Outside, the sweet smells of lemon grass and green basil emanate from a vast and beautiful garden. The sound of motor bikes cruising down dirt paths pierce the silence as a cloud rolls in and rests on the edge of the mountain. Colorful long-tail boats float down old river canals, passing ornate and ancient temples.
Thailand is known for its’ sacred landscapes, fresh local and international cuisine (little-to-no frozen food is consumed by Thai people), golden shrines, forested mountains, friendly Buddhist culture, and is home to some of the world’s most beautiful beaches.
While it’s typically an expensive and long flight to get there, once there, Thailand is extremely affordable.
The famous Reclining Buddha statue at Wat Pho in Bangkok weighs 5.5 tons and is almost 50 meters tall and over 150 feet long. The Buddha’s feet have auspicious images inlaid with the mother-of-pearl with the center of the feet containing a symbol for the chakra or energy point. Reclining Buddha represents his entry into Nirvana, hence his end to all reincarnations.
A vendor from a floating village in Bangkok paddles up to to sell Buddha statues, souvenirs, snacks, and chilled refreshments.
A colorful wooden long tail boat passes by on Klong Saen Saeb, a canal located in Bangkok, Thailand’s largest city. Boat’s can be hired for about $35 US, for a one hour boat ride, and an up close look at how Thai people live on the river.
International cuisine, Japanese sushi, is sold by vendors at Chiang Mai’s Sunday night market.
Monks stand outside of their temple Wat Maharan in the early evening on the last day of Buddhist Lent, where monks retreat on the temple grounds to meditate during rainy season.
A pdf version of this article, thanks to The Chronicle.