Page 7 of RENanDREW Travel Blog Posts


Asia » Thailand » North-West Thailand » Chiang Rai March 8th 2011

HE SAID... Day 1: We woke at 6am and headed straight for the shower. We breakfasted on khao niao sung khaya (sweetened coconut sticky rice topped with egg custard) and you tiao (Chinese deep fried donuts) with coffee. It was very tasty and perfect energy food. We were due to leave at 10am, so we had a leisurely morning. A songthaew (small pickup truck/ute with seats in the tray) took us to the start of the trek and we set off at 11.30am. We walked along a sealed road, which became an unsealed road and eventually a dirt track. We crossed a number of small creeks and started ascending to our lunch stop, where we sat beside a creek and sheltered under the tree cover. Our lunch had been prepared that morning at the homestay and ... read more
day 1 trek
day 1 trek
day 1 lahu village

Asia » Thailand » North-West Thailand » Mae Sai March 7th 2011

HE SAID... We descended out of the Chiang Dao Mountains to Mae Sai on the Burmese border. We checked out the markets and picked up a bottle opener for the remaining cider. We then jumped back in the songthaew (small pickup truck/ute with seats in the tray) and continued our journey, stopping on the way for lunch at a roadside restaurant at midday. I had a yum pla duk sam rot (spicy catfish salad) and Ren had pad thai goong sod (rice noodles stir fried with prawns, shrimp, egg, bean sprouts, tofu, chillies, fish sauce and peanuts). The food was good, but in comparison to street stalls and local cafes, roadhouse food isn’t the best. After lunch we headed to a lookout over the Golden Triangle (where the Mekong River divides Thailand from Burma and Laos) ... read more
golden triangle
house of opium museum
mae sai

Asia » Thailand » North-West Thailand » Mae Salong March 6th 2011

HE SAID... We woke at 6am to prepare for the days ahead. We checked out of the hotel and left at 7.45am for the Chiang Dao Elephant Training Centre. We arrived around 8.30am, fed bananas to the elephants, watched a show and then went for a ride. While the show was difficult to watch (elephants pulling logs and painting pictures is not really my idea of entertainment), the ride was great. The elephant Ren and I clambered onto was hungry, so she decided to go bush a number of times to eat. She also took her own path during the river walk, making a beeline for the riverbank where she could clamber up and munch on the undergrowth. As we made our way back to the minibus we were presented with a framed photo of the ... read more
chiang dao elephant centre
chiang dao elephant centre
chiang dao elephant centre

Asia » Thailand » North-West Thailand » Chiang Mai March 4th 2011

HE SAID... We boarded the train and settled into our seats which converted into bunk beds. We took stock of our travels to-date and caught up on our notes as the train slowly pulled out of Ayuthaya bound for Chiang Mai. This train was very comfortable! After having our beds made for us, I climbed in and went out like a light. I didn’t even have time to pull the blanket up before I was asleep. It had been a long, fantastic day. I slept well, although the air conditioning was a little cold (which I’d definitely prefer to having no air conditioning). I had dreams all night of being in earthquakes and trying to get out of houses as they shook from side to side - I absolutely love sleeping on trains! We woke at ... read more
chiang mai streets
wat doi suthep
wat doi suthep

Asia » Thailand » Central Thailand » Ayutthaya March 3rd 2011

HE SAID... We left the raft at 8am and jumped into a songthaew (small pickup truck/ute with seats in the tray) to travel back to the hotel where our packs had been stored while we were on the river. We were caught in rush hour traffic in Kanchanaburi for a while, but eventually arrived and shared two day rooms to shower and freshen up. The strength of the previous night’s storm was evident - street lights had been blown down and gardens had been smashed. We left the hotel at 9am and travelled into the heart of Kanchanaburi to catch a bus to Ayuthaya. We left at 9.30am. The bus was pretty basic (to say the least), but it still had the huge LCD screen up the front playing Thai pop videos (similar to the bus ... read more
wat yai chai mongkhon
wat phanan cheoeng
wat phanan cheoeng

Asia » Thailand » Western Thailand » Kanchanaburi February 28th 2011

HE SAID... The two hour bus trip from Bangkok to Kanchanaburi was fascinating! While I am always compelled to sit and absorb the countryside on bus and train travel, I could not pull myself away from the on-board entertainment. A large LCD screen at the front of the bus was playing Thai pop film clips, which were really mini musical soap operas. Each song ran for at least 15 minutes. The acting and background music were terrible and the plot in each song was repetitive - two lovers, man has affair with another woman, betrayed woman discovers affair by secretly flicking through man’s mobile phone, great fighting and wailing prevails. If I was visiting from another planet, I would conclude that the mobile phone was the maker and breaker of relationships (well, I suppose it is). ... read more
bridge over river kwai
saamlor ride
kanchanaburi streets

Asia » Thailand » Central Thailand » Bangkok February 27th 2011

HE SAID... We woke in Bangkok to the sound of torrential rain at 5.30am. The walking tour we had planned was looking completely out of the question, but by the time I’d showered the rain had stopped, so we ventured out at 6.30am and headed for the Grand Palace. However, as always happens on the first day in a big city, we were a little disorientated so we ended up heading off in the exact opposite direction. When we ended up at Democracy Monument, I realised the navigation skills I had so adeptly picked up in cubs and scouts had deserted me entirely, so we jumped in a taxi and pointed to the Grand Palace on our map. The taxi driver looked bemused - and for good reason. The Palace is immense, and has any number ... read more
wat phra kaew
wat phra kaew
wat phra kaew

Asia » Thailand February 26th 2011

HE SAID... The alarm went off as usual at 6am, but this was no ordinary day. We breakfasted on the deck with Oscar and Jasper (our corgi/beagle and kelpie respectively) as the sun rose, and the red dawn sky was as beautiful as it was calming. We had packed and prepared the day before, so the morning went like clockwork, although the time we spent playing with Oscar and Jasper set us back a little. Still, it wasn’t too much of a rush and friends picked us up at 8am and drove us to the airport. We arrived with time to spare - this was a perfect (and very relaxed) start to the long day ahead. The flight to Melbourne was uneventful until landing, when I accidently knocked an old man’s walking stick out of the ... read more

Asia » Thailand February 26th 2011

Life is so short we must move very slowly... ~ Thai Proverb Sawadee people! We are sending ourselves packing again - this time we are on a mission to continue delving deeper into South East Asia through a far reaching journey across Thailand, the Land of Smiles! We were a bit apprehensive about travelling in Thailand after the Red Shirt demonstrations and subsequent political events in Thailand over the last 24 months, and the more recent yellow shirt demonstrations too. However between keeping an eye on the Smartraveller site and on global media reports, we decided it would be ok. Plus it is usually easier to travel in countries experiencing a downturn in tourism, not to mention the fact that our money is helping to rebuild the industry. If you received a link to this blog ... read more

Europe » Italy June 1st 2010

HE SAID... This has been a memorable trip. Italy has seeped into our psyche, and we loved sharing the lifestyle of this fabulous country with the people around us. We loved standing at bars in the early morning, drinking coffee and eating pastries as large cities and small country towns slowly stirred around us. We loved sharing exceptionally good food and wine with travel friends. We loved rambling through the backstreets of Italy, finding people who welcomed us wholeheartedly, regardless of our inability to converse in their beautiful language. We loved the picturesque countryside, the dramatic coastline, the monumental structures to Christendom and the incomparable passion with which food is served. Italy is a truly magnificent and magical place, and I know there will be a time, after travelling to other destinations around the world, when ... read more
coffee in levanto




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