Thailand, A Visual Story.

May 29, 2017,

Today is the day, that I have been impatiently waiting for. I’m going to Thailand for a whole month!

After saying bye to our beloved family members, we boarded our plane. We flew with KLM on the way to Thailand, and had our fair share of wine.

Happily saying goodbye to friends and family whilst waiting for our flight.

After a 7 hour flight, we landed in Amsterdam, we had an 11 hours layover, we therefore took the time to visit the city. We took the train to Central Station and walked around for several hours.

Your average Amsterdam-ian picture.

Seeing people smoking Marijuana on the streets and vendors everywhere was expected, but nonetheless strange. 

That’s me taking the next picture.

Airport train station.

And again me taking the next picture.

Some alleyway in Amsterdam.

Credits: Christophe Voyer

We then took the plane for an 11-12 hour flight to Bangkok.

When we arrived, we took a taxi to SIAM square (an area with a lot of big malls) because it’s the only place that the taxi driver understood. We arrived, had a meal at the mall and then walked to our condo. We slept for the rest of the day.

Credits: Christophe Voyer

The next day we went to do visit the mall area, (without our big bags), and then we went to see the snake farm. The farm itself is nothing extraordinary, but the snake shows they hold daily at 2:30 pm is well worth it.

Documenting snakes. CC: Christophe Voyer

Documenting my friend, documenting snakes. CC: Christophe Voyer

After spending our first 2 days in the new Bangkok area, we headed to old Bangkok. We stayed at a Hostel near Khao San road for about 4 days.

The famous Tuk-Tuk

As opposed to the new Bangkok area, old Bangkok is not a concrete jungle.

One evening, we went to China town, which was spectacular, people were everywhere. The main street was beautiful as you will see.

Walking to the taxi boat that would get us to China Town. CC: Christophe Voyer

The next day was dedicated to temples, we went to visit the Grand Palace, which was beautiful, but the extra amount of tourist took a lot away from its beauty.

cc: Christophe Voyer

cc: Christophe Voyer

Credits: Christophe Voyer

The leaning Buddha

After spending a few days in Bangkok, eating scorpions, and some of the best pad Thai ever. We booked a night train to head south.

The train ride was about 10 hours,  then we had a 1 hour bus ride and finally a few hour shuttle ride to finally arrived to Ko Phangan. Upon arrival, we checked in our AirBnb, and went to see the surroundings.

Credit: Christophe Voyer

The next day we rented scooters and went scouting around the islands to see what we could do. At night we found this nice cafe on the beach and enjoyed ourselves.

The next day we went to see a “waterfall” that was pretty much dried out, instead of leaving, we decided to climb the waterfall.

Flip-flops can get pretty slippery, so we ended up climbing it barefoot.

The view was well worth it. Credits: Christophe Voyer

We continued our journey by going to the beach.

cc: Christophe Voyer

“Chris, make me hold the sun”. cc: Christophe Voyer.

And stayed there until sunset so I could film my time lapse.

cc: Christophe Voyer

Credits: Christophe Voyer

Credits: Christophe Voyer

On our final night, we attended the Full Moon party. It was spectacular. If you enjoy the party life, you will love it, and even if you don’t enjoy partying, you should still go, you’ll see some things you won’t see anywhere else.

Four days in Ko Phangan were more than enough to visit the island, so we then headed to Ko Tao, a much smaller island. We booked an AirBnb bungalow and were rewarded with this view.

I could get used to waking up to this every morning.

Credits: Christophe Voyer

After a fun experience, going diving and so on, it was time to leave. We took a night shuttle back to the mainland.

After arriving, we spent one day in Surat Thani because our flight was only the next day. There was not a single foreign person, other than us. The hotel we checked in was empty, and the people were giving us funny looks, taking pictures of us. In Surat Thani we got to experience a traditional Thai city, the people did not speak English at all, prices were much cheaper, there was barely any taxis and no Tuk-Tuk, there was no tourists at all. I wish I could have spent more time there.

The next day we took a 2 hour flight to go to Chiang Mai, the northern city. Upon arrival we rented a car and headed on to do the Mae-Hong Son loop. We were initially supposed to to it clockwise, but a glitch in google maps made us do it counter clockwise, and by the time we realized we were pretty far.

After a few hours of driving, we arrived in Pai, a beautiful northern city. We booked a hostel for a few days, and went around the city. One noticeable change is the environment, everything is a lot more slow paced, the people are more free-spirited, and people will often try to sell you drugs. 

The scenery in the North was incredible, pictures will never be able to portray the feeling I had when standing and looking down to see a never ending mountain landscape.

On the second day, we took a Bamboo raft down the Pai river, it’s a very relaxing experience.

Credits: Christophe Voyer

After going down the Pai river, we went straight to the Pai Canyon where we were able to enjoy more beautiful scenery.

cc: Christophe Voyer

cc: Christophe Voyer

Yet another place that we had to climb barefoot. cc: Christophe Voyer

The next day we headed to Tham Lod Cave. It’s a pretty wild experience. You enter an old, dark cave with nothing but a gas lantern as  your light source. The cave is filled with birds or hairy bats, not sure, and if you’re lucky, you might avoid getting pooped on. 

Credits: Christophe Voyer

Couldn’t take many pictures in the cave because it was so dark.

Stylishly walking out of the cave. Credits: Christophe Voyer

We then continued the Mae Hong Son loop.

On our way back to Chiang Mai, we noticed a sign saying “microwave” with an arrow pointing up a road that could barely fit one car. We obviously went up. It took us about 40 minutes to get all the way to the “microwave” which was a actually a big satellite dish.  

Credits: Christophe Voyer

It was only after that we noticed a dirt road and decided to follow it. Not a smart idea, but we did. We arrived in what looked like slums, but was actually a very small farm town. The road let to their fields which were on the side of the mountains.

Credits: Christophe Voyer

cc: Christophe Voyer

On our way to Chiang Mai, we did a few stops, this being one of them.

We arrived in Chiang Mai and checked in our Hostel late at night, we ate some street food and called it a night. The next day we walked around Chiang Mai, went to a nice temple, did a museum tour and so on.

The following day we went to an elephant sanctuary and hung out with elephants for half a day. We fed them, swam with them and took a nice mud bath with them. 

This baby was so excited he kept running everywhere, his mom eventually regulated him.

On the last day, we took cooking classes. We cooked a five course meal. I was surprised as to how much one cooking course can teach you. 

I graduated.

After spending about 8 days in the North, we took a flight to Bangkok to spend our remaining 2 days in the big city. At night we decided to go to the rooftop and have and have a drink. As I was leaning to close to the edge I noticed people partying on a balcony, so I waved them over. They came and we enjoyed a nice party on a helipad.

We stayed up through the night and even came back on time to film sunrise.

What I now call the best experience of my life can be translated in my 28 day backpacking trip through Thailand. This story only covers a fraction of what I experienced, unforgettable events that were experienced through my eyes rather than that of my camera, bonds were created, friendships were made, skills were acquired.

This experience also changed my perspective on a lot of things including myself. People call it spending money, wasting money. I call it investing in yourself.

I hope you enjoyed.

*I also made videos of my trip that I split in 5 parts.*

 

 

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