Thursday, February 13, 2014

chiangmai free and easy : Home Industries Tour

We were unsure if we should visit the home industries. but since it started to rain, we decide to go for it.
We just took a short walk around 10-15 minutes for each and we are allowed to leave anytime we want.
The good thing is that our tour guide was not a bit interested in asking us to buy anything. 
Most of the things are quite expensive, not sure about the quality
Quite good for educational purposes and a break from sightseeing.

Leather accessories. I find it a bit expensive and design a bit old.

Ceramic factory. Place was one of the prettiest, even the toilet is pretty.
You can pay around 100-200 baht and ask the artist to personalise our item.

Engraving. Jewellery factory.

Lacquer factory 

Silk factory

Tuesday, February 11, 2014

Chiangmai free and easy : Temples and sightseeing

We booked a Chinese speaking tour guide  because my parents only understand Chinese.
We need a driver as my parents are not really good at walking. This is more of trip catering to senior citizens. 
Actually if you book direct which means you call up the guide, the price is cheaper.
We booked kind of late so we could not get a driver cum tour guide directly.
Hence, we booked through an agency. We paid 3000 baht.
My tour guide is quite good but he is not those chatty kind so if you prefer someone who liven up the atmosphere, then is not suitable. We are not really chatty so we don't mind and he can speak chinese quite well as he worked in Taiwan for a couple of years.
His car is a MPV so it is quite comfortable and the car is very clean.
We were lucky that we booked a private guide so the itinerary is flexible. 
It started raining very heavily in the morning.
Instead of visiting temples, we switched to visiting the handicrafts places as that is the only sheltered places. 
He was quite flexible, we asked him to drop us at a market and when we decided not to go shopping near chiangmai university, he bought us to one or two temples to make up for the time difference.
I booked by tour packages through this website. I chatted with them in chinese via QQ.

He drove us to a market selling fresh fruits as my parents are interested in markets and fruits.
We bought some fruits back to try in our hotel.

Wat Phra That Doi Suthep
Can either climb a flight of stairs or take the cable car. The steps are still manageable.
They charge an entrance fee  for foreigners only. My guide explained that is because locals will donate when they entered the temple so that is their entrance fee. For foreigners, sometimes we don't know how to donate so they just charge as the entrance fees.

Beautiful skies. BEautiful photo.

 Can catch the beautiful view of chiangmai at the back of the temple.

Bells, bells, bells...

Look carefully, donation from a Singaporean.

After all the walking, is time to snack. 
If you are not into roadside food, which includes corns, hotdogs and fruits
 can buy chips or icecream from a provision shop.
There are various stalls selling clothes and accessories, remember to bargain.

Near to Wat Phra That Doi Suthep is the Chiangmai University. Beautiful lake.
Coffee break at Coffee Man at Chiangmai University. 

He bought us to 2 more temples. I did not get the name but I did get some beautiful photos.
I did enjoy my temple visit because the temples looks very beautiful and also they do not look alike.