THAILAND 2017

THAILAND 2017
THAILAND 2017
THAILAND 2017
THAILAND 2017
THAILAND 2017
THAILAND 2017
THAILAND 2017
THAILAND 2017
THAILAND 2017
THAILAND 2017
THAILAND 2017
THAILAND 2017
THAILAND 2017
THAILAND 2017
THAILAND 2017
THAILAND 2017
THAILAND 2017
THAILAND 2017
THAILAND 2017
THAILAND 2017
THAILAND 2017
THAILAND 2017
THAILAND 2017
THAILAND 2017
THAILAND 2017
THAILAND 2017
THAILAND 2017
THAILAND 2017
THAILAND 2017
THAILAND 2017
THAILAND 2017
THAILAND 2017

Chiang Mai is everything that everyone says it would be. The total opposite of crazy Bangkok. Now there's not much to do in the actual city itself, other than temple hopping. (And coffee hopping!) Ultimately, Chiang Mai is often treated as a base point for day trips in North Thailand. Or a quick rest stop in between travels before embarking to one's intended destination. And we are no different from the masses. Like Luang Prabang, Chiang Mai was more of a transitional city for us as me made our way from Vietnam to Myanmar.

The one week we've spent in Chiang Mai was rather underwhelming, to be honest. Don't get me wrong. We much prefer this laidback city over chaotic Bangkok, but when it comes down to it:

Temple, Coffee Shop, eat, sleep. Repeat.

I don't want to under sell Chiang Mai. It's a great city to chillax and take it easy. It absolutely excels in that. There are tons of cheap foodie and coffee options to choose from. More so than Luang Prabang or Hoi An, in my opinion. By all means, please do visit this wonderful little city! It will not disappoint!

If you don't believe me, and all the other travelers who has passed through Chiang Mai, then take it from an expat. A travel buddy of mine, Henry Wu, who has lived in Chiang Mai for quite a bit and swears by the unpretentious charms of this place. Henry kindly provided an extensive list of must sees and must dos. Check the list out below!


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When: March 2017
Temp: 85-95 F
Cities: Chiang Mai
Stay: Hostel by Bed
Recommend: Any Coffee Shop (Ristr8to Lab, Taa Peng Cat, Fern Forest Cafe, My Secret Cafe in Town, etc.), Night Bazaar, Saturday and Sunday Walking Street Market, Nimmanhemin, Wat Chedi Luang, Wat Pan Tao, Wat Phra Singh, Wat Muen Ngen Kong, Wat Phra That Doi Suthep, Wat Phra That Doi Kham, Tiger Kingdom.

// Chiang Mai List per Henry Wu //
Places To Visit: Lake at Chiang Mai University, Nong Buak Haad Public Park
Things To Do: Get a massage at ITM Massage School, Have a walk around The Dhara Dhevi Chiang Mai hotel grounds
Coffee Shops: Birds Nest Cafe, The Barn Eatery and Design, Akha Ama Coffee, Marble Arch
Night Life: The North Gate Jazz Co-op, Zoe in Yellow
Venture outside Chiang Mai: Pai, Play with elephants at Chai Lai Orchid Eco Resort, Moncham, Motorbike around Mae Sa Valley



-jin-

THAILAND 2009

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For those of you not in the know, that lil red dragon is my traveling gnome. Given as a Christmas present back in 2000 (2001??) by my Thai bestie, Mr. Ricky, so it's only fitting that I'd bring the lil guy along to Thailand. And may I add, Thailand is insanely dragon-friendly ... nothing but first-class treatment for Mushu! Lil dude was popular in the land of Thai!

Anyways, I would have to keep this post on the short side due to birthday planning and photog deadlines. I don't want to undermine the mystical and adventurous spirit of Bangkok by not giving it the full testament it deserves ... but I am. Time is of the essence and I know I'm definitely not giving Bangkok justice with the little synopsis I'm about to give. Oi. Conundrum. But here goes anyways. The gastronomy adventure here is insanely ah-mazing (Street-side crickets, anyone? Didn't try, but still so curious!), the Buddha-inspired visual scenes with tons of color pops are simply breathtaking, and THE down n' dirty backpacker's trekking dreams with the constant foot/boat/tuktuk travel through Bangkok's chaotic and mirky roads. Like Cambodia, there are virtually temples at every corner of the city so getting lost is inevitable. One thing that Ricky and my other good Thai friend, Joy (also a traveling kindred spirit who've I met through a mutual friend in an airport ages ago), had constantly brought up: Beware of scammers. They're everywhere! Left. Right. Up. Down. And these aren't your typical scammers you'd see, like in the street markets of Marrakesh or Peru. No, these are world-class, smooth-talking scammers. They will quickly identify and relate with you, know your story, follow you, give you 'evidence' of why their story is 'true'. In the end, your trust is easily gained (maybe), but not us thanks to V's exhaustive travel research! (I don't research, V does research. It's a match-made in heaven relationship, I tell ya!) We found that 95% of the people offering to 'help' us had an ulterior motive for money! Many of them textbook scenarios as mentioned in Trip Advisor.

So heads up. Mother of all ultimate scammers - Thailand for sure.

Ok, this is quickly becoming quite contradictory to 'keeping it short'. Obviously I have a lot to say about Thailand but that's for another day, another time, another travel story yet to be told.

besos ... jin.