Getting Around in Chiang Mai, Thailand

Sunrise in Chiang Mai

It was my dream to explore Thailand. Its rich culture, amazing architecture, nice beaches, and, you guessed it right, delectable cuisine, lures me to temptation. And so when I was given an assignment in Chiang Mai (Northern Thailand), I couldn't help but say a big YES! I instantly checked it on Google and found out that it is more like a countryside than a busy city like Bangkok, or an idyllic beach like Krabi. But the photos I saw online were nonetheless alluring, hence, I packed my stuff and the next thing I knew, I'm aboard Thai  Airways' (TG) Manila to Bangkok to Chiang Mai flight.

It was also my first time on TG, and I must say the service is nothing short of impressive. From the moment we entered the plane, the warm smiles of the TG flight attendants welcomed us and led us to our purple seats. Minutes after boarding, snacks were served. You can have all the wine, liquor and drinks you want onboard. The cashew nuts didn't disappoint, too. And just when I was about to pop my last piece of cashew into my mouth, lunch was rolled out. I got the chicken plate, which all the while I thought was chicken curry but turned out it was something with peanut sauce. Think chicken kare-kare. There was a yummy Thai salad on the side and a small serving of dessert. I had two refills of brewed coffee and a glass of red wine as finale. With the food onboard, I didn't even recognize we were about to land already. How three hours flew fast.

Sumptuous lunch onboard Thai Airways
After three hours, we safely landed at Suvarnabhumi Airport in Thailand, and since Thai Airways was so organized, we didn't have a hard time checking in for our connecting flight. Everything - from boarding pass to luggage - has been coordinated from Manila. So, all we have to do is literally sit back, relax and enjoy the rest of the trip. From Suvarnabhumi Aiport, Chiang Mai International Airport is another one hour flight. Don't worry, the airports in Thailand are way nicer than ours, so there's no space for boredom there. =)

Pre-Departure at Chiang Mai International Airport
When we boarded our aircraft for our BKK-CNX flight, we were so surprised that the plane was even bigger than the one we boarded from Manila. Not only that, the plane was way nicer and newer! There must be a good number of tourists and locals plying this route.

Onboard BKK-CNX via Thai Airways
Again, the food served was great. This time, it was a snack box that has some cashew nuts, pastries and a fruit juice, complemented by brewed coffee. I am loving TG for this! Thumbs up for the food!

TG's snackbox aboard BKK-CNX connecting flight
We arrived in Chiang Mai at around 6:00 PM. It was getting dark already when the cab we hired had picked us up at the airport's driveway. The driver brought us to the hotel and waited for us to settle in as we requested him to bring us to the night market, too. Of course, our first agenda was to search for some authentic Thai food! We said we don't want fine dining restos, rather, we want some hole in the wall diner that serves good Thai food. The taxi driver brought us to Anusarn Night Market - think Tiendesitas, with food stalls and bazaar - and instructed us to be at the 7/11 convenience store at an agreed time.

Anusarn Night Market

And as we walked through Anusarn, we found this small Thai eatery, and all agreed to check it out. First thing that we ordered? Pad Thai, of course!

Pad Thai
Nothing really beats Pad Thai in Thailand! (Do I really have to say that???) The nutty flavours combine well with the sweet tangy sauce. The rice noodles were not saggy. We also ordered other Thai favorites like Chicken Cashew, Chciken wtih Basil, Yellow Curry and some stir fried veggies. Everything's yummy!

We did not bother to get a drink anymore (just bottled, I mean literally "bottled" water) because we found everything so flavorful! Thai food is love at first bite!
Bottled Water in a Bottle (ano daw?)
As a sweet ending, we ordered this:

Fried Pineapple in Honey Sauce
After that sumptuous feast, we continued to roam around Anusarn and were delighted to see these goodies! From dried fruits to native Thai pastries and delicacies to colorful Harem pants, Anusarn has everything and anything under the sun! Plus, the prices are super cheap here. Imagine I was able to get a pants for around 150 Baht!

Dried Fruits - from pineapples to tomatoes, name it, they have it!

Wooden jars

Colorful bags at 200 Baht
Of all the fancy things I saw at Anusarn, these captured me most. Soap art! Delicately sculptured soap centerpieces in vibrant colors! How artistic, isn't it?

Soap Art
Chiang Mai is also famous for ceramics and celadon. And you actually need not go further, because in Anusarn, you can already buy beautiful ceramic plates and vases like these:

Brightly-colored ceramic plates
On our second day in Chiang Mai, and while waiting for our drinks at the pool bar, the staff served some cashew nuts with toasted  basil leaves and chili. We asked where we can buy those and the guy said we go to Waroros Market. So, excited to explore another market in Chiang Mai, we hopped inside the hotel's shuttle and went down at Anusarn. From Anusarn, we asked the locals where Waroros Market is and in less than 15 minutes, we were able to locate it. Seems like, Waroros Market is their local wet market. And when in a wet market, it is next to mortal sin not to buy spices!

Thai Spices
Here, spices are already packaged conveniently depending on what Thai dish are you replicating. You want green curry? They definitely have it! I was even able to buy some Pad Thai paste (25 Baht each) and green curry paste (20 baht each). The authentic Thai rice sticks are priced at 45 Baht. There were also loose leaf teas, chili paste, pickled and dried fruits, and some Thai sweets.

Pink eggs, anyone?

Lobo Thai spices

Pickled tamarind and mangoes
After an exhilarating walk at Waroros Market, we found this local Thai coffee stall and we couldn't help  but get Thai iced coffee! Yum!

A local coffee stall in Waroros
Our days in Chiang Mai were rather limited, and for that I promise to return. I love the warmth and hospitality of the people, the interesting flavors of Thai cuisine, and of course, the never ending shopping! Next time, I'll see to it to pay a visit at the Karen Long Neck Village.

Sawasdee ka...

Comments

  1. nice post and tempting to visit thailand. how much did you pay for the plane fare?

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. hi! if i remember it right, around $470 rt via economy. :)

      Delete
  2. parang nasa pilipinas lang ... i like the concept of making all our fruits in a dried version then market it internationally hahahah

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