Thursday, 31 March 2016

cute and casual: sawasdee chiang rai cat cafe

Sawasdee Chiang Rai Cat Cafe.

On our way back to Chiang Rai from Mae Salong, we stopped by the Sawasdee Chiang Rai Cat Cafe.

Part cat shelter, part cafe-restaurant, this place is slightly off the beaten track, but not too difficult to find with the help of GPS - we made a turn off the highway and then it just took a bit of navigating the village roads to get to our destination. If you type "Sawasdee Chiang Rai Cat Cafe" into Google Maps, it should come up with the location, and you can go on from there.

I think I immediately fell in love with this cat upon our arrival, because how could you not.

Look at zee adorable stance and expression on zee adorable tortoiseshell kitty with its cup of milk.

In some ways this isn't a fully integrated cat cafe like some others that we have been to - it feels more like there is a cafe-restaurant and then there is a cat shelter just next to it, and when the cats are out and about, they would wander wherever they please, be it in the cafe or in the surrounding garden area. Additionally, I think they usher the cats back into the shelter during midday for rest and shade when the weather gets hot.

So do keep in mind, you are not guaranteed to have cats all around you when you are dining at this cat cafe. However, when I think about it, I quite like this way of doing things - it seems to provide a more relaxed and comfortable lifestyle balance for the cats, where they are not cooped up in close quarters with a bunch of eager humans all the time, as can be an issue with some very commercial cat cafes.

Such a pretty cat.

We had an early lunch here, and Simon opted for some sort of Thai-Western fusion dish - spaghetti with fried chicken and green curry. He seemed quite happy with it.

Green curry spaghetti with fried chicken. Not bad apparently!

I went for what seems like a more traditional Thai dish, stir-fried pork with basil, chilli, garlic, and lime leaves. It was tasty, and definitely hit the spot.

Don't quite remember what the Thai name is for this dish, but it was delicious!

I could not resist taking more pictures of my favourite tortoiseshell cat. Is it just my imagination or does it have unusually short front legs? There is just something about this kitty that enthralls and delights me.

So cute.

After finishing our lunch, we went out to the garden, where we patted more cats. Yay!

We both enjoyed our time at Sawasdee Chiang Rai Cat Cafe. It is certainly a cat cafe that is a bit different to the rest - a somewhat "free range" cat cafe where the kitties may roam in and out in a reasonably safe environment, made possible due to the more rural and idyllic location. Plus, the food here is pretty good, too!

Cat in the Sawasdee Chiang Rai Cat Cafe garden.


  1. It's not your imagination, those legs are definitely short compared to the back ones. :)

    I've not been a big fan of the cat cafe idea, as you point out there's definitely a commercialised element to them ... this on the other hand looks like a lovely, relaxed way for the cats to live and the carers to raise money.

    1. Yes, we have been to a few cat cafes, and it's interesting to observe the differences. Indeed, this particular cat cafe is really lovely and relaxed. :)

  2. Gosh, I've never even heard of a cat cafe - sounds like an interesting concept, and some of those cats look adorable - food looks pretty good too.

    1. ALL the cats are adorable! :) I think the cat cafe concept is attractive for those who like cats but don't have their own, but it's important for the people running it to manage it well to ensure that the cats are happy. Plus, happy cats also translate to happy customers.


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