This year the Pai Jazz and Blues Fest fell during Thailand’s rainy season and lasted from July 5-7. (In a previous post, I discussed the best things to do in Pai, Thailand, and how to get there, you can read that here.) You can bet the event will be held around this time each year, so if you plan to go, plan accordingly. Although the festival is during the rainy season that did not put a damper on the weekend in any way and it only rained a few times for very short amounts of time – I’m talking less than 10 minutes. We drove up to Pai on Saturday and stayed at Baan Krating Pai Resort. Baan Krating is a beautiful accommodation surrounded by small bodies of water and greenery. We chose this resort because it was a short walk away from one of the Saturday evening venues.
Bell Villa Resort, the Saturday evening venue, is outside of Pai town by 5-7 minutes and easily accessible by motorbike or red truck (songtaew). The best part about Pai Jazz and Blues Fest is that all the venues have free entry and are even kid-friendly. The only thing that costs are food and drinks. If you’re staying close to Pai town and don’t feel like riding somewhere, you could also spend some time at Jazz House, which is along the Pai Walking Street.
We got to see some really great performers. Some were singers and some played instruments, a few of the artists even did fusion Jazz and Blues with their own culture’s music. At the venue, there were tables, but they needed to be reserved in advance. We didn’t book a table, but there was loads of space to sit, stretch out and relax on with minimal obstructions.
On Sunday, we woke up and had brunch at Lemon Thyme Cafe. The picture should be enough to convince you to eat there! It’s right off the end of the walking street, and it’s vegetarian-friendly. I visited the white Buddha statue, which was at the top of a very steep incline of stairs, but well worth the walk. The view of Pai from above was breathtaking. Since the white Buddha is a religious symbol, make sure you’re wearing appropriate clothing. Your knees and shoulders should be covered. If you need to, you can rent skirts and scarves for only 20 baht before you make your ascent to the top.