Chiang Mai and historical sights

I really can’t comprehend yet that my long travelling is ending. We are now in Bangkok and tomorrow in the evening we will be back in Finland already. At first all comforts of home will sure fit, but this Monday I will already continue with my job, and I am afraid I will be soon sick again of Finnish cold and cloudy weather.

But yes, after relaxing in Koh Tao and laughing at forest geckos (they sound like rubber ducks!) we flew to Chiang Mai on far north of Thailand and spent four nights in a luxurious hotel. Well, it at least felt luxurious for us with spacy, air-conditioned clean room and buffet breakfast where they had even cheese (I really missed that one), coming there after simple bungalows in the middle of nowhere. Chiang Mai is culturally rich city with, among others, many people from Myanmar. We visited a lot of “wat”s (temples), enjoyed the rich food and a bit of shopping in night market. The city is a nice place to relax and spend time walking in between market stalls. So we got a proper rest after resting on a paradise island, as they call it.

For the end of our journey we planned some historical sightseeing. First we went with bus to Sukhothai, a bit less than half way from Chiang Mai to Bangkok. Sukhothai used to be a capital of great ancient country, Siam, in 13th century. Some ruins of city and its temples are still visible. We visited the historical site and walked among the walls and stupas left from ancient kingdom. We enjoyed the sights, even though it was really hot on the sun. The following day we took a bus towards Ayutthaya, the next and most famous capital of Siam. Ayutthaya was the capital for next 400 years, until 18th century when Burmese army destroyed it. For that reason also Ayutthaya lays today in ruins, but there is a bit more still visible than in Sukhothai. The capital had to be magnificent once, and even now the ruins offer a great sight.

And that was it. Today we came back to Bangkok with train (in considerable better condition than in Myanmar) and tomorrow in the morning we have a flight to Finland.

So. Thailand. The people are nice and it’s true as they say, Thailand is the land of smiles. Since it’s overall quite touristic some people are of course trying to get more money from tourists, but the situation with scams is quite better than in Nepal, for example. The most annoying are probably just tuk-tuk drivers, asking for their service whenever they spot a foreigner. But once you say you don’t need a drive they usually leave you. As for the sights, Thailand has really beautiful beaches and now, off-season, they are really empty. The cities and historical sights are nice (I enjoyed from first far the most Chiang Mai and from second Ayutthaya), but to be honest, after Myanmar and Nepal they weren’t so spectacular. Nevertheless, we both really enjoyed our travelling.

As promised, pictures will come with the next post when we come home. Home. That will be weird.


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