Tag Archives: Thailand

Our Project from Thailand Needs Your Help!

Full Moon Kickstarter Photo for site

 

Our Project from Thailand Needs Your Help!

 

Last year while we were in Thailand, we began work on a documentary that examines the trash problem after the Full Moon Party in Koh Phangan and those who are attempting to solve the problem.    We have started a Kickstarter project in hopes that we can raise enough funds to complete the film.  Please take a few minutes to watch our video and if you feel inspired to help, we would be grateful as every dollar helps!  Thanks

Advertisements
Tagged , , , , , , , , , , ,

VIDEO: Swimming with Giants: Whale Sharks in Thailand

While staying on Koh Phan Ngan in Southern Thailand, we ventured to the north east of the island and heard rumors that a friendly Whale Shark, the holy grail for a lot of divers, had been seen the previous days. The whale shark is a harmless “shark” and more akin to a whale, being the largest of the fish species. Dark grey with white spots it can grow to be up to 42 feet long and weigh 47,000 pounds!! We booked a spot with a local dive operator to the dive sight Sail Rock, a large rock jutting out of the ocean halfway between Koh Tao and Koh Phan Ngan. The two dives were some of the most magical dives we had ever done with thousands of fish in schools, encircling us as well as turtles, barracudas, and lion fish encounters. On the second dive we were rewarded with multiple visits from a very friendly Whale Shark. It swam by us several times throughout the dive and even came up to the surface to say hello to the snorkelers. We were exhilarated and at the end of the dive came to the surface whooping and slapping high fives with each other. An experience not to be forgotten and we are grateful to have captured it on film.
Enjoy!

Tagged , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , ,

VIDEO: Reflections of Wat Doi Suthep-Chiang Mai Thailand

Ever since the first time I visited Wat Doi Suthep over ten years ago with my Mom, I have appreciated coming back and re-visiting the hill top temple.  Once visitors have climbed the 309 steps up, they are rewarded with views over Chiang Mai and the peaceful and contemplative setting of the temple, although this visit the view was obscurred by thick smoke from the slash and burn agriculture (more on that in our next post).

Shana and I raced up the hill on a motorbike as the sun was setting and by the time we had climbed the steps we were out of breath.  The last slice of sunlight illuminated the golden chedi and buddhas beautifully and we got to watch the monks doing their sunset chants and prayers. Most of the other tourists were long gone so we got to enjoy the temple in peace.

This short video shares some of the sights and sounds of the temple and I hope conveys some of the meditative aspects that I have come to enjoy.

-Ben

Tagged , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , ,

Some Highlights of Thailand

A few favorites from Bangkok, Chiang Mai and Pai; see PHOTOS for more.

We head out of Laos today… stayed tuned for many more photos and videos to come!

From Wat Arun over the Chao Praya River

Opening Performance, International Muay Thai Festival

Evening prayers, Wat Doi Suthep, Chiang Mai

Chinese Village near China border, Pai

Tagged , , , , , , , , ,

Visit to the Bangkok Flower Market

One of my favorite things to do while in Bangkok is to check out the Flower Market at Delaat Pak Klong.  It is open 24 hours a day but the night time is the best time to visit as that is when the deliveries of lotuses, roses, orchids, chrysanthemums, and many bright varieties arrive freshly cut from the flower farms  outside the city.    It is surprisingly off the tourist map and every time I have been there, I have only seen a handful of other farang (foreigners) there.   For photographers it is a feast of colors and is very interesting watching the people bartering.  Most of the flowers are destined as offerings at the many Wats (Buddhist temples) in the city, and garlands for wrapping around the hands and heads of Buddhas are handmade by women in almost every stall.

Tagged , , , , , , , , , ,

Leaving the Phillipines, Next Stop Thailand

20120315-123926.jpg

20120315-125054.jpg

After 10 full days in the Phillipines, Shana and I are both very anxious and excited for this plane to leave Clark airport outside Manila and take us to the land of smiles, Siam sunsets, and coconut curries. I really enjoyed scuba diving the Japanese WWII wrecks and exploring the lagoons and lakes on Coron Islands but I think we could have done Basuanga Island in less time. Shana has had a hard time eating vegetarian here as Filipinos love their chicken, fish, and pork so we are both looking forward to the veggie friendly Thai cuisine.

Yesterday we left Basuanga Island and took a flight to Manila. From there we had to make our way to Angeles City about 90 minutes north of Manila where our flight to Bangkok left today. Angeles city is home to Clark Air Force base, a huge sprawling airport that once housed the US Air Force during the Vietnam war. During the late 60’s, Angeles City developed a nightlife scene to cater to the needs of the many Americans and Australians stationed there. From what I’ve heard, very little has changed and during our short time there it felt like were in the middle of a giant brothel. The hotel we stayed at was full of Australian, British, and American ex-pats and their young Philippina lady friends. Looking through a weekly tourist guide, it seemed like the small city had developed a decent sized community of permanent and seasonal expats. Ads offering houses for sale and rent, visas, cheap medical services, and the latest girly bars filled the pages and made me feel a bit gross and sad for these men. What were they escaping from back home? Were they lonely widowers who hadn’t found a wife or partner in their country of origin? Were they stationed here in the Vietnam War and never could acclimate returning home? Was there a shameful legal past they were running from? All of these questions raced through our mind as we watched solitary sad looking men between the ages of 50-80 years old sipping drinks at bars and paired up with girls half their age. It was easy to be judgmental of these men and I wished that I could hear their life stories and learn what had brought them here. There was a fine line going on between prostitution and what may have been actual loving relationships. The entire place was a documentary film waiting to happen, although I can’t say that I could stay there long enough to film it. Needless to say, Shana and I stuck out there like sore thumbs. To be fair, very similar places exist all over Asia and in Thailand like Pattaya and the Patpong district in Bangkok. However, this place really struck me due to the ex-army backgrounds of most of the men.
When we arrive in Bangkok, we will be starting preparation for some videos we are producing while there and lining up interviews. It is a great city to act as a hub for our travels, due to it’s proximity to most South East Asian countries, modern amenities, availability of most everything we may need from clothes to film supplies, and access to internet connections. I have spent more time in Bangkok than any other city I have not permanently lived in, and am so excited to visit my favorite restaurants, food stalls, and stores. We look forward to sharing our stories, photos and videos of this amazing country in the coming weeks.

Tagged , , , , , , , , , ,