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The night market in Chiang Mai is alot of fun and bargaining is the name of the game . However you will see almost everything with a label marked "silk". Many of these are polyester....not real silk...so bargain accordingly. As long as you know what it is the prints are so nice and worth buying!!
Written Oct 2, 2006
IF YOU ARE TRAVELLING ON A BUDGET READ THIS CAREFULLY.
i SPENT A LOT OF MONEY BEING CHARGED FOR OVER THE WEIGHT SUITECASES TRAVELLING BETWEEN NORTHERN THAILAND, THE ISLANDS, AND BKK.
When I was there, the weight limit before they charge you extra was 70 kilos per suitecase. You are allowed 2 per person travelling. Otherwise they charge you....what I believe was the equivelent of $35-40 USD per suitcase.
So if you are there with heavy suitecases or bags, find a place to store some items, especially if you are shopping in Chiang Mai.
And it is cheaper than BKK so i would suggest it.
Updated Aug 20, 2006
When you are driving a motobike, like many tourists are renting in Chiang Mai, and you are driving just behing a song tew, take care that the driver is is not cutting your road.
The only thing they are doing, is looking for new passengers on the sidewalk; when they see one, they will immediately turn to the left, without looking behind and cutting your road.
So take some distance behind them and you'll have to time to brake or to slow down.
Updated Apr 3, 2007
There is no malaria in Chiang Mai, but there is evidence of it in Chiang Rai, golden triangle area as well as other places in Northern Thailand.
It is important to protect yourself when going into malaria infected areas, such as taking malaria medication. Important to bring bug spray with you. Malaria is an awful disease, which can be fatal if not treated.
Also, you should protect yourself with bug spray due to dengue fever-which occurs in southeast asia. Important to look at various websites on malaria and dengue fever before coming out here. Listed the usa's center for disease control (CDC) website below.
Written Apr 27, 2005
Opium is used in some mystic animistic hilltribe minority villages in the north of Chiang Mai. Opium, as all other drugs, is extremely dangerous and kills the brain and body. Stay away from opium. Most of the tribes are switching to tobacco, which is bad enough, because they even know that opium kills and stunts growth (you will see opium users are very small).
Not to mention that you will spend a very long time in a Thai jail if you are caught, you don't want that!
Updated Jun 19, 2003
You will get wet and pretty much stay wet during the Song Kran festival. What you need to do if you will be in Thailand during Song Kran is to invest in zip lock plastic bags to protect your personal items. If you can, leave them in your hotel.
Also, make sure that your zip lock bag is properly sealed. Mine wasn't and I lost my mobile phone and iPod to a watery grave. Unfortunate and expensive but avoidable with prior thinking.
Updated Jun 25, 2008
Be vigilent about protecting yourself from the water that is thrown in Song Kran. Firstly, the water comes from the local rivers (yuck) and secondly it can really hurt you!
Full buckets of water are thrown and a lot of the time in your face. If you wear glasses, don't wear them outside, wear contacts if you can. I lost mine out the back of the car (subsequently to be run over by a truck) and needed to fork out for a new pair.
Also, most people put huge blocks of ice in their water so the water is icey cold when it hits you - not nice even in 40 degree weather!
Have fun, but take care!
Written Jun 25, 2008
I recently read of now six people, American, British and New Zealanders who have died in Chang Mai under mysterious circumstances. The Thai police have not been able to accurately identify the source of the problem, calling the incidents 'coincidental'.....which is most probably a face-saving solution instead of admitting 'we don't know because we don't have the knowledge or skill to conduct a thorough investigation. At a press conference in Bangkok yesterday, Chiang Mai Governor Pannada Disakul said: "We have to admit that these deaths coming one after another are nothing more than coincidence.
"We have done and will continue to do our utmost to make tourists confident in our city."
Unfortunately he didn't say 'We have done and will continue to do our utmost to find the source of the problem and correct it before any more deaths occur'.
Clearly, until the matter is correctly identified, it is of grave danger to be travelling in Chang Mai at the moment without being aware of the deaths and possible food/water poisoning risk there so I implore you to be careful of what you drink and eat and where you stay if you need to visit Chang Mai.
Written Mar 9, 2011
New picture from the Sept. 31, 2005 flood in Chiang Mai Thailand. Police wouldn't let us get any closer to town. In the picture the sign on the front of the jeep reads drive slowly. The center of the old city never floods. The night bazaar area water over your head.
Every few years the water in the Mae Ping River in the city comes out of it's banks. This causes many problems for local residents and tourists alike. The area most affected is near the famous night, which is just a few blocks from the river.
In August 2005 Chiang Mai suffered the worst flooding in the past 40 years. Today, Sept. 13, 2005 the river is about to flood the city again. Heavy rain is expected again today and the flooding to happen all over again.
Here are a few pictures I have taken this morning and will add new ones if things get worse.
Updated Sep 30, 2005
As much as it is a exciting activity to do, if you do not have much biking experience prior to the trip, I would suggest giving it a miss. Or it would be best to leave it to the day before departure. The reason I'm saying this is because as a short Asian person(1.56 m), I was handed a standard-sized full suspension mountain bike that was too tall for me. The bike was working fine, but because of my size it was very hard to control it and when I stopped I could only tiptoe when staying on the bike. Extra effort had to be put in to control everything and going uphill was an extremely strenuous task. Even the caucasian people I was with(who were at least 1 head taller than me) found it hard. I fell quite a few times during the whole route and ended up with badly aching neck and back muscles and quite a few serious bruises. And it could have been worse. It takes a fast person about 2 hours to complete the route so if you fall and decide to take it slow, it could really turn into the longest day of your life(that's what I felt). You either complete or don't start at all.
Written Mar 3, 2006
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