Arriving at Chiang Mai Railway Station looking the worse for wear, we looked forward to some much needed R&R.

Not posing like tourists next to our tuk tuk.
Not posing like tourists next to our tuk tuk.

It was a little past 7am when we deboarded our train and were immediately bombarded with overly helpful tuk tuk drivers. After trying to find our bearings, we were whisked away by a chatty fellow who was more than happy to point out cheap markets and crack jokes along the way to our hotel located just outside the Old City.

I Heard You Like Temples

Exterior of Wat Phan Tao.
Exterior of the modest Wat Phan Tao.

Chiang Mai is a welcome reprieve from the frenetic pace of Bangkok. Narrow streets and back alleys lined with small houses and tourist-friendly hotels lead to a plethora of peaceful temples of all shapes and sizes. There is literally a temple every few blocks or so and it’s easy to wander the Old City and stumble upon yet another gorgeous view of a wat.

Pad Thai for Days

Pad thai at Writer's Club & Wine Bar.
Enjoying my daily dose of pad thai with chicken at the Writer’s Club & Wine Bar.

The Old City is quite charming and relaxing, with the cool morning breeze giving way to warm and lazy afternoons. I grabbed what I can only assume is takoyaki from a street cart parked in front of a 7-Eleven before wandering into Fahtara Coffee and indulging in some much needed fresh fruit, yogurt and muesli.

I Like Goooooold

The entrance to Wat Phra Singh.
The entrance to Wat Phra Singh.

It was one last temple visit for the day at one of the more popular wats in town before heading back to the hotel for a very necessary disco nap. On the agenda later in the evening: the night bazaar in the outskirts of the Old City for some cheap shopping, dinner and drinks.

Be still my beating heart!