• Travel, Thailand
    Thailand

    Thailand Itinerary

    The wonderful thing about Thailand is that there is SO much to see and do! It’s also the overwhelming thing about planning a trip there. It’s important to have a general sense of how much time you want to spend traveling city to city. We wanted to take in as much as absolutely possible so we flew between cities every time, and lost only a few hours each trip. Secondly, when choosing which island(s) to visit it’s also important to know what kind of vibe you prefer. We like having options of things to do day and night, which is why we chose Phuket. Certain islands are more difficult to…

  • Shrine Serene Light, Phuket, Thailand, travel
    Phuket,  Thailand

    Shrine of the Serene Light

    One place that was a delightful surprise was the Shrine of the Serene Light, or Sangtham Shrine – a place of worship to Chinese deities. In my weeks and weeks of research, one of the blogs, or TripAdviser, or somewhere mentioned a beautiful shrine tucked away in Phuket Town, and that it used to be accessible only by 2 discreet entrances. There was no way we weren’t going to hunt it down! Walking in, we knew we were somewhere special. Although small, the grounds and temple itself are quite extravagant and full of beautiful colors – my fave! The temple at night is STUNNING! Minus the telephone wires of course.…

  • Elephants, Chiang Mai, Elephant Nature Park, Thailand
    Chiang Mai,  Thailand

    Elephant Nature Park

    One of my favorite days OF ALL TIME was when we spent the day at Elephant Nature Park. There are many tour options from which to choose, and we decided on Elephant Trails as it sounded perfect for what we were expecting (and also b/c it was available the day we were planning to go). Holy moly did it deliver!!! We were picked up early in the morning by ENP and upon arrival, were provided our gear, which consisted of long sleeve shirt, pants and hat – we were all super cute. Just look at those high waters!  We first washed and separated bananas to feed the elephants, and all…

  • Phuket, Thailand, beach
    Thailand,  Travel Tips

    Thailand Travel Tips & Things We Learned

    ~ Always have travel TP and hand wipes/sanitizer on hand.  ~ Be prepared to have spare change in public places for restrooms as there is sometimes a small fee to use them. ~ Bangkok excluded, unless you want to spend a fortune on bottles, we couldn’t find champagne in bars to save our lives. ~ In Bangkok, cabs/tuk tuks rip you off every chance they can. They’ll say the meter is broken and charge a flat fee. Try to find a metered taxi – you’ll save TONS. ~ You cannot purchase alcohol from 2-5pm – this is strictly enforced EVERYWHERE in Thailand – or at least everywhere we went. ~…

  • Phuket Town, Night, Thailand, travel
    Phuket,  Thailand

    Exploring Phuket Town

    We made our way to Phuket Town via cab and, per usual, walked around to soak in as much of the city as possible. We found ourselves in need of some cool air and decided to pop into Macchiato House and Cakebox, a cute coffee shop in an adorable space – a minimalist vibe with a wide array of coffees. They also housed the ONE beer that I could not get enough of, Cha Tri IPA, and I loved it so much I took a pic to always remember it (of course). Craft beer lovers, pay attention – this was a real find b/c everywhere else we went served the…

  • Chiang Mai, Market, Thailand, travel
    Chiang Mai,  Thailand

    Eating Our Way Around Chiang Mai

    There is SO MUCH to say about the places we ate and drank in Chiang Mai that were incredible for so many different reasons. One of our favorite day spots was Annie’s Guesthouse and Bar, where we experienced the deliciousness that is mango sticky rice for the first time. Creamy, with juuuuuust the right amount of sweetness, I could eat mango sticky rice at every meal and probably not get sick of it. Annie’s is an open-air bar/guesthouse offering a wide selection of beers and spirits. Even more than Annie’s, we’d 100% recommend Fern Forest Café. The food, the ambiance, the service – we could have stayed all day. Outside…

  • Phuket,  Thailand

    Dear Phuket

    Dear Phuket,Your calm waters and vibrant streets were exactly what we needed for our last week in Thailand. Beachside cafes with a Chang, exploring Phuket Town and swimming with the rainbow of fish in your crystal clear water will be etched forever in my memories. Even if we had a whole year, I’m not sure we’d be able to explore the stunning beaches you so picture-perfectly display. I hope to see them all some day. After the hustle and bustle of Bangkok and Chiang Mai, we knew we’d want an extended beach time, and Phuket 100% delivered. We snorkeled around Banana Island… Lounged poolside at HQ Beach Club for a…

  • Bangkok, Thailand
    Bangkok,  Thailand

    Dear Bangkok

    Dear Bangkok, Thank you for…The sunshine. The fried chicken aromas while walking your streets. The markets (oh the never-ending markets)! The grit. The gratefulness for our lives after a tuk tuk ride. The hidden food gems you revealed to us. The rooftop champagne. And especially for the people always quick to smile, to say hello. It’s been a wonder. Truly. xo Many people I spoke to told me not to really bother with Bangkok – that it smells and it’s crowded. These points are true, but Andrew and I loved being welcomed to Thailand by Bangkok! Living in Chicago definitely helps…we’re accustomed to traffic, people congestion and funky smells.☺ That said,…

  • Chiang Mai Streets
    Chiang Mai,  Thailand

    Dear Chiang Mai…

    Dear Chiang Mai, Walking your streets was like reading a great book where the story gets better with each page turn – each one brought a new delight. The gorgeous temples everywhere, the adorable cafes tucked into alleys, the Riverwalk…I could go on and on. Thank you for being so lovely every step of the way. xo Of the places I’ve been in the world, Chiang Mai is one of my absolute favorites. Along with hosting one of the top 3 days of my entire life in the form of the Elephant Nature Park, the city opens itself up to you in the most beautiful way the more you explore…

  • Bangkok,  Thailand

    The Grand Palace

    Thailand is filled to the brim with temples, and we knew we would make the effort to see at least one. I know there are travelers that would say we’re missing out by not visiting more, but we didn’t really care to see EVERY famous temple; therefore, we decided our primary temple visit would be to The Grand Palace. While definitely stunning, full disclosure, the throngs of people hoarding around the grounds were quite a turnoff. See what I mean? Stating the obvious here, it’s HOT! Silly me thought that there would be air-con somewhere – at the ticket office perhaps; maybe they upgraded one of the temples – I…