Dui Suthep & Angkor Wat

There were no flights out of Chiang Mai today…  So we’re staying an extra day.  🙂 Heading up to the mountain temple Dui Suthep in a bit (highly recommended by fellow travelers as well as my friend Liane).  Tomorrow, we catch an EARLY morning flight out to Siem Reap, Cambodia via Bangkok.  We’ll have 2 days to wander around Angkor Wat before we fly down to Ko Samui and the beaches! Very excited about Angkor Wat.  As one travel poster advertized:  “Angkor Wat: Where you interface with God!”    


My favorite part of the trek was the elephant ride.  The elephants we rode on seemed very well treated and fed… but it’s always hard to tell.  Elephants are no longer really being used in day-to-day manual labor like they were before.  As keeping an elephant is very expensive, the best hope for these amazing creatures in Thailand is (responsible) tourism. Some pictures… Feeding “Mae” some sugar cane: Headshot:

Chiang Mai Sunday Market

Lucked in to the Sunday Market in Chiang Mai.  (In fact, we thought it was the famed Night Bazaar…  After visiting the Night Bazaar, I think the Sunday Market was a lot cooler.) We think things might have been even busier than normal because it was the first Sunday of the new year.   The next morning, the street was empty.  

Chiang Mai Trek Details

Rough trek schedule: Day 1 (Jan 2nd) Get picked up in covered truck and head up to mountains. Walk through Mao & Karen villages. Hike to waterfall. Hike through jungle & fields to Karen village. Stay the night in Karen village. Day 2 (Jan 3rd) Hike to another Karen village. Hike to another waterfall. Go on elephant ride. Trip on bamboo raft. Karen villages are one of several northern Thai hill tribes.  They also happen to share my name 🙂

Chiang Mai: Off on a Trek

Got up at 6:30am this morning… gotta love jetlag.  But it did make for a beautiful stroll the city.  Morning light, fresh fruit and banana pancakes at the market. About to head out on a 2 day trek through the jungles & hill villages.  Bamboo rafts & elephant rides included.  🙂

New Years in Bangkok

Last night was probably the best time to be in Bangkok…  Khaoson was quite The Scene.  A sample:       Things were much calmer the next morning. Evidence that Khaoson is aimed at Westerners?  Check out the starbucks sign.  (No, I didn’t get coffee.  And yes, this picture is sideways.)     In Chiang Mai now after a short flight…

Not Dead Yet!!

Arrived in Bangkok just before midnight.  Got to see foreigner craziness in Khaosan Road (AKA tourist ghetto).  Happy New Year everybody!

Leaving for Thailand!!

Tomorrow, I start my 2+ week vacation in Thailand!  (Well, at least the long airplane ride portion of it….)     We’ll land in Bangkok approximately 2 hours before the new year.  The current plan includes a trek leaving from Chaing Mai, jot over to Angor Wat, and some major beach time down south.  But we’re not sticking to a schedule — so we’ll see where the trip takes us! A few helpful facts about Thailand: Timezone: GMT/UTC +7   (AKA: 15 hours ahead of PST) Currency:  1 USD = 41.0754 THB  Religion:  95% Buddhist, 4% Muslim Weather:  High 90F, Low 73F …