It’s been 4 months since our Thailand vacation. Going through these photos has me really missing this place. It was a trip that I’ll never forget. One that is dear to our hearts. We went to Thailand with our friends the Solars. Josh, Jenny, and their three kids, Max, Ava and Lia. I’m breaking our post up into 4-5 separate posts. There is so much that I want to share and talk about but I also don’t want this post to be overwhelming.

After our long flight with China Air, we landed in Bangkok. The first thing we did was navigate their public transportation system. That definitely takes getting used to. We checked into our hotel and went to Wat Phra Kaew or the Temple of the Emerald Buddha. A few tips when visiting temples in Thailand.

  1. Remove your shoes before entering
  2. Do not get in the way of local people who are there to worship
  3. Back away from the Buddha statue rather than turning your back
  4. Do not touch sacred objects in the worship area.
  5. Do not raise yourself higher than the image of Buddha
  6. Do not point your feet towards Buddha

The basic rule for what to wear in a temple is for women and men to cover your shoulders and knees. Ideally cover your ankles too.

Our first day in Bangkok was hot. Well over 100 degrees. Most of our days in Thailand were over 100 degrees. We didn’t plan this first day well and if I had to do it again, I’d buy 50 pairs of elephant pants on the streets for situations like this (and also to lounge in every day for the rest of my life, obvi).

We spent one day in Bangkok before moving on to Chiang Mai.

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Pigeons. I’m pretty sure I had a nightmare like this once.

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Our kids were all so tired that first night. An 18 hour flight will do that to you. Lia was so tired that she fell asleep on the subway floor waiting for the train.

If you’ve never ridden in a tuk tuk before, you must. It’s pretty terrifying at times and you may question your own judgement, but it is exhilarating and once you make it to your destination, you think “wow..that was fun, let’s do it again”. Kinda like a roller coaster, but with way less safety regulations, haha.

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A little airport madness.

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This was our first time driving on the opposite side. Driving in Thailand to begin with is not for the faint of heart. Driving in Thailand on the opposite side of the road, on the opposite side of the vehicle definitely had me regretting the decision many times on not purchasing full coverage insurance on the car. I think I started to get the hang of it by day ten.

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Day two was our travel day to Chiang Mai. It was also a take it easy kind of day. Our kids and the dads went to a local pool and Jenny and I were on a grocery shopping quest. We stayed in this 5br airbnb home for $25 per night (per family) and it was great.

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Day three was one of my favorites. Although, I have many favorite days on this trip. We hiked up the Mae Sa waterfall to this really perfect swimming hole. Even though it was really hot out, the humidity wasn’t terrible and thus the heat was tolerable, but made the water feel even more refreshing.

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(photo cred: Josh Solar)

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(Photo cred: Josh Solar)

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(Photo cred: Josh Solar)

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This Sunday night market (located along Ratchadamonoen Road) was pretty spectacular. I felt like I was spending all of our money on gifts here, but in reality things don’t cost much here and I still had money left to buy more elephant pants.

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On day four, we went to the Bua Tong Waterfall (also known as the sticky waterfalls). Have you ever heard of the sticky waterfalls?  No? Well basically, they are waterfalls you can climb. The stones are covered in limestone deposit and therefore are sticky instead of slippery. It’s pretty amazing.

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Processed with VSCOcam with a6 preset

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(Photo cred: Josh Solar)

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(Photo cred: Josh Solar)  Listen, it’s really beneficial to travel with other photographers. I highly recommend it. 😛

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(Photo cred: Josh Solar)

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When driving up, we saw this really large staircase leading to somewhere. We were intrigued, so on the way out we stopped by. We climbed up 234 stairs (yes, we all counted) and found a Golden Buddha in a cave. The name of this place is called the Bua Tong Cave. It was so incredibly beautiful.

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Here in the US, we transport horses, pigs and cows. In Thailand, they transport elephants.

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For great and cheap food, check out Kanjana‘s.

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Sometimes, you accidentally hit your light switch while getting out of your car, right? And sometimes, your battery dies because of it. Such is life. I mean these are real life moments people. You get the good and the bad and sometimes the ugly. Luckily, we found someone that spoke some English and helped jump the car. I’m being quite dramatic, it really wasn’t that bad at all.

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Okay, so this was my absolute favorite day out of all favorite days. If you know us, you know how much we love animals. Playing with elephants was an absolute dream for us. We decided on the Elephant Jungle Sanctuary. We originally wanted to do the Elephant nature park but sadly we could not able to get a reservation. We wanted to choose a place that had good reviews and were known to respect and care for the elephants rather than abuse them. We had the best time with these gentle giants and little baby giant.  It was such an incredible experience. It was also a really great thing for our girls to experience. They now want to save all the elephants in the world.

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Bumpy dirt roads = hands up.

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(photo cred: Josh Solar)

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(photo cred: Josh Solar)

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(photo cred: Jenny Solar)

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(photo cred: Josh Solar)

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(photo cred: Josh Solar)

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After the elephant park, Jenny and I went for our first massage. AND NO…we did not get our massage at this place shown, but thought it was freaking hilarious. haha. We went to Fah Lanna spa and it was beyond amazing.  Jenny and I got a couple’s massage because that’s what you do with your girlfriends. It was a 3 hour foot, thai and Aromatherapy Oil Massage. It cost $22 (yes, you read that right).

Look out for Thailand part two coming soon.

One response to “Thailand vacation- Part one”

  1. Sharon McManus-ward says:

    These pictures are amazing! I am so proud of you all, and ecstatic that you are visiting these places as a family and sharing your photographs will all of us. Love Mom

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