Way up in the north of Thailand, lays a small town called Pai. This is a popular town among backpackers as it is a very nice place to go and relax and take in the scenery of vast mountains and the odd waterfall. But if there is one thing to say about Pai, is getting there can be quite the trip. A road that spirals around mountains with sharp switch backs. Many people do not make it all the way with out the help of drugs or they just get sick and puke into there bag.
To get a bus(By bus I mean a mini van) to Pai is not hard. You can arrive at the bus station in the morning and pick up a ticket for the same day. My ticket cost me 150 Baht for a bus with air con. The trip takes about 3-3.5 hours from Chiang Mai which is where many go to Pai from. This generally should be fine for most travellers going to a mini paradise.
But even the most seasoned traveler may have trouble with the road ahead. The twists and turns are fast and sharp you feel your stomach turn as you go through the hills, 762 curves in the short drive do add up. You become light headed with the change in elevation. The mixture is hell for many. I personally generally do not get motion sickness when traveling but the road to Pai, might as well be a roller coaster ride. A 3.5 hour rollercoaster ride. I witnessed people getting sick in our little bus, asking other for gravol, or anything that may help settle their stomachs.
But as long as you can survive the rollercoaster ride that is the road to Pai its well worth going! The little townsite has much to offer. As I have said in my last post that Thailand and much of SE Asia is under going a drought right now. So when we arrived to Pai everything was very smoky, as there was bushing burnings going on. I found this to turns the normally blue skies of Pai grey and the drought was seen when we went to water falls. The water falls lacked water and the great viewpoints were ruined by the grey smoke. But non-the less Pai was fun to visit. Pay still has much to be proud of, with a lovely night market down its walking street you can get cheap eats that are really good.
I visited Pai canyon, it had an awesome landscape to explore. It showed Thailands beauty even amongst the smoke of the brush fires. Running along cliff sides with no barriers is something we would never see in Canada at a popular destination such as this. I found the best time to go was during the day. I decided it was a good spot to get a sunset photo. But when I arrived it was packed with people trying to get the same photo. I got much better photos in the middle of the day when no one was around.
To get around Pai, I think most people rent scooters. Now if you have never rode a motorbike before, BE CAREFUL! You meet tons of people in and around Pai who get in accidents. Not to mention most travel insurance will not cover your accident if you don’t carry a license in your home country to drive motorbikes. I know of 2 people while I was there that got in accidents just riding there scooters. Another alternative is you can hire taxis to the sites or if you can handle the thai heat bicycles can be rented as well.
Hope you enjoyed this post! Thanks for reading!
Have you been to Pai before?
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