If you’re thinking about a trip to Southeast Asia, Thailand should be on your list of countries to visit. Beauty abounds in Thailand, in both beautiful scenery and in man-mad structures.
Things to do in Bangkok:
Bangkok, the capital of Thailand, is a city well worth visiting. The city is brimming with programs, tourist attractions, good food and great shopping. Here are three of our favorites:
- The Escape Hunt Experience is rated the number one attraction in Bangkok by Trip Advisor. In this unique experience, you travel back 100 years and become part of the escape game. You get to play detective as you try to solve the puzzle in a fun-filled hour. The games vary according to group types and ages of players.
- Snake Farm, which is located in the Queen Saovabha Memorial Institute, is an interesting stop. The organization produces anti-venom serum for snake-bite victims. Visitors can attend snake handling shows and venom milking demonstrations. You’ll even have the opportunity to hold a python at the end of the show!
- One of the best known of Thailand’s landmarks is the Wat Arun Temple, also known as Temple of Dawn. It’s located in the Bangkok Yai district of Bangkok on the west bank of the Chao Phraya River. If you’re on the east side of the river, the view is nothing short of spectacular, especially at dawn, when the early morning sunlight reflects off the surface of the temple with pearly iridescence. In addition to driving, it can be reached by ferry.
Things to do in Chiang Rai:
Travel north in Thailand, and you’ll reach the province of Chiang Rai. In the northern part of this area is the “golden triangle” – the area where Thailand, Laos and Burma converge. There is a plethora of tourist attractions in this area, as it is rich in history, some dating back as far as the 7th century. Some attractions worth visiting while in the area include:
- Mae Fah Luang Art and Cultural Park is a park/museum that preserves Lanna cultural objects.
- Doi Tung is a revered mountain 2,000 meters above sea level. The Doi Tung Palace, Mae Fa Luang Flower Garden and the Wat Phra That Doi Tung Holy Relic are all located on the mountain.
- Doi Nang Non, also known as sleeping woman mountain, is an unusual land feature well worth checking out. The silhouette of this mountain range looks like a reclining woman. Mae Chan has the best vantage point for viewing.
- Chiang Saen is an ancient town with traces of structures to be seen. The Chiang Saen National Museum is located there as well.
- In Baan Ruamit, the more adventurous can go elephant riding.
Other activities in the area include trekking through the network of trails, rock climbing, mountain biking, zip lining and swinging on the largest swing in Asia, called Pie in the Sky. It has an arc of 45 meters – sweeping off a steep limestone cliff and soaring out over the trees and hillside – 55 meters below!
Perhaps the grandest of all attractions in this area is Wat Rong Khun, The White Temple. This Wat is breathtakingly beautiful. It’s a contemporary Buddhist temple designed by Chalermchai Kositpipat. Visitors walk through the eerie, somewhat creepy “hell” area, where outstretched hands reach up, symbolizing the way to happiness is overcoming cravings. You’ll proceed onward. and stand before the “Gate of Heaven,” which is guarded by Rahu (the One who controls men’s fate) and Death (The One who controls men’s life). After crossing the bridge, you reach the temple. Words can’t begin to describe the beauty and majesty of Wat Rong Khun. Prepare for brilliance – the clean, whitewashed structures, embedded with tiny mirrors that reflect brilliantly. There are fish ponds, statues, teachings, hidden riddles and even a golden public restroom – the worlds most beautiful public restroom.
The White Temple alone is worth the trip to Thailand. It is the vision of one man – his thoughts, dreams and philosophies – merged into something concrete, something touchable, something magical.
Money and possessions are insignificant. They are not mine but are only make-beliefs. Merits belong to me, therefore, money is of no value to me. Money is valuable only as a way to make merit for further journey of the soul” ~Charlemchai Kositpipat~