"Mountains Hopping from Doi Suthep to Mon Cham and take a deep breath to get very fresh air at Mon Muan"
We woke up at 6 am. as today the car will pick us from hotel around 8.30 am and I need time to enjoy breakfast and not hurry for packing.
We stayed at Art Mai ? Gallery Hotel last night so today our breakfast is here at Jarid restaurant inside the hotel.
The restaurant it not too big but enough space for guest. The food quite variety and good taste but the most impressive is services by their staff.
We finished breakfast and bring all luggage up to the mini van. I chose the minivan because we are two person with one big suitcase, one small suitcase, one backpack and one small bag. So, normal car seem not comfortable especially when our program is full day on hop on and hop of on the mountains.
Today we plan to visit Chiangmai Grand Canyon, Doi Suthep,Mon Cham view point and then check in at Baan Mon Muan on Mon Muan. ( Mon=Small hill which you can plant or build the cottage. Muan = Fun, Happy).
We start with Grand Canyon because this place is located on the difference direction with other places in the program. I was there 3 years ago, the simple place where you can jump from the top of to the deep water. I want to see how differenc they are now.
They changed a lot, there are fence along the walk way on the top and some area was cover by the seating area for restaurant. The water still clear like crystal but may be today is too early so still no tourist come. The admission fee increase from THB 40 Baht when I visit last time to be THB 100 but the ticket can get discount THB 20 at their restaurant.
Can not believe, now they have water park in this Grand Canyon area. We contact counter and beg them to just step in to see from the top but do not want to enjoy their activity today and they allow.
What I saw from the top view is lots of sliders. I saw a guy enjoy wake boarding.
I think this side seem more fun than another side. So, now there are two options for tourist to visit Grand Canyon in Chiangmai. If you want to enjoy simple way by walking on the top and jump to the water then go to the old one but if you want to get more extreme activities then come to another one. However, the price for the old one is THB 100 while the new one is THB 550 include unlimited riding on slider plus one time zip-lining (exclude wake board)
We were considered to try this water sport or leave it for next time. Finally, we leave it for next time as we already have full program today. Then we left from Grand Canyon and heading back to the city to continue to Doi Suthep Temple.
But on the way we got suggested from our driver to visit one old temple more than 100 years old and still open for Buddhist's activities. The name of temple is Wat Ton Kwen" (Ton Kwen is the name of the tree and Thai people named this temple because they have lots of this tree in this area in the past.
When we walked in to the temple area. We saw old buildings and salas with Traditional Lanna architecture. The temple look old but still perfect.
I met with a nice lady wearing Thai Lanna Traditional cloths with read umbrella and handmade knitting bag. I like the way she dress so I asked for her permission to take some photos of her. And she say yes with friendly smiling face.
She explained us about this temple that in the past (long time ago) when people arrange the ceremony to celebrate the Buddha's relics by the march from the one of the most famous temple name Wat Pra Than Jom Thong to the city center. The long distance make people tired and they need to drop some where on the way and they chose this temple to relax before continue to city center.
We get into the chapel and saw a beautiful main Buddha image.
Besides of beautiful Buddha image inside, notice that all the poles and the ceiling are build and made by wood with high skill wood-craving specialists.
And when we came out from the chapel and sat under the roof of Sala and have chance to talk with some Thai people who walking in to the temple and almost of them wearing Thai Traditional Lanna dress.
One of the girl said that because it closing to Buddhist lent day so many people come to the temple to donate candle to the temple. Thai people believe that if you donate candle to the temple it will support you have lighting to your life and success in all you do. Meanwhile, in the past when we do not have electricity lighting. Temple light up the candle for the monks to learn and reading in the night.
After that we continue to Doi Suthep Temple. Almost every time I travel to Chiang mai, one of the temple that I always visit to pray is Doi Suthep Temple. Now they providing cable car with very cheap price only THB 20/person for round trip. In case that you coming with old people or if you do not want to walk up by hundreds steps then cable car is good option. But we prefer to walk.
We reached to the top of the mountain in 15 minutes. They prepare area to keep our shoes as the temple not allow to wear any type of shoes when we step in to the temple area.
Today is Saturday and because it close to Buddhist Lent day so there are lots of Thai people at Doi Suthep Temple as well. But there are lots of foreigner as well, good to hear Thai guide explaining the history of Doi Suthep Temple to the foreigner.
We spent around 20 minutes for pray and enjoy beautiful architecture of the main pagoda. Then we left and walk down again.
On the way down I saw 3 hill-tribe girls. They are lovely, one chubby girl keep saying something and when I concentrate to listen to her. Amazing, she speaking 3 languages (Thai,Chinese and English) with the same meaning "You can take photo with me with any small money you wish to give to me" I can not understand Chinese but I guess that it is same meaning. But when I ask her to say the it again one by one language. Start with Thai, she did well and then I asked her say in Chinese but she speak in English. I can not stop smiling, she is so cute.
"Time flies very fast and it time for lunch (again)"
And the driver recommended the restaurant which I never been before "Sala Cafe". This restaurant locate in Mae Rim on the way to Mon Cham which is our next stop so we agreed to stop there for lunch.
This restaurant is a old house with beautiful decoration mix with Thai Lanna style and European furniture. First thing that I like when we get in to the restaurant is the dress which all waitress wearing is hill-tribe style and they are very beautiful.
All area are open air. They have main house available for around 10 tables in the house and also at the balcony.
Firstly, we order drink, mine is "honey lemon soda" and I like it so much.
This meal we order a la cart and was very surprise with the size of the dish and the prices is very cheap.
I ordered fried duck with spicy sauce serve with rice. I like the taste of the duck, crispy skin and soft meat. But the size is too big so I can not finish it.
After finished lunch and before we left this restaurant, I walked around deep inside and found that they have another small house with two level. On the ground floor set up with 5 small tables but all the table are suit for 2 persons. It good for couple who prefer quite zone.
And there are some area for big family or group of friends. The big garden with good decoration and lots of trees make the place cool down under the shade of the trees so even it is open air but we do not feel hot.
We left the restaurant and heading up to the mountain."Mon Cham" waiting for us there.
It took around 1 hour then we reached to Mon Cham. Mon is local language mean the small mountain and there are lots of Mon in this area. The one of popular one is Mon Cham.
We came here 5 years ago and that time was much difference from current. They used to plant lots of garbage and some flower but the highlight of this mountain is a stunning mountain view.
Now there are only flower in difference colors and lots of people enjoy taking photos.
There are some hill-tribe children walking around area. Now their life has changed because of the tourist so lots of hill-tribe changed their job to sell souvenir to tourist.
This rainy season help the flower grow and blooming cover the mountain.
And also there are lots of fruit in this season.
I bough some fruit from the shop which selling by hill-tribe. The prices is so cheap, THB 150/kg.
We spent around 30 minutes on Mon Cham as there is another place that we are coming for, Mon Muan.
We came here and stay one night since 5 years ago. I love this terrace where I can see lots of mountain.
This time we arrive on the harvest period.
I was lucky to have chance to go down and see they pick the vegetable closely.
Farmer picked lots of vegetable from this farm and send to the Royal Project near the farm.
And the reason that I can hold the vegetable in my arm and keep it close to my face is to show how big size they are but most of all they are none insect spray. All the farm who want to join the Royal Project they have to guarantee not to use chemical in their farm (fertilizer is allow).
And because they do not use chemical or insect spray that's why they built the cottage for tourist around their farm. And these vegetable also serve on table for our breakfast.
We were lucky that got the room very close to the farm. We smell the fresh vegetable and got very good view.
The room have living room on ground floor with big terrace while the bedroom is on second floor with big balcony as well.
In the bedroom decorate with very nice furniture and the most I like is there are lots of pillow in living room and bedroom.
The room with air-con but they have windows around so we can open to get fresh air instead of air-con if we want.
Beside of the bedroom I also like their bathroom.
Moreover, they put roses in bedroom, in the living room and also in the bathroom. So lovely decoration.
And even outside the room they also plant the roses.
It was raining in the evening so we did not see beautiful sunset moment today. We had dinner inside the resort, the menu are simple but the taste is good. But brownie and home made ice-cream is so good.
If you have special occasion, i suggest to reserve the table at the balcony as you will see nice view.
We finished One Day Trip to Mon Cham completely. All places which we visit today are so nice and I got lots of photos for our memory. If you are already in Chiang Mai and looking for one day trip and if you do not mine to unpack and pack for staying one night on the mountain. I suggest to try, there are many choices of small resort on the mountain where you can take a deep breath in the morning from the balcony of your room.
1.If you want to drive to Mon Cham please make sure that you can drive up on the hill as the road quite narrow and many sharp curves.
2.Toilet on Mon Cham is not good condition so be prepared.
3.The parking area on Mon Cham quite limited so suggest to visit in the early morning
4. If you want to stay on the mountain, make reservation in advance to make sure you get the room. As now there are tourists coming every day.