Why Every Visit To Thailand Should Include Chiang Mai

As soon as I arrived in Chiang Mai, I could feel it was a town that was going to grow on me. Having come from the chaos of Bangkok, it was refreshing that Chiang Mai was a walkable town full of activities and character. 
The character of the town seemed one of trust, health and skills. The small streets were lined with welcoming guesthouses, food sellers, laundrettes and second hand book shops. Cycle and motorbike hires were common and meant the whole town was in easy reach. It was the kind of place I could easily spend a couple of weeks. 
I learned how to give a Thai massage, how to rock climb, watched some live Muay Thai, zip lined through the forests and used it as my jump-off to the Elephant Nature Park, whose office is in the town. […]

Taking The Slow Boat To Laos

Completing a loop of Thailand-Laos-Vietnam-Cambodia in either direction will always present an interesting question to a traveller –  “How do I want to travel between Thailand and Laos?”. Typically, and in my case, Chiang Mai to Luang Prabang.
The options were…

Fly
Coach
Slow boat
Speed boat

In this post, I describe my journey from Chiang Mai, Chiang Khong, Huay Xai, Pak Beng to Luang Prabang taking the infamous slow boat. […]

Volunteering at the Elephant Nature Park

Last week, I volunteered at the Elephant Nature Park (ENP), just outside Chiang Mai, Thailand. I did my best to manage my expectations leading up to it, but I have to say, a week at the park is going to be one of the highlights of my trip.

Why?

Watching elephants roam free in front of you all day, meeting an absolutely awesome bunch of people and learning some new skills was a great experience.

I recommend ENP highly. Even if you can’t volunteer for a week, a day trip to the place should be on every Thai traveller’s itinerary.

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Bangkok Shenanigans

I was advised that travelling doesn’t really go to plan. So far, for me, it had gone very smoothly.

But when I left Hong Kong for Thailand, it wasn’t the smoothest transition I had imagined. I learned plenty from it though.

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Choosing A Volunteer Scheme

I wanted to spend some of my travel time volunteering. For me, it was a chance to “give” to a noble cause, gain a deeper travel experience (not just beach hopping) and to be a responsible traveler. Typically, the volunteer schemes can be split into one of Animals, Teaching, Community.

Being an animal loving vegetarian, it was clear that my preference was for an animal related scheme. I decided upon one called the Elephant Nature Park. which I’ve booked for one week starting 5th November.

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