Travel Tuesday: The Pink City of Jaipur, India

Travel Tuesday: The Blue City of Morocco

Travel Tuesday: Temples of Chiang Mai

Home | Posts tagged "Travel"

Tag Archives: Travel

Travel Tuesday: The Pink City of Jaipur, India

 

p9

Our founder Kevin is busy exploring India, finding cool, new stuff for our showroom. He sent us a video today from his latest travels in the  city of Jaipur, which you can watch here:

http://www.mohr-mcpherson.com/blog/wp-content/uploads/2015/09/Jaipur.mov

Here are some quick facts about this magnificent place.

Jaipur is known as the “Pink City of India”, and is a fitting capital for the charismatic state of Rajasthan. It is the largest city in Rajasthan, as well as the 10th largest city in India, with a population of 6.66 million. The city is named after its founder, Maharaja Sawai Jai Singh II, who founded it in 1727.

85_indie_jaipur_pink_city

Unlike other Pre-modern day Indian Cities, the streets of Jaipur are quite regulated, and the city is divided by broad streets into six sectors. The urban parts are further divided by a grid network of streets. Jaipur is a very popular tourist destination in India. It is included on the Golden Triangle Tourist Circuit, in addition to Delhi and Agra.

The former royal family continues to live in the city palace at the heart of Jaipur. The royal observatory is also here, part of the world heritage, and In the hills surrounding the city is Jaipur’s star attraction, Amber Fort.  Jaipur is known for its bustling, full of life atmosphere and lively streets. Its culture is colorful, flamboyant and warm. It is also a prime spot for shopping, its markets overflowing with pottery, jewelry, silks and textiles, iron-ware,  carpets, and all kinds of other handmade goods. 

fav_things

Travel Tuesday: The Blue City of Morocco

 

a woman with her washing in the blue walled town of Chefchaouen, Morocco

The  city of Chefchaouen is tucked away in the Riff mountains of northern Morocco.It is located about four hours from the city of Fez, and is remote and well hidden.It was founded in 1471, when Jewish and Moorish refugees fled the Spanish Reconquista, and was used as a sort of base while hiding from the invading Portuguese. Chefchaouen once again became a safe haven in the 1930’s when Jews were fleeing Europe. It was during this time that the city was painted entirely in  Blue.  

The color blue, in addition to being beautiful, represents the sky and the Heavens in Judaism. Painting homes blue for spiritual inspiration had been a practice of the first refugees in the 1400’s, but became widespread in the 1930’s. The  families of Muslims,Berbers, and Jews lived here in peace for hundreds of years.  However in 1948, most of the Jewish families left for Israel. The people Chefchaouen today still keep the Jewish tradition alive, and continue to paint their building blue, applying fresh paint seasonally. The local government supplies paint and brushes to the people as well. 

Chefchaouen-Robinju1images-1

chefchaouen

Another fun fact about the blue paint is that it is rumored to keep away mosquitos. Mosquitos dislike flowing water, and from a distance that is what the city appears to be. Many visitors say that while walking through the narrow, cavelike streets, it can start to feel like you are swimming

maxresdefault

pcXcnvl

IMG_3945-final1-990IMG_3994-final3-990

Like many other parts of Morocco, This city is colorful! Not only are there countless variations of blue to gaze at, other colors are celebrated too. Bags of pigment fill the markets, and vibrant, handwoven rugs are a big part of cultural tradition here.

riad-chefchaouen

 

While most of us won’t be visiting this heavenly city any time soon, we can dream about it, and better yet we can shop about it.  Here are some of the most Chefchaouen and  inspired pieces at Mohr and McPherson.

43738__66334.1436726173.500.65943736__90490.1436726173.1280.1280Iron Stools

43979__40598.1440534229.1280.1280

 

rugs

 

blue shelves

RR43801__76225.1436457623.500.659

RR43764__50664.1436457586.1280.1280

42965__37146.1418402232.1280.1280

 

morocco-Sabino-Parente-600x398

Travel Tuesday: Temples of Chiang Mai

chiang-mai-hilton-night

You may have heard that our founder Kevin has relocated to Thailand. Since then, all of us at Mohr & McPherson have been continuously learning about the colorful and ancient culture of this fabulous country. An important aspect of Thai culture is Buddhism. Building “everlasting” temples or “Wats”, was a way for Thai Kings to leave their mark. The long-standing sustainability of these temples is proof of the advanced skills of the builders. There are over 200 temples in Chiang Mai alone,  many of them dating back to the city’s  founding date of 1296 AD. Read on to learn about some of Chiang Mai’s most famous Temples

Wat Chiang Man

Wat-Chiang-Man-TH

Wat Chiang Man was the first temple ever built in Chiang Mai. It was built in the North East Corner by King Mengrai in 1296. This temple was part of the original construction of the city, and holds two rare Buddha statues. One statue is Marble, and the other is Crystal.

Wat Phra Singh

watphrasingh2

This is one of the most important temples in Chiang Mai. It was built in 1345, and is a classic example of Northern Thai architecture. Amongst many revered Buddha statues, Wat Phra Singh houses a learning center for young men and boys who are studying to become monks.

Wat Phra That Doi Suthep.

wat-doi-suthep-temple-and-white-meo-hilltribe-village-half-day-tour-in-chiang-mai-140595

Wat Phra That Doi Suthep is the most well known temple in the area. It sits to the north-west of the Chiang Mai, near the very top of Mt. Suthep. This temple was established in 1383 under King Keu Naone, and pone of Chiang Mai’s most sacred temples. The place was “chosen” by a white elephant, who was sent by a monk to wander the mountains with a Buddha relic mounted on its back. When the elephant died, The Wat Suthep temple was built in the place of its death.

To get to the temple, you have to walk up a 306 step staircase, which was built to be meditative to the climber. Or, there is a tram visitors can also take if they do not wish to climb the stairs.

images-1

There is a shrine on the first floor terrace of the temple, honoring Sudeva, the hermit who lived on the mountain, and a statue of the white elephant who carried the Buddha relic.

wat-phra-that-doi-suthep

 

Wat Suan Dok

wat-suan-dok

This temple was built in 1371, and was originally a royal  flower garden owned by King Keuna. The King gave the flower gardens to a very revered monk from Sukkhothai.  There was a Buddhist Relic transported to this temple, and it split into two pieces. One piece was kept here, and the other was the relic strapped onto the white elephant we learned about earlier, leading to the birth of Wat Phra That Doi Suthep. Also at Wat Suan Dok is a 500 year old bronze Buddha statue, one of the largest in Thailand.

images-3

There are also many white “Chedis”, and many of them hold the ashes of the former Chiang Mai royal family. This temple is also home to a Buddhist University, and is located 1km West of the city.

 

Wat Umong Tunnels

Wat-U-Mong

Wat Umong is built in the foot hills of Suthep Mountain, which are still heavily forested. This temple was built in the late 14th Century, and is named for its many tunnels. “Umong” is the Thai word for tunnel.

1103261431_gJHGN-M-2

A large mound was built on a flat space, and then criss-crossed with tunnels.  The legendary reason for the maze-like tunnels was to keep the highly regarded but “mad” monk who ruled here, from wandering off.  At some point the temple was abandoned, and not occupied again until 1940. The overgrown, moss laden environment of this temple can partially be attributed to its many years of being uninhabited.

parts2