Day 9: Getting Acquainted with Thailand

Thailand bound!!!

Thailand has been on the top of my travel list ever since I knew we were moving to Japan.  Probably longer, but I knew I could make it a reality once we were moving to Asia.  Once I made up my mind to take the trip to Malaysia, I turned to my husband and said "meet me in Thailand" which he happily agreed.  After months of planning I was finally on my way to meet my husband on what I hope will be a great trip for both of us.

The down side was waking up at 3 am to get on a 6:55 am flight to Chiang Mai.  My husband would get in just after 8 am so I wanted to arrive around the same time.  So, sleepy and all, I headed to the airport.  Breakfast was not the easiest because I wasn't feeling like a donut.  Eventually I gave up on finding something with eggs and I ended up with this monkey thing from Starbucks.  It was a pastry filled with banana and cream cheese, hence it is called a monkey roll.
Before I knew it I was headed to Chiang Mai.  I flew Air Asia and it was my first experience.  It is an Asian budget airline and the prices are good, but you pay for everything, like suitcases and beverages.  My plan was to sleep, so I wasn't too concerned about that.  I only cared about getting there on time (and safely, of course).
It's still dark outside and that haze is terrible.  It's from the fires in Indonesia.
Once above the clouds the view was nice because we had the moon on one side and the sun on the other.  I had the moon side.  Can you see it in the distance?
Hello Chiang Mai!  Very beautiful up here in the north with the green mountains all around the city in the valley.
Our ride was waiting at airport for us.  Ryan arrived first and I was glad it was easy to find him there.  We arrived shortly there after at our hotel, Puripunn Baby Grand Hotel.  It was down a little windy alleyway, off the beaten path, but close by things so walking was still a possibility.  I went with a boutique hotel instead of a large hotel because it had great reviews on the internet.  Upon arrival I could see why.

We were graciously greeted by the staff and given a chilled towel to wash up with, shaped like a flower.
More flowers for the tropical and lush theme.
Some pineapple juice while we checked in.
Then we went to our beautiful room.  Love it!

The view from our room overlooking the pool.
The bench outside (which I am thinking about going to sit on right now)
The bathroom sink
The shower
Out to the beautiful pool area

Love this view!
The dining room/restaurant area
The front entrance, which I took a picture of as we headed out to get some lunch.
Yay, finally I am walking around in Thailand!

The Ping River
Cute coffee shop
Golden Buddhist temples everywhere
After some looking in stores and shopping we stopped into an art gallery and split a mango passionfruit smoothie.  Yum!
Some of the stores we looked in- I love the traditional architecture and the greenery.

Mer, this pic is for you!  My friend Meredith loves the ellies, so I always take pics for her.  This one is really pretty.
Here is our first temple visit.  We didn't go inside, but I did take some pictures outside.

Lunch was at a place called Deck 1.  We looked at the menu earlier and knew we would probably want to eat here.  We saw lots of options, which is always nice because we can share.
Nothing like a nice, cold beer to start off vacation.  This is Singha, which is a Thai beer.
Lovely river view at lunch
Spicy papaya salad
Vegetarian pad thai
Crab summer rolls
Coffee on a very cute plate
Banana crepe
Mango with sticky rice, which is the traditional dessert here.
After a 3 hour nap, yes 3 hours, we headed out to the night market.  This is the hotel courtyard at night.
The river at night with lights that change colors.

Wahoo, night bazar! 
Here I am at one of the temples.  Technically the temple is closed so I am out front.

The night bazar- very awesome area with lots of shops and places to get just about everything.
After walking, shopping and admiring things, we decided on Sila-aat for dinner.  
The giant prawns were what caught our attention first, but we quickly saw they had a huge display that was very inviting.
The fish looked good, which is why I ordered some.
Shrimp and squid
Veggies!  I love a restaurant that proudly displays their veggies.
And fruits!  I knew we had to eat here.
More yeah, I was sold!  This was the spot.
I insisted on a coconut to drink first thing.  I saw them everywhere and I wanted one.  For only $2, this was a deal!
Here is the coconut up close.  It is filled with coconut water.
For dinner, Ryan started with some fried cashews and veggies.
I started with pineapple and shrimp fried rice.  Served in a pineapple!  Yes!  So in heaven!
Then Ryan had the chicken pad thai, which he said was really good.
I ordered the red snapper in ginger sauce.  It came out in this awesome dish that was still cooking with a flame down below.  It was very yummy!  So glad I we found this place.
Whew, I am exhausted!  Happy to be in Thailand and looking forward to lots of fun and sightseeing.

QUESTIONS:  Do you like Thai food?  Have you ever been to Thailand?  Have you ever drank from a coconut?

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