29 janvier 2013

Last day in Bangkok

In the pool, Zoe and Rita decide to burn all calories gained during the wonderful breakfast. Zoe is now a fast swimmer and proves hard to beat! Today is our last full day. Walking around in Chinatown, I make the observation that all Chinatowns in the world are similar, they can be as far from China as possible, there are always the same smells, red lanterns, loud locals. We visit a big temple with a golden Buddha in intricate designs, then a Chinese shrine. We spend some time walking a covered Samong street and then go for an ok... [Lire la suite]
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25 janvier 2013

Bangkok Royal Palace

Here we are in Bangkok. We enjoy a nice swim at the wonderful pool right after breakfast. Bangkok’s tourist attractions -  though not always full with history or cultural traditions, are not to be missed. We head first to the grand monuments at Ko Ramanakosin. Among the usual suspects, the grandiose RoyalPalace and Wat Phra Keaw. We hire the services of a guide which proved useful in understanding the religious, cultural and historic significations of this wonderful place. We turn around gold pagodas, the temple guardians... [Lire la suite]
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14 janvier 2013

Last day in Chiang Mai

A painful awakening at 6 am got me to the yoga class - scheduled with the hotel which turned out to be a private class; just me and the teacher. Since everyone else is still sleeping, I took the hotel bike and went for a stroll which ended up being a self-pampering session: I stopped at a beauty parlour to have a facial massage. This included a cleansing, scrub, a mud mask and – to my horror - a cucumber mask. I come back just in time for breakfast. We then visit Wat Chian Man which is quite nice but honestly at this point we are... [Lire la suite]
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11 janvier 2013

Mae Ping River

The heat is overwhelming, and there is lots of humidity (even for Lebanese standards). We spend the morning relaxing by the pool. Then, we take a small slow boat on the Mae Ping river and visit a farm house on the river bed. The trip is relaxing and lasts around two hours. Close by is Warorot Flower market, where Rita buys all kinds of exotic ingredients including pungent shrimp paste, dried lime leaves, Thai basil leaves and some basic pastes. We wander around a bit around the small Chinatown before heading back to the hotel and... [Lire la suite]
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09 janvier 2013

Cooking Thai

We have moved rooms to be placed just in front of the infinity pool. What a nice feeling to wake up in serenity and enjoy simple pleasures. We have a light lunch at the pool of the hotel, after which I head out with Zoe to a cooking course for the afternoon.   We are divided in groups of 10; and we walk to the grocery market to sample all kinds of vegetables, fresh noodles and specialty ingredients. I am amazed at the different varieties and sizes of eggplant. And then the fish and smelly pastes… Zoe got sick and can’t... [Lire la suite]
Posté par jeremierita à 14:45 - - Commentaires [1] - Permalien [#]
01 octobre 2011

Wat in Chiang Mai

We chose our hotel (U Chiang Mai) mainly because we wanted to take it easy and have some time to swim and relax. The breakfast is amazing especially the choices of different coffees and teas and the wonderfully prepared egg combinations. The day starts around 11am with the discovery of neighbouring Wats. We visit at least three; all within walking distance. At one of them, a monk is almost frozen in a seating position, eyes wide open. People come and go, take pictures with him, he doesn’t even blink and sits in immobile meditation... [Lire la suite]
Posté par jeremierita à 08:28 - - Commentaires [1] - Permalien [#]

28 septembre 2011

From Chiang Rai to Chiang Mai

We pack our luggage once again and load everything in the car towards Chiang Mai. On the way south, 13 kms ahead, lies an out-of-this-world Wat: Rong Khun.   The architectural and artistic design is very futuristic. The outside is a glittering white produced with the help of mirror-like crusts in the never-ending sculptures.  We definitely are in a movie set with star wars and monster dragons emerging from the surrounding water ponds. The impression we get must have been the same for visitors to Gaudi’s structures a... [Lire la suite]
Posté par jeremierita à 07:59 - - Commentaires [1] - Permalien [#]
14 septembre 2011

Long Neck Karen

After a hearty breakfast we hit the road and head to a village where the famous Long neck Karen tribe can be found. We look for the place for hours and eventually we end up finding it. There are actually different communities that live together which makes it easier for tourists to know their culture while earning themselves some money although it feels a little bit like a human zoo. We first meet the Akha tribe who play us some traditional music and Noemie is delighted and is shouting ‘encore’… Then we encounter the Miao,... [Lire la suite]
Posté par jeremierita à 10:04 - - Commentaires [0] - Permalien [#]
04 septembre 2011

Tribes and Golden Triangle

We leave early for Mae Salong, a village where many ethnic minorities live. On the way, we discover a tiny Akha village. We sit down and try to engage a conversation based on sign language. Having a young child helps a lot to break the ice and suddenly we are not intruders but part of the family. The community lives in wooden houses, scattered on narrow dirt roads with chicken running around. We had seen the Akha minority in Yunnan during our past trip in China and I can say that they look and dress almost the same. We walk around... [Lire la suite]
Posté par jeremierita à 08:20 - - Commentaires [0] - Permalien [#]
30 août 2011

Chilling out at Tha Ton

It doesn’t take us a lot of thinking to figure out what we will do today. We have been moving a lot these past days and we decide to stay and enjoy the pool. It will be farniente time! We spend time on the terrace, walk around in the beautiful garden on the river side and look at all the nice flowers and the water ponds. We spend the day eating, swimming, eating, sleeping, having a massage, and relaxing. Towards the end of the day we go and visit Wat Tha Ton. The place is made of different temples spread around in nature, at... [Lire la suite]
Posté par jeremierita à 08:27 - - Commentaires [0] - Permalien [#]