A quick round up of our favorite places for a coffee in Chiang Mai
Chiang mai – Home to hundred year old temples, crumbling city walls, culture, and….coffee shops. Lots and lots of coffee shops and cafes.
Now I am one who loves a coffee as much as the next coffee loving person, but try as I might I will never be able to sample all of the coffee shop pleasures that this great city offers.
You have cute and sassy, trendy and upmarket, cheap or expensive. There are hippie hangouts, student hives and peaceful retreats. A simple black coffee can range in price from 30 baht to 130 baht. Yes. 130 baht! There are some coffee shops you can’t miss, plastered with novelty signs and bright eye catching décor while others go for a more discreet display which you could easily walk past and not even know it was there.
There is a good reason for Chiang Mai’s coffee shop obsession due to all the lovely coffee plantations adorning the hills of the North of Thailand, it would be a travesty to see the locally grown produce go to waste or simply exported to far off corners of the world for others to enjoy.
Frothy Cappuccino Coffee
However if you are bored of the traditional coffee bean, you can even find yourself a rather expensive mug of Civet Cat coffee. I’m not sure I would be able to bring myself to pay a thousand baht for a coffee that used to be poo. But hey, I’m not one to judge someone who is! Call me boring but I prefer my coffee beans freshly picked from the berries on the bush rather than passed through intestines and excreted from a wild cats back side. But that’s just me.
Whether you want to grab a coffee on the go, catch up with friends or sit and chill out for a couple of hours with a book while you savor the delights of the bean, there is somewhere out there for you.
Strong Espresso Coffee
From this overwhelming mind maze of coffee shops and cafes to choose from, I have put together five of our top go to places in Chiang Mai for a good cup of coffee, in a variety of locations (no particular order!).
Good Morning Chiang Mai Café, Old City
Good Morning Chiang Mai Café was the very first place we went to when we arrived in Chiang Mai from the UK. I still remember thinking all was not lost when I tasted the cocoa drink I had ordered for the first time. Success! Thailand has good hot chocolate – I wouldn’t have to live without my favorite chocolate beverage after all!
Good morning Chiang Mai serves an array of drinks and the latte is also rather good.
Latte Coffee in Good Morning
As well as delicious coffee, GMCM serves a big selection of specialty teas and has a great food menu. We have taken guests here for breakfasts and lunch and it has never disappointed. We love the garden area and the wooden style house packed with retro memorabilia gives a quirky air to the place.
The staff are always friendly and welcoming which is always nice to get a big smile when you walk through the door.
There are also handmade items such as jewelry and bags for sale. Free Wifi and plug points are available too for all you digital nomads out there.
Good Morning Chiang Mai is open every day from 07:30-17:00
Address: 29/5 Rachamankha soi 6
View Good Morning Chiang Mai Cafe in a larger map
Baa Baa Black Café, Mae Rim
Baa Baa Black Café is, at the moment, my favorite café in Chiang Mai. It’s part of the Mae Rim Lagoon Hotel and has a really great food menu from ‘Grandma’s Kitchen’ as well as naughty but delicious cookies set out on a table in cute cookie jars wrapped with ribbon.
I love the lay out of this place with tables and chairs dotted over the gardens leading down towards the water of Mae Rim Lagoon. There are also a couple of wooden row boats you can use.
Me & my dad with the boats
It is always peaceful, away from the road and as there is lots of space it never feels crowded and so it is a great place to relax with your coffee.
We have taken all of our guests for lunch at Baa Baa Café and they all loved it too!
It is also pet friendly, the owner has a Labrador which is sometimes there and so Eden comes along with us on occasion and gets to enjoy the café as well.
Eden chose our table 😉
As an added extra, there is a nice Wawee Coffee just at the top of the road before you turn off to go to Baa Baa and that is also a pretty good place to hang out in Mae Rim (good cakes!)
Crumble Cake at Wawee
Baa Baa Black café is 15km outside of Chiang Mai old city in the Mae Rim area and is open every day from 09:00-20:00.
View Baa Baa Black Cafe in a larger map
Dindee ‘Mud House’ Café, Nimmanheimin
Dindee Café on Nimmanheimin Road is located in the grounds of the CMU Art Center and is known as the Mud House due to it being built out of earth.
I love this café for its unusual ambiance, it has a good vegetarian food menu and gets very popular around lunch times, I recommend the chick pea curry and dindee fried rice.
As well as the usual coffees and teas, they make healthy fruit shakes, of which the passion fruit and ginger and the mint and lime are particularly delicious.
You will also find lots of little bits made by local artists for sale such as cards and jewelry dotted around the café.
You can opt to sit at a table or grab a cushion and take a space in the chill out corner.
Dindee Café is open Tues-Sun, 09:00-18:00 (closed on Mon)
View Dindee Cafe – The Mud Hut in a larger map
Praw & Plean Green House Café, Mae Hia
This café is a real retreat from the old city, and is set out in a cute shabby chic style green house and garden.
It is the kind of place that you can easily while away a few hours, which we have done on a couple of occasions. There is free wifi and makes for a quiet place to do some work or surf the net while enjoying a beverage.
They serve a simple menu of well-cooked Thai food as well as a couple of western style dishes such as fries and mashed potato and of course, the coffee they serve here is good! Last time we went to this café I enjoyed my cappuccino with a slice of chocolate fudge cake as I gazed out at the view.
Praw & Plean Café is out passed the Royal Flora Rachaphruek Gardens, 10km south of the Old City.
Open Every Day.
View Unique Coffee shop Chiang Mai Praw and Plean Cafe in a larger map
Themal Café, Warorot Market
Themal Café is tucked away above a shop in one of the off streets surrounding Warorot Market. It has an ethnic air, decorated with Moroccan style lanterns and an array of items for purchase around the café. Grab a seat on one of the cushions along the window and people watch as you recharge your batteries after a morning of strolling around Chiang Mai.
They serve rather good waffles and the iced latte was the perfect refreshment before we continued on with our day of shopping around Warorot.
Iced Latte coffee
We have been to Themal Café a few times now and it is a really great find.
Open Every Day.
View Themal Cafe – Warorot Market Chiang Mai in a larger map
We are always on the lookout for good coffee shops in Chiang Mai, so if you’ve been to a great place, let us know your recommendations.
Milky Latte Coffee
What’s your favorite coffee shop in Chiang Mai?
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