Monday, 9 July 2012

SE Asia Backpacking Series : Chiang Mai, More Bangkok and Koh Phangan

So last time I mentionned that we booked a cooking class in Chiang Mai. That was about 12 days ago. We are now in Koh Tao, which I will write about when we leave. I have a night off, with nothing to do, but write and relax. I have to say, it's quite a relief since the last 12 days have been really busy.

First off, the cooking class was amazing. Mathieu and I both had lots of fun. We went for a market visit and made many dishes including spring rolls, deep fried bananas, pad thai, green curry and coconut milk soup. We got to eat the dishes we cooked and everything was delicious. They also gave us an illustrated cooking book, which I'm really thrilled about :)

The next day, we went on a rafting trip. Since it's not quite the rainy season yet in Chiang Mai, the water was pretty low which means there were quite a few rocks. It was really exciting if a little scary at times. I really enjoyed it and I think it was worth while.

Then, the next day (I wasn't lying when I said we've been busy :P) we went for a 4 hour long trek into the jungle. I love trekking so I had a blast. Unfortunatly, on our way back down the path, it started pouring which means it got quite muddy. Thanks to my trusty Merrell hiking shoes, I didn't slip, but most trekkers kept landing on their butts. We finished the day exhausted and soaked, but satisfied.

We needed to go pick up my friend at the airport for the 1st of july so we headed back to Bangkok by train. Again, we took a sleeper train which I love :) The 13 hour journey just flies by when you can rest comfortably. It was quite cheap too. So we took the skytrain in Bangkok and met her at the airport. Then, we brought her to Khao San Road. There, we shopped ( I got bracelets and a tee) and got braids (she got half braids and I got a threaded bread). After we visited the Grand Palace. The Grand Palace is a very popular attraction in Bangkok. It's a site which houses a large number of beautiful temples. It's really a sight to behold. It was too hot when we visisted (I recommend visiting in the morning), but still very impressive.

That night, we took yet another train to Koh Phagan, Thailand's party island to attend the full moon party. After another 12 hour of train, a 1 hour bus ride and a 4 hour boat trip we arrived at the island where we had already booked a room (everything fills up quickly during the full moon party). The bungalow we had chosen turned out to be quite a dissapointement. It was overpriced, dark, the airconditionning barely worked and the staff wasn't very accomodating. The light in our bathroom stopped working because the connections melted and instead of fixing it, we had to shower using an oil lamp for the last two nights. Overall it wasn't a great experience.

The full moon party, on the other hand, was great. There were ten bars, lining up the beach (which is gorgeous white sand by the way) each playing different music. I got a cool dragon painted on my arm with neon paint.

The next day, we rented motorbikes and explored the island independently. We went to a place called Ko Ma, a small island which is connected to Koh Phagan by a stretch of sand. We also went to a chinese temple and to see a waterfall which turned out to be non-existent. The whole day was a blast.

Finally, on our last day on Koh Phangan, we booked a snorkeling trip. We left on a boat for the Marine Park and spent the day snorkeling and hiking on perfect white sand beaches or relaxing with a drink on the boat. I was a lot of fun, however, I got sunburnt like crazy even though I kept reapplying my SPF.

Overall, so far we've been doing loads of great activities! Hope you all enjoyed this update on my trip :)


  1. Wow, you were busy! Sounds like a lot of fun though, since everyday was a new adventure!

  2. Yep, we've been keeping ourselves busy! Completly exhausted now though :P



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