Lessons learnt in Chiang Mai

“And then I realised, adventures are the best way to learn”. 
As I sit on an Air Asia flight back to Bangkok for a night in a hotel, I’m the first to admit that five days in, I feel like a pretty rubbish traveller. This isn’t a blog where I sit and moan, but so far, the backpacker life has been a bit of a struggle. A creature of routine, I’ve found the constant upheaval, the being homesick and sleeping in hostels a little tough. 
After a few tears, a whatsapp call to my parents and a hug from my best friend, we’ve decided to move on to Cambodia (after I’ve had time to unwind, go for a run and have a proper nights sleep). I’m beyond grateful to be here and know how lucky I am to have this opportunity, but like always, I’m still learning. As life isn’t always as perfect as it seems on Instagram right? 
So for all those travelling, or thinking of doing so, here are my tips so far – 

Go for hostels in backpacker areas 

After spending a night in a hostel complete with it’s own cat cafe, we realised following the crowd isn’t always a bad thing! (Unless you love cats that is).

Do a cooking class 

One of my favourite days so far was a trip to the Thai Farm Cookery school. Thinking back to a time where I wouldn’t touch anything I hadn’t prepared, I still have an odd relationship with food. Learning from a local, seeing exactly what went into the dishes I’d been eating and visiting a Thai market was amazing.

Plan ahead, but go with the unexpected 

I was told to say yes to every adventure as I travelled, and so far, I think I have. Whether that’s riding on the back of a moped in the rain or eating another bowl of froyo. That said, if you are anything like me, having some sort of plan or just knowing where you are going to sleep a few days ahead is comforting. 

Ask for help

A massive thanks to the lovely lady who helped me translate my allergies into Thai. And to my boyfriend, for listening to the ‘am I getting fat’ moans and booking me into a hotel where I can spend an hour in a gym. Help is always there when you ask for it, even on the other side of the world. 

Embrace being out your comfort zone, but have someone who makes you smile 

Last but certainly not least, travel with someone who makes you laugh (or surround yourself with people who do if you’re travelling alone). As cliche as it sounds, being with someone who makes you feel at home under a mosquito net in an awful hostel makes everything seem a lot easier. 

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