Brisbane2Bristol

On our great adventure

Chiang Mai Part 2…… Patting Tigers……

Archive for 26/3/2013

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Mai Hong son….Early by the lake…..

We set of early towards Mae Sariang and soon came across a Japanese war museum, which was about the time they retreated out of Burma and they settled here..

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It was a fascinating place…..

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The museum displays military equipments, accessories, weapons, clothes, photos etc. of Japanese Army which entered Amphoe Khun Yuam during World War II.

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Lots of these laying around…

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We arrived in Mae Sariang, found a comfortable place to stay, and by pure coincidence had a email from Keith Hooper who is also riding his bike around SE Asia and he said he just got into town…..
We quickly arranged to meet up for a drink and dinner and had a great time swapping stories from the road….

They were heading back to Chiang Mai, like us and we gave them our guest house address and arranged to meet them there later the next day…

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We stopped for a rest near a old bridge and decided to go and have a look, it traversed a deep river gorge ,so we walked across to get a few pictures….

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It was not until we were in the middle we looked down and saw how rotten the timbers were…..

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Needlessly to say we both made a hasty but careful retreat …..

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It was hotter than this town suggested….

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It was really hot so we pulled into our favourite rest stop place, you guessed it Amazons for a Mocha Frappe…

Just as we were pulling out our new friends Keith and Ellen were just pulling in….
Thats meeting twice now by pure coincidence ……

As we were close to Chiang Mai they followed us back to the guest house we told them about……

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That evening we went out to dinner at the Riders Corner and met up with another travelling couple Jeff and Si who have travelled through India and Nepal on there BMW.

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We all agreed to meet up again for breakfast as Jeff and Si were heading off to Laos…

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After yet another fantastic breakfast at the Riders Corner cafe… And before we could go and play with the cats, we had to go and collect our passports that now have our Pakistan visa inside from the DHL office in Chiang Mai…

After the collecting the passports we went into the airport shopping mall… Hoping to find the lithium batteries that we have been after for weeks now… We left the mall empty handed…..again….
Maybe some one in Bangkok will sell them?…..

2pm arrived, so me, Clive, Keith and Ellen set off to Tiger Kingdom which is not far from Chiang Mai.

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We get to Tiger Kingdom…we quickly parked the bikes and headed up the large staircase and into a impressive foyer…
Something that you would expect to see in a fancy hotel.
First up before we paid we had to decide which tiger we wanted to ‘hug’…
The choice was:
Cub..
Year old..
Young adult…
Adult….
Hmmmm…. which one to choose…as much as a cub would be great to cuddle, the chances of us getting THIS close to an adult Tiger again is very slim, so we all choose the adult, so we paid our Baht ($40), and signed a ‘form’ to say that we won’t sue if we get eaten or hurt while with the Tigers!…….

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Then we got a numbered ticket and waited for our turn…we didn’t have to wait long before we were called…. full of excitement…

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Once near the enclosure, we had another few minutes to wait, which gave us time to leave any belongings on the shelves provided, then one of the keepers said that when we were in the enclosure with the Tigers that we were not to use flash photography or touch the Tiger’s head…
Yippeee it’s our turn…I don’t think any of us four felt nervous at all, just excitement.
There were four tigers in our enclosure, also two other people and ‘their’ keeper.
We headed over to a Tiger that was lounging around on the grass, two of the other tigers were wandering around doing their own thing!

The the other tiger was with the other couple….

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The keeper said for me to go and lay on the Tiger!…..

So while the keeper stood near the Tigers head I went lounged with this magnificent creature…its hard to describe the feeling of being so close to an animal that could harm or kill me at any time…but the strange thing is, it wasn’t scary!….

We all got a turn to ‘cuddle’ the different Tigers in the enclosure, and then all too soon it was over ☹….

We gathered up our belonging and went and had a look around ‘The Kingdom’ at the other tigers here, walking around we noticed one animal that stood out from all the others and that was a male Lion, boy he was amazing……

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So handsome…. not sure why he was at Tiger Kingdom…. maybe rescued from a circus?….

So Clive and I went off to see the other tigers…..

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They all seemed happy and some were even stalking each other…. there were also some very young cubs in a nursery area…one was even getting his bottom wiped-Messy little cub!…….

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Just at that time Keith and Ellen had to leave as Keith was being eaten alive……
Not by the Tigers…but mossies’….

He was covered in bites…. we were all fine!
He must be a unique blood group to be bitten like that.
We stayed for a little longer then unfortunately had to leave.
What a fantastic afternoon this has been…something I would love to do again…our grandkids would have loved it……

Some people may say that these Tigers are drugged…

There is a sign that says the tigers aren’t drugged and that the keepers take offense that anyone one would suggest it…

In our opinion they’re not drugged…

These tigers have been hand reared so are used to people, they are well fed, Cats are nocturnal, so are naturally sleepy during the day…and one incident while we were in the enclosure with the tigers was, one of the keepers walked past on the out side of the enclosure with a load of bushy branches and all the Tigers got up so fast and chased these branches, that there’s no way that drugged tigers could do that….

That evening we went back to our ‘local’ Riders Corner for Dinner and made plans for another ride north to the border with Burma so we can get another 15 day visa extension with Thailand……

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2 thoughts on “Chiang Mai Part 2…… Patting Tigers……

  1. Sarah house on said:

    omg that picture on the tiger is amazing!!! X

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