Although we loved Old Town and could hang out there forever, we decided to see more than the inside of every juice bar in Chiang Mai. So we hired a car and driver to take us up into the mountains to see the famous Wat Phra That Doi Suthep, the Royal Gardens, and a hill tribe village. We met our driver early in the morning and began the steady climb up Doi Suthep mountain. After, we pulled off the road and arrived at a stunning vista overlooking the city. The air was blessedly cool and the view was spectacular. It felt good to be away from the bustling city and we were happy to be there.
We hopped back in the car, unaware of the golden splendor awaiting us at the top. Once we arrived at the base of the temple, we rode the tram up to the top, unaware that we could take the long staircase for free. Oh well! Soon we walked up to the magnificent temple and slowly removed our shoes while gazing up in awe of the ornate structure before us.
Is this inappropriate?
We walked through the entrance way and were confronted with a golden chedi in the middle of a courtyard. This place has some serious bling! But my favorite were the bells hanging down from the roofs surrounding the entire chedi.
So much gold, so little time.
We wandered around for a long time, discovering something new and exciting in every nook and cranny. It was so beautiful and so fabulous. We stayed here for a long time, observing some monks and Chinese tourists in prayer.
I think the pictures speak for themselves. Photo credits also go to Carina who took my camera for a spin and captured some beautiful shots. We were both pretty obsessed with the eye candy as you can probably see.
The staircase that we did not climb!
Eventually we left the confines of the golden courtyard and discovered the open terrace with views over the city. However, we couldn’t see much because a delicious fog had rolled in over the mountain. We shivered in the cold air while exploring the amusing gardens in the vicinity. How could you not love these funny little statues?
Soon it was time to put on our shoes and leave this magical place. Thankfully this dog took special care of our shoes while we moseyed around.
We took the tram back down (we had purchased round trip tickets after all) and located our driver who whisked us away towards our next destination. A great start to a great day!
Postcards from Thailand… Hi mom!