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Visiting again the Wat Sri Mongkol in Tha Wang Pha

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Last week did visit with a guest the now famous Wat Sri Mongkol in Tha Wang Pha in Nan province, North Thailand. Originally just a village temple called Wat Kong but on a nice location with views over the mountains and rice fields. And a smart monk who started a small museum in a teak-wooden house next to the temple. And it became a major tourist attraction for Thai tourists to visit. And so came the coffee shops, the souvenir shops, the second parking place and of course more selfie opportunities. In my travel-blog you will find more postings about this temple but following are some more photos. This time not of the temple itself but of all the people making selfies. Well and 2 photos of the building of a new part of the temple. And as you can see it has become a busy place!








Moonrise & moonset in Pua

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Besides sunrises & sunsets I also love moonrises & moonsets, in the serie balcony photos you will also see photos like this. First the moonrise over the mountains of Doi Phu Kha and the next morning moonset behind the Wat Phuket. Photos were made with my Sony RX100 in my hand. Next time will try a tri-pod.


Sunset in Pua, North Thailand

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A beautiful sunset seen from our balcony. The small bungalow you see is our bungalow Non Na Pua Homestay. I love sunsets!

Sunrise in Pua, North Thailand

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Today at 6:30am it was 5.9℃ in our garden in Pua, North Thailand. And for most Thai people, and me included, that is bloody cold! But beautiful sunrise with total clear sky and slightly fog over the mountains of Doi Phu Kha. Imagine houses without heating, people without good warm cloths, houses build to be cool and people who are totally not used to cold weather like this. High in the mountains there is even frost. People from south & central Thailand are flocking to North Thailand to experience the cold weather. You like to experience the cool weather of Nan province and the slow life of Pua, come to Non Na Pua Homestay.


An early morning in Pua

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It has become winter in North Thailand and this morning at 6:00am it was 8℃ at our garden and at 7:30am we were on the motorbike to buy some food at a local market. It was bloody cold! I was wearing a warm shirt with long sleeves and a jumper. And a warm cap and gloves! After 20 years living in a tropical country I think under the 20℃ is cold. So we sleep under a winter blanket and wearing a pyjama. And windows are closed. Following are some photos my wife made while I was riding our Honda CUB scooter.




Staying at Riverside HouayXay Hotel in Huay Xai, Laos

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HouayXay Hotel (formerly known under another name), where I stayed in November 2019, is located right along the Mekong River. And along the main street in the center of town. See location tag. Be aware that it seems there is another hotel with almost the same name. Also be aware that although the hotel is right along the Mekong River only a few rooms have really river-view. There is no doubt it is a bit older hotel and lacks good maintenance. But everything is clean and in working order. And for me just sleeping for 1 night that is enough. And as I was with the motorbike I prefer a hotel with private on-site parking. Here even covered under the hotel! All rooms have private balcony, private bathroom with hot water, air-conditioning and an old TV. The hotel does not have a restaurant but serves some coffee & tea in the morning. And there is a huge verandah along the Mekong River, where probably once was a restaurant. Staff was very friendly and speaks a little bit English. You can…

Visiting the Wat Yai Chai Monkol in Ayuthaya

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The Wat Yao Chai Monkol is located just on the outside of the inner-city of Ayuthaya in Central Thailand and is part of the second ancient capital city of Siam (as Thailand was called until 1932). Officially named "Wat Phra Chao Phaya-Tai" and was build in 1357 by King U-Tong and originally called the "Wat Pa Kaeo". This temple features a huge chedi that can be seen from far away. You can go inside and up the Chedi for a beautiful view over Ayuthaya town. On the temple grounds you will also see a huge Reclining Buddha image. Like most temples in Ayuthaya the entrance is open from 8:00 to 17:00 and there is an entrance fee. Following are some photos of this impressive temple.





Staying at Pha Tang Meihua Resort at Doi Pha Tang in North Thailand

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Stunning location! I did stay here 1 night in November 2019 and I loved it! And as usual I always write a short review of all places I stay, now 259 Hotels, Homestay's and Guesthouses in Thailand, Laos, Cambodia and Vietnam. Have a look at Accommodation where I did stay. I have been a few times at Doi Pha Tang but did never stay overnight there. And I always passed this hotel of what I thought should have a stunning sunset view. So this time I did stay here. OK the rooms are a bit old but nicely & recently renovated. All rooms have private balcony with stunning sunset view. And all rooms have a private bathroom with toilet, shower with hot water. In the room is a fridge and free drinking water. The hotel has a restaurant for breakfast, lunch and dinner. But breakfast is served at 8:00am, what is a bit late for me so I left before breakfast. The room is a bit overpriced but it is all about location and as said the location is stunning. Staff speaks a little bit English and is …

On the motorbike to Huay Xai in Laos

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I had not been motorbike riding for a long time and missing it. So I planned a 5 days Laos trip, but I could not leave on the day I wanted and had to be back soon. So it became a 3 days Laos trip. But never mind it was good trip, next time more time and better planning. As usual my trips begin and end in Pua, Nan province, North Thailand. Following is a full trip report per day with Google Maps screen-shots of the routes I took. On the ODO-meter I made about 667 km this trip, although on the maps its looks like about 582 km. During this trip I did cross the border between Thailand and Laos at the Thai-Lao Friendship bridge at Chiang Khong, North Thailand. And I must say this was one of the most relaxed and straight-forward border crossings I did from Thailand by car or motorbike. That said I do not understand why other Thai-Lao borders are so difficult or even closed.
Day 1 from Pua to Huay Xai Until Chiang Khong this is an easy ride for me as I have done this a few times already. At…