Hi, We're Larry and Kaye Richardson from N Little Rock, Arkansas.  Mid-sixty retired couple married over 40 years trying to balance caring for an elderly parent, playing with grandchildren who live far away, and living a fun-filled-adventure-packed-still-crazy-about-each-other-life around the world. That's our 30 second elevator speech! You can stop here if you wish! For the long version, keep reading!

Hi, We're Larry and Kaye Richardson from N Little Rock, Arkansas. 
Mid-sixty retired couple married over 40 years trying to balance caring for an elderly parent, playing with grandchildren who live far away, and living a fun-filled-adventure-packed-still-crazy-about-each-other-life around the world. That's our 30 second elevator speech! You can stop here if you wish! For the long version, keep reading!

The Gardens of Chiang Mai

The Gardens of Chiang Mai

We've been back from Southeast Asia for a few weeks now, but it still tugs at our hearts, and we know we'll go back. When people ask us if we ever get homesick, we say that we don't, but the truth is we do, in a way. We get homesick for where we just left, and as much as we are loving the Utah road trip that we are currently on, we miss Southeast Asia! Take a look at the pictures below and you'll see one of the reasons why. 

The title of this post is The Gardens of Chiang Mai, even though that's not completely accurate. There's technically only one actual garden shown below and it's the King's Garden at Bhubing Palace on Doi Suthep high above Chiang Mai. The rest are restaurants in garden settings, plantings near the moat and gate outside of old city, and just pretty plants we passed by on streets. Larry wanted to call it The Gardens of Chiang Mai because that's how he remembers it - lots of inviting garden settings. In our former life when we traveled we took lots of pictures of gardens so we could go home and try to reproduce some of what we liked. Now we just enjoy them while we are there and take pictures so we can remember them later. No fuss, no muss, no gardening!

We're standing in front of a huge wall of flowers at Bhubing Palace.

We're standing in front of a huge wall of flowers at Bhubing Palace.

I've always loved angel trumpets, and they are all over the King's Gardens.

I've always loved angel trumpets, and they are all over the King's Gardens.

The King's Rose Garden, Suan Suwaree, is a favorite place for visitors to see rose varieties that are not grown in other areas of Thailand. The cool mountain air allows them to thrive here.

The King's Rose Garden, Suan Suwaree, is a favorite place for visitors to see rose varieties that are not grown in other areas of Thailand. The cool mountain air allows them to thrive here.

The green house overflows with colorful blooms!

The green house overflows with colorful blooms!

Thailand is in a year-long period of mourning for their king, King Bhumibol Adulyadej, who died last October. Visitors to Bhubing Palace are invited to sign a condolence book. 

Thailand is in a year-long period of mourning for their king, King Bhumibol Adulyadej, who died last October. Visitors to Bhubing Palace are invited to sign a condolence book. 

A water feature in the garden.

A water feature in the garden.

Beautiful orchids grow in abundance here in the garden!

Beautiful orchids grow in abundance here in the garden!

We loved the leaf prints and carvings in the concrete here in the king's garden and other places throughout SE Asia. This is a project we tried after a trip several years ago when I first discovered concrete pavers with leaf prints. We made several, and they were beautiful, and they broke! All of them! These look sturdy enough to withstand time and traffic!

We loved the leaf prints and carvings in the concrete here in the king's garden and other places throughout SE Asia. This is a project we tried after a trip several years ago when I first discovered concrete pavers with leaf prints. We made several, and they were beautiful, and they broke! All of them! These look sturdy enough to withstand time and traffic!

Water reservoir and garden at Bhubing Palace

Water reservoir and garden at Bhubing Palace

The pavilion at the reservoir

The pavilion at the reservoir

Last picture in the Bhubing Palace gardens - giant bamboo!

Last picture in the Bhubing Palace gardens - giant bamboo!

This is a pretty, flower covered foot bridge over the moat that surrounds old city Chiang Mai. There are several bridges. Some of them are plain, and others are lush with plants like this one.

This is a pretty, flower covered foot bridge over the moat that surrounds old city Chiang Mai. There are several bridges. Some of them are plain, and others are lush with plants like this one.

A close up of plants on the bridge.

A close up of plants on the bridge.

The garden by Suan Dok Gate going into the  old city.

The garden by Suan Dok Gate going into the  old city.

As you enter Clay Studio Coffee in the Garden through a small gate in a wall on the street, you are greeted by this beautiful garden setting. Enter the doors on the far right and place your order. Then wander the garden until you find your own little private spot. Sit and relax. They'll find you and deliver your food!

As you enter Clay Studio Coffee in the Garden through a small gate in a wall on the street, you are greeted by this beautiful garden setting. Enter the doors on the far right and place your order. Then wander the garden until you find your own little private spot. Sit and relax. They'll find you and deliver your food!

The beautiful, peaceful setting made this one of our favorite restaurants in Chiang Mai.

The beautiful, peaceful setting made this one of our favorite restaurants in Chiang Mai.

"Our" table was just to the left of this water feature.

"Our" table was just to the left of this water feature.

Terracotta art works and lush plantings make a stunning combination!

Terracotta art works and lush plantings make a stunning combination!

They are everywhere!

They are everywhere!

Last picture from Clay Studio. It was hard to stop taking pics there (I have more!) and hard to stop posting them too! If you could only feel the cool air and the serenity of the place, you'd see why we loved it so much! They have great, free wifi, and you could see people working on laptops throughout the garden. I wouldn't mind working if I had this as my office! Oh, and the food isn't bad either!

Last picture from Clay Studio. It was hard to stop taking pics there (I have more!) and hard to stop posting them too! If you could only feel the cool air and the serenity of the place, you'd see why we loved it so much! They have great, free wifi, and you could see people working on laptops throughout the garden. I wouldn't mind working if I had this as my office! Oh, and the food isn't bad either!

We stopped into Fern Forest Cafe hot and tired from miles of walking and sightseeing. It was a delightful spot to relax and cool off and have a nice meal! They, like many other restaurants in Chiang Mai, have cooling mist sprayers throughout the garden, and the mist feels terrific! 

We stopped into Fern Forest Cafe hot and tired from miles of walking and sightseeing. It was a delightful spot to relax and cool off and have a nice meal! They, like many other restaurants in Chiang Mai, have cooling mist sprayers throughout the garden, and the mist feels terrific! 

The Blue Diamond Cafe is another restaurant in a garden setting with a koi pond, but we didn't get great pics from there. They also have a really pretty fruit and vegetable market in the restaurant, as well as baked goods and local coffee beans and ground coffee to take with you. Judging by the day we ate a late breakfast there, it's popular with the backpacker set! They chose these low tables and loungey chairs while we chose to sit at the more traditional table and chairs. Ah, youth! We remember a time when we would have chosen these seats too!

The Blue Diamond Cafe is another restaurant in a garden setting with a koi pond, but we didn't get great pics from there. They also have a really pretty fruit and vegetable market in the restaurant, as well as baked goods and local coffee beans and ground coffee to take with you. Judging by the day we ate a late breakfast there, it's popular with the backpacker set! They chose these low tables and loungey chairs while we chose to sit at the more traditional table and chairs. Ah, youth! We remember a time when we would have chosen these seats too!

If you know what this plant is, please tell me! We saw it growing on a wall on the street and there wasn't anyone around to ask. I've never seen one before and don't know if that is a flower or a fruit. Beautiful though!

If you know what this plant is, please tell me! We saw it growing on a wall on the street and there wasn't anyone around to ask. I've never seen one before and don't know if that is a flower or a fruit. Beautiful though!

A wall outside a restaurant in old city.

A wall outside a restaurant in old city.

Chiang Mai holds many charms and we'd love to go back and enjoy them again! 

Arches National Park

Arches National Park

Wat Phra That Doi Suthep

Wat Phra That Doi Suthep