One day trip From Chiang Mai
Golden Triangle is the meeting point of three countries – Thailand, Burma and Laos. This area has been focused longterm on the cultivation of opium 10-15 years ago. Nowadays is not allowed to culivate opium here anymore. Gateway to this area is Chiang Rai which is the capital of the eponymous region in Thailand. The town is located about an hour flight from Bangkok and Chiang Rai region is the northernmost in Thailand.The best direction from Chiang Rai it the north, towards the boundary of Thailand with Burma and Laos. Along the way it is worth a stop area called Mae Salong. This mountainous region is very picturesque, because hills are covered with greenery. you can find many tea fields, which are cultivated as a substitute for opium, which dominated local agriculture in the past decades. The recent history of this northern Thai region is quite turbulent. After the second world war here fled Chinese troops who fought against Mao’s People’s Army and at the same time did not want to (or could not) to flee to Taiwan after Chiang Kai-shek. The army continues to function as an anti-communist resistance and its operations funded just by growing opium. Since Thailand is itself surrounded by countries where the government (or ruled) communist regimes did the Thai government with the army in exile interesting trade – legitimize their stay in this area (and gave them Thai nationality) in exchange for protection of borders and protection against the influence of Communism. This proved to be a wise move, because thanks to Thailand remained the only country in the region where the communists failed to gain relevant effect. The ultimate resolution of this situation was that Thai government fight against opium cultivation and to control the entire region.By continuing the road further north you will find the town of Mae Sai, which is the border, while the northernmost Thai town. Just go over the bridge and you will find yourself already in Burmese town Tachileik. If you decide to visit just this town, you dont need a visa to cross the border.
By boat on Mekong River, you can find yourself on the mentioned golden triange between Thailand, Burma and Laos. On the other side of the river (which is now Burma) is a casino which is available for all hazard players. Gambling is banned in Thailand. Not far away is a museum where visitors can learn about the Opium almost everything. Passionate farmers can learn how to properly cultivate opium and those of the other section is devoted to explaining the ways in which it is possible to consume opium.
Another intersting place to visit around..
Karen Long Neck Villages
Their photos have appeared in numerous magazines and specialized publications – namely their necks adorned with huge rings. The First ring the small girls get at the age of five and they continue adding more and more. Weight decorations thus can be up to twenty kilograms and neck optically extended to 30 cm. These women live in small mountain town near the border with Burma and their unusual appearance attracted dozens of visitors daily. Towns are lively open-air museum and is especially interested tourists, which this special tradition still keeps alive. What do you thing about it? Im sure i do not want to have it around my neck 🙂
Wat Rong Khun – White temple
A few kilometers south of Chiang Mai is Wat Rong Khun, better known under the name of White temple. It is built entirely of smooth and creamy white concrete. To get Inside you need to cross the bridge, which is defended by 16 terrifying demons. Roof are decorated with symbols of the four elements – earth as an elephant, a mythical lizard as water, lion mane like fire and swan wings than air. Thanks to artist Chalermachaie Kositpipata – “Thai Gaudi”, who supports the reconstruction of this temple from his own financial sources. Interior adorned his unconventionally conceived paintings and mirror glass – it shows the Buddha purity and wisdom.