TheLoneRider
a nomad in search of Easter Eggs
people of Chiang Mai, Thailand

Shifting Peoplescape of Chiang Mai July 31, 2020

Shifting Peoplescape of Chiang Mai

Location Google Map: Chiang Mai, Thailand

Coming Out of Covid Lockdown
Chiang Mai has been resuming normalcy from the Covid lockdown. Events are back and people are beginning to come out. Yoga in the Park is now daily. Chiang Mai Blues Band is now gigging at My Bar and Thaphae East. I saw old friends who managed to stay intact during the lockdown. Some were stuck somewhere else awaiting for Thailand's borders to open up again. The first order of the day was to let old friends know I was back. I've already invited a few for a catch-up at Nawa Saraan or just around the bend at EM16 Bar. Often, I would reconnect with them at Yoga in the Park where I do my daily practice

PEOPLESCAPE (chronological)

Mikey ChongMike Singapore
With the pandemic, Mike closed 3 of his 4 hotels, including Nawa Saraan, the hotel I was managing before I left to escape the burning season. Despite that, he still allowed me to stay at this place - in one of the luxurious guest rooms at that. What a guy! With no hotel guest duties, this plush hotel has become a home - together with its lush garden and café setting. With no hotel revenue, I was a liability on the balance sheet. But still, when I offered him money from yoga proceeds, he wouldn't take it. He has always looked after my well-being, but now that he's hurting, I feel helpless not knowing what to do to make things better for him. I'm profoundly grateful to this magnificent guy - whenever anything good happens to me in Chiang Mai, I simply whisper to myself, "Thank you Mike".

Mike blogs:
  1. Shifting Peoplescape Of Chiang Mai July 2020
  2. 2019: A Year in Review Dec 31, 2019
  3. Peoplescape of Chiang Mai Jan 24-Mar24, 2019
  4. Resuming Life in Chiang Mai Jan 24, 2019
  5. Overnight in Pai with Mike Jan 1, 2019
  6. 2018: A Year In Review Dec 31, 2018
  7. Peoplescape of Chiang Mai Dec 12, 2018 - Jan 1, 2019
  8. Mike Chong Aug 8, 2018
  9. Kneaded and Pampered at Zira Spa Aug 4, 2018
  10. Savoring a Baht 3,500 Birds Nest Soup at Natural Bird Nest by Burapa Aug 3, 2018
  11. Chiang Mai's Amazing Peoplescape Apr 9-23, 2016


China DollChina Girl China
Upon arrival in Chiang Mai at the Red Arcade Bus Terminal, I bumped into China Girl - a Chinese hotel guest who was also stranded with me in Nong Khai at Mut Mee Guesthouse. We spent a good amount of time talking and sharing at Mut Mee. She left a month earlier than me when a bus for Rayong became available. I thought I've seen the last of her. What are the odds I'd bump into her here in Chiang Mai? She was just en route to return to China via Chiang Mai. I invited her to leave her stuff at Nawa Saraan and take a shower while awaiting her flight. We had a few more moments together before she left off to catch her plane. That was a pleasant treat.

China Girl blogs:
  1. Coming Back To Chiang Mai Jun 29, 2020
  2. Peoplescape Of Nong Khai Jun 17, 2020


Marina ForsterMarina Puerto Rico
Brazen Travel Thoughts
Wanting to reach out to friends, I invited Marina to join me for a coldie at EM16 Bar, just across the corner. She was still the same lovely Marina. I've attended her Sunday Yoga in the Park. She does this while teaching swimming in addition to her regular English teaching job. Yep, she's a busy girl who treads the conscious path. She's one of the few I would feel comfortable with to message on short-notice for coffee and grubs.

Marina blogs:
  1. Shifting Peoplescape Of Chiang Mai July 2020
  2. Sunday Vinyasa Flow with Marina Forster Sep 8, 2019
  3. The Conscious Peoplescape of Chiang Mai Aug 31, 2019


Anna BaraAnna Poland
With her shaven head, I mistook Anna for a nun when I met her at yoga in the park. She was stranded in a meditation center for 4 months and practically lived the life of a nun. We shared many things about yoga and meditation. We had coffee and bread at Nawa Saraan (my first guest since I came back) and saw each other more at yoga. She also introduced me to some of her friends who also got stranded at the meditation center, one of whom decided to be a fulltime nun. Collectively, I saw all of us as a monastic crew (yes, I am a self-proclaimed Cyber Monk).



Alan and NicolaAlan & Nicola South Africa
Alan: + HeartMath SA | Ecstatic Dance
Nicola: Nicola Symons Yoga
Ah, the dynamic duo, who perhaps are the two I'm most comfortable with. They're deepening their roots in Chiang Mai and have moved to a better shire. Their house-blessing was a gathering of intimate friends who celebrated through a cacao ritual, mandala circle, ecstatic dance and wholesome vegan food. We hung out at Saraan for Hippie Night and chilled to live music at My Secret Cafe. Alan was my first podcast interview. He remains busy coaching coaches for Heart Math while Nicola keeps to her evolving Kundalini Yoga and her regular job. I would say the 3 of us are fairly aggressive in our practice - reading, researching, pushing boundaries and biohacking to find out what lies beyond. I wonder who'll be the first one to walk on water...LOL!!!

Shifting Peoplescape of Chiang Mai
with Nicola and Alan at EM16 Bar
Alan and Nicola blogs:
  1. Shifting Peoplescape Of Chiang Mai July 2020
  2. The Podcast Series: Alan "Heart Math" Strydom Jul 17, 2020
  3. Secret Sunrise: Nelson Mandela International Day July 17, 2019
  4. Farewell Picnic with Alan and Nicola July 15, 2019
  5. Optimizing Life thru Heart Math May 8, 15 and 22, 2019
  6. Fascinating Peoplescape Of Chiang Mai II May 22, 2019
  7. Kundalini and Vinyasa Yoga with Nicola Symons May 10, 2019
  8. Secret Sunrise Interactive Dance May 9, 2019
  9. Peoplescape Of Chiang Mai Jan 24 - Mar 13, 2019


Jhantira KhamlaengYing Thailand
Ying's Thai Massage Courses
Sore from the max-out daily yoga in the park, I asked Ying if she was free to give me a massage. I've defaulted to her since she did a Tok Sen Massage on me last year. She stopped by Nawa Saraan and gave me a good full-body Thai massage. We were talking the entire time. I prepared bread for our post-massage catch-up, but she had to rush out to catch her 2pm appointment. Asked how much I should pay her, she said it was "on the house" - I couldn't persuade her to take my money. Whoa!

Ying blogs:
  1. Shifting Peoplescape of Chiang Mai July 31, 2020
  2. Fascinating Peoplescape Of Chiang Mai II May 22, 2019
  3. Tok Sen Massage from Ying May 8, 2019


Nick LianNick USA
Nick's FB posts were my barometer to what's happening in Chiang Mai during the entire Covid pandemic - from empty streets to a slow resurgence of activities and events. I bumped into him and his girlfriend at Chiang Mai Gate which led to a bread/coffee catch-up at Nawa Saraan. An interesting guy with fresh ideas and chutzpah to wit, it was good to get together and get a glimpse of his take on this post-Covid scenario for Chiang Mai.

Nick blogs:
  1. Shifting Peoplescape of Chiang Mai July 31, 2020
  2. The Conscious Peoplescape of Chiang Mai Aug 31, 2019


Christine ThielChristine Germany
Chiang Mai is full of beautiful ladies but none so beautiful they make up my Top 2. With her movie-star looks, Christine is one such. Who is the other one? I knew you would ask. I thought Christine was long gone from Chiang Mai so it was a pleasant surprise seeing her on the yoga mat one morning at the park. It didn't even feel like there was a 5-month gap or a falling-out. We were just glad to see each other again. This was followed by coffee and bread with long lazy talks about yoga, the new-normal, her post-PhD, Chiang Mai as home, and career. We continue to hang out whenever it's possible. She was at Hippie Night as well.

Christine blogs:
  1. Shifting Peoplescape Of Chiang Mai July 2020
  2. Friends, Coffeemates And Breadmates Dec 31, 2019


Shereen KamalShereen Egypt
It was instant rapport and connection meeting Shereen at Alan and Nicola's house blessing. An Egyptian with a Masters in Couple Relationship, I picked tirelessly into her take on human dynamics. Like most of the invitees, she's on to the path - a shift from the corporate path to one of pursuing bliss. Predictably, there's less money but it's more fulfilling. Like the ending in the Casablanca movie, it seemed like a "start of a beautiful friendship".



The Yoga TeacherYogini United Kingdom
She has an aversion to pictures so no photo here. And she seems particular with her privacy too, so no name. Why do I even want to write about her then? Well, 20 years down the road, I won't even know she ever existed if I don't make an effort to write about her.

She has that X-factor about her. That's the first thing I noticed about her at the yoga place. There's nothing imposing about her, but you notice her - even if she hasn't uttered a word yet. We eventually got acquainted. I was curious and engaged, so I invited her to my usual coffee/bread indulgence for a getting-to-know-you tete-a tete. She was inconsistent in saying, "I'd love to, BUT....". And then it just happened without planning - she was across the coffee table from me. We talked, shared and traded narratives. Aloof, grounded, charming, smart, confident, alluring, and a woman of dimension, she remained an enigmatic package.



Joanne GenozaJoanne Philippines
@inhaledeeplyexhalefully
Like me, Joanne comes from the Philippines. She is one of the newest teachers at Yoga in the Park and teaches Tuesdays but quick to fill-in other days when other teachers can't. She also attended all my classes, teaches online yoga and studies Flamenco with Victoria. I call her the Energizer Bunny who simply can't get enough of life. She's newly "conscious" and quite devoted to being on the path with a sense of urgency. Her zeal, dedication and almost single-minded focus on being awake are just inspiring.



Ending Thoughts
Peoplescape can be taken for granted in Chiang Mai given its abundance. But back in Nong Khai where I was stranded for 3 months due to the pandemic lockdown, this was rare. There were hardly any travelers and the ex-pats who lived there were old and would rather go to bars and get hammered with the bar girls. The Thais were aloof and distant. I had to download Tinder just to get any kind of social interaction - and even that didn't fare out. I felt stuck in a void. I am now in Chiang Mai with renewed lenses on just how wonderful and vibrant this place is - largely for the people it keeps.

With the visa amnesty extended to Sep 26, I get a new lease on life in Chiang Mai. The borders will soon be opened, new people will be arriving, and the ones stuck here can finally leave. In the meantime, I'll just hold on to this golden moment while I am in the company of these wonderful people. It won't be long before turn of events take a shift for another chapter.

--- Gigit (TheLoneRider)
YOGA by Gigit Yoga by Gigit | Learn English Learn English | Travel like a Nomad Nomad Travel Buddy | Donation Bank Donation Bank for TheLoneRider



Reader Comments:

Marina ForsterMarina Puerto Rico
Brazen Travel Thoughts
(Aug 3, 2020) So blessed to have your energy and company in my life Git!!!🙏 See you soon!

Leave a comment?

Chiang Mai Peoplescape blogs

  1. Shifting Peoplescape of Chiang Mai July 31, 2020
  2. The Podcast Series: Alan "Heart Math" Strydom Jul 17, 2020
  3. Friends, Coffeemates and Breadmates (Dec 2019) Dec 31, 2019
  4. Coffeemates and Breadmates (Nov 2019) Nov 30, 2019
  5. Coffeemates and Breadmates (Oct 2019) Oct to Nov 5, 2019
  6. The Conscious Peoplescape of Chiang Mai Aug 31, 2019
  7. Kaleidoscope of Chiang Mai's Peoplescape July 27, 2019
  8. The Outsiders (people you need to push out of your sacred circle) May 31, 2019
  9. Fascinating Peoplescape of Chiang Mai May 22, 2019
  10. Peoplescape of Chiang Mai Jan 24 - Mar 13, 2019
  11. Chiang Mai's Amazing Peoplescape Apr 9-23, 2016

Next stop:

Manipuraka (Navel Chakra) Chiang Mai, Thailand

Manipuraka (Navel Chakra)

(Aug 5, 2020) Manipuraka Chakra resides at the navel. A person at Manipuraka is strong in body and mind. He is a mover and shaker. He dominates and asserts. He also wonders if this is all that life is all about....more »»


Google Map

Chiang Mai, Thailand

important places in Chiang Mai IMPORTANT PLACES
Chiang Mai Bus Station Bus Station
Chiang Mai Train Station Train Station
Chiang Mai airport Chiang Mai International Airport
Nong Buak Hard Park Nong Buak Hard Park - free yoga classes daily

hotels in Chiang Mai HOTEL
Chiang Mai Arun Dara Villa Arun Dara Villa - 7 exclusive rooms, 1 swimming pool for every room, grand opening
Chiang Mai Nawa Sheeva Hotel Nawa Sheeva Hotel - big rooms, high ceiling, salt-water pool, restaurant, cafe
Chiang Mai Nawa Saraan Hotel Nawa Saraan Hotel - low density (4 spacious rooms), stone garden setting, Koi fish pond, Old City location
Arun Suite, Chiang Mai Arun Suite - 3 bedrooms in a 3-storie guesthouse within Old City, ideal for families

birds nest restaurants in Chiang Mai RESTAURANT
La Pizza Chiang Mai La Pizza Chiang Mai - Italian pizza, pasta, wine, dessert, coffee
Chiang Mai birds nest restaurant Natural Bird Nest by Burapa - authentic bird's nest soup

Thai massage in Chiang Mai WELLNESS
ITM  International Training Massage School ITM - International Training Massage School - Chiang Mai's most prestigious massage school
Float Chiang Mai Float Chiang Mai - sensory deprivation float pod
Chiang Mai, Royal Thai Lanna Massage Zira Spa - upscale authentic Thai massage and spa treatment

motorcycle rental in Chiang Mai MOTORBIKE RENTAL
Chiang Mai birds nest motorcycle Tawan Bike - motorcycle rental | +66 91 635 2863 | Si Phum, Mueang Chiang Mai District, Chiang Mai 50200



USEFUL INFORMATION

Chiang Mai FYI / Tips
  • crop-burning season in Chiang Mai is between late Feb to early April. But laws change everytime. This year, 2019, there is a 61-day ban on burning so the farmers started burning early. When my plane was approaching Chiang Mai on Jan 24, 2019, there was already a thick blanket of smog covering the entire city (and beyond). But within the city itself, you won't feel it (but that doesn't mean the air is healthy). To monitor air conditions in real time, refer to site: Chiang Mai Air Pollution: Real-time Air Quality Index (AQI)
  • hot season begins March and lasts until June
  • wet season begins July and lasts until September
  • best time to visit Chiang Mai is mid-September to mid-February - after the monsoon and before the burning
  • you have to try Khao Soi, this is north Thailand's culinary staple
  • the tourist area where most of the hotels, restaurants, ticket offices, tour operators are, is located in the Old City
  • to exchange your dollars to Thai Baht, the Super Rich Money Exchange give the best rates. There are many branches scattered around Chiang Mai
  • get a red cab (songthao) outside the train station for Baht 50 (instead of paying B100 if inside the train station) to Old City - if you haggle nicely enough...I did!
  • shared red taxi (songthao) - B30 standard fare plying all over Old City
  • for only B50/day, best to rent a bike to go around the Old City - it's a 2.5km2 with lots to discover
  • FREE daily yoga classes from 9:00am to 10:15am at Nong Buak Hard Park (southwest corner of Old City). Resident and passing-through teachers take turns conducting yoga classes.
Blues/Jazz Bars in Chiang Mai
  1. North Gate Pub - at Chang Phueg Gate, great Tuesday jam session, Blues on Sundays by the 11pm band
  2. Taphae East - 88 Thapae Rd. (just north of Night Bazaar). Fridays at 9:30pm by Chiang Mai Blues Band
  3. Boy Blues Bar - at the Night Bazaar. Mondays at 9:30pm is open mic
Chiang Mai Cost Index
  • B60 Chiang beer
  • B250 1 hour drop-in yoga session
  • B200 one hour Thai body massage at WAYA Massage (highly recommended)
  • B50 noodle soup with meat
  • B50 coffee
  • B40 pad thai
  • B30/kilo wash-only laundry
  • B50/kilo wash+iron laundry
  • B100-150 dorm bed/night
  • B250 fan room/night
  • B30 internet cafe/hour
  • B170-190 Movies Sat-Sun and public holidays
  • B130-150 Movies weekdays
  • B100 Movies Wednesdays (movie discount day)
  • B750 1/2 day Thai cooking lessons
  • B900-1000 1 full day Thai cooking lessons
  • B400 Muay Thai boxing ticket
  • B2500 starting room rate at the luxury hotel, Nawa Sheeva (highly recommended)

  • Transportation
  • B450 bus, Chiang Mai to Bangkok
  • B160-180 bus, Chiang Mai to Pai
  • B1250 bus, Chiang Mai to Luang Prabang
  • B1650 slow boat, Chiang Mai to Luang Prabang
  • B210 bus, Chiang Mai to Chiang Rai, 3-4 hours
  • B360 Green VIP bus, Chiang Mai to Mae Sai (Thai border town for visa run to Tachileik, Myanmar)
  • B50 bicycle rental, 24 hours
  • B200 motorbike rental, 24 hours
  • B273 #51 sleeping train from Bangkok to Chiang Mai
  • B638 #7 a/c train from Bangkok to Chiang Mai
  • B50 red taxi fare from point to point
  • B100 red taxi fare from train terminal to city

  • Tours
  • B2000 full day elephant sanctuary
  • B750 Chiang Rai one-day tour
  • B1500 mountain biking scenic ride
How to Get to Chiang Mai from Bangkok by Train from Bang Sue Train Station

For more train info: Bangkok to Chiang Mai trains - departing from Hua Lamphong - MRT (Bangkok)

(I'm using Bang Sue as a starting point because I was closer to it, but you may be closer to the Hua Lamphong station)

  1. take the MRT train to Bang Sue Station. Take the #1 Exit to the north provincial trains
  2. Proceed to Counter 2. You will see an information booth, a train schedule chart and the ticket counter. Choose the train and pay at the ticket counter.
  3. daily train schedule:
    • 8:48am - #7 Train, arrive Chiang Mai 7:30pm, not sleeper, B638
    • 2:06pm - #109 Train, arrive Chiang Mai 4:05am, sleeper
    • 6:31pm - #9 Premium Train, arrive Chiang Mai 7:15am, sleeper, B938 upper deck, B1038 lower deck
    • 7:56pm - #13 Train, arrive Chiang Mai 8:40am, sleeper, B768 upper deck, B838 lower deck
    • 10:22pm - #51 Train, arrive Chiang Mai 12:10pm, sleeper, 3rd class B270 (non sleeper), 2nd class B438, B728 upper deck, B798 lower deck
Bus from Loei to Chiang Mai
  1. From Loei town center, take a tuk-tuk ride to the bus station, B30. There is only one bus station.
  2. As of June 28, 2020 (still on Covid schedule), there are only 3 night trips: 8:30pm, 9:30pm and 12 midnight. 9 hours, B470.
  3. The bus makes the following stops at the following times from a 9pm Loei departure: Phu Ruea (9:50pm), Phitsanulok (12:40am), Uttradit (2:20am), Lampang (4:35am)
  4. Final bus stop is at the Red Bus Arcade, Chiang Mai, 9 hour-trip, arriving 6am (from 9pm Loei departure).
  5. Take a red songthaew to Old City, B50. They'll try to charge you B100, but they'll take B50 (just assure the driver you won't tell the other passengers).
Chiangmai Blogs by TheLoneRider
  1. In Pursuit of Happiness Aug 2020
  2. Manipuraka (Navel Chakra) Aug 5, 2020
  3. Shifting Peoplescape of Chiang Mai July 31, 2020
  4. Yoga Class for Strength and Muscle Jul 30, 2020
  5. Yoga Class for Optimum Digestion July 29, 2020
  6. Yoga Class for Healthy Eyes Jul 27, 2020
  7. Hippie Night at Nawa Saraan Healing Space July 24, 2020
  8. The Podcast Series: Alan "Heart Math" Strydom Jul 17, 2020
  9. Yoga Class to move Prana Vayu (energy) July 11-12, 2020
  10. Movie Review: Jojo Rabbit (2019) July 11, 2020
  11. Movie Review: The Kingmaker (2019) July 8, 2020
  12. Anahata (Heart Chakra) July 5, 2020
  13. Coming Back to Chiang Mai Jun 29, 2020
  14. Goodbye Chiang Mai Jan 23, 2020
  15. Movie Review: Underwater (2020) Jan 19, 2020
  16. Prasnopanishad: Understanding Prana Jan 17, 2020
  17. Hiking the Monk's Trail Jan 15, 2020
  18. Chaturanga Jan 10, 2020
  19. Movie Review: Star Wars: Episode IX - The Rise of Skywalker (2019) Jan 7, 2020
  20. You Spooned Me Jan 3, 2020
  21. 2019: A Year in Review Dec 31, 2019
  22. Friends, Coffeemates and Breadmates (Dec 2019) Dec 31, 2019
  23. Visiting Mae Sot Dec 27-30, 2019
  24. Let's Make it About You - an Epiphany Dec 17, 2019
  25. Movie Review: Knives Out (2019) Dec 12, 2019
  26. Shut-Up! Dec 7, 2019
  27. Movie Review: Ford vs Ferrari Dec 5, 2019
  28. Roasted Red Bell Pepper Puree Dec 3, 2019
  29. Coffeemates and Breadmates (Nov 2019) Nov 30, 2019
  30. Bhujangini Mudra Nov 25, 2019
  31. Mathangini Mudra Nov 24, 2019
  32. Kaka Mudra Nov 23, 2019
  33. Movie Review: The Cave (2019) Nov 23, 2019
  34. Movie Review: Panic: The Untold Story of the 2008 Financial Crisis (2018) Nov 22, 2019
  35. Pasini Mudra Nov 20, 2019
  36. Aswini Mudra Nov 18, 2019
  37. Sambhavi Mudra Nov 16, 2019
  38. Manduka Mudra Nov 15, 2019
  39. Movie Review: Midway (2019) Nov 15, 2019
  40. Tataka Mudra Nov 14, 2019
  41. Movie Review: Zombieland: Double Tap (2019) Nov 11, 2019
  42. Sakti Calana Mudra Nov 10, 2019
  43. Vajroli Mudra Nov 9, 2019
  44. Coffeemates and Breadmates (Oct 2019) Oct to Nov 5, 2019
  45. Yoni Mudra Nov 1, 2019
  46. Movie Review: Judy (2019) Oct 31, 2019
  47. Viparita Karani Mudra Oct 31, 2019
  48. Khecari Mudra Oct 30, 2019
  49. Mahadeva Mudra Oct 28, 2019
  50. Movie Review: Roger Waters - Us + Them (2019) Oct 27, 2019
  51. Sacred Cacao - Chakra Dance Journey Oct 26, 2019
  52. Movie Review: Terminator: Dark Fate (2019) Oct 24, 2019
  53. Partner Healing with Natascha Oct 24, 2019
  54. Maha Bandha Mudra Oct 24, 2019
  55. Movie Review: Liam: As It Was (2019) Oct 23, 2019
  56. Point-Of-Failure Birthday Workout Oct 22, 2019
  57. Mula Bandha Mudra Oct 21, 2019
  58. Hugfest at Thapae Gate, Chiang Mai Oct 19, 2019
  59. Anushasan Mudra Oct 18, 2019
  60. Ling Mudra Oct 17, 2019
  61. Movie Review: Official Secrets (2019) Oct 15, 2019
  62. Jalandhara Bandha Mudra Oct 15, 2019
  63. Learning Thai with Cee Oct 13, 2019
  64. Uddiyana Bandha Mudra Oct 10, 2019
  65. Nabho Mudra Oct 9, 2019
  66. Movie Review: Joker (2019) Oct 8, 2019
  67. Maha Mudra Oct 7, 2019
  68. 20 Essential Mudras by T. Krishnamacharya Oct. 6, 2019
  69. Mindfulness Gong Bath by Vee (Veerayuth Pongsiri) Oct 3, 2019
  70. Cuddle Party by Abundant Love CM Oct 1, 2019
  71. Vayu Mudra Oct 1, 2019
  72. Movie Review: Hail Satan? (2019) Sep 29, 2019
  73. Visa-Run to Tachileik, Myanmar Sep 28, 2019
  74. Sankalpa Mudra Sep 27, 2019
  75. Surya Pradarshini Mudra Sep 26, 2019
  76. Movie Review: Ad Astra (2019) Sep 25, 2019
  77. Movie Review: Rambo 5 Sep 22, 2019
  78. Eye-Gazing at Heart Space Sep 20, 2019
  79. Prana Vayu (Pranic Wind) Sep 20, 2019
  80. 2-Week Yoga Challenge by Agnese Erba Sep 17, 2019
  81. Movie Review: Farewell Song (2019) Sep 16, 2019
  82. The Mudra Project Sep 13, 2019
  83. Movie Review: Once Upon a Time in Hollywood (2019) Sep 12, 2019
  84. Sunday Vinyasa Flow with Marina Forster Sep 8, 2019
  85. Shamanic Breathwork by Rachel Constantino Sep 4, 2019
  86. Movie Review: Yesterday (2019) Sep 3, 2019
  87. The Conscious Peoplescape of Chiang Mai Aug 31, 2019
  88. Movie Review: Midsommar (2019) Aug 28, 2019
  89. Of Winos and Yogis Aug 26, 2019
  90. Movie Review: Ready or Not (2019) Aug 22, 2019
  91. The 9 Jhanas of Buddha Aug 22, 2019
  92. Full Moon Ceremony at Heart Space Aug 15, 2019
  93. Yin Yoga - Water Element by Martina Barabas Aug 15, 2019
  94. Movie Review: The Art of Racing in the Rain (2019) Aug 14, 2019
  95. Hatha Mix Yoga with Christin Aug 13, 2019
  96. Boy Blues Bar Rocks Chiang Mai Aug 5, 2019
  97. Back to my Beloved Chiang Mai Aug 1, 2019
  98. Kaleidoscope of Chiang Mai's Peoplescape July 27, 2019
  99. Secret Sunrise: Nelson Mandela International Day July 17, 2019
  100. Movie Review: Anna (2019) July 15, 2019
  101. Farewell Picnic with Alan and Nicola July 15, 2019
  102. Movie Review: Spider-Man: Far from Home (2019) July 4, 2019
  103. Secret Sunrise: Water July 3, 2019
  104. Hotel Review: Arun Suite June 27, 2019
  105. Movie Review: Rocketman (2019) June 25, 2019
  106. Bruce Lipton: Epigentics to Transcend Genes June 24, 2019
  107. Optimizing Life thru Heart Math May 8, 15 and 22, 2019
  108. Movie Review: Aladdin (2019) June 13, 2019
  109. Connective Cacao and Sound Journey June 12, 2019
  110. Movie Review: X-Men: Dark Phoenix (2019) June 6, 2019
  111. Chiangmai BLUES June 6, 2019
  112. Movie Review: John Wick 3 - Parabellum (2019) June 4, 2019
  113. Hatha Slow Flow with Neil Jefferson June 3, 2019
  114. Meditating with One Million Meditators Movement June 1, 2019
  115. Vinyasa Happy Flow Series by Vaida May 31, 2019
  116. Muay Thai at the Chiang Mai Boxing Stadium May 30, 2019
  117. Yoga Flow Through the 7 Chakras by Sabrina Pilz May 30, 2019
  118. The Outsiders (people you need to push out of your sacred circle) May 31, 2019
  119. Fascinating Peoplescape of Chiang Mai May 22, 2019
  120. World Meditation Day at Heart Space May 21, 2019
  121. Movie Review: Avengers: Endgame (2019) May 14, 2019
  122. Movie Review: Arctic (2018) May 13, 2019
  123. Abs Yoga by Gigit May 12, 2019
  124. Kundalini and Vinyasa Yoga with Nicola Symons May 10, 2019
  125. Secret Sunrise Interactive Dance May 9, 2019
  126. Tok Sen Massage from Ying May 8, 2019
  127. Bruschetta: Nawa Saraan Style Apr 22, 2019
  128. Thai Cooking at Pra Nang Thai Cookery School Apr 20, 2019
  129. Movie Review: Hellboy (2019) Apr 15, 2019
  130. Bonding with the Elephants in Chiang Mai Apr 11, 2019
  131. Ziplining in Chiang Mai with Eagle Track Zipline Apr 10, 2019
  132. Movie Review: Shazam! (2019) Apr 4, 2019
  133. Movie Review: Captive State (2019) Mar 27, 2019
  134. Getting Thai Massage from Chiang Mai's Best (Lar Thanakrit Khamtanong) Mar 21, 2019
  135. Movie Review: Captain Marvel (2019) Mar 19, 2019
  136. Being the Soul of Nawa Saraan Hotel Mar 18, 2019
  137. Peoplescape of Chiang Mai Jan 24 - Mar 13, 2019
  138. Movie Review: Vox Lux (2018) Mar 2, 2019
  139. Movie Review: The Favourite (2018) Feb 25, 2019
  140. Curing Cancer with Yoga? Feb 21, 2019
  141. Movie Review: Alita Battle Angel Feb 19, 2019
  142. International Training Massage School (ITM): Level 1 Feb 11-15, 2019
  143. Sandesch Album Launch by Christoph Joerg Feb 13, 2019
  144. Movie Review: Spider-Man - Into the Spider-Verse (2018) Feb 3, 2018
  145. Movie Review: Green Book Jan 30, 2019
  146. Meditation in a Sensory Deprivation Tank at Float Chiang Mai Jan 29, 2019
  147. Bohemian Rhapsody (2018) Jan 27, 2019
  148. Movie Review: Aquaman Jan 26, 2019
  149. Reiki Share at the Mastermind Brain Spa Jan 26, 2019
  150. Resuming Life in Chiang Mai Jan 24, 2019
  151. 4 Days in Chiang Mai at Nawa Saraan Hotel Jan 2-6, 2019
  152. Mike Chong Aug 8, 2018
  153. An Intimate Conversation with my Universe in Chiang Mai Aug 8, 2018
  154. Kneaded and Pampered at Zira Spa Aug 4, 2018
  155. Savoring a Baht 3,500 Birds Nest Soup at Natural Bird Nest by Burapa Aug 3, 2018
  156. Yoga Exploration at The Yoga Tree with Gernot Aug 1, 2018
  157. Laughter Yoga with Saffiya Arnous July 31, 2018
  158. Yoga with Adam at Hidden House Yoga, Chiang Mai July 29, 2018
  159. 2 Weeks in Chiang Mai July 25 - Aug 7, 2018
  160. A First Timer in Chiang Mai Apr 9-23, 2016
  161. Chiang Mai's Amazing Peoplescape Apr 9-23, 2016
  162. Dance Mandala in Chiang Mai at The Yoga Tree Apr 19, 2016
  163. Songkran Waterfight Festival in Chiang Mai Apr 13-15, 2016
  164. Border Crossing from Siem Reap (Cambodia) to Bangkok (Thailand) to Chiang Mai April 9-10, 2016

Travel Tips for Thailand

How to Get a 60-Day Thai Tourist Visa and then Extend by another 30 Days

    60-Day Thai Tourist Visa

    NOTE: There is no need to go back to your country to get the Thai tourist visa. Any major city with a Thai Embassy will do. Apparently there is also no need to have an invitation from a Thai establishment to justify the visa.

  1. Bring the following to the Thai embassy:
    a) proof of money (bank statement will suffice)
    b) flight booking to Thailand
    c) onward flight back to your country from Thailand
    d) filled-in tourist visa form
    e) 2 passport pictures
    f) hotel booking in Thailand (they didn't ask me for this but better be safe)
    g) passport with at least 6 months validity
  2. After handing over all the documents, they will ask you to come pick your passport with the visa the following day from 4 to 5pm. That's it!
  3. NOTE: after 2 successful attempts, I was already questioned the 3rd time.

    30-Day Extension

    NOTE: When your 60-day visa is close to expiry and you want to extend your stay. No need to leave Thailand.

  1. bring the following to the Immigration Office:
    a) passport (make sure your Tourist Visa hasn't expired yet)
    b) Baht 1900
    c) photocopy of your passport + visa duration date stamp + TM6 card (white immigration card) and sign all the copies
    d) completed TM7 visa extension form (available at the Immigration Office)
    e) one 4cmx6cm passport picture
  2. submit the above to the Front Desk. They will give you a stub with your number on it. Take a seat and wait for your number to be called
  3. when your number is called, your picture will be taken. Then go back to your seat. They will call you again.
  4. when they call you again, they'll give you your passport with your extended visa. That's it!
  5. when there are no lines, the whole process can take only 10 minutes
General Travel Tips
  1. arrive early - in case there is a snag (visa snag, documentation snag, transport ticket snag, etc.), you will have ample time to troubleshoot the problem if you arrive early (to the airport, to the bus terminal, etc.)
  2. put detailed itinerary on the Calendar apps of your smart-phone according to timelines - this is where you do all your thinking and planning. Once written down, you don't have to think anymore while you are on the journey...you just follow the steps. This frees your mind for something else that might happen while you are already en route
  3. avoiding scams - as a general rule, I ignore the touts or anyone I don't know who call out to me. The calling comes in many forms - "Hi! Where are you from?", "Excuse me! Excuse me!", "Where are you going?". I don't look them in the eye and I remain non-verbal with them. If you reply to them, you just gave them an 'in' to hound you. In order not to look rude, I smile and wave the 'not interested' hand to them, without looking at them.
  4. power bank - hand-carry your power bank. Do not check it in. You can be called in when you are already inside the plane to go all the way to the loading dock so you can personally remove the power bank...and chances are, you'll have to surrender it to them. And you might delay the plane departure!

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