Week 5/13 (20/02-27/02)
We only stayed in Bangkok for 2 nights and on our last day our flight to Chiang Mai wasn’t until nighttime so we spent the day just chilling at the hostel until it was time to get a taxi to the airport. The day before we spent seeing both the Maeklong Railway and the famous floating markets. We were lucky that our hostel could find us a cheap driver for the day and although he couldn’t speak any English he was very nice to us. The Maeklong Railway was pretty awesome to see, but there were so many tourists visiting and not actually buying any fresh produce it was sad at the same time because the locals weren’t making any money. When it was time for the train to come through, we were told to move back as far as possible but no one realised how close the train comes to each side of the markets. The driver makes sure the train is going as slow as possible but it really is crazy to see the small gap it slowly slides through in-between all the market stalls. You are literally squished with everyone else and the trying to avoid being hit but the train.
After that, we were on our way to the floating markets, however the spot our driver dropped us off at was not the right place. The company there with the boats wanted us to pay almost $50 (AUS) each just for the boat to take us through. I said no to going and then the lady dropped the price and we ended up paying around $35 (AUS) each which I still thought was too expensive but we went all that way, so decided to just do it. It was an okay experience, but not really worth it. All of the market stalls were too expensive and you go through it all within 40 minutes.
When we landed in Chiang Mai we got a tuk tuk to our hostel and crashed for the night. The hostel we stayed at was only $6 (AUS) a night and we were in a 4 bedroom dorm. It was only on the first night that someone else was in the room with us, so it was nice to have the place to ourselves for the rest of the time. Over the week there I tried to save some money by not doing a lot and just relaxing. I have already been to Chiang Mai so I didn’t have the urge to do all the same attractions I had already done a few years ago. Laura and Bianca went to an Elephant Sanctuary and the Sticky Waterfalls and on another day we all went to the Grand Canyon. The Grand Canyon was a fun day out that didn’t cost a lot, the most expensive part was getting a driver to take us there. Once there we paid about $4 (AUS) for entry and swam in the big dam for a few hours.
I really enjoyed all the food we ate in Chiang Mai, their was one local lady around the corner from us that cooked really good rice and veggies and it was only $1! There was also A-M-A-Z-I-N-G coconut ice-cream down the road we went to a few times, and most nights we went to different markets and ate the yummiest curries, rices and noodles. Chiang Mai is definitely food heaven. Laura and I also investigated a few Western Vegetarian/ Vegan food cafes and they were cheap and delicious. The only bad thing that happened was one cafe I ate at had a screw in the noodles which luckily I noticed before eating.