Hermit-Sage of the Digital Age – Interview with an American Ruesi

Thai ruesi hermit sage

My friend Tevijjo Yogi is a frequent visitor to Chiang Mai with no fixed abode of his own. But he’s quite unlike the many travel bloggers and digital nomads who often pass through these parts. Rather he belongs to an ancient Thai tradition of Buddhist hermit sages known as ฤาษี ruesi (also sometimes spelled reusi or lersi). Ruesi is actually the Thai pronunciation of the Sanskrit word rishi. In ancient … Continue reading…

Sky Gods Take Pity on Northern Thailand

vishnu with garuda Thai painting

My fellow human beings don’t seem to have enough common sense to refrain from setting alight thousands of fires in the forests and fields of Northern Thailand each dry season. Every year, around March, the skies over Chiang Mai turn into a thick, choking smog—leaving the citizens with burning eyes, sore throats, chest pain, and asthma. The toxic particles in the air become too much for some of the elderly … Continue reading…

Wat Jed Yod – A Little Bodh Gaya in Chiang Mai

stucco temple art at Wat Jed Yod temple

Despite being one of the most important historical temples in Chiang Mai and having some of the most beautiful original stucco artwork in Thailand, Wat Jed Yod is largely quiet and free of tourists. It’s not only quite peaceful, but Wat Jed Yod is also designed like a miniature version of Bodh Gaya, making it an interesting temple to poke around and have a look at. The name Jed Yod … Continue reading…

Survey Says… Chinese Tourists Wearing Out Their Welcome in Chiang Mai

Chinese woman in yellow dress at Thai temple

A massive influx of Chinese tourists into Chiang Mai has given a much needed boost to the local economy . But despite this, guests from Thailand’s northern neighbor are quickly wearing out their welcome—and that is putting it politely. The Thai language Daily News was a little more blunt in their story on the attitudes of Chiang Mai residents towards Chinese tourists when they ran with a headline that translates … Continue reading…

Exploring the Chiang Mai Flower Festival

chiang mai flower festival decorated float

The Chiang Mai Flower Festival is a fun event with lots of eye candy and plenty of good photo opportunities. It’s held each year during the first weekend of February. If you missed it this year, then you can make plans to see it Feb 6-8, 2015. The beginning of February is a nice time to visit Chiang Mai as the weather is still not so hot and the worst … Continue reading…

The Problem with Dual Pricing in Thailand

dual pricing in thailand

Thailand is a tropical country blessed with much natural beauty, but there are more than a few long-term foreign residents and regular visitors who refuse to go to any of the national parks. Why? It’s because they feel discriminated against when they’re charged 4 to 5 times more than a Thai person for entry. Many attractions in Thailand operate under a dual pricing policy, where Thai people will be charged … Continue reading…

How to Order Vegetarian Food at Any Restaurant in Thailand

how to order vegetarian food in thailand video screenshot

I’m sometimes asked by people if it’s hard to find vegetarian food in Thailand, and my answer is always “no.” Sure, if I ate meat then everything in the market would be an option, but I never really have trouble finding veggie food. If there’s no vegetarian restaurants around—and even if you don’t see any meatless options written on the menu—that doesn’t mean you’re out of luck. You can order … Continue reading…