The "northern capital" seems to haved a very good reputation among Thai. Much more than Bangkok. Shortly before arriving, you feel already the face of landscape change. The mountains are becoming more present and more and more arrogant, more rise to the sky. Well not yet anyway but the Pyrenees. In the north, nature is present, forests denser, more beautiful. Thailand A wilder somehow. And what also makes the charm of Chiang Mai are the moat around a whole district of the city in a perfect square.
During our short stay there, it's me who serves as co-pilot and Tik leading course. We were setup in the rally, timed and less. And I must say that the two planes of Lonely Planet, I easily managed to lead us to each of our destinations. Once understood that the inner perimeter and outer perimeter of the fortified part of the city have their own sense of movement and positioning our hotel on the map, I am ready to yell three words necessary to make a good living in Thailand GPS. "Dong Bai" (straight), "kua" (right) and "sai" (left). First destination, the famous Doi Suthep.
Plant on top of a mountain, is the most famous temple in Chiang Mai. During the ascent by a winding road to give you the runs, one crosses seriously sick, uh no, I meant great athletes who had attacked them bikes. And they were all farangs. He should not know there were like that for 7 km. No Thai would do this climb by a bicycle. I noted Tik. "Crazy Farang ". We've arrived. We park the car and quickly before we find a long stairway with handrails on each c4te dragons are huge. And we go for the red carpet. More impressive than that of Cannes, I assure you. Especially for Tik which stops three times to catch his breath (I told him no but there is an elevator on the side). Me with my old address is a bit like coming home at night after work, the notes in the mail less. And as usual in Thailand, foreigner that I am required to pay an entrance fee (30 baht), for it is gatuit. It does not shock me, I'm not going to worship but to visit. The temple is very popular with Thai and like all the monuments of this type while gilding the sommum the golden chedi its being covered with gold and height of sophistication matched his yellow scaffolding of art worthy of detail and the any accessory fashion victim respectable.
I flounder again the ritual candles and incense sticks and then returned with Tik in buildings or a monk we splashes of his sticks hardened in water by reciting lyrics that I think we do want but good. Then I handed him my right fist and he tied a small cotton bracelet still around with a few words whose rhythm is a little incantation. I want to know the symbolism of these rituals, but the few Englishmen know that my companion does not allow me to explain. From the terrace of the temple was a magnificent view over the city of Chiang Mai. Finally, in theory because in the morning, there is a cope of mist that gives you rather a ghostly vision of the city. But actually after the end of the afternoon is more clear.
Doi Suthep - Chiang Mai
chedi Doi Suthep - Chiang Mai
I will briefly on a visit to the Pumping House, a resident of Winter King, who presents no particular interest unless you love flower gardens. For cons, the stage at the Zoo whose pride is their panda couple and their little Lin Ping has revealed a nice step. More than I think. I found my soul child. Finally, after initially hate Chaung Chuang, dad panda, only to be visible to visitors and slept like a mass, presenting us not to admire his posterior. After a long wait, I am determined to let his dreams of cotton, or bamboo, is a panda anyway. And I do not know what an inspiration, just before the door, I decided to turn back just to check one last time if he was sleeping. And I introduced myself to him, he stood up and took a few steps back to bed but was opposite me. Chuang Chuang the nice fact! I then photograph the tigers, lions, koalas. I was a kid. Must say that this zoo is not bad at all. Without comparison with that of Bangkok! Here too, the input is two times more for farangs as the thais as usual but hey, it is often the rule here and we can understand it.
Zoo Chiang Mai - panda Chuang Chuag
The second day is temple day ! We went to see 7 which is not as many, I say when you think Tik is that there are more Sat king wat (300 temples) in the city. Those who are worth more to me the detour, the U-Mong, a little outside of Chiang Mai, which is surrounded by nature in a beautiful park with a pond with fish and turtles had mustaches. Below the platform with the brick chedi lies galleries with Buddhist altars and from time to time, head down, bat hanging. A very pleasant place (apart from the galleries for those who are afraid of Friends of Batman), or I suggest you take a little break relaxation. Otherwise, wat me most is the brand Ched Yot. The bodihsattwas, saints associated with Buddhism, carved on the walls of wihaan are superb. I photograph each of those who had not lost his head.
Chang Mai-Wat Jet Yod
Chang Mai - Wat Jet Yod
Chiang Mai - wat Jet Yot
I guess that Chiang Mai has many other treasures to offer. Because of the company and I did not like it as much walking as I do, I have not done one of my trips to the famous blind the camera strap. Yet the night with the reflection of lights in the water of the moat, there surely has to make beautiful pictures. Normally at the end of my trip, after Cambodia, I intend to return again in Thailand and the North should stop here again a few days.

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