Chiang Mai, Thailand 28th Feb - 4th Mar

Trip Start Dec 13, 2012
Trip End Apr 02, 2014

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Thursday, February 28, 2013


Chaing Mai is in the far north of Thailand. We had just dropped Tony off at the Airport for his flight back to England so we decided to get the 1 hour flight from Bangkok instead of the ten hour bus ride.

We were expecting Chiang Mai to be a quiet sleepy town but actually it was quite busy, lots of people, guesthouses, restaurants and bars. We spent four days there taking in a new side of Thailand, away from the beaches & high rise buildings. The town centre was originally built walled all the way around with a moat surrounding it. Most of the wall has now collapsed and the moat remains now as a divider of traffic.


Day on Moped

We spent a day exploring Chiang Mai and the surrounding areas. We drove up to the top of a hill where there was a temple and a beautiful view of Chiang Mai below.
After that we had a long drive in the 38 degree heat to go and visit a waterfall. It had ten tiers to it and took about an hour to walk up to the top. All along the way up there were locals having picnics. Wish we brought one too…or swimmers would have been nice in the heat!

Day with the Elephants

Neil had the day to himself whilst Fae went out for the day to learn how to be a Mahout, an Elephant Trainer.

First we went to the markets to pick up food … bananas and potatoes. The elephants weigh between 4&6 tons, they eat around 150 kilos of food a day each and they drink 40 litres of water too!

We spent some time at the camp base learning about the elephants and feeding them breakfast. They showed us some tricks like putting a hat on our heads and kissing our necks with their trunks.

We learned and practiced the 5 elephant commands to use while on top of the elephant.  

-         WHOOO: Forward

-         HOW: Stop 

-         GWE: Left or Right  

-         TOY: Backwards

After enough practice we went on a trek around the forest and through rice paddies and streams – it was pretty scary at times, you have to balance sitting on top by holding onto the elephants head, if you fell, it was a long drop down a cliffside or into the water!

We then took the elephants into a river to be scrubbed down, washing all the mud off its skin. They layed down in the water, sometimes putting their whole head under & kept filling their trunks with water and spraying us. As soon as they got out of the water they would pick up some more dirt and cover themselves with mud again!

It was a fantastic day and such a beautiful setting to do it in. The elephants were being well looked after by their carers so it was a good choice in company to book with too.

Food & Drink

Food: We didn't try any new foods – we were budgeting hard, so eating cornflakes for brekkie out of a noodle cup & then putting the noodles back in the cup for lunch! ;-)

International McDonalds Meal: Spicy Pork Burger

Local Beer: Chang


FX Royal Panerai – This was a huge room, comfortable bed, air con & fridge for $19 a night. About a 10 min walk from the centre.


                Meals:  $0.50 – $3
                Water: $0.50 1.5l

                Transport: $8 for a moped for the day

                Mahout Training: $80 for the day inc. transport, meals & CD with pics on. 
                Company Name: Chang Siam

Average Daily Spend per person: $36

Transport there for both of us: $204

Total Spend for both of us inc. Transport: $500
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