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By jctv , September 13, in Chiang Mai Forum. It's nice to live there but I agree with the other posters January to May this year were horrible because of the air pollution, in my case Mae Tha. Regardless of whether you currently have health problems, no one with options should be anywhere in northern Thailand during January, February, March or April.
The air during those months is an unprecedented experiment, the medical results of which will play out for decades. The north already has massively higher levels of lung cancer than the rest of Thailand. I love living in Chiang Mai in a gated community in the suburbs but, at the latest, fly out in the first week or two of January, once the airfares have come done again after the holiday season.
I always notice it starting to get bad by the time I leave - the haze you can see is not actually the dangerous part. WiFi is included, but metered electricity and water are not. During the rest of the year, Lamphun would be better than Chiang Mai because it doesn't have gridlocked traffic and red buses. For folks who want to enjoy a more relaxed, easy-going pace of life, I think Lamphun is better and certainly a lot cheaper. It now has all the malls, fast food, cinemas etc but without the traffic jams and hordes of Chinese.
There is a fun atmosphere and the prices are noticeably cheaper than Chiang Mai. People are friendlier, and farangs are more of a rarity, but only some have good English, it is not a tourist town.
I can imagine that there are people who, if the pound or the Euro collapses, would prefer to stay living simply in Thailand rather than return to their own countries. Perhaps they are right, I might be a bit of an oddball in thinking that a cheaper, more basic lifestyle would be rather attractive to some folks. Getting ready for the Sino-Indian influx. So go South to Lampang, it is Dukes free. Sent from my iPhone using Thailand Forum - Thaivisa mobile app. I disagree with those who have stated that the air pollution is bad in January and February.