Thursday, 3 January 2013

Doi Sutep

We fly back to Old Blighty today :(

For our last morning in Chiangmai we visited the temple at Doi Suthep. This is set on the mountain side giving dramatic views over Chiangmai. It was a little hazy today, so the view wasn't perfect, but the temple itself was fascinating.

So we are writing this blog as we wait to leave to go Chiangmai airport for the first leg of our journey back to the UK. Hopefully it will be as smooth as the trip out here was!


Following a restful night of sleep at the Nest we regretfully checked out and took the truck on a tour of the local sights of Chiang Dao. We started with the caves at Chiang Dao which are the main attraction. You are required to take a guide into the caves so you don't get utterly lost. The guides speak little English, but are able to explain what shapes the various stalagmite and stalagtite formations make.

After the caves we moved on to the Golden Chedi temple. This temple is either half-finished, half-falling down or possibly both!

Next we headed towards the Mayanmar (Burmese) border. About 20km before the border we arrived at the hot springs. This is a small camping location (we were not camping!) with some lovely hot pools which you can fully immerse yourself in. The hot springs are twinned with the nearby waterfall, so for one small amount of baht you can visit both.

The waterfall was our last stop of the day before we headed back to Chiangmai. Tonight we are going to visit the night bazaar for "Operation: Mulberry"! Tomorrow will be our last day in the Land Of Smiles, but we will have time in the morning and afternoon for one last excursion to Doi Sutep.

The Nest, Chiang Dao

I may never eat again.

If you had visited the Nest at Chiang Dao you would also be too full to eat again. The Nest is run by a Thai lady who has lived in the UK. It is a Thai mini-resort which means it has fairly basic accomodation (we stayed in a lovely wooden bungalow with a bedroom and bathroom) and services. However, most people travel to the Nest for the gorgeous food!

There is an international restaurant where we had lunch when we arrived. This taught us lesson #1 - always book in advance! Lunch took about two hours to eat, and we had a light lunch. Everything is prepared fresh at the Nest, so you have to wait your turn!

We spent the afternoon exploring the nearby template which has 510 steps. It is hard going given the humidity, but well worth the walk!

You should take the walk up to the top of the temple in order to work up an appetite for your dinner... And what a dinner it was! We chose the Thai "Big Eater" dinner. This consisted of:

  • Northern-style sausage
  • Pork toast
  • Mixed vegetable dish
  • Green chicken curry
  • Buffalo Northern style
  • Vegetables in oyster sauce (utterly addictive!)
  • Organic brown rice
  • Hand made noodles

Wherever you have been in the world, you have never had Thai food this good! Since we had pre-booked and pre-ordered, the food was served immediately and hot. You can even choose how spicy you would like it:

  • Not spicy
  • Medium spicy
  • Farang spicy
  • Thai spicy

Medium was mouth-tinglingly spicy!!

We have a lovely night's sleep in the silence of your bungalow.

You may be thinking that this all sounds very expensive. We paid 40 GBP for our room, and 6 GBP each for dinner (yes, six pounds each for all that gorgeous food).

We are considering moving to Chiang Dao just to eat at the Nest every night!