Happy ending and beginning for Thai cave town

The rescue of a Thai football team from a cave in north Thailand last year puts the spotlight on Mae Sai, a region with mountains, temples, caves and cultural diversity

I am standing in the grounds of a Buddhist temple, at the entrance to a dark cave, when I hear a male voice from behind me. "They say that cave goes all the way from Thailand to Myanmar."

I turn around to be greeted by a Swiss monk who is living here at Wat Tham Pha Chom, an ancient Thai temple located just 200m from the Ruak River, which forms a natural border between Myanmar and Thailand's Chiang Rai Province.

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A version of this article appeared in the print edition of The Sunday Times on April 07, 2019, with the headline 'Happy ending and beginning for Thai cave town'. Print Edition | Subscribe