Throwback Thursday – Thai Wats

We visited a number of wats (temples) in Chiang Mai during our time there.  Most shortly after our arrival as people were keen to show them to use (they are important to the people and culture) and because we wanted to dive into the culture right away.  The first we visited was probably the biggest, Doi Suthep is a prominent wat situated at the top of the mountain that overlooks the city of Chiang Mai. We hired a driver for the day and drove up the mountain to the base of the wat.

IMG_4301Before we climbed to the wat (309 stairs), we stopped for a refreshing smoothie. They were AMAZING!  Best smoothie we have ever had!  You just choose a cup with the combination of fresh fruits you want for your smoothie (notice the assorted cups behind Alia's head) and the vendor blends the contents of your cup with ice and coconut milk (the white pointy things to Alia's right are fresh coconuts).  He then returns the slushy goodness to your cup and for about $1 each you have a treat so tasty that it makes a memory!  YUM!

IMG_6213This buddah statue was near the base of the wat as well.  It was HUGE!  The entrance to the wat sits right on the end of a switchback so the area is very congested with foot and vehicle traffic.  The statue face directly out to the center of the road and is the main things you see as you drive up. Impressive!


DSC00113Here we are about a third of the way to the top.  Uh-oh!   Smoothies are already half gone!


DSC00114Little girl in traditional dress on the stairs to the wat.  You could pay her coins to have her pose with you for a picture.

DSC00120Paul and the big boys inside the wat.

IMG_6224Look at this cute little monkey!!

IMG_6223All of us by the centerpiece of the wat. [Alia still stands like a dancer!]
DSC00119Relaxing in the shade inside the wat.

DSC00122My A and my Z...IN A TEMPLE IN THAILAND!!!!  The normalcy of seeing these two together like this set against a backdrop of anything but normal makes this a really fun photo for me. Sometimes the crazy coolness of this whole adventure just hits me hard!  This pic exemplifies that.

DSC00125Alia near the huge bells that buddhists ring to ward off evil spirits.

IMG_6228This is a different wat in Chiang Mai.  It was extrememely ornate and the old monk sitting off to the right is actually a wax figure of a beloved monk who died.

IMG_4303The younger monks all sat in the middle of the wat listen to teachings being read to them.  


Spiritual habits say a lot about a person.  The Thai people are very serious about their religion and spirituality.  It plays out in their everyday life in their calm and peaceful demeanors.  Do you live out your faith?  Can people around you see that you are serious about your spirituality?  I challenge you to make it so.


Becky Kortman

I'm a homeschooling, world traveling, Jesus follower who is a wife and mom of 4 kids, In all my travels, I am looking for places that fit with my soul and feel as much like 'home' as they can this side of heaven.

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  1. kaitangsou

    I lived in Chiang Mai once for a few months, teaching kung fu…the areas to the north into the Golden Triangle and Burma are much more interesting. Chiang Mai is a tourist trap, short and simple. Generally the Thais despise Farang foreigners after being overrun by millions of of them, many who are druggies, dregs, dogs and misfits, BUT the Thais love the money the Farang bring!! Thats the problem of Thailand in a nutshell…they want your money but they do not want to you! I am also a Buddhist. Thai Buddhism is based on Thai culture which is patriarchal, just like Christianity for example. I prefer the more feminist forms of Buddhism such as Chinese and Japanese styles where women play an active role…Anyway, since I re-discovered the wonders of Philippines I have not been back to Thailand for about ten years now…

    • Becky Kortman

      We never felt “unwanted” in Thailand. The locals we wonderful and very friendly. I had a motorcycle accident in Chiang Mai and numerous locals stopped and offered different ways to help. We found the locals to be quiet, kind, helpful and fun. They we reserved at first (common) and then opened up and were friendly in return. A lot depends on how you treat them!


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