We heard that one of the big experiences in Chiang Mai is traveling to the temple in the mountains. It is up pretty high so when you get there it seems like you are surrounded by an eternal mist or a huge cloud. Without a clue we simply hopped in the back of a tuk tuk and said take us to the temple on the hill. He laughed and said no I’ll take you to the bus, a tuk tuk can’t do that.
The bus was really a red pick up truck with a covering in the back. Something called a songthaew here. We were supposed to wait for 10 people to fill it up but impatience set in and we asked the man what his price would be to take only 8 of us. After we piled in we couldn’t imagine fitting two more adults in the back comfortably.
We slowly headed out of town but soon the speed picked up and so did the curves of the road. I thought I had a mild case of motion sickness set on by reading in the car, little did I know this ride would become horrible for me. Luckily, we made a few stops along the way. First at a point that overlooks Chiang Mai.
The second place we stopped was a mini waterfall, and should have been a great photo op. Unfortunately I was so car sick at this point all I could focus on was not throwing up over the side into the waterfall. We piled back in and continued upward.
When we finally got to the temple, Doi Sutthep, we found a thousand stairs that would continue our journey upwards. The good news was that being so high up made it much cooler than down in the city. We slowly made our way up and cursed ourselves for living in such a flat city like New Orleans for two years. We were apparently so pitiful that when we made it to the top an old man commented that we had finally made it.
You must wear long clothes to the temples, but fortunately many will provide you with coverings because they know it is so hot out that no one wants to wear long heavy clothes. I think it was a pretty good look for me…
On the way back down the temple stopped and bought some sweet corn from a lady. Our first attempt at street food and it was pretty good. It was probably all I could manage before the ride back down.
We headed back in to town after our day adventure for manicures and pedicures at a local salon. The whole thing cost just 500 THB. I may have struggled on the ride up the mountain but I was just glad I discovered my motion sickness before the bus ride to Pai so I could purchase some dramamine.