The last stop on my Asia tour was Chiang Mai. Pause for a massive sad face while I pout that my month is over. 😦
Okay, moving on.
Way back when I started planning this trip, Chiang Mai was the top priority city for me. I loved the idea of Thailand’s “countryside” – up in the mountains, lots of adventure activities and culture. Chiang Mai is an old walled city, complete with a moat surrounding the square mile of the town, with temples around every turn. You could literally spend days just touring the 20+ temples within the walled city…all different sizes, adornments and level of gildedness!
In my five days in the city, I packed in a handful of amazing experiences. Each one deserves a separate post, which I hope to write when I’m back in the states this summer. Since I leave tonight for Costa Rica, I only have time for a considerably abridged version!
First up, after arriving Friday was an amazing yoga session at Wild Rose studios – a 2 hour Ayurvedic class followed by an hour talk on the Bhagavad Gita. It was physically, mentally and emotionally right on the money. If my experience in Costa Rica is anything like this afternoon, I am you to be one happy yogi!
All day Saturday was spent at the Chiang Mai Thai Cookery school, learning how to make 6 different Thai dishes.
My favorite was the Tom Yum Goong soup…a hot and sour prawn soup with lemongrass and veggies. Delish! I also really enjoyed the green curry (which I made super hot and spicy!). A Thai feast will happen when I’m back in town this summer!
Sunday began with another yoga course, this time at the Yoga Tree. It’s not often that I’m the most advanced student in the room, so it was an interesting couple hours being “teacher’s pet” in this beginner course.
I had a delicious Khao Soi (yellow curry dish) later that day at my favorite hangout – The Bird’s Nest, an organic cafe just across the street from my hotel – Nine House.
Nine House, by the way, was one of the best hotels I stayed at during my month. It was clean, modern, came with a hearty breakfast and a super friendly owner.
Sunday night included 5 hours wandering around the weekly Sunday Night Market on a closed down mile of road in the center of town. I certainly cleaned up on gifts and souvi’s for myself!
Monday was perhaps one of the very best days of the trip, at The Elephant Nature Park, surrounded by 35+ rescued elephants from around Thailand and Asia. It was fantastic benign up close to feed, bathe and hang out with all these friends. I have 200+ photos, so much more coming 🙂
And then Tuesday. Tuesday morning began with an early morning trip up the mountain, Doi Suthep, to visit one of the most holy temples in all of Thailand. At this temple, I kneeled down to receive a water blessing from a resident monk and toured the amazing grounds with views over the city of Chiang Mai.
None of theses little blurbs or photos really do this experience in Chiang Mai justice. It was everything I’d wanted in my trip to Asia. I would go back and stay for weeks, and I hope one day I do! It was magical.
I’m off to Costa Rica now for the month of June and will be completely off the grid. I may check in once during the month, but more than likely it will be July before you hear from me again. Thanks for reading and traveling along with me. Be well in the meantime!