Exploring Pai

Exploring Pai

Hi everyone! Welcome back to my blog 🙂 As I told you in my  previous post, whilst in the North of Thailand we also visited Pai- the most amazing place! I have so much to tell you about Pai that I thought it deserved its own post, so here we go….

Pai is a small town in a Northern Province in Thailand. This tiny town lies on a river and is currently my favorite place in the world! It is a long and winding road to get to Pai from Chiang Mai, but a three-hour bus ride later and you are in Paradise. However, do brace yourselves it can be very hard to get some sleep on this journey due to all the twists and curves.

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My friends and I got the 5pm bus from Chiang Mai to arrive in Pai at around 8pm. For our first night, considering we arrived quite late we simply went to our hostel; Pai River Zen Hostel. We got this super cute bamboo hut with a hammock on the porch.Photo 6-02-17, 8 16 12 AMPhoto 6-02-17, 9 02 31 AM

In the evening we hung out at the outdoor bar/common area of the hostel; everyone was super friendly and we played cards well into the evening. At night Pai can get quite cold so make sure to pack a hoodie. We enjoyed our stay at the bamboo hut but it got very cold at night so the next day we decided to look for accommodation with solid walls.

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For our second day we checked into the Breeze of Pai hostel. The people at the reception are extremely nice; they gave us free water and banana and our room was spacious and warm too.We then headed out to adventure; we started off the day by renting a scooter. It was three of us on this holiday, and a scooter fits only two people (albeit we saw whole families riding on one scooter in Thailand) so Bex rented a bicycle instead and we headed off to the Chinese Village.

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The drive turned out to be 4km of uphill roads, literally one curvy uphill road away from Pai is the most amazing view. We sometimes had to tie the bicycle to the back of the scooter just to give Bex a little help. We even hitched rides where possible. Everyone was very cheery, happy and extremely helpful in Pai; maybe that is why I loved it so much.  Most of the people we met in Pai were only planning to stay for two days and ended up staying there for months; unfortunately we were pressed for time.

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We then drove a bit further to a waterfall. Seeing as we went during dry season there was not much water in the waterfall but we still went in for a dip , relaxed and sun bathed next to it. We then drove a to Yun Lai viewpoint to watch the sunset. However, we quickly realised that this viewpoint would be amazing for Sunrise and so we vouched that the next day we would wake up extremely early and go to watch it.

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And so we did. Yasmine and I were on the scooter at 6am and got the viewpoint ten minutes before sunrise. We are not usually morning people but this was definitely worth waking up early for.

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The sun rises from behind the mountain tops, fog floats towards you as the sun’s heat reaches it. A wedding altar is also set up at this viewpoint. Can you imagine a better background ?

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We were then set to go to our tour. Tours are available everywhere in Pai, all you have to do is choose which one is best for you-and always ask for a bargain. Our tour guides picked us up from our hotel and two hours later (again, the drive has a lot of curves in the road) we were at the Lod Cave. Here we met one of the best tour guides we ever had, he held a lamp for us and showed us all the different rock formations whilst pointing out what they looked like: ‘fish’, ‘crocodiles’ and to our amusement even ‘boobies’-cheeky guide ! He had a constant smile on their face (it was maybe because we were his last run for the day , as we later found out). The tour was somewhat hurried as the cave does get extremely busy. We were then served lunch at a nearby restaurant and it was off to our next destination .

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Our next stop was the hot springs. The springs were more on the ‘warm’ side rather than the hot , but it was a fantastic to bathe in warm fresh water. Thai families came to bathe in them, shampoo and all, even though signs clearly stated not to do this. There are bigger and hotter springs out-of-town if you are willing to go !

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For the absolute perfect ending to the perfect day we went up to the Pai Canyon to watch the sunset. The Canyon is vast and stunningly beautiful. If you only have time to watch one sunset in Pai make sure you watch it here.

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Pai also hosts a street market every night with a huge variety of ocal foods (if you’re ever there and meet the lady at the Falafel Queen stand tell her the Maltese girls said hi).

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That was all the time we had in Pai! We could’ve fallen into the ‘Pai hole’ and stayed there for the rest of our vacation. Have you ever visited Pai? and if so is my love for Pai justified? Let me know in the comments!

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