Pai is a quiet town in the north of Thailand, loved by everyone who visits and never wants to leave…myself included.

Before I came here absolutely everyone I spoke to got so excited talking about Pai and how amazing it was, but I never understood why. When I asked what there was to do there, the answer was always “Nothing…that’s why it’s so good”. But now I completely get it; it’s so chilled and has such a lovely community feel, and I was really sad to leave!

The view of the town from the Big Buddha

One reason I loved it so much is because it’s so small. You can walk to the other side of town within minutes, and it’s so nice always bumping into people you know when you’re out and about.

I stayed at Common Grounds Hostel which was really good, and definitely the best in Pai for location and socialising. My friend from home, Gemma, who’s also travelling at the minute, was there too so that was really nice! Everyone was really friendly, and each night the whole hostel went out together in town, with the staff showing us all the best places. And right outside the hostel was the ‘walking street’, the main street for shops and street food.

Walking street
When I first arrived I met a girl from LA who I instantly became really good friends with, so we spent the first day exploring the town together. In the evenings we went out with Gemma and her friends, and then met up with lots of people from our hostel at a bar in town where a guy who worked in the hostel was playing.

Mountain Bar…they do the best Strawberry Daiquiri and Mai Thai cocktails that I’ve had in Thailand so far!
The next morning everyone was chilling in the hostel. I went out for lunch at a really good restaurant called Om Garden with a couple of people I’d met the night before, and then went to explore more of Pai. 

Om Garden
Pai is famous for hiring mopeds, mainly because you need one if you want to see or do anything other than walking around the town centre, and also because it’s so cheap at only 100 baht (£2) for 24 hours. I was far too scared at first, partly because I’d never riden one before and didn’t know what to do and partly because you hear so many stories and see quite a few people walking around with bandages on! But after practising on someone else’s outside the hostel, I decided to get my own and I’m so glad I did because I loved it!

I picked it up really quickly, and it’s a great place to learn because it’s so quiet and there’s no cars on most of the roads, just mopeds and a few taxis/mini vans in the town centre.

Four of us from the hostel spent the day riding around, and the scenery was incredible. 

We visited Mo Paeng waterfall and climbed to the top of the Big Buddha where you could look down on all of Pai.

Pai is just so good. It’s one of those places that you need to visit to feel the vibe and experience how nice it is. I loved it and didn’t want to leave! 

Today I’ve taken a minibus, plane, coach, and a ferry (starting at 7am after getting in from a night out at 4am…lesson learnt!) to the south of Thailand for two weeks and it felt like I was leaving the country because it’s so far and everyone I’ve met are still in the north, but over the next couple of days people from Chiang Mai and Pai are coming down so it’ll be great to see everyone again, and I can’t wait to make lots of new friends too!

Love Emily X