This post follows Chiang Mai: Old Town And Around.
While I was staying in the Old Town I went to a software talk in the Nimman area of Chiang Mai. The stretch of road (Nimmanhaemin road) and the surrounding sois are popular with students from the nearby University and young locals and expats, particularly those working in the local tech scene.
The night was hosted by GitHub, a hugely popular company based out of San Francisco. The two guys giving the talk used to be contractors before they joined so they compared how they used to work independently compared to how GitHub does things. As usual with their "drinkups" the bar was free for the evening and thanks to the nice climate it was all held outside. Meeting and chatting to other developers at events like this is always good, but many of those I talked to were expats, sharing their thoughts on Thailand and working remotely which was great.
After a few conversations I decided to check out the local area a bit more so I found a place to stay on the next road over from Nimman and traded temples for coffee shops. It's impossible to walk more than 20 metres without passing one with wi-fi and a bunch of people working away on MacBooks. There isn't much to do but it was nice to spend a few quiet days and actually do some coding for the first time in a couple of weeks.
To help with that I tried working from Punspace for the day, Chiang Mai's first co-working facility. Essentially to stop freelancers and going stir crazy working on their own at home you can pay a small amount to work in a nice office with good internet, some company and most importantly, tea and coffee. The people working all seemed to know each other and were quite clicky, but with a bit of time spent there it'd be a good place to work.
Nimman and the surrounding roads in general always have something quirky and interesting to look at, whether it be an English tea-house (complete with red phone box), a guest house with a slide down to reception, or a hotel and coffee shop built out of old shipping containers.
I really liked Nimman and while there isn't much of interest for most tourists I can easily see why expats come to stay.
More photos from Chiang Mai on Flickr.