Beautiful, Interesting and Ooo Shiny! Images From Various Places

Posts tagged “shopping

Thailand’s “Other” Capital City

Location: Thailand
Camera info: Canon Rebel 350D • lens 18-55mm f/3.5-5.6
ISO 200 • f 3.5 • 1/1000 sec (both photos)
(Note: This panoramic was created by digitally stitching two photos together)

Everyone needs time to relax, and this globe-hopper is no exception! I took this photo at the Suan Bua Resort in Chiang Mai, Thailand, during a week of rest (and more exploration). While scenic pathways, Thai massage, and colorful butterflies & flowers are a good way to relax, Chiang Mai offers many more options for the more adventurous traveler.

Chiang Mai is the unofficial captial of northern Thailand, and a haven for Western tourists and retirees who want to visit somewhere with a temperate climate, good exchange rates, and lots of people who speak English. I had a tour guide who obviously loved her job, and she showed me some of the usual tourist destinations like the Tiger Kingdom, Maesa Elephant Camp, jungle zipline tours, a hill tribe trek, and a butterfly & orchid farm.

“The locals say you’ve not experienced Chiang Mai until you’ve seen the view from Doi Suthep, eaten a bowl of kao soi, and purchased an umbrella from Bo Sang,” claims one tourist site. When I was there, the locals talked about visiting the ruins of the old city wall and moat, shopping at the night bazaar, getting an authentic Thai massage, and checking out their most famous Buddhist temple, Wat Phrathat Doi Suthep. All of it sounds good to me! 😀

What is the most unique tourist site you’ve seen while traveling?

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Adventures in Food… and Other Things

Location: Thailand
Camera info: Canon Rebel 350D • lens 18-55mm f/3.5-5.6
ISO 1600 • f 4.5 • 1/25 sec

Q: Where can you go to find fresh veggies, raw meat, freshly-picked flowers, or ready-made desserts all in one place?
A: Thailand’s open markets!

I got to see one while visiting some friends, and it was quite the shopping experience! Nearly a hundred booths were filled with various items for purchase. The lady in the picture was selling vegetables, and she was eager to bargain if you were willing to buy more. Down the row, another lady sold bouquets or single orchids (a popular flower in Thailand). They were very cheap in comparison to US prices, so my friend didn’t think twice about grabbing a bunch to decorate her table at home. Yet another vendor sold  ready-made food and desserts, so I opted for a banana treat wrapped in leaves. Yum! Others sold jewelry and school supplies. So random. 🙂

While we walked around, I happened to look into a room off to the side and saw several people chopping meat. The room was filled with all varieties of meat products hanging on the walls or lying on the tables. They did not have refrigeration for anything here, as they expected to sell it all that day. I opted instead to sample some of the native fruits off another cart. One was pink and spikey. Hmm… don’t let the appearance fool you, it was very good! My nose told me that someone was also selling durian, and Asian fruit that smells like rotting garbage, but tastes very sweet. To keep away flies, the merchants rigged up an ingenious contraption: plastic streamers attached to slowly rotating fans, which swatted the flies away every time they came near. Now why didn’t I think of that!?

If you went to an Asian open market, what type of things would you look for? Be adventurous!