A Travellerspoint blog

February 2007

Hanoi Vietnam

Beep Beep Beep Beep Beep And More F*-*king Beeps

rain 20 °C

Beep beep i think the vietnamiese have just found out about horns attached to vehicles we arrived thios afternoon at around 1pm and i HATE IT. Its chocka all there is is beeping beep for left beep for right beep for straight on. We have decided to leave this god ridden place and head north to halong bay first thing in the morning. Were going on a Junk Boat for two days and cruising round the bay and exploring caves ill keep you posted once the excursion is over. But for now we are off to sleep to hope and pray for tommorow to come.

Posted by philymc 04:39 Archived in Vietnam Comments (2)

Golden Triangle & Hill Tribes Rafting In Jungle

Smugglers Run

sunny 35 °C

Hey snot Pickers,
25th February
Today we went on a massive trip up to the north of thailand to Chang Rai. Here we visited the long neck hill tribe which was quite fascinating. Rings rounf there neck which apparetnly where used to defend themselves from tigers etc The fellas dont have to wear the rings as they are able to defend themselves. We visited a little village which is mainly a few marklet stralls set up for them to sell there goods. There not actually thai but burmese but are allowed to come here to sell there stuff. Nic bought a statue. They chew something called beetlenut which apparently gets you off ya head. We couldnt find any so we didnt try it. HAHA. It stains your teeth and gums purple which in there community is conmsidered attractive.
Aftetr that we went to the burmese border round a massive market where people go to buy stuff. This was quite upsetting as there were loads of women there begging for money for food for their children which they had on their back some only a week or two old.
We didnt give them any as we didnt know if we would be contributing to the problem.
Then we went up to the golden triangle, this is the borderland between laos, burmah and thailand and is wear all the heroin/opium smuggling occurs round here few beggers round here but at least they made the efoort by sining for money, what was strange though is that at the end of the song they said how much they wanted which ranged from 5 baht to 20 baht. This was a very long day and very tiring.

26th
Today weve been white water rafting in the jungle, nic was very dubious over the whole thing and after having finaly rid of the stains from the river kwai slowly but surely they had appeared once more before we even got to our destination. However once on the river with her fetching helmet and matching life vest all was well. The rapids where quite big much bigger than anything ive ever done in wales, she did very well. oh and while we were on a calm bit of river about 4 elephants where in the water washing themselves and splashing round it was amazing to see (Mum Jealous???) There was even a little baby elephanty with its mum. Thats all we have done oday and now we have jkust arrived back in chiang Mai we are going back to our place of rest before we depart here anf head back to bangkok. Then its off to vietnam to hanoi on the 28th.
So thats it for now i will defo try and stick some pictures on tommorow whilst in stinking bangkok, sick of the place now thank god this is our l;ast visit to bangkok.
Smell Ya L8r

Posted by philymc 02:32 Archived in Thailand Tagged boating Comments (5)

Bangkok & kanchanaburi

Oh My Buddah

sunny 37 °C

Well on our last day before we went to kanchanaburi we went to visit the reclining buddah and took a tuc tuc with no events in between. Nic has got very bossy and teacher like with the tuc tuc drivers so i can just sit back and be embarassed.
The reclining buddah is amazin best thing we have seen in bangkok, we want to take it home with us but not sure we have anywhere to put it.
Then we were up at seven on the 21st febuary to get a minibus to kanchanaburi we were met by a man called Michael Jackson, it seems that all the tour guides adopt a famous western person for their name rather than their thai name i guess it \s becasue no wan can pronounce there name @Chan Fang Dow@. After a gruelling journey we went and visited the bridge over tyhe river kwai where nic got about a 1/4 of the way accros and had to turn back because there are massive holes in the bridge its not safe at all.
I think she done very well considering, although the brown stain i witnessed on her costume tells me otherwise now.
Then we went and visited the tigers in their temple which was bizzare we have took many amazing photos of them but cant put them on at the moment because the computer im on wont let me. Bummer!
Then we went to see some waterfall which was ok, only small.
Then it was back to be fed, eugh, i was so hungry it didnt really mnatter but in the jungle i guess theres not much choice. We then got took to our accomadation by longboaty along the river kwai it was very surreal. When we arrive the accomadation was alot better than we originally thought it would be we had air con and a fan. We crtashed straight away think we were asleep for about 7:30.

22nd Feb
Woke up for seven oclock, knackered, nic wasnt welll had a cold which i am now just overcoming. That day we went to the erawan waterfall which was amazing but very hard work indeed. it had seven tiers and was about 750 metres up we climbed right to the top and swam in the laggoony thing at athe top. Where there was wild monkeys and snakes etc. A monkey jumped down from the tree and started rooting through someones bag i thought it was hysterical he also then obliged by urinating all over the said items.

Then we went to the hell fire pass which was a train track built by prisoners of war from thailand to burma we walked the whole thing and got lost in immense heat, we were not impressed as the guide didnt come with us. We survived anyway. I suppose he wanted us to feel like a pow.
Then back to camp for lots of beer drinking and a sore head in the morning.

23rd Feb
Very sore head in the morning and a cold/flu, horrid.
We went on the river kwai on a bamboo rtaft which was nice but considering our hangovers and my flu wasnt that exhilariting.
Then it was off to sit on the elephants, wasnt that impressed weith that felt a bit tighht on the elephants as thats all thwey do all day the highlight of thsat was stroking and feeding them bananas though that was nice. Elephant snot all over me mmmmmm.
Then we went back to camp ate a bit of food and gto back on th e minibus back to bangkok. We were on the minibus for ages 4 hours it was roasting i was dehydrated with the flu i wanted to die.
Then to make us feel better we went to mcdonalds. We had to book a night in a dive of a place well wasnt that bad but would probs be my lastr choice. Its very busy round here cos of chinese new year.

24th Feb
Were off to chiang Mai today going to hopefully do white water rafdting and visit a hill tribe. Back to bangkok on the 27th and then to Hanoi in vietnam on the 28th.

So long popo pickers speak soon.
I will try and stick some photos on if i get a chance.
Smell Ya
x

Posted by philymc 18:29 Archived in Thailand Comments (1)

Bangkok

Madness (18th & 19th Feb)

sunny 37 °C

18th Feb

Well after a gruelling 15 hour flight with no Freakin leg room we landed in bangkok. Was easy going through customs not that we had anything to worry about anyway.
We got a taxi from the airport straight to our hotel. We got there about 8:15am thai time and we couldnt check in to our hotel until 12:00 (HORRID) so we went and got blottoed. We had about 3 pints each and some brekkie (english of course). We finally got into our hotel after getting lost near enough straight away.
The weather here is boiling hot nd a little smoggy. We met two lads from poland last night and sat off with them for a while they told us of places to visit in southern thailand. Then we went all over the show having drinks in several different bars ate some real thai food in some place and even got some nibbly bits of someone selling food in the street.
You get harrased every second to jump in a tuc tuc or taxi or buy something from traders.

Our hotel is ok weve got a lovely view out of our window (NOT) but its clean and tidy and pretty posh from the outside.

19th Feb

We got up bright and early this morning considering we were pretty razzled last night. Nic was complaining of a hangover but after a swift breakfast she was fine. We had to go and buy some clothes for us to go to the grand palace as you cannot wear shorts or show shoulders etc. This was our first encounter of bartering it went terribly wrong and we got like 10p off the inital price bummer im sure well get better at it (or will we) there very pushy i guess i just cant say no.
Then we decided how we would get to the grandf palace this is were the fun began. Bangkok seems to be set up to milk as much money as posible out of you as it can heres how it started.
9:30am
We thought we would get a tuc tuc to the grand palace and the fella (tout) who organised it said you pay 10 baht and that is it thats about 5p too gud to be true, i thought so too.
We asked to go to the grand palace instead he took us to the standing gold buddah which is absolutely massive very nice see pictures. Then we got took to the gold mount which was built for the king its pretty impressive loads of monks about nic wants to be one now of course im sure its another fad of hers and she may want to be a sikh next week. After that we got taken to a suit shop (let the fun begin) "Hello sir where you from?" "england," how many suits you want i was like none i dont wear them" Anyway we left empty handed after being made to feel embaressed because we didnt buy anything (BASTARD TUC TUC). Then we said we want to go the grand palace so as you can imagine he took us straight to a jewellery shop of course me and nic were delighted with this becasue we both love jewellery and wear lots of it (NOT). Anyway after opurchasing a purse for a measley 60p we thought we had kep our end of the bargain, off to the grand palace we go.... YAY

Wrong!!!!!

Off to his mates long boat cruise tour shop we ended up getting this cruise cos it was taking us to the grand palace this was pretty nice cos it was only me and nic on the boat on our own as soon as we got on the boat started tipping to ther left nics having a fit at this time causing me to laugh hysterically at her prediciment.
wwe sailed along the canal network through all the shanty places. Its pretty amazing to seee how these people live the houses along the river are mostly made of corrageted iron sheets (Not a piece of curtain walling in site here, thank god for that)

All the people along the way who were lioving in these house waved and smiled at us and guess what this didnt cost us anything i was surprised by that. finally we pulled up at a dock were we had to pay a further 20 baht as a docking fee. You would think that was included in the 800 baht i paid for the long boat. No it wasnt.

Anyway we went to the grand palace which is absolutely amazing best buildings ive ever seen grand is the only word you can use to describe it.
There are masswive posters of the king everywhere over bangkok not sure if they love him or whether its his own advertising campaign.

We got a taxi back from the grand palace i barted for that and got a 100 baht discount. How good is that. Ive left nic in the hotel whilst im typing this she has walked more today than she has in her whole life apparently. Im ok think i may sneak off for a quick beer before i go back. Some of the thai food smells great whilst other stuff makes you bork.

I havent had any sweets yet shocked i thought so.
Oh and weve booked our trip to Kachanaburi that cost us about 40 quid for three days trekking riding elephants (although i think these are a bit big for me to mount joke get it

anyway well and fed so thats it for now snot pickers.
Peace Out

Posted by philymc 15:33 Archived in Thailand Tagged backpacking Comments (3)

Day Before The Flight

The Day Before Tommorow

rain

Well here i am in work mundane and rainy as usual outside. This time tommorow me and nicola will be up in the sky somewhere over africa maybe.......?
We fly at 9:30 and total flight time is 14 hours.
Not packed yet, cant wait to finish for the day at 3:30.
Will keep all posted as much as we can through the holiday.
Internet cafe's permitting.
Weather in bangkok is currently clear and only 36 degrees hahaha.
Have a Laugh!

Posted by philymc 04:05 Archived in United Kingdom Comments (0)

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