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Thrilling Adventure ...
Just Around the Corner

LOOKING for fresh air, beautiful countryside and an adventure? Then you will be glad you chose Chiangmai in northern Thailand for its wealth of exotic flora and fauna. Northern Thailand is a place that has everything for visitors who want to get to know nature at its finest. Fascinating life forms such as frogs, snakes, lizards and numerous species of insects are part of the adventure of a trek. Treks provide many activities to explore the local culture and to heighten appreciation of alluring nature.

[ Trekking - 13K ] A trekking tour is an invigorating exploration of the beauty of nature. On this adventure visitors will see forests, rivers, streams, plants, animals and kindhearted local people who live in the hills and valleys. Although not many mountain dwellers ride elephants, visitors often do travel this way. The view from elephant back is thrilling. Rafting Visitors have the opportunity to hike along the majestic local topography and to delve into the customs through age-old activities such as walking, horse, donkey or elephant riding, boating, rafting, and camping the night in hilltribe villages. Extensive and spectacular limestone cave systems can be explored in northern Thailand in the provinces of Chiangmai, Chiangrai and Mae Hong Sorn.

The month of September has more rainfall and so a few more challenges may be incurred during the trek such as more faster flowing streams and rivers. But your guide will ensure that you will not be placed in any dangerous situation. It's just a matter of man versus the elements. And most visitors seeking soft adventure are looking for a challenge to face the wide and open spaces.

Nowadays visitors have a greater awareness of preserving the environment by focusing their attention toward ecological friendly tourism. Some visitors lack knowledge and understanding about the aims of trekking. Sometimes they inadvertently do something unknowingly causing embarrassment to the simple villagers. Remember that you are a guest in this country. Behave as if you are an ambassador to promote international goodwill. (Don't be an evil alien like the creatures in the sci-fi movie Independence Day!!)

The information included in this article should give you a general view as to what a soft adventure experiences such as education as well as an extraordinary enjoyable memory of a once in a lifetime holiday.

North Thailand rates high in terms of quality of life including plenty of green spaces to explore. Trips into the mountains offer the best of nature's finery. The mountain ranges of northern Thailand are part of a geological range stretching southeasterly from Yunnan in southern China and resurfacing in Irian Jaya (Java). The magnificent view from the mountains over to the distant surrounding mountains looking down into the broad fertile valley is breathtaking. You'll feel like a bird soaring through the sky.

Night Safari

The Night Safari in Chiang Mai is a great place for families to see to 60 species of animals in realistic in a natural setting of trees and streams. Many children enthusiastically expressing their amazement and wonder when they spot the animals in the cool dark evening from the set of the observation vehicle.

Those families enjoying an evening out ride though the Savanna and Predator Prowl on open air buses with clear overroofs. There is a guide on every bus to explain in Thai and English languages. The English speaking guide is available selected buses according to time schedule.

Mostly the animals walk freely in the enclosure often eating very near the edge of the small lanes near the passing buses. Don't worry, the
lions, tigers, cheetahs and hyennas are safely secured in their enclosures and they do not walk around freely.

The third exhibition is walk around the swan lake. At 7pm, 8 pm and 9 pm every evening, visitors sit around the lake to watch the fantasy dancing fountain show. A rainbow of colorful lights and streams of water follow the rhythm of the music in the 10 minute presentation. This show is included in the ticket price.

Now there are lodging accommodations to stay overnight at the Night Safari, The lodgings are surrounded by green forest and most are high on hills to enjoy a panamora view of the safari forest top.

Six rooms can accommodate parents with 2-3 children. Another six rooms can accommodate parents with 1 child and six rooms for couples. Guests can travel within night safari on electric golf carts by phoning the reception and or housekeeper for the vehicle. Also, guests can request to have Thai massage in their rooms.

Soon the camping area will be open with modern rounded roof tents. An above-the-ground walkway will prevent wear and tear on the natural forest ground. A building is renovated to house a restaurant with conference room and other activities rooms.

Local Mountains

Let's start off with sights that promise to be the most alluring for outdoor lovers. Located 100 kms to the south of Chiangmai, Doi Inthanon is the tallest mountain in northern Thailand at 2,595 meters. Here are sightseeing spots plus facilities and accommodations enough to be able to conveniently explore for several days. This is only one of ten mountains visitors can enjoy in national parks throughout northern Thailand. Another popular mountain, Doi Ang Khang, is considered by Thais to be "Thailand's Little Switzerland" due to the cool days, chilly nights and the panoramic view from the mountain. The height is almost 2,000 meters. Visitors should arrange advance reservations to stay overnight at this location on the way to Pai, Mae Hong Sorn province.

Ping River Sightseeing

One doesn't have to venture very far to enjoy a rendezvous with Mother Nature. The Ping River passes through Chiangmai city. Travelling in a long tail boat and seeing the beautiful residences made from teak along the river is very pleasant. Villagers still live at the river's edge amid the lush green foliage. The boat landing is at Wat Chaimongkol, Charoenprathet Road.

Chiang Mai Zoo

[ Monkey - 7K ]How else can one be part of the great outdoors? A popular place very close to the city at the foothills of Doi Suthep mountain is the Chiangmai Zoo. Bird-watching can be done with ease at the Chiangmai Zoo on Huay Kaew Road. Most common bird species of northern Thailand fly freely there. You can buy a handy reference book about the birds of Thailand available in all bookstores to become familiar with this subject. There are animals from over 300 countries residing in the Chiangmai Zoo. The animals are treated well and have comfortable quarters.

There's plenty of space for all throughout the 1,000 acres. The walk through open-air aviary is where to find over 100 species of birds that are native to southeast Asia and birds that live in a warm climate.

Your first camping experience camping in Thailand could even be at the Chiangmai Zoo around a large reservoir. Booking a campsite with the Public Relations before noon entitles campers to a campfire with evening fireside supper. Around sunset the serenity is felt and the air is cooler than in the distant city. As dusk settles from the altitude of the Zoo campsite, the enchanting view of twinkling lights of Chiangmai by night can be seen.

Elephant Riding

[ Elephant ride - 7K ] Elephant riding is certain to be a new exciting experience for most visitors. An elephant safari via a confident, surefooted beast of the jungle is in great demand. These safaris are conducted mainly in the mountains. For those who don't have much time a safari can be arranged at areas near Chiangmai in Mae Rim. It is easy to arrange a 1-day excursion with one of the friendly travel agents listed in our magazine.

We hope this brief introduction is useful during your communion with nature. For more information readers can contact our recommended advertisers. The Tourism Authority of Thailand has information at their office on Lumpoon Rd.

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