Chiang Mai: A week of food, temples, and natural wonder

Sean and I have already been in Chiang Mai for a week and it has flown by. We have fallen back in love with this beautiful country and are so grateful to have such an amazing friend living in Chiang Mai to show us around and give us countless tips on making the most of our limited time here.

Our first day or two here was spent relaxing and getting our bearings of the area. One thing we knew we wanted to do for sure was eat a lot of Thai food. So since we’ve gotten here, we’ve slowly been trying all sorts of Thai dishes.

Maker:L,Date:2017-8-30,Ver:5,Lens:Kan03,Act:Kan02,E-Y
Delicious vegan Thai curry and fritters
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Crispy pork over rice
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Spicy Thai noodle dish
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Thai Tea is so refreshing on a hot day!

After a few days here, we decided to hike along the Monk’s Trail from our apartment at the base of Doi Suthep to two temples up the mountain. The first temple was Wat Pha Lat which sat next to a peaceful stream and a beautiful overlook. The temple itself was dappled with sunlight coming through the tall trees overhead. There were only a few tourists, making it a very relaxing place to visit.

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Loved the peaceful view from this temple
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A cute, serene relief sculpture surrounded by plants
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One of several old looking structures in Wat Pha Lat
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A detailed shot of one of the temple doors

After getting a little lost during our very sweaty hike to the top, we finally made it to Wat Phra That Doi Suthep. This temple was very busy but still a humbling experience. We made sure to take a few moments to marvel at the intricate golden architecture and soak in the views of Chiang Mai.

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Intricate golden designs of Wat Phra That Doi Suthep
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Golden buddhas with a mural telling the story of the Buddha as a backdrop
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Large Buddha statue outside the temple
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View from the top of Doi Suthep

After a few more productive work days, our good friend Stasha was super nice to organize a day trip around Doi Suthep. We rented a car and made several stops at some remarkable places. The first stop was at the Mae Sa Waterfall in Doi Suthep-Pui National Park. I was definitely reminded of some of waterfall hiking I’ve done back in Asheville, NC which I love so much.

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Mae Sa Waterfall
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So happy to be outside, surrounded by nature
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There are so many tiers to this waterfall!
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We happened upon the weirdest/coolest little insects (apparently a type of planthopper nymph)

The next stop was at the Queen Sirikit Botanic Garden which featured beautifully manicured gardens and a canopy walkway. I loved seeing the huge variety of plants which were grouped according to their environmental condition.

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Gorgeous views from the canopy walk
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We saw so many banana trees!
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The arid greenhouse felt a bit misplaced but still so interesting!
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A man-build waterfall inside a huge greenhouse with jungle plants
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Some of the leaves were huge, even for Sean!
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Perfect weather for a road trip

Our last main stop was in the Mon Jam hill village. We ate lunch at a restaurant that sat at the top of a hill, overlooking the valley, from a small open-air hut. Then we roamed around the gardens and enjoyed the expansive views.

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Ate lunch in a little hut on the hillside
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It’s the off season so there weren’t many crops but the views are still beautiful
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One last selfie for the day!

Sean and I are so grateful to have a friend who has been so generous with her time and knowledge. Chiang Mai is turning out to be the best ending to our 6 month journey of Asia. That being said, we still have one more week so stay tuned for another update soon!

2 Comments Add yours

  1. GERARD A STAMM says:

    Fascinating! So glad you shared this with us. Something tells me your final week will feel like a day to you, whereas we here in the States will feel like a whole month has transpired. Can’t wait to see you two and talk to you about your adventures.

    Liked by 1 person

    1. christina_mcm says:

      I think you’re right! Even though we absolutely love it here, we are super excited to be back home!

      Like

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