Thai trip: a night train to Chiang Mai

Hua Lamphong train station in Bangkok

Good evening dear readers!

I hope everything is fine with you. Here in Scotland it’s so sunny today. This morning my bf went to his English class while I did a yoga session. I love following “Yoga with Adriene” youtube tutorials, I started doing them again (after A LOT of months) yesterday after my walk/slow run and I’d like to make it a habit. After that we went to do the shopping because we had finished almost everything at home and we needed some food! Then in the afternoon I went jogging and I’ve had a lovely hot bath. Ok, so, I would like to go on with the (visual) narration of the travel to Thailand and Cambodia that we went for three months ago (it feels like a million years ago ).

Leaving at 19.35, arriving at 8.40!

On the 12th of January we took the night train who would take us from Bangkok Hua Lamphong station to Chiang Mai, in the very north of Thailand, a much quieter city full of culture, temples and nature. We were very happy to leave Bangkok and go there, also because we had read that the climate was cooler. Chiang Mai was founded in 1296 and it was the ancient Lanna capital of the independent homonymous kingdom.

The train ticket was more or less £28 (33 euro) pp, for a berth in second class with A/C. I had bought the tickets online, on 12 Go Asia. I wanted to try first class because it was so cheap and we would have had a private cabin with a sink as well, but it was full, so never mind, we had an even more authentic experience and the place was clean and comfortable.

The journey lasted 13 hours and I can genuinely tell you that they passed quickly, except for the last 2, when we couldn’t wait to arrive at the hotel to have a shower. At 8.30pm a steward came to prepare our berths, I was staying on the lower and my boyfriend on the upper.

We had curtains for privacy, space for our big backpacks and a small lightbulb inside our berths so that I could read. I only slept from 10pm to 4.30am because of the jet lag, but I had a great book with me so I read that while waiting for our breakfast because, yes!, a lady came to get our orders for breakfast shortly after leaving Hua Lamphong station. At 7am it was funny because she arrived yelling and waking up everyone by opening their curtains or knocking… What an adventure, I was super excited, really. Closing the curtains and having your privacy, it felt like being in that tents that we were making up at home, as a child, with blankets and pillows…! So fun!

And the next morning…what a breakfast! The lady brought us a tray with toasted bread, butter, jam, eggs (as you liked them) and, if you eat meat, bacon and sausages. If you wanted you could also have dinner the night before, but we weren’t hungry. So, I went “upstairs” and we had breakfast on my bf berth.

Going to the toilet was really funny because I had this very long skirt, so it was comic because the toilet was extremely small, the train was moving so much, there was a hole on the (wet) floor, the window was completely open so the wind was blowing me away and I was afraid that someone could see me… LOL! What an experience. I was trying to keep my balance and laughing at the same time.

Good morning!
Arrived in Chiang Mai!

Once arrived in Chiang Mai we found a lot of red pickups waiting for backpackers arriving with the night train, they were extremely cheap and everybody could talk to the driver first, see which direction they were going. We were going to Tri Yaan Na Ros (recommended by the Lonely Planet guide) an authentic, Lanna style colonial house for just £32 (37 euro) a night. Beautiful interiors and a huge bricked-up bath tub. The surroundings were lovely, too, we had a primary school near and I could spend hours looking at the squirrels running on the trees. Can you imagine switching from noisy, crowded, super hot Bangkok to this heaven with birds singing in the day, toads singing in the night and squirrels? This was definitely our kind of place. And it was also a stone’s throw from the centre and the walled old town.

Our hotel in Chiang Mai (the pool was freezing cold and I wasn’t brave enough to get in, but my bf was)
This kitty cat welcomed us

That’s it for today guys, I’ll go on with the trip very soon, writing about what we have done in Chiang Mai during our four days (including visiting an elephant sanctuary and my favourite temple ever in Thailand. It was like being in another, peaceful world).

But please tell me about you in the comments, have you ever been to Thailand? In which part? Did you enjoy it? I’m curious! 😀

Camy xx

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