Monday, January 23, 2006

Amazing Chiang Mai Trip Part V: Mae Hong Son

Overnight at Golden Pai is simple, quiet and relaxing. Though the room is very small, but it is quite delicate. After having our breakfast, our tour guide arrived to pick us up (we arrange for him when we was in town yesterday, 1200 Baht for one day tour).

Mae Hong Son is a nature sightseeing town, with quite a number of temple, cave and waterfall to choose from (I have no idea which one is the best, I just followed their standard package).

The first stop is a white temple on a hill top. The place is pretty small, but the view is magnificent. We gave a few large white pagoda building around, and some monks doing some craft work. We could see the whole of Mae Hong Son town from here, and it was quite a view indeed. It had a long stair case as well.

Next stop is the Long Neck Karen village, where pretty tribe women put metal ring around their neck to prolong them. They have metal ring around their leg as well, with colourful traditional costume, pretty makeup and perhaps some facial motive as well. Somehow, these women looks very pretty compared to the rest of the tribes we have seen in Thailand. They sell all kind of food here, and crossbow shooting game for 10 Baht per shot.

The ladies sell all kind of souvenirs, body accessories and postcards. Most accessories are made of silver, and can be pretty nice and unique. We don’t get to see much of their houses, mostly on the street where all their small shops are located. The little Karen girls are very pretty and cute as well, with colourful and enchanting clothing. There is a tribe lady singer singing tribe song in album form, the music is pretty soothing I would say. The entire village just seems colourful and unique, perhaps too commercial as well. You would need to pay around 200 Baht of donation upon entry. Some local girls know English as well, as we passed by a school on the way.

On the way out, we stop by a field of small yellow flowers. This place is really nice, as we don’t get a see a big field of flowers everyday (a sea of yellow flower, yeah!). The girls are excited and took a lot of photos. Probably they are too short, thus the tall flower plants cover their face in most of the shots (I have to carry Li Mun up to get a good shot).

The next place is Fish Cave. It is not really a cave, just a beautiful park with a small pond of many fishes next to a small cave. Nevertheless, it is a very nice and clean park. They have pretty toilets and people selling BBQ potatoes and alike. I think the fish there is very full or got tired of the fish food visitor bought for them everyday, as they don’t seem hungry at all. This place is good for a 30 minutes walk with nice landscape and surrounding (they have a water mill and a bridge).

The last and most interesting stop is the waterfall. It had a pond down there with many fishes, with many stones to climb. Some of the stones are quite slippery though, but it is fun and challenging to climb them. On the top, there is a big and slippery stone for you to stand one, where you could feel the water from the waterfall splashing toward you. It is indeed loud and refreshing. We had quite some fun there, and taking a nap on stone with the forest surrounding the waterfall is indeed cool.

The guide is very polite and nice, though he speaks very little English. He brought us for lunch before driving us to the airport, which is in the town itself (super near). We took Thai Airways to fly back to Chiang Mai town, where Daniel’s (Siam Sun owner) girlfriend/assistant picks us up from the airport to our small hotel. We would spend one night in Chiang Mai town, and fly back to Malaysia the next day. Happy times do fly, and I wish it was the first day all over again.

Last activity of the trip is Night Bazaar, which had many goodies in it.

Photo Link: Tang's DropShots

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