I’ve always wanted to ride elephants in Thailand, but I never wanted to go to some big elephant camp where they train elephants to play soccer and paint pictures for tourists. Since I was in the remote Mae Hong Son Province, I was able to find small elephant homes in the village. We rode a big elephant bareback through the jungle, and had a blast playing in the water!
I spent the rest of my time in Northern Thailand going on mini-motorcycle trips. We made it out to the Tham Lod Cave, where we asked a local to help us navigate through the cave. The most difficult journey was to the “secret” hot springs hidden deep in the jungle. There are no known maps or written directions to this area. Even after we actually found signs to it, we had to ride at least 30 minutes up and down steep unpaved hills. By the time we got there, I was definitely ready for a swim. At some point, a few young villagers from the hill tribes came by to say hello. They were very shy, but curious/excited about spotting foreigners at their hangout spot.