Wednesday, 19 April 2017

Nan to Chiang Rai

Today's drive was a more straight forward affair but also very scenic, especially right after leaving Nan.

The mountain roads were great to drive on with the ups and downs and sharp corners. This is probably why I forgot to take many photos.

Chiang Rai itself ended up being very quiet and almost felt deserted this time round. Still, I didn't mind and prefer it over packs of tourists at every corner.

Tuesday, 18 April 2017

Phitsanulok to Nan

After following driving directions on which roads to take up to now, we decided to just start and follow waking directions today.

This was in the hope of getting a more scenic route and stop getting re-routed to the highway most of the times. And it worked great, giving us the best drive and scenery during this trip.

We drove through rice fields, small roads, a national park, had to cross a lake by ferry and got to see an amazing sunset from the top of the mountains.

The photos speak for themselves but this route is definitely great and at the end of the day we were thinking of going back and doing it again tomorrow.

But not only the landscape and views were great, also the people we met along the way were nice and friendly and it reminded us more of Laos or Vietnam than Thailand.

So in short, if you have time and don't mind driving on some small dirt roads across rice fields, definitely use the walking directions on maps as it will be a more scenic route and definitely more fun.

Monday, 17 April 2017

Uthai Thani to Phitsanulok

Having left earlier and not having much distance to cover, we decided to take a longer country road route.

It was an enjoyable drive through smaller villages and past fields and across rivers.

While I enjoyed the drive, I was surprised how few photos I actually took at the end of the day.

Sunday, 16 April 2017

Kanchanaburi to Uthai Thani

After a slower start in the morning and a must do visit to the Bridge on the River Kwai, we set off to get to Tak or maybe even Mae Sot.

As you can judge from the title of this post we didn't quite make it there but Uthai Thani proved to be a great place to stop over.

The roads were definitely better, less highway and more country roads with actual things to see and Thai people to meet during coffee breaks.

Ultimately the late start and slower drive on the country roads meant we had to change plans and stay in Uthai Thani. This was not really a problem as the drive was fun and Uthai Thani is a pretty cool place.

It has a lot of Chinese influences there, is quiet and laid back, people are friendly and it has some pretty cool roundabouts to discover.

So far Uthai Thani proved to be my favorite place in Thailand during this trip and I could have even stayed longer here.

Saturday, 15 April 2017

On the Road Again

TG-4, f2.0, 1/2000, ISO 100, RAW, 25mm

Thanks to Vietnam Airlines screwing up and the incompetent ground staff at BKK airport not being capable to string one clear sentence together, much less an English sentence, the day didn't turn out as expected.
Still, thanks to the much more competent and friendly staff at Jetstar Pacific and thanks to modern technology, tings didn't end up that bad and the day ended up well despite initial problems.

Lesson from today is to never, EVER, fly from BKK to Vietnam with Vietnam Airlines (or at all with them for that matter) and not expect competent and English speaking staff at airports during Songkran.

Friday, 14 April 2017

Songkran in Bangkok

After another really boring drive up to Bangkok, I ended up staying at a hotel right in the middle of the Songkran festival area.

At first this didn't promises to be much fun due to the many people around which made it impossible to take the motorbike out.

Still, if Ban Phe was great fun for Songkran, Bangkok was a few levels higher.

After having some lunch and managing to get to the hotel halfway dry, it all started to get really, really wet.

It wasn't just kids but also adults acting like kids and having water fights on the streets. Everyone had fun and was in a good mood.

It was like being a kid again and just enjoying yourself at a big street party.

This lasted till about 22:00 when the police decided to break it off and make sure people went home.

Still, it was great fun and I enjoyed not only the atmosphere but also acting like a kid and having water fights with strangers.

Having the Olympus TG-4 around allowed me to capture the action without having to worry about the camera.

I wasn't sure what to expect from Songkran in Bangkok and thought it might be best to avoid it, it ended up being great fun and I can recommend it.