Don’t ask why but on the hottest day that we were in Pai, we decided to visit The White Buddha. We had caught glimpses of the wondrous statue from many a place as it is situated above Pai, overlooking the goings on of the small town.
We found a small car park to park our moped which to our dismay, wasn’t the main car park at all and meant us bumbling up another few hundred steps in the mid day sun…
We were nearly at the main steps when we were welcomed by these lovely statues, peacefully guarding the pathway.
I couldn’t help but wonder how many visitors from around the world had been welcomed by these kind looking figures.
The climb commenced…
The image that awaited us at the top of these steps was overwhelming.
Just to give you an idea of scale, here is Alex (6’2) next to the White Buddha…
Equally, the view in the opposite direction wasn’t bad either.
Alex’s ‘need’ for an ice cream was our next priority and so it was, the decent began.
On our way down, we came by this less welcoming looking chap…
We had a great day and got up and down in one piece. The sight of The White Buddha up close is magnificent and well worth the effort. However, if you plan to go on a scorching hot day, remember a water bottle or three!
If you’re in the mood for a maze of stalls (food, local crafts, clothes, plants, massages, drinks, denim jackets, antiques etc.) and you have a free few hours, head to Chatuchak Weekend Market.
Surrounding the entrances of the market are lots of food stalls, selling yummy grub at a very fair price.
Before venturing into the market, we had a bite to eat and a coconut…
Lunch was delicious, cheap and filling – what more could you ask for?
So the adventure begins…
We found the closest entrance and off we went. Once you enter the market, it is very likely you will get lost.
Top tip: there are endless stalls selling similar products so if you are patient enough and willing to barter a little, you will more than likely come away with a great deal!
There were what felt like hundreds of clothes stalls (probably pretty accurate) selling a variety of different styles and fashions for all.
We particularly enjoyed exploring the antiques stalls and seeing what treasures we could find.
Each turn led to another spiderweb of narrow pathways…
The market was both equally wonderful and intense. Every which way we would turn, we were faced with crowds of people coming in the opposite direction, stall holders shouting good deals, loud music, a variety of colours and patterns etc. It was bonkers to say the least…
It was a boiling hot day and we decided to venture on the metro to visit The Temple of the Golden Buddha.
Top Tip: The Metro system was the easiest and cheapest way travel within Bangkok from our experience.
So where can you find The Golden Buddha? It is located inside a temple called Wat Traimit which is situated near Chinatown.
Inside this beautiful building, you find the worlds largest seated golden Buddha statue. It is an incredible sight!
The temple was full of both people praying and others visiting like us, taking in this spectacular vision. However, although filled with people, the atmosphere was peaceful and you could hardly hear a sound.
We sat at the back of the temple for a little while, simply observing our surroundings. Before us, were people praying, some were carrying out their own rituals and others, like us, absorbing the atmosphere.
The room was decorated with such elaborate patterns and an array of colours. Everywhere you look, you are faced with intricate designs of some sort.
Smaller statues surround The Golden Buddha…
To tell you the truth, we weren’t sure if we were definitely going to visit however, we were really happy we did!
The previous day we formed a plan to watch the sunrise at 6am the following morning at a waterfall nearby and then head to Tha Pai Hot Springs.
Waking up at 5am was a success; we excitedly packed our bags and were out of the door. Alex was sure he remembered the way and we decided that he would give me directions whilst I practised my moped driving in the dark. Anyway, we got lost!
What should have taken us twenty minutes had taken us an hour. The further we drove, the more the sun appeared in the sky.
Pam Bok Waterfall –
Through sheer determination, we made it to Pam Bok Waterfall! Although our plan had half come together, we soon concluded that a waterfall was perhaps not the best location to watch the sunrise. Instead, we stared through the trees as the blue of the sky became more prominent.
With the little light there was, we explored the waterfall, Alex accidentally slipped into a stream and we enjoyed breakfast on a flattish rock. All in all, an interesting morning so far.
For the last few years, at this time of day, I would more than likely be rushing to get ready for work. Well I definitely wouldn’t be exploring waterfalls that’s for sure. I really hope we can take some of this calm home with us and learn to slow down a bit.
I loved this place – it was so peaceful and definitely worth visiting early in the morning to miss the rush of visitors.
Tha Pai Hot Springs –
After another interesting journey (yes we got lost again!) we arrived at Tha Pai Hot Springs. Oh my gosh, I was in my element! I had never visited a natural hot springs before and it was amazing!
The further up stream you walk, the hotter the pools of water become. Here was where we settled at the recommendation of one of the locals. As he saw us, he pointed up stream and shook his head as if it would be the end of us.
I was in my element! It was like being in a giant jacuzzi in the most incredible setting!
In the few days leading up to this one, I had been bitten dreadfully by mosquitos all over my legs and had tried so many different creams to help. Miraculously, once I climbed out of the hot spring, the bites had practically vanished. Magic!
Once we had dried off, we couldn’t help but wander up stream to see the rest of the hot springs.
As we approached the top of the hot springs, we could see the water steaming. We gradually started to hear people talking and laughing.
What we found in the hottest stream was breakfast being prepared. Some local people were boiling their eggs in the spring!
We couldn’t believe our eyes…
What an eventful morning! It was absolutely bonkers but wonderful.
A short drive away from Pai town is The Land Split, a fascinating place with a very interesting history. Many tourists visit here on a daily basis. Again, some sturdy shoes would be helpful if you’re thinking of visiting.
Here is a brief account of how The Land Split came to be –
Once we reached the top, we were amazed by the view. I can’t even imagine how the farmer who found The Land Split must have felt to wake up one morning to this – how bizarre!
Although Pai is only a small town, the sights and activities it has to offer are fairly spread out. The easiest way to see the sights at a decent price is to rent a moped. This we did and we had the most incredible time!
We had never ridden a moped before but thought ‘how difficult could it be?’ Okay, it’s pretty simple although we were still very careful and balancing was tricky on some roads. Alex, myself and two friends visited this lovely man who showed us the ropes and then sent us on our way to face the open road alone.
And that was it, from then onwards there was no stopping us. We went off and rented our first moped – 250 Thai Baht for a day, bargain!
Biker James at your service…
Next we planned our first trip and off we went!
I remember shouting woohoooo when I hit 40kmph out of pure excitement! Alex quickly pointed out that this was only roughly 25mph!! 😂
To find out where the road took us, check out my next post!