Pola-und-Helena Photography

Chiang Mai- Bangkok (5/2010, EVROPA Magazine)



From Chiang Mai to Bangkok – the contrast could not be starker. This is a real alternative to the obligatory beach holiday… Chiang Mai is located at the border of the rainforest of Northern Thailand… and is a base for jungle trekking tours… elephant safaris… or bamboo rifting down the river and through the rainforest… imagine all the mystical sounds, exotic scents… and the hot, wet, steamy jungle air… and then, as the complete opposite to it, the journey to one of the world’s most vibrant megapolis – to Bangkok…The city of the golden temples… of the exotic markets… and of nice and special people…

Issue 5/2010

September-October 2010

(Golden Issue)


Thailand… For once not at the beach… Discover an entire village in the traditional style of the ancient Lanna kingdom. Traditional paddy fields and mystical culture. Thailand’s past – an eldorado for discoverers and explorers of foreign cultures…

The Thai rainforest is great for many an activity… rifting, trekking, elephant safari… the grey giants were used for tree logging in the past – today they carry tourists across the river.

Here you will always find time to unwind… the exceptional mixture of history, craftsmanship, traditions and Asian serenity…

We leave the mystical jungle romance of Chian Mai and rush into the buzzing metropolis of Bangkok – with a population approaching 12 millions. It’s here, in the “city of angels”, in the very heart of one of the world’s most exciting megacities that the sophisticated Mandarin Oriental offers a classy riverside oasis. You’ll love to relax here in the legendary Spa – or simply by the poolside.

The Chao Praya river is a major river in Thailand and Bangkok’s lifeline. It’s not for nothing that travellers call Bangkok the Venice of the East. The traditional junk boats are a breakneck adventure of its own. A room with a (cinematic river) view means: never a dull moment. And a fantastic view of the skyline.

On the left:

the Wats and Temples of Bangkok are the capital’s heart and soul as for the traditional part. Here you see the legendary Grand Palace, the former official residence of the Kings of Thailand, magnificent, decorated with gold.

On the right:

have a cocktail at Vertigo – and treat yourself to a fabulous panorama view from the 62nd floor. Bangkok at night is a fabulous sight for your last day in the city… Here above the clouds it’s particularly hard to say good-bye.


From the kindom of Lanna to the city of angels

Mandarin Oriental Chiang Mai

We arrive at night… Mandarin Oriental Chiang Mai… We’re amazed… I think Indiana Jones… This is an entire village built in the traditional style of the thousand-year-old Lanna kingdom… amidst Thailand’s jungle… at least it looks quite like a jungle – spread over 20 hectares of lush subtropical northern Thailand landscapes… A maze of pathways leads us through fascinating gardens, past rice fields, lakes, temples, pagoda. A maze that awakes the adventurer within you and offers a lot to discover. The resort being so spacious, we explored it by bike. And as the days passed by we still kept discovering new places of this mystical paradise. The resort’s heart and soul is the multi award-winning Spa centre, one of the best in the East. The guest can have their own wellness program set up after a thorough preliminary medical checkup. The culinary treats of four restaurants and one elegantly designed cocktail bar leave nothing to be desired. If you wish to swing the ladle yourself, learn Thai cooking hand on – instructed by the hotel’s chefs. By the way, the cooking lessons include an unforgettable trip to the local market – a great experience. You can easily book all trips and safaris at the hotel travel desk or at the reception. Since the resort is located on the edge of the Thailand rainforest, jungle trips, elephant safaris, trekking tours, rafting are the thing to do. A more relaxed adventure worth visiting is Chang Mai’s night bazaar. The hustle and bustle offers an insight into the everyday life of the locals. If you go for the exotic taste, try grilled grasshoppers, chicken feet soup, or raw worms – yummy! And as a highlight, take a tuk-tuk ride. The drivers figure themselves as racers, so having rode a tuk-tuk, you have nothing left to fear.


Mandarin Oriental Bangkok

…The very sound of this name is ringing in your ear evoking dreams of exotic journeys… It also stands for tradition, service and outstanding style…The Mandarin Oriental experience begins… at the airport. A limousine picks you up. The chauffeur conducts you to the hotel – the noble hideaway, once reserved for crowned heads, the great and the good… Lady Di, George Bush, Leonardo di Caprio, Mick Jagger and many others stayed in the legendary Mandarin Oriental Bangkok… Built over 130 years ago, it hasn’t lost any of its charm and elegance… Especially when enjoying the five o’clock tea the traveller feels the unique atmosphere that cast the spell over such renowned writers as Hemingway, Graham Greene or W. Somerset Maugham… It makes you feel like the colonial times had never been over and enjoy the unfading class and charm of those. When you finally leave the lobby and get into one of the 393 rooms or suites you are rewarded with the town’s most sublime view of the Chao Praya, Bangkok’s major river and the town’s lifeline. The city skyline stretches as far as the eye can reach framing the busy life on the river and its umpteen canals. Here you understand why they call Bangkok the Venice of the East. To experience the Spa or to have dinner in the hotel’s riverside restaurant you’ll be taken across the river in one of the hotel’s historical ferries. Seven excellent restaurants, among them the legendary Le Normandie with its finest French haute cuisine, will spoil you during your stay. And we come to realise why the Mandarin Oriental Bangkok has been repeatedly awarded the world’s best hotel.


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