Today we went to a little 5 hour walk to the beautiful KL Botanical gardens and orchid farm. These both are part of a vast park located near downtown KL which also contains Butterfly park, Bird park, Hibiscus park, planetarium and lots of different museums and greenery. Although during this time we managed to cover only a certain part of this huge place it was extremely beautiful. Everything is clean, there are plenty of pathways, lakes, ponds, fountains and it’s all combined in such a way that it seems to you that you’re in some sort of wonderland. In addition there are squirrels running around everywhere, different lizards trying to find their food underneath the trees and colorful fish swimming around in ponds. We will definitely go back there during our stay in KL to visit the bird park which we skipped today since we had already been walking for quite some time and also to discover the rest of this magnificent place. In the next videos I’ll also try to give you a small glance of it since it’s quite difficult to do with pictures from a cell-phone.
Our original plan was to go there with a bike since a bike sharing service called oBike is quite popular here. But actually this city is not very good for biking since sidewalks are quite narrow and already occupied with people while there are thousands of cars roaming the streets. In addition for some reason many of the bikes we tried to unlock were broken (as the app promptly told us) and it turns out with one user you can only unlock one bike at a time so we quickly buried this idea. Although for riding around in the park itself they are really good and most likely we will use that option next time.
Meanwhile I also put together the first video of KL so you could get a first overview of what this city is all about 🙂
Yesterday we went to see Chiang Dao caves. To get there we took the local county bus which was an experience in its own. The bus was probably from the 70’s but after a fun 1,5h ride we arrived at small Chiang Dao town (one way ticket was 40 baht per person). From there it was supposed to be 1h walk to the caves but we managed to walk only for about 1,5km when a very lovely couple picked us up and took us the the cave entrance. Big thanks to them! Although walking in this beautiful countryside was a great experience. There you could see the true country life of Thailand. Rice fields and farmers everywhere, majestic views of the nearby mountains and much more. At the cave once again our friend fast floods greeted us. The nearby river at the entrance was flooding and water was covering the park benches and pathways. Luckily though we could still get into the caves. Entrance fee is 40 baht which allows you to see the lit part of the area with small shrines and walkways. This was definitely worth the money! But there’s also an option to hire a guide for 100 baht per person (+ a tip at the end, usually 50 baht) and then you can go and discover the darker areas of the cave system. The pros of this was that you could see a lot of different bigger halls, beautiful stone figures that water has formed through thousands of years and also get a small adrenaline rush climbing through the small passages (rather I would say crawling, and there was quite much of it so be prepared to get dirty) joining the different parts. The cons are that the guide has a rather small gas light and it’s difficult to see much (since there were hundreds of bats in the cave, maybe small light is so that they wouldn’t be disturbed) and our guide seemed to be in a rather hurry. It would have been better to discover this place on our own but sadly that’s not allowed. Some areas were closed once again because of the high water but either way it’s definitely worth a visit! Sadly we lost Anna’s sunglasses somewhere in the darkness of the cave.. but we will buy new ones :). By the way the first picture in the beginning of this post is when you try to take a picture in the dark caves with a flash but at the same time you are sweating and there’s a huge amount of vapor coming from your body. In the end it turned out to be quite an artistic capture :).
To get back it was supposedly a 5km walk but once again we could manage to walk only for about 1 km when we were picked up by another great couple. People in the countryside seem to be very very nice :)! So we got the experience riding in the back of a open pickup truck and it was fun :)!
Today we went to see a local Nong Buak park in old city Chiang Mai. It was really nice and most of the time we spent feeding the fishes. There were several ponds filled with them and also some very big and beautiful Koi fish. We had never seen so huge and magnificent Koi before! It was truly relaxing spending time there. In addition I could through some hoops after a long time. There was a basket and a basketball in the middle of the park and a couple from Sweden were playing 21. They were also travelling through SE Asia planning to visit Laos, Cambodia and Vietnam. So I joined in and it was fun :)!
I also made a video of our adventure in Chiang Dao and some clips of our pool visit in nearby Eco resort (you pay 150 baht per person and you get access to the poolside for the whole day) plus of course I had to include our Hostel hamsters :). Go and have a look!