When friends come to visit- Chiang Mai, Thailand

Adventures with friends, Chiang Mai addition: Temples and Elephants!

Day Three: (of the whole trip)

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And we’re off….
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Welcome to Thailand, the land of smiles. This portraits of the late King were everywhere
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We stayed at the iRiver and it was fantastic.
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Pool view from out hotel
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First Thai food of the trip!

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Walking to the night market as the sun set. This picture came is so helpful to show our tuk-tuk drivers where out hotel was.
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Night Market

 

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This ice cream is so cool to watch being made. They pour milk on to a cold plate and mix it around. As they do it freezes.
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Tuk- tuk
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First Tuk-tuk experience.
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One of my friends suggested we go the Muay Thai boxing. This is the only picture I took and it was before we went inside. I understand that the sport is a cultural thing, but I had a very hard time watching children as young as 8 years old fight with people betting on them. We didn’t stay long.
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There was a Lady Boy show going on across the street. There are a lot of transgender/drag women in Thailand.

Day Four: Elephant Nature Park

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Our hotel had such a good breakfast. (Not all of this was mine)

 

Elephant Nature Park was my favorite part of the whole trip! They rescue elephants that are being used as work animals or being mistreated. Most of the elephants were old because in Thailand to “rescue” and elephants they actually have to buy it off the owners. Elephants come with ownership papers. The park wants to make sure they are not setting owners up with enough money to get new elephants so the buy old ones who (are mostly) hurt at a low price. The park also educated other elephant parks on kind ways to treat the animals. They whole day was amazing! If you want to learn more are this wonderful place click HERE!

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First sight of the elephants.
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We’re ready to feed them
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Some of the elephants were picky and only wanted the watermelon.

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Most of the elephants we saw were old and had been resuced. The ones we were allowed to get close to were very tame.

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I’m standing so far from this one because she kept swinging that branch around. The flower in her ear was put there by her keeper. They said if she doesn’t like the flower she will purposefully get it muddy.

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We were able to wash one of the elephants.

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The next group of pictures are from when Sarah, Jen, and I went to Wat Phra That Doi Suthep. on the way back from the Elephant Nature Park. We were dropped of at a bus stop and had to take a taxi up a mountain.

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This is what a taxi in Chiang Mai looks like
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Inside the taxi
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Road side snacks! I’m not sure why I look so unhappy.

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My friend Sarah took this sneaky photo and I love it.

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Road side stalls outside the temple
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Crickets and grubs anyone?
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I wasn’t aware this photo was being taken and it’s not the most flattering photo of me, but I really like how the traffic out the back of the taxi looks.

Day Five: More Temples

While the other girls took a Thai cooking class, Sarah, Jen and I took a day trip to Doi Inthanon National Park stopping off to see a waterfall and the highest point in Thailand.

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When we walked down from the water fall they were selling souvenir photos from what looked to be a hidden camera. It was kinda creepy.

We stopped off at a local village to see how they made textiles and bought some to take home. The women were lovely.

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Look at how beautiful these fabrics are
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There was a little market on the side of the road that we stopped at to buy dried food and nuts

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Phra Maha Dhatu Naphamethinidon and Naphaphonphumisiri Pagoda. Pagodas for the King and Queen.
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Inside the Kinds pagoda
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Hello wind
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Standing at the top of the Queen’s pagoda looking at the Kings
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The garden
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Queen’s pagoda
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View from the top of the mountain
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Sunset over the river from our hotel
When we got back from our tour we hung out at our hotel for a little while before heading the airport to catch a late flight to Phuket. I really enjoyed Chiang Mai. It has a much slower/calmer feel to it the HCMC.

Next blog post will be about Phuket and Kon Phi Phi Island…. stay tuned. 😉

BLOGGING IS NOT SOMETHING I’M NECESSARILY GOOD AT AND AUTOCORRECT AND I HAVE A LOVE/HATE RELATIONSHIP, SO PLEASE IGNORE ANY TYPOS, MISSPELLED WORDS, OR ALL TOGETHER WRONG WORDS. 😉

 

 

 

 

 

When friends come to visit- Vietnam

Chúc mừng năm mới

(Happy New Year)

I had been looking forward to February since I moved here! Six of my girl friends flew over during my TET holiday break and we had such a wonderful time. Because we did so much I’m going to split up the holiday into several blogs based on where we went.

TET is the Vietnamese Lunar New year which fell during the first part of February this year. We only spent 2 days in Vietnam before heading off to Thailand. These post are going to be more pictures than writing because we took so many photos. (disclaimer I did not take all these photos 😉 )

 

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My TA took my to a local tailor to get an Aoi Di made. She picked out the fabircs and I love it. The lotus flower is the flower of Vietnam. Having the Ao Dai made cost around $40 USD.
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My TA, Linh, and I with the TET decorations at school.
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The pants are so comfortable I may or may not wear them around my apartment!

Traditional TET food made by my TA. I enjoyed all of it!

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TET is the busiest time of year at the airport. This picture does not do justice to the amount of people. I was standing way off on a side waiting for my friends and there were guards standing around keeping a pathway so that people could walk through. Insane!
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Welcome to the madness!
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First stop -Ben Thanh Market
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Ben Thanh Market. I forgot how overwhelming this places is to new people.
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Outside the Reunification Palace. I love how the city put up so many yellow flowers during TET. It was hot, the pollution was high, so instead of walking around we opted to get messages.
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Some of the best places are down dark questionable little ally ways.
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Secret Garden Restaurant
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Up the stairs we went

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This picture looks fake. It was taken from Secret Garden roof top.

Day 2- Mekong Delta

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Banh Mi (traditional Vietnamese sandwhich) for breakfast

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Bus ride to the Mekong Delta.

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We took this boat to several different locations.
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Floating house/ Fish farms

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Location number one
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Rice paper making
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Rice paper
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Location number two. Watching how the make coconut candy! Unfortunately, they put malt in these so I can’t eat them.

 

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Snake liquor
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Sarah and I were the only ones brave enough to try the snake liquor.
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Snake and scorpion liquor
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Lunch was so yummy!
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Our waitress made the spring rolls in front of us.
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Spring rolls and coconut fresh coconut water
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Tradition boat ride

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Location 3. Bees and honey. We were able to taste honey tea.

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A nice snack break of fruit and some traditional singing.

There was also a horse and carriage ride but the horses looked really sad and uncomfortable.

When we got back from the Mekong we walked around the city for a while.

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Strolling down Bui Vien Street in search of some souvenirs.
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In true Asia fashion we crammed too many people into a tiny elevator to get to a roof top bar.
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View from a rooftop bar. Vietnam does roof top places well!
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This place is delicious and I plan on going back!

 

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Ending the night with some Pho

That was pretty much all we did in Vietnam. The next morning we headed off the Thailand. That will be my next blog 😉

BLOGGING IS NOT SOMETHING I’M NECESSARILY GOOD AT AND AUTOCORRECT AND I HAVE A LOVE/HATE RELATIONSHIP, SO PLEASE IGNORE ANY TYPOS, MISSPELLED WORDS, OR ALL TOGETHER WRONG WORDS. 😉