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This week, my mini (millionth) tour of Thailand continued as Heather and I ditched the Bangkok boys and made our way up to Pai and Chiang Mai. Our four days in Pai mostly consisted of lazing around our cute A-frame bungalow, getting massages, reading by the river, and one ambitious excursion to a nearby cave.

Since arriving in Chiang Mai we’ve vowed to be a bit more active, which we kicked off with one of the most magical nights of my life at the Yi Peng lantern festival — attending was basically what inspired this entire trip up north, and it was worth it, multiplied by about a billion. You’ll be hearing about the whole thing in a lot more detail but for now, I think the expression on my face in by my friend Torre says it all.

Amazing as this trip has been and as much as I am looking forward to these last lingering days in Chiang Mai, I am beyond pleased that next week I’ll be reporting from Koh Tao again. Crystal clear ocean and palm tree shots coming right up. Happy Monday, guys!

Photo A

Lod Cave, Pai, Thailand
Magnificent Lod Cave in Pai

Photo B

Lod Cave, Pai, Thailand
Two shutterbugs goofing around in a cave…

Photo C

Friends in Pai
…and on a bridge

Photo D

Yi Peng
The magic of Yi Peng

Photo E

Yi Peng
Sending off love and light

Photo F

Yi Peng, Chiang Mai, Thailand
The heart theme continues as I paint with light by playing with my shutter speed

Which photo is your favorite?

 

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58 Comments...
  • Ashley Hufford
    October 27 2014

    I just finished Torre’s book (what an epic adventure) and went to like her page when I saw your face as her most recent post….quite surreal! Looks like an awesome experience. I have to go with E this week, so cool!!!

    • Meihoukai
      October 28 2014

      Aw, that’s awesome Ashley! I adore Torre, and her writing!

  • Rika | Cubicle Throwdown
    October 27 2014

    I like photo E, and am sooo jealous you guys got to go to that festival. Looks SO amazing!
    Rika | Cubicle Throwdown recently posted..

    • Meihoukai
      October 28 2014

      It really was. And once was not enough — already plotting to go back next year!

  • Paper lanterns for win! šŸ™‚
    Katelyn @ Diaries of a Wandering Lobster recently posted..

    • Meihoukai
      October 28 2014

      I can’t believe how many hundreds of photos I have from that day, ha. Not easy to narrow down!

  • Sonja at Breadcrumbs Guide
    October 27 2014

    Photo E is beautiful, but my favorite is Photo D. Makes me feel like I’m right there. Looking forward to your post on Yi Peng!
    Sonja at Breadcrumbs Guide recently posted..

    • Meihoukai
      October 28 2014

      I almost didn’t even put E in actually since I usually try to feature my most creative shots in Photo of the Week. Looks like I would have missed the fan favorite!

  • Krystle
    October 27 2014

    Meihoukai,
    I can’t wait to read more about your time in Thailand. You’ve inspired me to visit Thailand for the first time next summer (specifically Koh Tao). šŸ™‚ My husband and I are going to celebrate our four year anniversary with lots and lots of diving. If you have any specific advice I’d love to hear it!
    Have a great day,
    -Krystle
    Krystle recently posted..

    • Meihoukai
      October 29 2014

      Hey Krystle! I’ll be writing updates to my favorite Koh Tao restaurants post soon (with lots of romantic trip worthy ones in there!), as well as reviewing my first Koh Tao hotel! So there should be some helpful new content out soon, but for now, all my tips and tricks are already in the archives šŸ™‚ I can’t think of a better place to spend your anniversary!

  • Krystle
    October 27 2014

    And DUH, I forgot to put that my favorite photo this week is E. šŸ™‚ Looks like an amazing experience.
    Krystle recently posted..

  • becky hutner
    October 27 2014

    I think we have a clear winner — E for Epic.

    Huge creativity points for all of them though — esp. impressed with your heart!
    becky hutner recently posted..

    • Meihoukai
      October 29 2014

      You should see the hundreds of outtakes šŸ™‚ It wasn’t easy… but then again we had many hours of waiting time to play with (assuming you mean the Photo F heart!)

  • Steve
    October 27 2014

    This is a easy one. It has to be E. This is something I want to witness for myself.
    Steve recently posted..

    • Meihoukai
      October 29 2014

      Even once was not enough… I want to see it again already!

  • Caity
    October 27 2014

    Photo E actually made me gasp…it is soooooo pretty. Especially the one on the left. It reminds me of photos of distant galaxies or star constellations!

    • Meihoukai
      October 29 2014

      It did feel a bit like floating in the milky way, Caity šŸ™‚ Absolute magic!

  • Ashley
    October 27 2014

    I love Photo D, and E is amazing as well! Yi Peng is definitely on my bucketlist. I’m excited to read about your experience!
    Ashley recently posted..

    • Meihoukai
      October 29 2014

      I’m excited to write about it, especially as it was quite difficult to find information on ahead of time!

  • Stef
    October 27 2014

    It just has to be photo E this week!
    Stef recently posted..

    • Meihoukai
      October 29 2014

      Definitely seems to be the fan favorite šŸ™‚

  • Chris
    October 27 2014

    Not even a contest!

    E wins this one by a huge margin!!

    How magical…
    Chris recently posted..

    • Meihoukai
      October 29 2014

      “Magic” is the word I’ve been using to describe it everywhere. Amazing!

  • Emily
    October 27 2014

    I’m torn between D and E – what a magical experience!

    • Meihoukai
      October 29 2014

      It was indeed. Can’t wait to write and share more.

  • Definitely photo E! I am confused, I thought that the Yi Peng Festival was at the beginning of November?
    Katie @ The World on my Necklace recently posted..

    • Meihoukai
      October 29 2014

      There are two lantern releases, a paid version (this year on November 6th) and a free event (this year on October 25th). The free one is kept kind of hush hush and the date is only released a few months in advance.

  • Justine
    October 28 2014

    I think I’m just going to be like everyone else and go with E. Those are some spectacular shots! I would have loved to have been at that festival. I lit one of those lanterns in Thailand once. It promptly caught on fire and became consumed by the flames. I had to throw it on the beach and kick sand on it to put out the fire. It wasn’t my finest moment šŸ™ It looks like you had much better luck!
    Justine recently posted..

    • Meihoukai
      October 29 2014

      Oh no! Well believe me, many of these caught on fire, landed in trees, burst into flames, etc. It’s definitely not a festival that would pass any health and safety codes in the US, and that’s part of what I love about it!

  • Tommy
    October 28 2014

    I got a treat for you Meihoukai. Check out this lantern video (and the others they made because they are BANANAS!) made by a couple living in Thailand.

    • Meihoukai
      October 29 2014

      Unfortunately my wifi isn’t good enough to stream any videos out here šŸ™‚ But I know from being there in person it is cinema gold!

  • Kiara Gallop
    October 28 2014

    I can’t choose between D and E because Yi Peng (although I thought it was called Loi Krathong – or are they two different names for the same festival?) is AMAZING!! I found myself there by accident back in 2011, rocked up in Chiang Mai and wondered why all the guesthouses on my list were fully-booked! It was one lucky accident! An incredible sight to behold, and it feels even better when you’re part of it all šŸ™‚ Looking forward to the full post!
    Kiara Gallop recently posted..

    • Meihoukai
      October 29 2014

      Happy accident indeed! Yi Peng and Loi Krathong are actually two different festivals but both tend to overlap as they are based on the lunar calendar — from what I have come to understand. Yi Peng involves the sky lantern release, while Loi Krathong involves floating lanterns on the water. Wish I could stick around to see Loi Krathong here in Chiang Mai as well, but excited to be back on the island šŸ™‚

  • Emily
    October 28 2014

    Definitely E – I am so envious that you got to go! That experience high on my bucket list!
    Emily recently posted..

    • Meihoukai
      October 29 2014

      I can definitely understand why now. It’s magical!

  • 2 tickets to Wonderland
    October 28 2014

    Lod Cave really looks magnificent! So voting for photo A šŸ™‚
    2 tickets to Wonderland recently posted..

    • Meihoukai
      October 29 2014

      Nice to hear from a dissenter šŸ™‚ It was a seriously cool cave!

  • Francesca
    October 28 2014

    E all the way! The lantern release is way up high on my bucket list!
    Francesca recently posted..

    • Meihoukai
      October 29 2014

      Maybe I’ll see you there next year!

  • Amy
    October 28 2014

    I love photo E. Last year I got to celebrate Songkran for the first time in Chiang Mai but I have yet to experience the lantern festival and I so want to! It looks beautiful. Safe journey back to the island šŸ™‚
    Amy recently posted..

    • Meihoukai
      October 29 2014

      Thanks Amy! Can’t wait to have my feet back in the ocean!

  • Sameer
    October 28 2014

    Photo ” E ” : Image gives you the impression of a deep sense of “hope” in this life .. and “ambitious” in the infinite sky of freedom and love and beautiful wishes .. flying high in the sky .. and be an eternal flame in this vast universe ..

    forward dear “Meihoukai” and Enjoy adventures

    • Meihoukai
      October 29 2014

      Thank you Sameer! Best wishes to you as well šŸ™‚

  • Anna R
    October 28 2014

    Definitely Photo E!
    Anna R recently posted..

  • Yay, I’ve been waiting for photos of the lantern festival. Well done, it looks so incredibly beatiful. I’m definitely voting for E!
    Miriam of Adventurous Miriam recently posted..

    • Meihoukai
      October 29 2014

      Clear fan favorite this week šŸ™‚

  • Kiara Gallop
    October 29 2014

    Ok, I’m confused! I’m pretty sure the Thai people were referring to the festival as Loi Krathong, but we released lanterns into the sky, as well as floating decorated baskets on the water. Either way, it was an amazing experience šŸ™‚
    Kiara Gallop recently posted..

    • Meihoukai
      October 30 2014

      I could very well be extremely confused myself šŸ™‚ But regardless of what they are called, they both look like fabulous experiences!

  • Jana
    October 29 2014

    My absolute favorite this week is Photo E!!! I’ve always wanted to go to this particular festival! Thanks for reminding me to put it up higher on my bucket list!!!
    Jana recently posted..

    • Meihoukai
      October 30 2014

      If I can help it, I’ll be going again next year too. Magic!

  • Jimmy Dau
    October 29 2014

    Everybody is saying E so I’m saying A. I love the sense of scale of the cave. I’m in Chiang Mai next week so hopefully the festivities will be hal as good as what’s in the photos.
    Jimmy Dau recently posted..

    • Meihoukai
      October 30 2014

      I can’t wait to see photos of what that one is like to compare! Wish I could have attended both, you know, for research purposes šŸ™‚

  • Kristen Noelle
    October 31 2014

    I love the cave photo to the right in A and the lanterns in E!!! can’t wait to attend the lantern festival myself, as I have plans to move to Thailand next year! So amazing
    Kristen Noelle recently posted..

    • Meihoukai
      November 2 2014

      This should definitely be on your bucket list when you arrive. Magical!

  • Erika
    November 2 2014

    Wow, photo D! I’ve always wanted to go to a floating lantern festival, I imagine they’re one of those things that’s even more beautiful in person.
    Erika recently posted..

    • Meihoukai
      November 4 2014

      It’s truly impossible to describe. No amount of photos prepared me! I can’t wait to go again someday.