Thailand: The Land, History & Culture (Live to Travel Series)

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We walked past them hand in hand and not a single word was said to either of us.

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We walked around the block and then Marta walked 20m behind me. Consistent annoyance from prostitutes, taxi drivers, store owners, street food vendors, et cetera, made it really exhausting to enjoy anything. Another thing, that was to us incomprehensible, was the extremely poor level of English spoken by Thais we met. Thailand has been a popular tourist destination for a few decades now and has seen a huge boom since the arrival of cheap international flights. We obviously didn't expect perfect fluency, Marta's native language isn't english either, but we thought places such as hotel receptions, tourism information offices and travel agencies to have slightly more than just the very basics!

Again this has been a popular tourism destination for many many years! We didn't and still don't expect to walk into a remote village and have a full on conversation in english. Generally, I am of the opinion that the Thai, those of which who work in tourism , think all tourists are the same. They presume we all want to drink beer and want massages with happy endings, and now because of their misguided beliefs, the country has become famous for women shooting ping pong balls out of their vaginas, excessive amounts of alcohol and drug taking, men who look like women, theft of all kinds, and now, the murders of two British Nationals on the island of Koh Tao.

Did you have the same experience or were we just unlucky? I would love to hear it in the comments! After graduating from university in he set sails on conquering the world, hoping to see as much as possible. November Also, book your accommodation well in advance. Chiang Mai is famous for Muay Thai fights, and we enjoyed seeing the action in person while in Bangkok.

Thailand: The Land, History & Culture (Live to Travel Series)

You can even take classes at many gyms in Chiang Mai. Whether you try it yourself or watch a match, experiencing Muay Thai fighting is a fun thing to do in Chiang Mai. With Doi Suthep mountain towering over the city, there are countless opportunities to get outside and do something memorable. While it is no secret anymore, it still has a feeling of being relatively unknown to many travelers passing through.

Just a minute drive from town, a trip here will allow you to escape the city and soak up some rays while watching a handful of daredevils make this foot jump. If you are a confident cliff jumper, we would suggest making the leap! We did, and had a blast. Start with some of the smaller jumps and work your way up. If you are nervous though, just observe others. Split the fare with other travelers to make it more affordable. It sounds like a bunch of fun, but the entrance fee has increased and is currently baht up quite a bit from 50 baht when we were there in Seeing an elephant up close is almost on everyone's bucket list in Thailand.

But we wanted to let you know a little insight we've learned while living in Chiang Mai: It is not uncommon for elephant parks to call themselves "sanctuaries" without truly being kind to the elephants.

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We've heard stories that after tourists leave, the way they treat their animals and staff members isn't always great. While we didn't experience or see any mistreatment of the animals, we are now more aware about this issue still facing Thailand's tourism industry. Related: 33 Ways you can Travel More Responsibly.

We've heard mixed reviews even about some of the popular sanctuaries in Chiang Mai. We've had friends who had great experiences at Elephant Nature Park , though we haven't experienced it ourselves. They provide a better life for the elephants and also work to improving villages and alternate work for the mahouts. We encourage you to do some research ahead of time and choose a place that is hopefully treating elephants well.

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  6. Tell their management of what you saw. Write a review online so others can be informed and decide if they want to support it. Tip: The good places book up in advance -- so plan ahead if seeing elephants is a must for you. If you'd like to support elephant protection and conservation, consider making a visit to Elephant Parade Land. Here, you can visit their museum and see where these lifesized baby elephant statues are made.

    Local and international artists paint these statues at the onsite workshop, and also create smaller versions that you can take home as a meaningful souvenir. If you don't have time to visit Elephant Parade Land, you can simply stop in their retail shops in Nimman or Old City to purchase your own souvenir elephant and support this cause.

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    This project was started to help fund the creation of a prostethic leg for a baby elephant name Mosha who had lost her leg. Elephant Parade helps fund the work of the Friends of the Asian Elephant Hospital , where Mosha and other injured elephants are being treated. Located just off highway 11 between Lampang and Chiang Mai, you can actually visit this hospital if you have time. Visiting hours are between a.

    Similar to river tubing, you can cool off on a hot day by floating on a bamboo raft! Check out Tieland to Thailand's article on bamboo rafting. While it looks like fun, we have heard it is a long trip to get to the river for a rather short rafting ride. There's actually some decent rock climbing in Chiang Mai. If you are a climber or want to learn , consider booking a climbing day in northern Thailand. Who knew Chiang Mai is well-known for its mountain biking?! If you like to get gnarly on mountain trails is that what the kids are saying these days?!

    Flight of the Gibbon is by far the most popular of the Chiang Mai zip-lining companies, but there are many high-flying adventures to choose from. While Chiang Mai is Thailand's fourth largest city it is surrounded by jungle and mountains. Be sure to get out of the city and experience the nature that lays just beyond the bustling streets. Most waterfalls you think of are extremely slippery due to the massive build up of mossy rocks or fast moving water. There are a couple sections to the tiered-waterfall, but our favorite was at the very bottom where the falls drop about thirty feet and you are able to climb around them.

    It's a great way to cool down on a hot day! After you're done playing the falls, head up the small set of stairs opposite of the falls which leads to the source of the spring. The spring itself is a deep hole filled with vibrant blue water. We rented a motorbike for this journey, and found it quite easy.

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    The roads are all paved and flat, but you'll have to watch out for traffic. You'll know you're getting close when the road starts winding up hill and bordered with trees. You'll see a sign for Bua Thong Waterfall on the right and take that turn to enter the park. If you don't feel comfortable on a motorbike, you can always ask a red truck songthaew to take you and a group of friends typically up to 8 people to the falls. The best app to find hiking trails around Doi Suthep mountain is Maps Me.

    Download the app and then download Chiang Mai region. A visit to these little-known waterfalls is a good way to escape the city and find some solitude.


    When we went, we only crossed paths with a handful of people. Unlike Sticky Waterfalls, you can't climb on the actual falls, but if you stick to the side path you'll make it to a swimming hole, complete with a rope swing! The best part was we were the ONLY people there. On a hot day, this would be a great place to bring a picnic and relax. It is really simple to get to the Huay Kaew Waterfalls. From the old city you can take a red truck to the Chiang Mai Zoo 30 baht per person.

    Starting from the entrance of the Chiang Mai Zoo, walk west toward the mountain. You can take the mountain road uphill until you see the official entrance, or walk our favorite way through a local street to the left just as the road begins to go up hill.

    Thailand: The Land, History & Culture (Live to Travel Series)
    Thailand: The Land, History & Culture (Live to Travel Series)
    Thailand: The Land, History & Culture (Live to Travel Series)
    Thailand: The Land, History & Culture (Live to Travel Series)
    Thailand: The Land, History & Culture (Live to Travel Series)
    Thailand: The Land, History & Culture (Live to Travel Series)

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