Pai & Mae Hong Son

Wat Phra That Suthon Mongkhon Khiri at night, very beautiful.

Mae Hong Son

 

The initial run out of Chiang Mai is quite gentle but the hills quickly appear as you turn towards the Burmese border and the road from Mae Sariang to Mae Salit Luang could bring the unprepared to tears.

On the upside, the scenery is stunning and you get an up-close look at many hilltribe people in an area that sees few tourists. Mae Sot is a fascinating border town, with a mix of ethnicities to observe. From Chiang Mai to Mae Hong Son is only 225 km, but it took us almost the whole day to get there. This is one of the most beautiful parts of Thailand, the problem is that riding a bike you can't look at the view. This is a very dangerous country with sheer drop offs and some of the worst hairpin bends combined with some of the worst roads.

Mae Sot lies 5 km from the Burmese border, near the end of Route 105, which swoops its way through hills and forest from Tak to Mae Sot and the Moei River Valley. The town has developed into an important trading centre and just about every ethnic group can be seen wandering the streets: Thais, Chinese, Burmese, Karen, Hmong and other mountain peoples. Although Mae Sot has quietened down over the last few years, it still has a reputation as being one of the more lawless towns in Thailand. With a flourishing, and sometimes illicit, trade in teak and gems and drugs - this is perhaps unsurprising.

The Temple hosts a very good craft market at night.
Night time on the lake.
Wat Phra That Suthon Mongkhon Khiri in daylight.
Wat Jong Kham, sits in the middle of Mae Hong Son. Built over 200 years ago.
Young Monks.
A prayer Tree where people write wishes on gold hearts an attach them to the tree.
A seller outside the Temple.
The Bamboo Buddha, an amazing statue woven from Bamboo.
Looking down from the Temple on the hill.
The Emerald Buddha
Warrior face.
Autumn on the road.
One of the many beautiful Temples In Mae Hong Son.
On the road to Mae Hong Son.
I love watching the ladies make these colourful garlands for different celebrations at the Temple.

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