This was easily the most expensive expenditure on my short Chiang Mai trip - day trip to Doi Inthanon National Park. However this is probably one day tour I enjoyed the most - it's easy to chat with the rest of the day tripper in the tour, even for me, who doesn't seem to do well in those small talk area.
Basically I was just walking around the moat area and flipped through leaflets outside the shops. This was one of the cheaper ones on offer. I paid 850 baht for a day tour with Top Thailand Adventure Tour. Price included a Thai dishes lunch.
In the leaflet, this tour was described as
"Visit Thailand's highest peak, King & Queen pagodas, exotic birds, Tribal projects, Hmong and Karen hill tribe villages, 2 thunderous waterfalls combine with rural villages scenery, floral and green forest view."
A van came to pick me at the guesthouse at approximately 8.30 in the morning. There were already 4 other people in the van then. We set off after the van picked up another 5 person - 2 couples, one Caucasian and the other Asian, an uncle from Canada, a Thai lady, a young Turkish lady who works in Germany, and 2 Japanese lads.
I have a memory of a goldfish and can't seem to recall where the 2 couples were from, pretty sure they mentioned at some point. Oh well, I blame it on me forgotten to bring my travel journal exercise book to jot down on details.
The Canadian uncle was traveling by himself as his wife had returned to Canada earlier due to work commitment. He was telling me that I should try the Khan Toke dinner with Classical dance, said he went the night before and it was very good. I guess I'll park that for the next round. The Japanese lads, name Kenma and Teppei. This I remember... as Teppei reminded me of KimuTaku's character name in Love Generation.
Anyway, back to Doi Inthanon trip.
From memory, our guide introduced this as the King's Waterfall. The water was gushing down, I could even feel the splashing water when I stood at the side to snap some photos.
|Look! Rainbow :)|
Karen Hill Tribe Village
This village is not the Long Neck Karen Hill tribe village. But there wasn't anything exciting about this one either. The Turkish lady remarked that it feels like any other ordinary village. Actually, it feel like some made-up village for tourist. :(
|Entrance to the "main site" of the village|
There was a small hut that served as a cafe, serving freshly brewed coffee, I didn't try it though.
As we visited the King's waterfall, so we paid a visit to the Queen's waterfall as well. This fall is about 40 meters high and originated from the Mae Klang River. This waterfall was said to be named by the Queen who came to visit the fall.
Doi Inthanon Summit Point
|The Highest Spot in Thailand|
The bus dropped us at a check point. Getting to the highest spot in Thailand wasn't difficult at all, it was only a couple of minutes walk from the check point where we were set down. Amongst the trees, there was an ancient temple and a stupa in which the ashes of King Inthawichayanon (after whom Doi Inthanon is named) are interred.
At this point, it started to rain but the bus was ready to pick us up at the other end. We were sent to our next destination from there.
Twin Royal Pagodas
At a few kilometers short of the summit of Doi Inthanon, the Royal Thai Air Force constructed two pagodas dedicated to the King and Queen.
The King's Pagoda is brownish in colour and the Queen's Pagoda is in purple.
I read that the pagodas are symmetrical and surrounded by a beautiful garden. The view from the pagoda were fresh and peaceful.
There's even an escalator going up the pagodas if you are lazy to walk. :P
... that was the last stop of the day trip.
Side note: It sucks when wi-fi wasn't working. Glad it's back up!