World Cup fever at Chiang Mai Municipal Stadium
After four years of waiting, the World Cup 2006 has finally come round
again. More than 1,500 million people all over the world have been eagerly
awaiting this great sporting festival. Even in Thailand, although the
country is not included in the competition, there are thousands of football
fans who will be cheering on their favorite teams; such as Brazil, England,
Germany, Italy, France, Japan, or other teams that they particularly fancy,
as long as they don’t gamble on the results!
Chiang Mai has a giant marquee at Chiang Mai Municipal Stadium, at a cost of
more than 10 million baht that can hold more than 3,000 spectators, to
broadcast every match from Germany live.
who participated in the event painting the French national flag.
World Cup 2006 at True Stadium will
broadcast live continually for 32 days using two giant projector screens
with Digital Cinemascope System which is an innovation in live sports
broadcasting as football fans who barrack for each team will sit on opposite
sides. Football fans will dress in their favorite team’s colors or symbols
and display their favorite team’s national flag.
There will also be live broadcasting in many other places; such as
restaurants and pubs. However, Provincial Police Bureau 5 who are
responsible for suppressing gambling in the Upper North has set a procedure
for monitoring football gambling in many places and set penalties for any
police officers who get involved with football gambling, including instant
dismissal. Police have also been informed that there are more than 10
gambling places in Tachilek in Myanmar opposite Mae Sai district, Chiang Rai
and they will be keeping an eye out for anyone attending these places.
Cup Fever in Chiang Mai.
World Cup fever with many
products in the shape of footballs.
World Cup 2006 at the True
Stadium tent which can hold more than 3,000 people.
World Cup 2006 fever at Mae Sa Elephant Camp
elephants decorated with football teams’ national flags for the World Cup.
World Cup fever started early on June 9 at Mae Sa Elephant Camp, Mae Rim
district, Chiang Mai, with an activity to welcome the World Cup 2006. This
was an opportunity to welcome the tourists who visit Maesa Elephant Camp and
hope they will be amused by the national flags of the competing countries
that have been painted on the elephants’ cheeks.
Anchalee Kalmaphichit, operation director of Mae Sa Elephant Camp said that
this year at Mae Sa Elephant Camp, 8 baby elephants have been painted with
the national flags of Germany, the World Cup 2006’s host, as well as those
of Brazil, Spain and Italy in order to promote the sport and create a World
Cup atmosphere for foreign tourists during this festival of football.
Football is one of elephants’ favorite activities with the special feature
that young elephants love to kick a special-sized ball into the goal in
different ways such as front leg or rear leg with another elephant as a
Chiang Mai Pool League: Start your Everest climb from Chiang Mai
If you ask which mountain is the highest in the world, most people answer,
Everest, and they’re wrong. At 33,465 feet, Mauna Kea near Hawaii
stretches 4,436 feet taller than Everest, but only 41 percent of it rises
above sea level.
So, while Everest in the Himalayas proves to be the highest and most
challenging climb on earth, with its rapidly changing weather conditions,
avalanches and crevasses, it’s downright impossible to swim to the bottom
of Mauna Kea.
Once known as Chomolungma in Tibet, Sagarmatha in Nepal and Peak XV in
western countries, Mount Everest was officially named after the British
Surveyor General, Sir George Everest, in 1865. Attempts to scale the peak
started 56 years later, but who reached the top first remains a mystery.
In a 1924 ascent, British climbers George Mallory and Andrew Irvine
disappeared in bad weather and never returned. Mallory’s body was found 75
years later only 2,000 feet from the summit and speculation remains as to
whether he was still on his way up or coming down.
In the meantime, Sir Edmund Hillary officially conquered the mountain in
1953 and Mallory’s grandson ญ another George ญ succeeded in
Since Mallory’s fatal attempt, around 1,000 people from some twenty
countries have climbed on Everest, with more than 150 of them losing their
lives. Despite the 6 to 1 odds on survival, climbing the mountain has become
somewhat commercialized, with controversial guided tours open to any
physically fit person possessing US$65,000 to pay for one.
Hence, an accumulation of discarded equipment and human waste amounted to an
estimated 600 tons of garbage up to last year, but a Chinese team has begun
cleaning operations in readiness for the 2008 Summer Olympics in Beijing.
Some people say that the mountains of Chiang Mai are the foothills of the
Himalayas, and while not as majestic as the giants further north, they offer
challenging rock faces that are much cheaper to climb.
Chiang Mai Rock Climbing Adventures provides first class tuition and a guide
service, where beginners can clamber about on an indoor boulder wall before
getting to grips with the real thing. When faced with vertical cliffs and
overhangs, a team of fully qualified instructors is on hand to ensure
maximum safety measures.
Co owned by Thai national climbing champion, Khaetthaleeya Uppakham and Josh
Morris from America, this professionally run outfit organizes more than a
dozen different instruction courses with all the necessary equipment
There’s a lot more to climbing than just knowing what to wear and finding
cracks to place your fingers and feet. Knowledge of ropes and the ways to
knot them is essential, never mind the use of chalk, clips, climbing jargon
and how to secure a harness. Bending and stretching demands a certain level
of fitness, especially in the fingers, joints and toes, and determination
helps to build on physical strength.
One day programs at Chiang Mai Rock Climbing Adventures range from
introductory to advanced and cost between B. 1,800 and B. 3,500. Courses
spread over two, three and five days are priced at B. 6,800 (self rescue),
B. 6,600 and B. 11,500, respectively, and custom designed tuition is
All equipment, transportation and lunch are provided and for more
information visit www.thailandclimbing.com or ring 053 207 102.
Nature carved a lifelike horse’s head in the limestone on top of the Crazy
Horse Buttress. This outcrop of weirdly shaped rock faces - streaked in
black, orange and yellow - stands 70 metres tall in the picturesque Mae On
valley about 35 kilometres from Chiang Mai.
Chiang Mai Rock Climbing Adventures has mapped out over 150 climbing routes
there, and I joined a multinational party of nine, who were determined to
use some of them in conquering Thailand’s newest international climbing
Finnish tourists, Adrian and Riikka, told how much they enjoyed climbing as
an individual sport that demanded physical strength and intense
concentration. Brits, Richard and Paul agreed, and when we arrived at the
Crazy Horse these seasoned climbers prepared their ascent from the more
challenging routes without supervision.
But for Singaporeans, Xavier, Lee and Ruek, climbing was a relatively new
experience, which called for the help of skilled instructors like Thomas
from Switzerland and our local man, Sorn. It was amazing to see how quickly
the students learned ญ from tying knots to clawing their way up
vertical slices of rock inside a day ญ egged on by the rest of the
As an alternative to climbing up Crazy Horse, our intrepid trio from
Singapore ended their encounter by rappelling down 55 meters into a cave
full of stalagmites, stalactites and dramatic rock formations.
After eight climbing hours, it was difficult to prise our seven mountaineers
away from the precipice. Climbing is clearly obsessive and when the elder
Mallory said that he wanted to scale Everest simply because it was there, I
now understanding what he meant.