In 2017 Ethan and I took some time off for ourselves did one of the most exciting things we’ve ever done and took off 4.5 months to travel the world, we circumnavigated it in fact. While most of our year is spent working full time photographing weddings, it is always so important at the end of our season to step away from our wedding work and take some time for ourselves, to be with each other, work on personal photography and become better stronger as husband and wife. This was truly a trip of a lifetime and we both grew in so many ways and learned so much. It’s funny how travel teaches you so many life lessons ands opens your heart, mind and fuels your creativity. One of the things that we love so much about traveling is that these memories and experiences we have are ours forever. Traveling isn’t always easy and comes with it’s fair share of trials and challenges, but no matter what else happens in life, we will always have these days to look back on and these incredible memories, whatever they may be, are priceless to us.
In total we visited 10 countries on this trip and our first stop was on our big adventure was Thailand. We will be creating separate blog posts for each stop on our journey, so stay tuned for more! These won’t be travel guide posts, but more posts highlighting our photos, experiences, things that we learned and things really made an impact on us.
The first days of our Thailand were spent in Bangkok, and while many people tend to skip over Bangkok on their way to the southern islands in Thailand, we decided to spend a few days here. We LOVE the hustle and bustle in big crazy cities. Here we experienced street food full of flavor, immaculate temples, bustling markets, and New Years Eve! If I am going to give one piece of advice on traveling Thailand it is, don’t skip Bangkok. Big cities may intimidate some people, but Bangkok is one of my favorite places we’ve traveled. There is so mush to see and do here, there is definitely something for everyone to enjoy.
New Years eve in Bangkok, unfortunately no fireworks because of the King’s recent passing.
The islands in the south of Thailand were our second stop in the country. We flew from Bangkok to Krabi and the travel over to Koh Lanta. Unfortunately the weather wasn’t the best there and we endured a big heavy thunderstorm that actually shortened our trip to some other islands because no boats were able to get anywhere due to the storm. Even though we had that little mishap it didn’t stop us from enjoying our time here. We went on a lovely island hopping tour to visit some of the smaller and more private islands in the area that were so fun to explore. On days we were island hopping we rented a motorbike and got to explore the island at our own pace and go anywhere we wanted. One of my favorite thing about the islands were some of the hikes we did to make it to some amazing view points.
The reason I chose to post this photo is because it represents very much what we found many beaches in Thailand to be like. Overcrowded with tourists and places to accommodate tourists. It was so sad to see all these food boats completely blocking the beautiful beach. Of course not every beach in Thailand is like this, you just have to look harder to find more secluded and less populated spots, which luckily we did.
Rock climbers on the limestone cliffs. SO much fun to watch!
Chiang Mai was our final destination in Thailand and to be honest, probably my favorite and you will see why later in the post 🙂 Here we explored more temples, got to talk with some monks in training, eat more delicious street food and our favorite, spend time at an elephant sanctuary. If you are in Thailand you MUST visit and elephant sanctuary if you’re an animal lover. They are seriously amazing and loving creatures and leave you feeling so happy after having spent the day with them. At first hanging out with them was a little scary just because of their sheer size, but you will soon realize that they are some the kindest animals you will ever meet. When booking this activity, be sure to do your research to make sure you are booking a place that is ethical and treats the elephants with respect and love and does not harm these animals in any way, because sadly there are many places that don’t treat elephants well all over Thailand and the rest of Asia.