Two bus rides on windy roads out of the mountains and we reached Huay Xai on the Lao-Thai border where we spent our last night in Lao. The next morning we crossed the border by ferry and took a bus to Chiang Mai, Thailand. Chiang Mai is a major tourist destination and a big city, we only spent two days here, exploring the many temples and enjoying delicious food, the many bookstores and the huge night market. We saw our first Starbucks since Los Angeles (we didn't go in).
The wats (temples) here were a little different than we had seen elsewhere and very impressive. Several had beautiful painted doors and wall murals.