Protests in the 9th December 2013, Bangkok
       
     
Wat Pho, Bangkok
       
     
Wat Chedi Luang, Chiang Mai
       
     
Grand Palace, Bangkok
       
     
A view from Baiyoke Tower II, Bangkok
       
     
Khaosan Road, Bangkok
       
     
Street restuarant in Bangkok
       
     
Bangkok, near the rail station
       
     
Street kitchen in Bangkok
       
     
Market at Damnoen Saduak
       
     
Floating market at Damnoen Saduak
       
     
Tavern at the rail station
       
     
Elephants, north of Thailand
       
     
Hills, north of Thailand
       
     
Karen hut, north of Thailand
       
     
Karen family, north of Thailand
       
     
Cave, north of Thailand
       
     
Jungle, north of Thailand
       
     
Jungle, north of Thailand
       
     
Krabi Province, Thailand
       
     
Phra Nang Beach
       
     
reaching the Princess Lagoon
       
     
Princess Lagoon
       
     
Sunrise at the Andaman Sea
       
     
Ko Poda
       
     
Ko Poda
       
     
facing Ko Poda
       
     
Beach of Ko Po Da Nok
       
     
facing Ko Poda
       
     
The Tiger of Paradise Beach
       
     
Krabi Town
       
     
Bangkok
       
     
Protests in the 9th December 2013, Bangkok
       
     
Protests in the 9th December 2013, Bangkok

I arrived in Bangkok in the evening of the 8th of December 2013,  I wasn’t able to sleep well due to te jet lag and the sound of helicopters in the sky. A coup d’etat was near? The following morning there were the final manifestations against the corruption of the government, events reported in the Thai political crisis (2013-2014). This is what I saw 5 meters from my hostel. I gave my support wearing for all my permanence in Thailand the wristband with the Thai flag, symbol of the protesters.

Wat Pho, Bangkok
       
     
Wat Pho, Bangkok

The Wat Pho is a Buddhist temple complex where is kept the largest collection of Buddha images in Thailand, including a 46 m long reclining Buddha.

Wat Chedi Luang, Chiang Mai
       
     
Wat Chedi Luang, Chiang Mai

Buddhism is very important in Thailand. Every boy is expected to be a monk for a couple of months at least.

Grand Palace, Bangkok
       
     
Grand Palace, Bangkok

The Grand Palace is a complex of buildings that has been the official residence of the Kings of Thailand (before Siam).

A view from Baiyoke Tower II, Bangkok
       
     
A view from Baiyoke Tower II, Bangkok

The Baiyoke Tower II skyscraper offers a nice view of Bangkok, unfortunately you can't see the sunset as the Sun gets soon hidden by the pollution.

Khaosan Road, Bangkok
       
     
Khaosan Road, Bangkok

Khaosan Roa is the backpackers area of Bangkok. Here Di Caprio, in the movie The Beach, drinks the blood of snake, but isn’t at all a Thai tradition.

Street restuarant in Bangkok
       
     
Street restuarant in Bangkok

If you don’t fear, street food is very satisfying both for your palate, both for your wallet. Here I had finished a delicious slow cooked pork belly (from the morning) served with rice and spring onions marinated in soy sauce.

Bangkok, near the rail station
       
     
Bangkok, near the rail station

Is time to go back home.

Street kitchen in Bangkok
       
     
Street kitchen in Bangkok

Kitchens are everywhere in the market areas, just trust your nose.

Market at Damnoen Saduak
       
     
Market at Damnoen Saduak

I ended up there by case.

Floating market at Damnoen Saduak
       
     
Floating market at Damnoen Saduak

You may hear in Bangkok of the floating markets, where people do shopping riding a boat. Unfortunately some of them become very touristic, if you decide to go there anyway, plan very early.

Tavern at the rail station
       
     
Tavern at the rail station

Is good sometimes to join with people during travelling, the trip becomes more comfortable. We are now going in Chiang Mai, in the north of the country.

Elephants, north of Thailand
       
     
Elephants, north of Thailand

Based in Chiang Mai, you can apply for a lot of "adventurous" activities in the surrounding jungle. Be prepared to bargain the price.

Hills, north of Thailand
       
     
Hills, north of Thailand

We have shown our passports to the customs and we can start a trekking in the jungle in the north of Thailand, the border to Myanmar is close with its opium plantations. A good guide will avoid them, besides to spot the snakes in your path.

Karen hut, north of Thailand
       
     
Karen hut, north of Thailand

The trek will take several days, we are going to spend a night in a Karen village, a population apart from Thais and Burmese. Every hut is bamboo made with a fireside in the middle and is designed as a palafitte to provide shelter to the farm animals. 

Karen family, north of Thailand
       
     
Karen family, north of Thailand

Dinner time with the local products. The fat taste of a pork full bred outdoors is something that really confuses with the beef.

Cave, north of Thailand
       
     
Cave, north of Thailand

According to the guide, we are passing paths used by the Japanese army to escape at the end of World War II.

Jungle, north of Thailand
       
     
Jungle, north of Thailand

Finally out from the cave. 

Jungle, north of Thailand
       
     
Jungle, north of Thailand

In a jungle you can appreciate the gift of a new sun. Don't underestimate the hot of the day, during the night it can be very cold and even with a ski mask I wasn't fully comfortable.

Krabi Province, Thailand
       
     
Krabi Province, Thailand

Another jungle, this time in the south of Thailand, close to a paradise.

Phra Nang Beach
       
     
Phra Nang Beach

The movie The Beach ends with this question: What is paradise? Is this what I was looking for? I can only continue my search.

reaching the Princess Lagoon
       
     
reaching the Princess Lagoon

Someone says that there is a hidden lagoon in this limestone mountain, another piece of paradise. I have to see, I can deal now a jungle.

Princess Lagoon
       
     
Princess Lagoon

I would stay there forever, but the shadows are inclement.

Sunrise at the Andaman Sea
       
     
Sunrise at the Andaman Sea

To find the paradise I have to move very early in the morning, in order to avoid hordes of tourists ruining the landscape.

Ko Poda
       
     
Ko Poda

We are now landing. Moreover, as close to the equator line, the Sun will be very strong at midday and everything will appear soon grey.

Ko Poda
       
     
Ko Poda

Paying for a private boat won't be free but the shipwreck sensation in being the first landing there is priceless.

facing Ko Poda
       
     
facing Ko Poda

A very narrow piece of land is linking two islands: Ko Poda and Ko Po Da Nok. But the tide is rising.

Beach of Ko Po Da Nok
       
     
Beach of Ko Po Da Nok

I wasn't able to stop.

facing Ko Poda
       
     
facing Ko Poda

The tide has risen, are we all able to swim?

The Tiger of Paradise Beach
       
     
The Tiger of Paradise Beach

Doesn't matter how early you wake up. Not always you will be the only one in the beach.

Krabi Town
       
     
Krabi Town

The last night, let's enjoy Christmas before taking the train back to Bangkok.

Bangkok
       
     
Bangkok

The trip is over, time to reach the airport. Did I find the paradise I was looking for?