Mae Sai

by hamishandkat

Mae Sai sits at the northernmost point of Thailand on the border with Myanmar(Burma). After a pleasant ride on a local bus from Ciang Rai, we lobbed in here for a couple of nights to check out a few recommendations we had recieved for Mae Salong and Doi Tong.

Again, we rented a bike and took off for the hills on some steep windy roads. Riding a 100cc bike with semi-automatic (clutchless) transmission proved interesting, as most times the bike was either revving it’s mammaries off or struggling to climb some of the hills. We made it to a couple of wats, and spent some time at a border station overlooking Myanmar.

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Dodging rain clouds, we headed for Mae Salong. Again, asking nearly everyone along the way, it took us way longer than expected but we found a nice hilltop village amongst tea plantations and met James, a homestay owner who had us in for a few free cups of green tea. He explained to us that that evening would be a celebration for full moon, in line with the hill tribes animist beliefs. He showed us around and as soon as the latest rain shower had stopped we made our exit and went to find something to eat.

Long story short… We didn’t find much in the way of food, but we did find fireworks. I made a quick dash across the road to befriend a child with a lighter, borrow an umbreella and engage in some pyrotechnics.

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We haven’t really covered huge distances on motorbikes so far… Most of the time the roads are either crap or steep or windy so maximum speed is about 30kph. Heading back to Mae Sai from Mae Salong was a lot better, with some beautiful winding roads that were fairly level and in good condition so we were able to sit on 60kph almost all the way back to the highway, and then 70kph back to town to have some dinner looking over the river to Myanmar.

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