How To Get A Sak Yant Tattoo In Thailand: Everything You Need To Know

How To Get A Sak Yant Tattoo In Thailand: Everything You Need To Know

We’ve known for years that if we ever traveled to Thailand, we would get traditional Sak Yant tattoos. I’m not sure how we first heard about these traditional Thai tattoos, but we were immediately intrigued. This was before we knew Angelina Jolie has one and before Sak Yant tattoos became a bit of a fad (especially with travel bloggers.) I actually think most people thought we were crazy when we used to explain why we would want a Buddhist monk to hammer repeatedly into our skin with a bamboo rod… So when we finally embarked on our first trip to Thailand this year, getting an appointment for a Sak Yant tattoo was the very first thing to go on our travel itinerary.     What Is A Sak Yant Tattoo?   You’re not alone if you’ve never heard of a Sak Yant Tattoo. We’re always explaining to people what we’ve got inked on our backs, and we love sharing about the sacred experience! Sak translates to ‘jab’ and Yant to ‘blessed tattoo.’ Traditional Sak Yant Tattoos are ancient Buddhist designs and prayers that are etched into the skin by an expert monk using a long bamboo rod (now with a steel needle tip.) They date back thousands of years and are believed to offer various protections and blessings, depending on the design.     The Sak Yant Tattoos are typically performed by monks within a Thai temple. These are by donation, but it can be difficult to find monks willing to tattoo women as they aren’t supposed to touch the opposite sex. Alternatively, Thai bamboo tattoos can also be...
Sosua, Dominican Republic: 8 Outdoor Activities You Won’t Want To Miss

Sosua, Dominican Republic: 8 Outdoor Activities You Won’t Want To Miss

It didn’t take us long to fall in love with the Dominican Republic. From the delicious tastes of Santo Domingo to the gorgeous beaches of the Northern Coast, the DR managed to exceed all our expectations—so much so that we were looking up return tickets the moment we got back to Costa Rica! One of the reasons we enjoyed our time in Sosua, Dominican Republic so much was the huge variety of fun things to do outdoors, all within easy access. Whether you’re seeking adrenaline-pumping adventures or laid-back fun-in-the-sun, there’s a little something for everyone in and around Sosua. We had a rental car, which we would highly recommend if you want to experience the Dominican Republic that’s outside of the resort walls. That said, driving is hair-raising, to say the least; it’s best if you’ve had practice driving in various conditions around the world. We know we’ll be back in Sosua to explore more of the Dominican Republic soon. In the meantime, here are eight awesome activities you won’t want to miss along the DR’s Northern Coast:     Sosua, Dominican Republic: 8 Outdoor Activities You Won’t Want To Miss   Windsurfing   If you’ve ever thought about giving windsurfing a try, then Cabarete is the beach for you. Just about ten minutes from Sosua, Cabarete is a long and beautiful beach that has been attracting windsurfers since the mid-80s. Great conditions year-round for both beginners and advanced windsurfers means just about anyone can give the sport a try!   Windsurfing in Cabarete was one of the best things we did on our entire trip. It’s not easy,...
The Ultimate Way To Experience Elephants In Thailand

The Ultimate Way To Experience Elephants In Thailand

    I’ve always had a strong affinity towards elephants. Their gentleness, intelligence and sense of community are just a few of the characteristics I find absolutely fascinating. Of course, I know I’m not alone. Various cultures around the world have long revered elephants for the powerful and complex animals that they are.     For all their adoration, it’s also true that far too many elephants are abused and mistreated for personal gain. Many travel bloggers have written extensively about why you should never ride elephants, explaining the horrible truth about the mistreatment of elephants in the tourism industry. If riding an elephant in Thailand is still on your bucket list, we strongly encourage you to learn more about the issue. On our recent trip to Thailand, we knew that we did not want to do any elephant rides or otherwise participate in the mistreatment of these gentle giants. But we also knew that we couldn’t leave Thailand without an ethical encounter with elephants. Enter: Elephant Hills. An incredible ethical encounter with elephants in Thailand!Click To Tweet Located in Khao Sok National Park (one of the most beautiful national parks in all of Southeast Asia), Elephant Hills is Thailand’s first luxury tented jungle camp. Elephant Hills boasts adventure activities within a stunning location—without sacrificing style in the process. Or, as we like to say, it’s adventure travel with a dash of class at its finest.     While there are many features of Elephant Hills that make it stand out from your typical hotel getaway, it is, of course, the opportunity for one-on-one interaction with elephants that truly...
A Glimpse Of Our Latest Adventure: 41 Epic Photos of Thailand

A Glimpse Of Our Latest Adventure: 41 Epic Photos of Thailand

After the most phenomenal three weeks of traveling around Bangkok, Chiang Mai and a handful of southern Thai islands, we can officially say it’s true: Thailand lives up to all its hype. Our trip was even better than we could have anticipated, and we’re itching to share all our juicy travel tales and tips on the blog in the upcoming weeks. Between participating in water fights for Songkran to getting Sak Yant tattoos by a monk in Chiang Mai to playing with elephants and relaxing in a floating luxury tent, we’ve definitely got a few stories we can’t wait to share. We’re about to hit the road once more, though, this time to the Dominican Republic to celebrate our 5-year anniversary! :-) Be sure to check in on social media for live updates as we explore this new destination. And in the meantime, enjoy these 41 epic photos of Thailand! We think they might be just what you need to kick your wanderlust into full gear. 41 Of Our Favorite Photos Of Thailand   Bangkok Thailand’s bustling capital city   Koh Samui One of Thailand’s largest and most lively islands   Khao Sok National Park w/ Elephant Hills Considered to be the best national park in Southeast Asia   Railay Beach A small peninsula between Krabi and Ao Nang, known for its dramatic limestone cliffs and crystal water   Kho Lipe The Maldives of Southeast Asia   Chiang Mai An ancient city with a modern coffee-shop culture vibe   Again, stay tuned in the upcoming weeks for in-depth travel stories, tips and, of course, more photos of Thailand from...
22 Photos that Prove Playa Zipolite Is Paradise

22 Photos that Prove Playa Zipolite Is Paradise

The small seaside town is simply a strip of barely paved road with a few restaurants and hotels on either side. The long whitesand beach sits secluded between two towering rock cliffs, the crashing waves beckoning surfers to ride them. The simplicity of it all is what makes Playa Zipolite so charming. You won’t find any over-the-top resorts or ritzy all-inclusives. What you will find are laid back locals who never seem to know what time it is, street vendors selling stylish handmade crafts, delicious Mexican cuisine cooked in ways that can only be found in Oaxaca, and some of the most beautiful sunsets in Central America.   Note: Do keep in mind that Playa Zipolite is a popular destination for nudists. When we were there, most people seemed to keep their swimsuits on, but don’t be surprised if you see fellow travelers donning nothing more than their birthday suit.     Here are 22 photos to show why Playa Zipolite is paradise on Earth.   Surfing Since living in Costa Rica, one of our (more specifically my) favorite beach pastimes is hitting the waves. Surf lessons are popular here and nearly everyone on our trip with Cantimplora Travel caught some waves during our surf session! We were so grateful to have a professional photographer with us to capture the moment while we enjoyed the ride.     Cruise to Bahia De La Luna The following morning, we took a fishing boat around the corner to Bahia De La Luna. On the way we were lucky enough to spot sea turtles and dolphins. We were told the migrating humpback whales weren’t in season to make an...
Exploring the Amazing Petrified Waterfalls of Hierve el Agua, Oaxaca

Exploring the Amazing Petrified Waterfalls of Hierve el Agua, Oaxaca

  One of our favorite things about traveling with locals is the opportunity it provides to go deep under the surface of a new destination. To not only experience off-the-beaten-track attractions but also to learn about the unique culture, history and importance of the area from the viewpoint of someone who knows it intimately. Without fail, these moments with locals—however brief—always create our most meaningful, lasting memories. While recently exploring Oaxaca with Mexican photographers and tour guides Sam and Bernie, we were once again swept away. Sam and Bernie founded their new travel company Cantimplora Travel based on their passion for taking travelers on meaningful, off the beaten track adventures—all while photographing the once-in-a-lifetime memories so that you can step away from your screens and devices.   Photo by Cantimplora Travel  Photo by Cantimplora Travel  Photo by Cantimplora Travel  Traveling with Cantimplora Travel is precisely like being hosted by local friends; Sam and Bernie are eager to share the best-hidden gems and attractions of their country, without using forced scripts or rigid schedules. From meeting a local mezcal farmer to indulging in the best cuisine in Oaxaca City, Sam and Bernie were a wealth of insider tips from start to finish. But perhaps one of our favorite attractions on our road trip through Oaxaca was exploring the mesmerizing petrified waterfalls of Hierve el Agua.   Hierve el Agua: A Natural Wonder in Oaxaca, Mexico   Photo by Cantimplora Travel  Hierve el Agua is one of only a handful of petrified waterfalls in the world. Though it looks more like a frozen waterfall dramatically etched into the side of a...