thailand // chiang mai, pai, and mae hong son loop // part I
we spent a couple days exploring chiang mai, including wat pra singh and wat phra that doi suthep. the latter is a temple located up on a mountain above the city – it requires a fun songthaew ride to get there! we ate delicious street food [which burned so good], walked the street markets, and got a thai massage. one night we went out to a ladyboy show, which was really impressive + a wild time!
we were spending new years in pai, the road to which includes 760+ curves through the mountains of northern thailand [our ride unfortunately occurring the morning after my exuberant celebrating at the ladyboy show]. we stayed in a little treetop room at a guesthouse just outside town [pictured above], with stunning views of the surrounding mountains. on new years eve we took in the bustling street market – music, lights, food stalls of every sort you can imagine – watched paper lanterns being released from a rooftop bar, and spent the midnight hour in a dive-y spot open to the street with wild, colorful walls and a band playing lively covers.
the next day we took a guided trip [with a fun group!] around the mae hong son loop in the mountains. we hiked through the impressive lod cave and rode a bamboo raft on the river that runs through it. we soaked in hot springs and finished the day off at pai canyon, which included some tricky scrambles to get out onto its thin ridge [which i was too busy trying not to fall off to take any pictures!]