Following from yesterdays post - Chiang Mai: The Jungle by the Side of the Road - today I would like to show you around Doi Suthep Mountain Temple, which sits at the peak of the Mountain overlooking the city of Chiang Mai.
After my long trek through the city and up the mountain jungle paths, I was a little fatigued at the sight of 309 steps to the temple complex. I have to admit, I stopped on more than one occasion to drink from my water bottle. It was around 11.30am by this point and the heat of the day was ramping up! But what a view when I reached the top...
The shimmer of the gilded Wat emblazoned gold on the pastel sky. This place truly is a site to make the spirit soar, even for those who're not religious.
Wat Phra That Doi Suthep is an important site of pilgrimage for Thai Buddhists, and it's easy to see why. The wealth and history of the nation is evident throughout the temple complex and I found it an interesting but strange juxtaposition between the flamboyance of the surroundings and the quiet peace of the meditative mind.
I wandered the temple in a tired daze. Drinking in the surroundings while letting the spirit of the place sink into my soul. I stopped at one point to write some poetry and meditate.
Nariphon buds quiver,
the monkeys fall still,
snakes cease their sliver,
the rain's pitter-patter
in uproarious clatter,
douse the sun silvered leaves.
Excerpt from poem, © Rowan Joyce, all rights reserved
The afternoon slipped by in a wavering dream of golden motifs, green swaying trees and the scent of Nariphon buds quivering in the breeze.
Until, finally the view of the city below, and my rumbling stomach drew me out of my reverie to make the long journey back to my hostel.
100% honesty 😉..... I shared a tuk tuk back to the city with a friendly family I'd got talking to in the temple. They thought I was crackers for walking all the way up to the temple. They wouldn't take no for an answer, and give me a lift back to where they were staying, which was around 2 km walk from my hostel. All in all, it was a fantastic ending to a long day. I would recommend this day trip to anyone visiting Chiang Mai. It is on pretty much every tourists to-do list, so try to get there early-ish and if you're going to hike it, set off early in the morning to avoid the heat.
As some of you may be aware, I plan on finally getting started writing a trilogy of books that have been in the planning stages for nearly a decade. This unfortunately means I can't spend the time I would like to dedicated to steem. This photographic series is my way to continue posting and contributing to steem while I work on my first novel. These shorter posts will hopefully allow me to keep in touch with all the friends I have made here. I hope that everyone understands 🙂
Check out previous posts in this series:
All pictures are my own property, unless credited below picture. If you have enjoyed this travel/photography post, you can check out my homepage @raj808 for similar content. Thanks again.