A Travellerspoint blog

Bangkok - Chiang Rai

Carnations, clock towers, cabbages and condoms.

sunny 36 °C
View Footloose in Laos 2012 on Grete Howard's travel map.

Time to leave the hustle and bustle of Bangkok behind and head for the airport for a flight to Chiang Rai in the north of Thailand.

Chiang Rai

Our hotel, the Legend, is a sprawling resort on the banks of the river, some distance from the town itself. Very well laid out with great attention to detail, it was a shame that we weren't to spend much time here. Two hours after checking in (a quick re-pack for the next couple of days and a wander around the hotel grounds to take some photos) we grabbed a couple of cycle rickshaws and headed to the clock tower.


Having missed our friends Jen and Simon by five hours in Nairobi last July and by 200 miles in India in November, we were hoping to finally be in the same place at the same time in Chiang Rai. In an email arranging the get-together, Jen jokingly mentioned that Simon wanted to wear a red carnation and carry a copy of the Times, so we packed a couple of plastic flowers and a newspaper. With times being hard (pun intended), we opted for a copy of the free Nailsea, Clevedon and Portishead Times rather than the more expensive national paper.


As Jen and Simon didn't know where they would be staying in Chiang Rai, the logical place to arrange to meet them seemed to be by the clock tower in the middle of town. Built in 2008 to honour king Bhumibol Adulyadej, the clock tower is an architectural delight or a grotesque monstrosity, depending on how you look at it. Three times each evening a sound and light show lasting seven minutes is put on for tourists.


Having been here for a couple of days already, Jen and Simon had checked the place out and found a suitable restaurant for us, Cabbages and Condoms where the food is guaranteed to not make you pregnant. The food was excellent, the d├ęcor surreal with life-sized statues made from condoms, but the service left a little to be desired. All the food was brought to the table, but no plates, which we had to ask for twice before one arrived, and then ask again for another. Still only two of us had cutlery, and another request only brought one more set. Finally we had a complete collection of plates, cutlery and food. As is typical of Thailand, starters and main course dishes were brought out all at the same time.


Posted by Grete Howard 08:18 Archived in Thailand

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Haha! sounds like the service we got in Bali most of the time :o)

by Helen

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