Gay nightlife in Chiang Mai? Yes, you read that right: Thailand’s culture capital might not compete with the legendary LGBTQ+ party scene of Bangkok just yet, but queer visitors in town still have a few friendly places to steer towards if they’d like to shake a leg and meet the local community.
There is more to gay life in Chiang Mai than simply going to bars and clubs, of course (like all of this, for example), but the city’s welcoming vibe and comparatively small size make for a more easy-going queer party experience than what you’ll find in the capital. Intrigued? These are four of the best places to check out for gay nightlife in Chiang Mai!
Ram Show Bar, Chiang Mai
This fun and fabulous establishment is much more than a bar, and its cabaret show has proven so popular over time, it’s now on seven nights a week, at 10 pm sharp! The show is usually free, with the exception of specially themed nights, when you’re well advised to get there early, before Ram Show Bar fills up.
Conveniently located between the walled city and the Ping River, this place is frequented by both locals as well as tourists who stay in the riverside resorts; and there’s an authentically Thai vibe about this wonderful option for gay nightlife in Chiang Mai – perhaps it’s the tropical disco interior?
Orion Bar, Chiang Mai
Just two minutes down the road from Ram Show Bar, you’ll find Orion Bar, an establishment you couldn’t possibly miss, even if you tried. That’s because of the bar’s multicoloured arrangement of all things rainbow… the flag, the banner, and of course the umbrellas!
Orion Bar is less about partying and more about mingling – there’s a friendly and flirty atmosphere here, and it’s easy making new friends at the pool table or by the bar. The outdoors seating is particularly popular thanks to this places’s great location adjacent to the night bazaar and all the bustle that comes with it. For a relaxed drink or two, LGBTQ-run Orion couldn’t be more fun!
Route 181 HostBar, Chiang Mai
Get ready to rock: at Route 181 HostBar, Chiang Mai, guests have the chance to step behind the mic and deliver the karaoke performance of a lifetime – although you could also just attend one of their fun and friendly theme nights (anyone up for a neon rave?).
One of the classics that make Route 181 a great option for gay nightlife in Chiang Mai is its hot-as-fire shirtless night, which sees the bar’s dancers and staff sashay around the place and heat up the crowd… Needless to say, dancing is very much the order of business here, so if you’re after a good, gay party, look no further!
The sauna at Club One Seven Gay Hotel
A sauna? Yes, you read that right: the sauna at Club One Seven Gay Hotel is actually a fabulous (and sweaty!) place to get the party started early – make sure you go in the afternoon as the sauna closes at 9:30pm and the outdoor pool follows suit an hour later.
There are a number of original themes that run each week; from underwear to sexy swim suits, and the much-talked-about mask parties are particularly popular, running on the 7th, 17th and 27th of each month. Best of all, after all those steam rooms and saunas, you’ll be glowing by the time you leave this place and experience more gay nightlife in Chiang Mai!