Trekking & Tarantulas!

Trip Start Mar 25, 2009
Trip End May 11, 2009

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Where I stayed
Hill Tribe Village

Flag of Thailand  ,
Tuesday, March 31, 2009

We were up early on Wednesday morning and left promptly with 7 other fellow 'trekkers' for the jungle.

We briefly stopped at a local market to pick up the necessities required for the trip and then drove for about 45 minutes on what can only really be described as a pick-up truck (the corners were slightly hairy - I was at the back so clinging on - was a bit of a white knuckle ride!)
We were dropped off at the side of a road and then began our trek into the jungle. We were told to be careful of where we were walking as wildlife is plentiful and ranges from birds and butterflies to snakes and spiders! Hmmmmm! I have to say my need to go the 'bathroom' anytime soon was quickly diminished with the thought of sharing it with more than just a sink and newspaper! ;-)
Just 5 minutes into our walk it felt like we were already in the middle of nowhere with nothing but the sound of bugs and beatuiful scenery - almost like a giant postcard. It was quite surreal! We walked through what can only be described as a rainfall of brightly coloured butterflies - a sight that could not quite be captured in the same way on camera.
We trekked for around an hour before we reached our first village to stop for lunch.

After enjoying fried rice and fresh fruit we continued on our journey - trekking for a further 2-3 hours with a couple of stops through all kinds of terrain. It was challenging, but we were rewarded about half an hour before our final stop with a beautiful flowing waterfall. We all washed off - it was clear we all needed it! (the heat, walking & backpacks made us look like we had just been trekking in the rain - not a pretty sight!) And arrived at the village where we would spend the night around an hour later.
The village was beautiful - with plenty of animals to keep us entertained! We enjoyed delicious Thai food prepared by our guides and enjoyed a couple of drinks before heading to our communal hut for the evening!
It was a little difficult to sleep with all the bugs, gekko's and other animals continuously making a noise, but comfortable nevertheless!

We were awoken at 4:00am by the cockrel and then later by the pigs roaming under the hut! A more unusual wake up call! The bathroom with a shower was a little optomistic, so a wash with baby wipes was a little more successful, but we enjoyed 'roughing it' and quickly learnt to like bugs and spiders as we shared our entire trip with them!! Including late night visits to the bathroom where you could barely see the door for spiders!

We had breakfast and continued on our way. After around 1 1/2 hours of trekking we reached a larger waterfall where we could shower & wash our hair. It was so refreshing and very welcome by all!
Our day trekking was interesting to say the least! It was more intense and felt more challenging (especially on the legs after using squat toilets!). The guys got to play tarzan and we saw more creepy crawlies - only this time, when we stumbled across a tarantula nest the guides thought it would be a good idea to dig it up! They made a makeshift spade with some bamboo and were digging away until there it was! It was huge - i've only ever seen tarantula's like this at the zoo before! We cautiously took photo's & thought the guides were going to leave it alone, until one of the guides went to pick it up! They stored it and carried it to the next village where we stopped for lunch. This time, not only did we enjoy Thai food - we also enjoyed BBQ tarantula & frog captured from a nearby waterfall!
We continued on our way and arrived at our next village around 6pm. We had more amazing Thai food, there was a waterfall nearby where we could swim and we enjoyed a fire and stayed up talking until the early hours.

Our final day trekking was a short walk to a huge, open waterfall where we swam yet again and then continued to a village where we enjoyed the best Pad Thai we have ever tasted (and used chopsticks to eat it too!) and then went to see elephants and went bamboo rafting.

We arrived back around 6pm the final day - completely shattered but so happy with our experience!

We spent the following day relaxing and enjoying traditional Thai massage - amazing! We spent around 2 hours at a nearby spa. Both Steve and I had a thai massage and foot massage and I also had a pedicure - all for under 20 pounds! We will be enjoying a few more of those before we leave Thailand!!

We go onto Lampang tomorrow - not without visiting the Sunday market in Chiang Mai, where we are heading now!
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