By: iamAldonLopez | March 30, 2019
Let me explore the mountainous part and the fourth-most popular city in Thailand known as Chiang Mai. This city is located approximately 700 km north of Bangkok in a jungle-like on the verge of the Ping River. It is the capital of Chiang Mai province and the largest city in Northern Thailand and was a former capital of the kingdom of Lan Na (1276-1768), which later become the Kingdom of Chiang Mai. Chiang Mai means “New City”.
There are numerous ways on how to get to Chiang Mai. You can book your very inexpensive tickets here. On my trip to Chiang Mai, I took the Bus from Mo Chit Terminal and it took 8.5 hours before I arrived in the New City. It was tiring but fun and exciting at the same time because along the way, you can see the lush green countryside and pristine rainforests with peaceful country villages as well as a place of elephant sanctuaries.
Chiang Mai has over 40,000 hotel rooms to choose from. You can book your cheapest hotel/hostel here. I recommend you select a hotel which near night markets and temples; so, you will be able to discover the city by just walking. If you are into trekking, water rafting adventure and wants to experience how to take good care of the elephants. Well, this place is for you!
Basically, there are many tour companies offer organized tour packages for 1 day. However, I recommend you choose ‘Bamboo Elephant Family Care’ as it very inexpensive and guaranteed that you will be able to enjoy your trip as well as your adventure. Aside from that, you can have your instant photographer without asking in return. Kudos to Mr. Sak our tour guide/photographer/driver and thank you for sharing us your expertise on how to take good of the elephants. Ultimately, it was a wonderful experience!
Now, let me share with our 1-day adventure with ‘Bamboo Elephant Family Care’.
8:30 AM: Mr. Sak Picked me up at Me U Hoster & Tour.
9:30 AM – 12:00 NN: We started our trek going to the Waterfall. The waterfall has a scenic view and it occupies a natural setting among gigantic trees providing a cool shade. This waterfall can get crowded on weekends and public holidays, so it is better to visit during weekdays.
12:01 – 1:00 PM: We had our Lunch at the camp site. Lunch meal was included on the tour package. They had fried rice, water and fruits. Well, don’t expect that it’s going to be a wondrous lunch. The fried rice was good though.
1:01 PM – 2:30 PM: Water Rafting Adventure. It was really fun and thrilling at the same time because of the crashing through waves, being bucked in the air. I can say that it was really memorable, enjoyable and entirely worth every second spent doing it.
2:31 – 5:00 PM: The most awaited part of the itinerary. The Bamboo Elephant Family Care. Mr. Sak provided us with Red Mahout Style Karen Uniform because according to him, it easy for the elephants to see us. It was a very unique experience and educational tour at the same time. We learnt basic commands for the elephants, make herbal medicine for the elephants, bath & brush with the elephants in the river. I was so happy that I was able to witnessed how they take good care of these elephants. You can even see how happy the elephants are. They are so lucky that they don’t experience being maltreated by using chains or hooks which I you can read on my other blog post – 2019 Countdown in Bangkok.
These are the basic commands you need to know:
- Bon – to eat.
- Ma pe – Come.
- DD – Good boy/girl.
- Pai – Go.
- Toy – Go back.
- How – Stop.
- Ya – Do not.
Bamboo Elephant Family Care has 6 elephants and the other is pregnant. Their names are:
- Pu Eat – 42 years old.
- Trung Ma – 28 years old.
- Tong – 2 years old.
- Mai Noi – 26 years old.
- Jan War – 14 years old.
- Buo Ban – 63 years old.
All of them are so lovely!
5:01 – 6:00 PM: Go back to our hostel/hotel.
Cost for this tour: 1,700 – 1,900 baht. Price may vary depending on the season.
What’s included: Trek, water rafting, Lunch, drinking water, Insurance, Transportation.
What to Bring: Small Bag, Sunscreen, Swimming attire, Sandals, Towel, Insect Spray.
Bus from BKK TO CNX: 489 – 800 baht. Price may vary depending on the bus ticket if it’s VIP, Class A.
CNX to DMK via AirAsia: 1,500 baht.
Food for 5 days in Chiang Mai: 1,000 – 2,000. Well, it depends if you are really in a tight budget.
Temples in Chiang Mai
Chiang Mai has over 300 temples scattered throughout the city and most of the temples are designed of ‘Lan Na style’, If you are into temple hunting. Surely, this place is for you!