Our last day in Chiang Mai, we decided to go up in the mountains to visit Doi Suthep and Bhubing Palace. It’s a bit out of the city, so you have to first get to the zoo west of the city, then transfer to get up the mountain (although many tourists take a private car for 2-3x the price). I think we were pretty much the only tourists who took the public transport system.
Doi Suthep is a temple on top of a mountain, and it’s about a 20 minute ride up steep winding roads to get there. You sit in the back of a pick up truck, so I was feeling pretty car sick by the time we got to the top. It was nice and cool up in the mountains, so that was a nice relief from the heat down below. We never once got hot up there!
The temple is beautiful (despite obnoxious tourists in inappropriate temple clothing) and Mike even got blessed by a monk. He was sitting in a temple when all of a sudden a monk comes up to him to sprinkles him with blessed water.
Afterwards, we took another pick up truck up to Bhubing Palace, which is the King and Queen’s winter palace. They’re known for the their roses, which are considered “exotic” in Thailand since it’s usually too hot on valley floors to grow them. The gardens were immaculately organized and beautiful. We got caught in a torrential downpour for a moment, but it stopped after only 15 minutes. We only saw 3 other people while we were there, guess it’s not a popular destination. Very pretty though, and a good change of scenery from temples.
A nice cool day in the mountains of Chiang Mai! Well worth it, and a good place to get away from the touristy old city.