Because I have an open night tonight, I wanted to take advantage of the time and post about one of my favorite spots here in Chiang Mai. I’ve visited this temple MANY times and I love it more and more with each visit.
I went with some of our volunteers on Sunday for what might have been my last time and tried my best to capture the beauty and tranquility of Wat Phra That Doi Suthep in these pictures. Overlooking the city from its mountain throne, Doi Suthep is one of northern Thailand’s most sacred temples. Just outside of the temple walls, you will find the perfect lookout point. This is my very favorite spot! You can stand at the point and listen to the hum of the jungle while looking out on the beautiful city of Chiang Mai! It is so peaceful and picturesque. The wat (temple) itself is a beautiful example of northern Thai architecture, reached via a steep, 306-step staircase. The staircase has a serpent-like dragon on each side that represents the hardships of the world and the path to enlightenment.
While making your journey up the stairs, you can usually see these cute girls in traditional dress, ready to pose for your camera if you pay them a few baht. I usually hand them a few baht and walk on by, but this time I really wanted to get to know them. They had so much spunk and personality and they loved it when I would take a shot and then let them see the photo.
My favorite was the littlest girl. As you can see from the first image, she started out extremely shy. She only let me take the following picture so that she could see herself on my camera. When she caught a glimpse of her photo, her naturally shy demeanor changed and she lit up because she saw how beautiful she looked. Sunday was a great day to visit Doi Suthep because the people in Thailand have been celebrating Dharma Day, one of the most important dates in the Buddhist calendar as it marks the day the religion was established. Although I am not Buddhist, I love learning about and being a part of their culture. I loved witnessing the devotion and faith of the hundreds of people that made the journey to Doi Suthep to pray and worship during their sacred holiday.Here are a couple more pictures that I really liked! The first picture is of a legit Bangkok Harley Davidson biker gang! I was so happy and surprised when they asked to get a picture with me! I definitely don’t “fit in” to this picture but I love it all the same. I also got to participate in a monk blessing. This took place in the temple and the monk said (chanted) a prayer and then sprinkled holy water on everyone. We then went one by one and received a yarn wrist band. It is my understanding that if this wrist band is worn until it falls off on its own, then you will be blessed with good luck!