We found Ban Rai Tin Thai Ngarm Eco Lodge the most peaceful of places. It is located in a small village which we found to be an enjoyable walking distance from Mae Rim, about 45 minutes. A great feature is that the bungalows have fly screen windows (with wooden shutters for night time) and no glass. There's no air-con, you really don't need it as air circulates well in the high ceilinged rooms and there is an electric fan to help - which we didn't need. Everything is spotlessly clean and more stylish than many of the lodges we have stayed in. The authentic home cooked Thai food is fantastic (Western food was also made available). The grounds are, as all gardeners will know, a work in progress. That said, there is lush native planting around the bungalows; bamboo, young teak trees and tropical fruits including banana.
The bathroom was large, clean and there was plenty of hot water. Although isolated there is satellite TV in the bungalows and free wi-fi across the whole site with speeds that would put more expensive hotels to shame.
It's so peaceful, whether you want to practice yoga or meditation, use it as a base to explore from or just to lose yourself in a good book (as we did), this is the place to do it. There are plenty of local attractions that are just a bit too far to get to on foot but your host, Bele, will arrange travel and tours.
The 'eco' aspect of any tourism offer always raises a 'greenwash' concern for me. Here it is well considered and balances consumption with comfort, food is seasonal and locally sourced. Bicycles are available and you are encouraged to use them, the grounds are planted up with native species. An existing travel infrastructure can be used without the need to create new.
All in all a great place to stay, we'll definitely be back and for longer next time.
- Also Known As:
- Ban Rai Tin Thai Ngarm Eco Hotel Chiang Mai
- Ban Rai Tin Thai Ngarm Eco Hotel