Travel destinations for getting some ink (part 1)
Most people who get one tattoo will need to get another, and some people will tend to get themselves inked in order to celebrate, commemorate or simply have a permanent reminder of some event. And if that event is a trip to a particular place, then here are some places where you can get some crazy ink.
Wat Bang Phra – Thailand
Ever thought of endowing yourself with mystical powers? Who hasn’t really? Well you can visit the Buddhist monks at Wat Bang Phra who can help with this particular goal.
They have been known for some time to ink yantra tattoos mean to bestow their wearer with mystical strength, protection and good luck. These tattoos are not for the faint hearted as the various monkeys, tigers and Khmer/Cambodian designs are inked by the holy tattooists using scary 45 cm long needles.
For an extra bonus to this, try to visit the temple in early March when a wild tattoo festival is held here in which the attendees go into trances and ‘become’ the spirit animals that are carved into their skin.
North Island – New Zealand
If you do take it upon yourself to get to New Zealand and you want a reminder of the visit there, this is the place to get some Maori-style tattoos. In New Zealand’s indigenous culture, the complex designs of their blue swirling tattoes – called ta moko – are a type of sign, representing one’s identity, origin and bravery. It’s akin to having one’s personal history etched into one’s skin so that those who are able to, can know it without having to ask.
A traditional and true ‘ta moko’ is sacred and traditionally artists would use a bone chisel to make them, but nowadays they tend to use somewhat less-painful modern technologies. A ‘ta moko’ is only for Maori, but if you love the style, you can get a similar motif called Kirituhi. The best places for this art are Auckland and Rotorua.