The third destination I had the pleasure of discovering was Chiang Mai, Northern Thailand’s most populous city.  It’s quite different from Bangkok, with lots of open space and fresh air. Plus, prices are cheaper.

I arrived in the morning anxious to start a full day of travelling after a night bus.

One of the views in Chiang Mai city.

Some of the beautiful restaurants.

I met a very nice girl Eunjin whom we shared the same interests.The first thing on our agenda was to tour the famous temple Wat Phra That Doi Suthep. The tour takes about an hour and the views are lovely. Buddha statues and lotus flowers are everywhere.

My partner in crime.

On the way to Doi Suthep.

Inside Doi Suthep temple.

The view from the temple.

Next we checked out the night food market. There is variety to eat and prices are reasonable. We loved the honey chicken skewers right before our meals. I recommend ordering a variety and share. They have delicious fruit juices, shakes, and Thai tea, the most delicious and refreshing beverage I had on this trip.

The night life in Chiang Mai is not disappointing. There some bars you can go dancing or just sit and enjoy a drink. Going from one bar to another was easy as they were all close by.

Coconut shakes on a warm night.

Variety of dishes ordered.

Sea food.

The delicious Chicken skewers.

One of the things that I recommend you experience is an elephant sanctuary. Spend time with these magnificent animals! Some reserves have rescued elephants that have been mistreated and they are given a more compassionate life. In doing so, you are helping the cause by putting an end to their mistreatment. However, please do not visit the ones that offer riding services.
It was quite an immersive experience with the elephants; we had the chance to play with them in the mud (we changed our clothes) and then bathe them under a waterfall while their trunks sprinkled water and gave us kisses. It was such a fun day!

Elephant hug.

Bath and play time.

Be sure to rent a bicycle and ride around the new and old part of town. I’m not the best cyclist but it was a great work out and the traffic wasn’t crazy. We cycled to Wat Chedi Luang, a beautiful historic Buddhist temple in the center of Chiang Mai built in 1441. If you love old architecture and some quiet time, you need to take a look!

Cycling around town.

Bicycle adventures.

Some remains of Wat Cheda temple.

We also experienced a Tok Sen massage, a treatment meant to clear blocked energy, remove negative energy and deeply get into body’s muscles. I felt lighter and better after this. The masseuses were very pleasant and  all four of them out of curiosity came to touch and feel my skin praising how smooth it was.

Just before the Tok sen massage.

Our lovely and curious messaues

Last but not least, they say if you haven’t tried the Khao Soi dish (very delicious) or seen the view from Doi Suthep, you haven’t really been to Chiang Mai. I had such an amazing time here and I see myself going back discover more that I left untouched. Such is life!

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