How do I summarize a 12-day trip to Thailand that was filled with so many experiential moments, new foods, language and culture, unforgettable memories and lifelong friends? Let’s give it a try…
UTM Abroad and Operations Groundswell made my trip to Thailand like no other. We got the opportunity to stay in a small Village learning about the Akha people, we roamed Chiang Mai eating the best chicken on a stick from a street vendor, we hiked, we learned, we explored, we laughed & we cried. We became a family. I went to Thailand with 10 strangers and came back with 10 new best friends! We still hang out till this day, 6 months later. Always reminiscing about our amazing shared experience in Thailand.
These global experiences target people that are willing to expand their perspective, explore and try something new. The minute I got on the plane, until the minute I returned to Canada, I learned and developed as a person.
My group and I did so many wonderful activities that integrated fun and knowledge. Visiting the Elephant Sanctuary was one the highlights of the trip for me. Not only are these animals beautiful, but learning about the sanctuary was very eye-opening. We learned about their efforts aiming to put an end to the mistreatment of elephants in the tourism industry. We heard stories from the staff, we fed them and we watched the elephants interact and talk amongst themselves.
Another amazing experience my group and I experienced was visiting the Akha village. This was a once in a life time experience for me. We lived with local village people and worked with their community to build a road. We spent the day working on the road, and the evenings eating delicious home-cooked meals, playing soccer with the kids and reflecting with the group.
This trip to Thailand is a trip that I cannot express in words because it is something you must experience yourself. The food, temples, people, landscapes, is indescribable. I wish I could relive this experience again and again. Thank you to UTM Abroad and OG for providing experiences like such because without it, I wouldn’t have had this trip of a lifetime!
Written by: Madiha Hussain