Chiang Mai and Some Proper Sausages……Part 1….
Archive for 22/3/2013
While Clive was loading the bike ready to leave Chayadol Boutique Resort…he was approached by one of the staff (Rainee) from the Chayadol….
She was saying how excited she was about our trip, and that she hopes to one day do a similar trip her self…her eagerness was so apparent, that we know there will now be another ‘Traveller’ soon exploring the roads of the world…
Its great to know…(even though our trip is short compared to what other people have done), that we can inspire others…
Now to ride the 236klm’s for our next destination…
Not far out of Chiang Rai we came across the ‘Highest Hot Springs’ in Thailand…
We parked up and walked towards the ‘springs’…. yuk…the springs had a really strong smell of sulphur…
The springs are located along the Chiang Mai to Chiang Rai highway, and if the smell hasn’t put you off by now then why not buy a boiled egg,they sell them here! and it only takes 3-8 minutes to boil in the hot Springs!
Enough smelly stuff and on with the journey…following the twisty roads around the foot hills that lead into Chiang Mai…
The ride didn’t take too long at all…and as we neared Chiang Mai the roads became straight and pretty busy, but as soon as you cross over the ancient moat into the old city, the roads became hectic!…all one way systems…..
We located to the first Hotel that I had researched…. after checking out the room, I made a hasty retreat and made my way back to Clive… I must have been wearing blinkers when I looked at this place on the Agoda…lol…it was awful…enough said!!!
Not far from where we had parked the bike was a small lane, I could just make out a Hotel sign, so while Clive ‘Manned’ the bike, I went off to see if this Hotel was up to my standard!
Yes the SK11 Hotel did meet my needs….
Big clean room, cheap, a friendly family run business, a parking space for the bike, fast Wi-Fi and a great atmosphere but what sealed the deal was ‘another’ hotel with a pool ☺
…I don’t ask for much!!!
Once we had settled into our room, we got changed and went for an invigorating swim…
Feeling refreshed we decided to take a walk around the city…well a small part any way….
Old Chiang Mai city is surrounded by an old brick wall and a moat…
We ended up at the Riders Corner Bar and Restaurant which is biker friendly and run by Ex Brit Phil and his wife, Phil has a wealth of Knowledge of riding around Asia and is always keen to share it with you…
The food and atmosphere was fantastic…the sausages were the best we have had in a long time….
We had them a few times…..
We also met up with Steven, who we first met way back in Malaysia and had a great chat about the adventures we’ve both had since we last met….
We stayed in Chiang Mai for a few days checking out what the city had to offer and decided to go away for three days and ride the Mai Song loop ride, which is famous for being a great bike ride…
So we packed the essentials and our hotel SK II very kindly said we could leave the rest of our things there..
We set off in the direction of Pai which was on the 1195….
There was lots of twists and turns gaining elevation all the time giving us a hint of things to come on this ride….
We saw a sign to some hot springs 7klm down a side track , seeing that we had plenty of time up our sleeves to get to our first stop for the night, we decided to go and investigate….
Well not a lot of people come down here going by the condition of the road, defitnatly not buses….
Arriving at the gate we had to pay a fee, $5.00 each….
So after coming this far down this bad road, we thought we had better take a look, after paying we rode around till we found some where to park.
The place was obviously popular at one stage going by infrastructure, but now its sadly going into disrepair for some reason.
We walked over to a stream that was running down over the rocks, it was beautiful, but testing the water thinking it would be cold we were in for a surprise it was hot!!!
After getting changed into our swimmers and hiring a couple of towels We checked the hot pools, one was too cold, the other was way to hot as soon as you stepped into it you had to step out!!!
But We did find a smaller pool and like goldilocks porridge, it was just right…
Ahhhh….this is the life…the water felt sooo good and seemed to fade away any aches and pains we had…..it didn’t even smell horrible either…..
But eventually even this pool started to feel hot, so we got changed, got back on the bike, and made for the hills!
There’s some seriously tight bends to navigate at really steep angles, 762 to get to Pai, we only got a few glimpses of the mountains through the very thick smoke haze…..pity..
On arriving at Pai the first thing did was stop at was a bakery and had a massive tuna roll with fries and a iced chocolate….I’m beginning to think we should have called this trip Bakery2Bakery…..
With lunch all sorted we went off to find a some where to stay, prices seemed to range from really cheap bamboo huts next to river to out really expensive hotels way out of our budget!
We did eventually find a little complex of individual bungalows set on a few acres of large manicured lawns with beautiful scented trees and bushes,we are the only ones there…
what a gem this was and just just 2 minutes from the main centre of Pai.
After settling in we walked into town, had a beer, checked out the night markets which were selling some really great and unusual stuff!
In the morning I lubed the chain and made a small adjustment on the clutch before we packed the bags and set of towards Mai Song.
There were still lots of tight curves….
and only glimpses of the mountains through the smoke haze, when we stopped for morning tea at the top of one hills…….
A mother approached us and asked for some money to photograph her kids….. no thank you…thats not how we roll…..
We did think about swapping the bike for this ride….
Getting close to Mai Song we passed a National Park, we’re gonna have to check this out later in the afternoon, when we have found somewhere to stay…
Riding through the small town of Mai Song we decided to ride towards the lake and see what accommodation we could find…it wasn’t long before we came across a small Guest House with cozy wooden Huts in the garden…
And run by a very welcoming family…
After unloading the bags…we set off for the National park that we had passed a few klm’s back.
After paying the entrance fee, we set off to find the ‘Fish cave’…but to get to he cave you walk past manicured lawns reserved for camping……
Walking down the pathway then onto a bridge that goes over a stream full of fish….
walking along with the stream to the right of you for about 15 minutes until you come to some bigger ponds full of these fish, then over another little bridge and you will see the cave (very small indeed).
It was choked up with fish trying to get into the cave…..
We went out for dinner by the lake and the temple was all lit up, very spectacular, a really great place to have a drink and dinner…
Walking around the temple there were these weird bugs attracted by the lights…….
to be continued….