. Kerman


    It looks like you guys are having such an amazing time-Chiang Mai looks amazing! I love the blog posts and all the pictures-your writing is so great and so engaging. But when did kayan turn into a toddler? He looks like he’s grown up a few years in the last week and a half!

    Tell Ava that I was singing Dora the Explorer this morning at MSKCC. All the kids were pretty impressed that I knew all the words 🙂

    Lots of Love to you all

  3. Parvati

    The pictures are awesome 🙂 Looks like you guys are having a great time!

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