Heading To Chiang Mai, Thailand

Public bus from Ayutthaya to Chiang Mai (10 hrs) – doesn’t that just sound sweet?!  {That’s a “Hell, no!” from Scott too.  It’s half dozen of one, 6 of the other to the kids (for now).  Down south they would something like, “Bless your heart,” to me.  I take the path less traveled.}  I’ve heard the buses are pretty decent, run often and have a reasonable price point.  That is all kinda, sorta accurate.  But it’s certainly not the entire story.

The bus station in Ayutthaya is not easily recognizable as a major stop to the untrained eye.   It was more like a random space literally on the side of the highway with chairs and a ticket counter in back.  When in Rome. 

We had all of our luggage and 2 hot kids in the noon heat expecting a bus northbound every hour.  That information was not accurate.  There are 3 buses a day.  We had just missed the second one.  We were welcome to wait for the 8 pm if we wanted.  Pass.

I should have relied less on local info and more on internet info in this case.

We spent 1 extra night in Ayutthaya and caught the 10 am bus the next day. 

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Glad I brought our own snacks:


The Never Bored book always comes through in a pinch.  Bonus, she worked on number sense without knowing it.


The hotel we stayed at that night turned out to be a really nice find.  If I pull out the oatmeal and hot cocoa for breakfast, it’s a win 100% of the time.  I know how to smooth over the rough patches.


This was the view from out back balcony.  No, I did not spend time out there. No, I have no desire to come face to face with bugs (or worse) the size of small animals.  This whole country is straight up rainforest.



On the bus the next day we busied ourselves.  I usually roll with at least 1 or 2 tricks up my sleeve to keep the kids happy.  Evie and I made colorful clay scenes while Jack slept.

Round 2.

I caption this, “Northern Kids”.



At a layover:




I made reservations at a hotel in Chiang Mai. I didn’t think anything of the name. Words aren’t recognizable here – even when they’re in Latin characters. For example, in English we often add a “y” or “ie” to a word to make it cute, right?! Doggy, Evie, sweetie. From what we gather, the Thai version of “y” is “porn”. Lots of porn everywhere (and no…. not like that).  You would never call your kid Honey Porn or Sweetie Porn.  {It feels super icky to even write that.}  Anyway, my point: I don’t really pay much attention to the words.

Scott asked me for the hotel info as he was prepping for the end of the bus ride. Him to me, “What’s the name of this place? The hotel????”

Me to him {I’m spelling this like it sounded coming out of my mouth}, “None-ya.”

Blink.  Huge sigh.  Big eye roll.

Me (sincerely… because I really hadn’t thought about it), “What?”

Him, “None ya…. None ya business?” Getting testy, “Seriously?”

Me, “Yes seriously. Look.” I can be an ass, just not this time.


The Hotel Nanya was an outstanding find.  For less than $20/day we had 3 beds, 2 bathrooms, a fridge and plenty of space to spread out.  Things were very clean.  Maybe a bit utilitarian but I’ll take it.  Bonus – it had a giant pool, an attached kid pool, free continental breakfast and solid wifi (better than at Grandmom’s house!).  

The only minor *complaint* was that it didn’t have a door handle (but it did have a deadbolt).  We always travel with a portable safe that we lock to the toilet or the sink so everything important is usually safe enough.




Scott’s office for a few days: