- Monkey Forest – Ubud, Bali (empressniwi.wordpress.com)
- Cooking in Ubud (nengahbalitour.wordpress.com)
- Ubud And Tanah Lot Tour (baliairports.wordpress.com)
The next morning me and two of my friends left sweaty sweaty BKK for the misty green mountains in Chiang Mai, in the north of Thailand. Since we had limited time, we decided to fly there, which ended up being the best decision ever, as it was so smooth and hassle free to take a domestic flight instead. It was a bit more expensive, but the ease of travel and time saved more than made up for the price of the ticket. It was us three mangy backpackers and every Asian tourist in Thailand headed to Chiang Mai, for the sweet sweet two hour ride which would give us an extra whole day there!
We stepped off the plane amazed at the efficiency of domestic Thai airlines, and into a cheap taxi to the heart of the old town, finding a decent guest house after a few near misses for rooms. We had ah-mazing mediterranean food for lunch (might sound weird but Chiang Mai had unreal Western food, something we were all craving by that point) and decided our top three things to do/see were: riding scooters, going up the mountain to see the ancient Doi Suthep temple, and do some ziplining through the rainforest. We booked our ziplining tour for the next day and found a place that would rent us sweet scooters for our mountain journey.
I am very proud to say that after a fateful gas stop and a few wrong turns I successfully guided us to the right road and up the winding streets to the mountain temple. It started to POUR as soon as we got up there, so our pictures feature us in hilarious pink ponchos and helmets as we climbed the 300 temple steps to the top.
The temple was gorgeous – my favorite one in all of Thailand so far, with a view of Chiang Mai and the surrounding countryside. The ride down was a bit crazy because of the wet roads, but we got back to the rental place in one piece with no damage to the bikes, whew! It was one of my favorite Thailand adventures so far.
We ate at a falang (foreigner) restaurant at dinner, then went to bed…boring girls!! Forgive us…we had been out three nights in a row at that point, sleep needed to happen!
Actually, we weren’t in Phi Phi yet, we did have one more night in Bottle Beach before we left, and I actually managed to stay up most of the second night as well, on account of some energy drink aftermath and my night owl tendencies! It was almost more fun than full moon in a way, there were very few of us out and we sat at the bar laughing and making friends with the locals, listening to awesome music and watching fire spinning.
The sun came up too soon and took us away from paradise onto our next adventure, the island of Koh Phi Phi!
A very hung over speedboat, ferry, bus and ferry ride later, we arrived in Phi Phi to cloudy skies and a bustling little port. There are no cars on Phi Phi, but TONS of bikes and carts that WILL run you over if you’re not being careful!!
Our guesthouses were far enough away from the centre of town to be a bit more tranquil in the evening, but made for a longish walk to the beach and centre of town. Not that we really went to the beach, it was pretty cloudy and rainy during our stay 😦 oh well. once again – rainy season = stupid tourist!
We went out for dinner on the first evening after we had settled, but I was sooo tired after staying awake for the better part of the last three days, and passed out soon after that.
The next day our exploration of Phi Phi started, there was TONS of cheap shopping to be had, and we signed up for a scuba course the next day. The night passed in the usual way – group dinner, buckets with friends, dancing (on the speakers) at the club on the beach, and a semi-early night to prep for the dive the next day.
Semi….because we actually couldn’t sleep as we were total night owls by this point, aaand also because my friend Nikki bashed up her foot real good on the way home and had to be doctored by our (hero) guide Jon and cheered up by us and a bottle of vodka!!
Trust me….if you had seen her foot you would have passed her the bottle too…just sayin!!