Travels in Thailand

Here are some photos of my trip in Thailand this month. Just got back a couple days ago.

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Water Monitor lizard? outside guesthouse in Bangkok, little hard to see but on the right hand side, between the rocks. It was about as long as I am tall. It was a bit afraid of me, more so than I was of it, and disappeared into the water on the left a few seconds after I took this.

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Retro airplane image in Don Mueang airport, Bangkok

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View from 2nd floor of my guesthouse in the old city, Chiang Mai

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Food market, Moon Muang Road, Soi 6, Chiang Mai. This place had everything, fruit, veges, nuts, seeds, live fish, dried fish, fresh meats. And super cheap

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Chedi/Stupa in old city, Chiang Mai

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This guy was playing amplified violin in his customised tuk-tuk at the Lua Wai night market in Chiang Mai

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Up north in the small village of Soppong (pronounced Sub-bung) lots of the men were wearing these fancy shiny pants. Lots of them made from velvet, and these awesome sparkly ones. I got this pic at a little restaurant. Pang Mapha district, Mae Hong Son province

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I stayed the night in a guesthouse on the main road in Soppong (I think there was just one road). Was woken by the sound of drumming and singing. I went out to see what was happening and found a big parade of young people. Different groups in different uniforms/costumes. There were women dressed as cowgirls in a western style, folks wearing what looked to be school or sports uniforms, and some dressed in a more traditional thai look. Never found out what was going on but really enjoyed the music and seeing all this.

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2013-02-17 14.55.16

I caught a motorbike taxi 9kms north to Cave Lodge, a place opened about 30 years ago by a thai-australian couple. It was so nice. Really friendly folks there, good conversations, good food, cheap as dormitories. And you could just go wander around the area and swim in the river just below. Watch the water buffaloes. Was so nice to get out of the city as that is where I’d spent most of my time while in Thailand (during this trip and others).

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The entrance to Tham Lod, Tham = Cave. This place is about 10 minutes walk from the lodge. A couple of people I met and I hired a guide who took us through with a lantern. The start and end was travelling on bamboo rafts, and in the middle we walked. It was so huge and beautiful, as caves usually are in my opinion. Was a bit hard to get any good photos though as the guide was kind of rushing and we needed to stick with him.

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A short walk to Susa cave. I joined three guys from the lodge for a trip kayaking and caving. We had just kayaked 12kms down the Khong(?) river with a Thai guide named Ong. Unfortunately I had forgot to bring my camera so had to pinch these off someone else. Thanks WIlliam.

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The entrance to Susa cave

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Inside Susa cave. This place was really incredible. The most beautiful formations, flowstone, draperies, stalactites, stalagmites etc. And at the bottom left of this pic is a big hole. Didn’t want to get too close. There was also very little oxygen in this cave so we were panting the whole time we were inside. It was a very weird sensation, panting but doing very little work. We didn’t go very far in as our guide didn’t come past the entrance area. He hadn’t brought a light (possibly on purpose). And apparently if you stay too long, or go too far in you start to feel faint which can be very dangerous.

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Coming back out again. So nice to be able to breathe easily again

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2013-02-19 10.23.13

On my last day in Cave Lodge before returning to Chiang Mai to start my trip back home, I went out with some friends for a walk to a village of Karen people. We came across this house which had burnt down a couple nights before. This was just up the road from the lodge. Was so sad to see this.

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Some examples of the amazing limestone karst landscape in the area

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The view from the top of a hill on the way to the Karen village

A Karen woman weaving

A Karen woman weaving

While we were in a house in the village, a bunch of the women came in with rolls of scarves, blankets, tops and bags which they had woven to sell them. This is me after just buying a blanket

While we were in a house in the village, a bunch of the women came in with rolls of scarves, blankets, tops and bags which they had woven to sell them. This is me after just buying a blanket

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Masses of fish at one point in the river, just upstream from a small dam, they would all scramble aggressively for food when you throw it in.

 

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On the way back from the village, we followed the path of the river downstream. Had to do many crossings. So much for keeping shoes dry. These are some folks I met at the lodge, Elena (from Spain), and Mike (Polish guy, lives in London).

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Rice fields, growing garlic at the moment as its currently the dry season, winter. The main difference as far as temperature goes between the seasons is at night. Winter nights are quite cool, whereas summer nights are much the same as daytime temperatures.