Thailand Day 9: The Chiang Mai Zoo

Happy New Year! The morning after celebrating New Year’s Eve, we decided to go to the zoo. All of us were tired from staying up late, spending day after day in the heat, and battling off and on food related stomach issues. We decided that all of us could use a break from traditional sightseeing, and decided to spend our morning at the zoo.


For breakfast, we were given menus at our hotel and I ordered something traditional looking, then later was surprised when a delicious rice soup came. Somehow I missed the word soup. But it was really good, too bad I wasn’t hungry enough to eat much of it.

While we were waiting for our food, we were told that the food cart vendor was also providing roti on the house, so we ordered a couple of different varieties to try. My favorite was the plain one that ended up being coated in frosting, and was probably the reason I couldn’t eat much soup.

The Zoo

After breakfast, we used the Grab phone app to get a taxi to the zoo.  The ride was fairly short and it was quick to get in.

Our first stop was the Panda area. To our surprise, we had to purchase a separate ticket to see the Pandas. So we forked over the money and went in. Luckily there are few things in Thailand that are expensive. Super cute! We spent a while watching them wander around, eat, and play. So much fun!

Since we had bought tickets that included the aquarium, we decided to head that way next. It was a lot of fun seeing all the sharks and other creatures.


The hippos were quite close by, so after finishing at the aquarium, we decided to see if it was feeding time. Jeremy bought us each a basket of food and we got to toss them into the hippos’ mouths. Fun! John asked if he could pet one, but I said no. Then he told me it would be really easy to touch its tooth. Um, yeah. Just like the night before, I was the “boring mom.” Oh well. Hippos aren’t pets and John isn’t a zoo veterinarian dentist.


From here we continued to wander through the zoo, seeing a lot of fairly active animals that looked quite happy. We were all having a really good day, although we somehow only ended up with the one hippo picture. Some days are like that, particularly at the end of a trip.


Afternoon Rest

The heat was starting to pick up, and it was starting to get close to lunchtime, so we decided to call it a day and get a taxi back to the old town.

We were hoping to get some street food, but apparently most of the vendors in the area we picked only come out at night. Very wise with the heat, but unfortunate for us. We then saw a little market with some baked goods and picked out a few to take back to the hotel. That said, they weren’t at all good – you win some, you lose some.

At this point, we decided to rest in our air conditioned room for a few hours, given the afternoon heat. We were all getting a bit tired of both the heat and the travel and needed some rest time, especially with the previous late night. It was good for everyone.

Dinner and Night Market

For dinner, we decided to wander towards the night market that we were sidetracked from the night before, and found dinner on the way. In Bangkok, I had been having fun trying different versions of Tom Yum Soup, and decided that I needed to try Chiang Mai’s version. Still not as delicious as the first bowl I had in Bangkok, but still quite good. Unfortunately, I spilled a little on my shirt and ruined it. Sigh. I know better than to travel with white tops, but it was so cool, airy, and appropriate for Thai weather, that I went ahead and brought it with me.


After dinner, we headed east of the city walls towards the famed Chiang Mai Night Bazaar, and explored that area. There were a large number of stalls. That said, it would have been more impressive to us if we’d seen this area before the special New Year’s Eve market the night before. I did get a scarf, though.

What a fun, if lower-key day!

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