The is a charming place that I highly recommend. Below I have listed the pros and cons that I feel are worthwhile...
- the staff were very friendly. I cannot say enough about Puk, who is at Nest 1; she was extremely kind, accommodating, informative and helpful.
- Food: the food at Nest 1 is Western food, and was very tasty. It was nice to have a great Western option to get a little break, here and there, from Thai food (although Thai food is my fave.) The food at Nest 2 is Thai and is great! I really enjoyed the red curry and Tom Ka. One evening we did eat next door to Nest 2 at Chiang Dao Hut. It was not as tasty or as comfortable as the Nest. We, unfortunately, didn't get to try Malee's, which is about a minute's walk from Nest 1 (right next door).
- both Nests are beautifully kept and are absolutely gorgeous. Nest 1 is smaller. I enjoyed walking around Nest 2 to take pictures of all the different flowers. We were here in low season so neither Nest was loud, but were very quiet and peaceful. We originally booked Nest 1, not realizing it does not have AC, but ended up switching to Nest 2, as the humidity is incredible. I highly recommend the AC option. Across the way from Nest 1 is a nice dipping pool. It's surround by lush beauty and is a nice break from the humidity.
- Thai massage - I recommend doing this at Nest 1 as they will set it up outside in a hut. For us it rained so the sound of the rain made it even more lovely. At Nest 2, I was told they do the massage in your room.
- Just a reminder that Nest 1 does not have AC
- Walking from Nest 2 to Nest 1, and to the cave and to the wat, we encountered dogs very consistently. I feel this is very important to be aware of as when we walked to the wat, we were surrounded by a growling pack of dogs. I nearly passed out :-) I am so thankful that a man came over and called them off. Due to this experience we were unable to actually go up to the wat. Wild dogs seem to be the norm for the area as a whole, though.
Other things to note:
- we did the half day elephant your and bamboo raft tour. We enjoyed it. When you get to the elephant camp, you get right On your elephant and at the end you get right off. There is no time for interacting with the elephant, which I thought there would be. The mahoot did stop a couple of times to take our picture on the elephant on our camera. There is a bathroom facility at the camp and it was in decent shape to use so no worries there; however there was no TP provided that I saw so luckily I had some tissue with me. May want to take some along just in case. On the way back to the Nest, the driver stopped in the town of Chiang Dao. I believe it was mostly to get us to eat at a specific restaurant, where she must have gotten a kickback, but I didn't mind at all as the restaurant has great Panang curry. Very tasty!!
- if you go to the cave, beware!!!! We attempted to the guided tour with a lantern but once we got going the light of the lantern revealed huge spider and lots of jumping bugs everywhere, similar to crickets. I am terribly freaked out by bugs of this kind so when we got to the crawl space, and all I could think about was crawling over these things, I had the guide escort me out. Perhaps you are more brave than I, and wouldn't mind.
- we had no problem at all with check out or our bill.
- Official Description (provided by the hotel):
- Chiang Dao Nest 1 & 2 are situated about 90 min north of Chiang Mai near the famous Chiang Dao Cave. Chiang Dao Nest offers simple but clean and comfortable accommodation, designed to detract as little as possible from the natural, mountainous beauty surrounding it. Chiang Dao is an area that offers many of Northern Thailand's highlights to visitors, not least of which can be found at the award winning restaurants at Chiang Dao Nest 1 & 2. ... more less
- Also Known As:
- Chiang Dao Nest Hotel Chiang Dao
- Chiang Dao Nest Mai
- Chiang Dao Nest Hotel Mai
- Chiang Dao Nest Chiang Mai Province