Month 22: Travel Summary and Statistics

View at Chiang Dao nest

After a whirlwind few months full of movement, travel and very little relaxation, this month I finally found time to stop.

…And you probably won’t be surprised to hear that I stopped in Chiang Mai, somewhere I’ve lived three times in the last three years — I just can’t seem to keep away!

It was never in my plans to go to Chiang Mai, my original plan was to spend this month travelling through Malaysia and Myanmar. However, after a two week scooter trip in the Mekong Delta followed by a week long road trip in Australia followed by a two month road trip in New Zealand, I was just about ready to keel over and sleep for a week. I desperately wanted to explore both Malaysia and Myanmar but sadly, my heart just wasn’t in it. I was exhausted, I was incredibly behind with work (something which wouldn’t be helped by the lack of internet in Myanmar!) and I was ready to have a home again.

So what better place to do so than in Chiang Mai?! The city was familiar, I had dozens of favourite restaurants, I had lots of travel blogging friends currently living there.

It was definitely the right thing to do.

Keep enjoy and drink wine

Nailed it!

I’ve long wondered what Southeast Asia would be like in the rainy season. I’ve always chosen to leave just as the rains started to arrive, thinking that it’d be too humid, too wet and that I wouldn’t be able to leave my room for weeks.

Fortunately, I discovered this month that being in Chiang Mai during the start of the wet season can be a lot of fun! The afternoon thunderstorms are incredibly dramatic yet short-lived, often turning the streets into rivers after just five minutes of torrential downpour. I could definitely see myself living in Southeast Asia at any time of the year now, so I pretty much have no reason to ever leave!

Flooded streets in Chiang Mai

Despite spending most of the month eating and napping, I still found time for a little bit of travel when Dave and I drove up to the mountain town of Chiang Dao for a romantic getaway.

And, well, it would have been romantic had Dave not caught food poisoning two hours after we arrived… 

View at Chiang Dao nest


Onto the statistics for the month!

Distance travelled: 140km

Countries visited: 1


Cities visited: 2

Chiang Mai, Chiang Dao

Money spent:

Thailand: £614.00 over 30 days = £20.47 per day = $30.86 per day.

Miscellaneous: £407.12 for flights from Ho Chi Minh City to Los Angeles.

Total for the month: £1021 = $1539


The next month:

After falling in love with barely moving in Chiang Mai, there’s going to be much more of the same for the next month, except I’ll be living in Ho Chi Minh City! I adored Vietnam when I first visited last year so I’m ridiculously excited about getting to know the country even better over the next month. I’ll be based in Saigon for most of the month but I’ll also be heading up to Hoi An for a few days to celebrate my birthday (yay!).

At the end of the month, I’ll be preparing myself for a big dose of culture shock as I leave Southeast Asia and head to Los Angeles to begin a few months of travelling around the United States. I can’t wait to start ordering from the children’s menu again!


Looking to follow along with my travels through my monthly summaries? You can read the previous month’s summary here, the next month’s summary here, or head on over to the monthly summary page to read from the very beginning!

Previous The Tongariro Crossing: The Hiking Saga Continues
Next How to Pack for New Zealand: My Detailed Packing List


  1. May 23, 2013

    Ordering from the children’s menu is sometimes necessary in the USA haha! San Francisco is AMAZING, and you can use your new-found hiking skills to walk up and down those crazy (and I mean crazy) hills!

    • May 24, 2013

      It’s always necessary! I can’t even finish my meals in Asia, let alone in the US! I’m so absurdly excited to finally get to San Francisco.

  2. May 23, 2013

    I had the “luck” of living in bangkok during the big flooding of 2011 it was just terrific! And yes, you never go wrong when you decide to stop in Chiang Mai. It is such a thrilling city! Enjoy your rest and I am looking forward to some great new stories!

    • May 24, 2013

      It was fun scootering along the roads and splashing water everywhere but I’m not sure I would have found it as much fun with the crazy 2011 flooding! :-)

  3. May 24, 2013

    Thailand is so hard to leave, it’s no wonder we keep returning again and again! I love the rainstorms there, and find myself looking forward to them to cook things down.

    Where are you going to visit in The States?

    • May 24, 2013

      I know! I leave and think it’ll be for a few years but no, I’m always back a few months later!

      I’ll be spending two weeks in Los Angeles in San Francisco, a month in Portland and then a month travelling through NYC, Boston and DC :-)

      • May 24, 2013

        Sounds awesome! I’m an Oregon native – Portland is great, but if you get the chance, you should check out Bend as well! It’s completely different weather (sunny and dry), surrounded by mountains, lakes, rivers and some of the best rock climbing/hiking around!

      • Allie Potter
        May 26, 2013

        Let me know when you’re in Boston!! Would love to say hi

  4. May 24, 2013

    Haha, poor Dave. I hope your getaway was somewhat salvageable despite the food poisoning. Utterly jealous of your upcoming US jaunt. I’m completely gutted I ended up not being able to go this summer – was looking forward to potentially meeting you when you’re both in Portland. Oh well, there’s always the rest of the world ;)

    • May 24, 2013

      Well, the getaway was wonderful for me! I’m not sure it was so great for him :-)

      Boo to Portland but I’m sure our paths will cross somewhere at some point!

  5. May 24, 2013

    Can’t wait to read about Ho Chi Minh City!

    • May 24, 2013

      I can’t wait to write about it. I love it here! :-)

  6. May 24, 2013

    Well done on your budget. You did pretty well this month. Always wanted to live in Chiang Mai, maybe I’ll go back to Thailand next year.

    • May 24, 2013

      Thanks, Agness! It’s pretty easy not to spend much in Chiang Mai when you’re just eating and working :-)

  7. Hannah @ Getting Stamped
    May 25, 2013

    Seems like everyone loves Chiang Mai, we can’t wait to get there on our RTW! Also looking forward to hearing about Vietnam! FYI the kids menu is the way to go, but some places won’t let you order from it bc you are over 12. But I love it because the portions are what you actually need example at applebees the kids chicken tenders (3) with fries is under $4 and the adult version is like $8-9 and you don’t that much! Good luck!

  8. May 25, 2013

    I miss Chiang Mai a lot, it’s been few years since we visit that region of the world.

    You will love LA and the states in general. Try CouchSurfing, we had great experience with the people there and it’s the easiest way to meet locals.

    Safe travel :)

  9. Dave Briggs
    May 26, 2013

    Getting caught out in a downpour is certainly fun! Quick question – Almost everywhere I travel, the people say that the weather is getting increasingly unpredictable – Is it the same in Chiang Mai?

  10. May 27, 2013

    Enjoy Los Angeles! It’s where I currently live and the weather is great right now, and it is warm enough to spend time at the beach. I don’t know how you plan to make your way up the west coast, but I took a road-trip from Los Angeles to Seattle up the 101 freeway a few years back and it was amazing. San Francisco is great, and so is Portland, both are bustling cities with lots to do and see.

  11. May 28, 2013

    Ha ha, I miss ordering from the children’s menu too. I guess it will be necessary in the US too with the big portions you get out there.

    • May 30, 2013

      I can’t even finish a meal in Southeast Asia so I doubt I’d be able to even finish a meal from the children’s menu in the US! I have a tiny stomach…

  12. May 30, 2013

    Awesome about the LA part! It’s where I’m from, so if I can give you any tips, let me know. Maybe we’ll cross paths if you’re still in the US come August!

  13. June 1, 2013

    I wish I would have made for time for Thailand. I’ve heard so many great things about Chiang Mai but didn’t get to visit. On a side note, I’m now officially addicted to Thai food. Seriously one of the best countries for street food!

  14. Stephanie
    June 4, 2013

    I have fallen in love with Chiang Mai just like you have! It’s a big city with the feel of a town, perfect! It is quirky and has so much going on! You can’t beat 20 baht mango smoothies either!
    I bet America will be a real culture shock after Asia! Please take some photos of the massive food portions!

  15. June 17, 2013

    Our first visit to Chiang Mai was in 2007 in vacation, it was just perfect. We had so much fun and we stayed with a lovely Thai family who were so fun.

    I wonder how things are now in the city, our last visit to Thailand was 2009.

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