Bangkok. The first and last place I visited in Thailand. Spoiler: Bangkok didn’t have me and let us go in the end. Sightseeing and not getting wet in the afternoon rains were my priorities, so I was waking up early and didn’t go out at all. I have to admit, I like getting up early in the morning on holidays, when streets are still empty and I can walk easily without bumping into tourists all the time (ok, ok, I know, I’m a tourist myself).
Frankly speaking we spent more than one day in Bangkok, but only one involved walking around the city. The most popular tourist attractions are popular for some reason, so we started with number 1: The Grand Palace. Distances in Bangkok forced us to take public transport instead of just walking, but thanks to that we have discovered the best, fastest and cheapest mean of transportation in Bangkok: boats. 14 THB per person one way (~0,50 USD, tickets to be bought on the boat) and you’re not stuck in a traffic. So if you’re looking for a place to stay in Bangkok, make sure it’s close to the river, because river=boats. We arrived next to the Grand Palace, walked with hundreds of people along white wall and ended up being examined for appropriate clothes. My maxi skirt was ok, shorts on men aren’t ok, so quick change to long pants which we had in a backpack, 500 THB (~15 USD) for the ticket and we were ready to go. If you don’t have long pants to change to, they’ll borrow you some. Our jaws literally dropped because of all the golden decorations, mosaics, ornaments and all the work it required to complete the Grand Palace and Temple of Emerald Buddha (Wat Phra Kaew). Let the pictures do the talking:
At the beginning of the trip every temple was different and unique, so we went to Wat Pho – Temple of Reclining Buddha. We could still distinguish one temple from another, so we simply had to see it before a whole Thailand would turn into One Big Golden Temple and Mosaic Stupa.
I knew that Reclining Buddha exists, but I had no idea, that it’s soooo big. 15 meters high and 46 meters long. It simply has to make an impression. Especially in comparison to Emerald Buddha from the temple next to the Grand Palace. The emerald one is simply a small figure (it has different clothes depending on a season). Stupas in Wat Pho are impressive as well. Everything is impressive.
After these spiritual moments, we went to look for Khao San Road – touristic center of the city, full of shops, hostels and bars. Maybe it was because we were there during the day and not at night, but Khao San didn’t make an impression on me. Adidas, Nike and Michael Kors in every shop and zero chances of buying just a regular bag, because mine got destroyed. We had our first pad thai for 50 THB (~1,50 USD) and continued our sightseeing, happy that our hostel is in another part of the city.
Afternoon rain was coming, so we started walking back to the pier. On our way there only one tuk tuk driver was trying to sell us 1 hour long boat tour for 1000 THB (~30 USD). We arrived at the pier when it started raining. The pier next to Grand Palace is a small market under the roof too, so we felt like we won a lottery with fruit juices and all the goodies. And even terrible smell of durian didn’t bother me. Ok, there aren’t miracles like this. Stinky durian will always bother me.
What we didn’t see in Bangkok? Floating market, because it’s quite far from the city center. We didn’t go shopping, because there were better things to do. We didn’t visit Wat Arun, known as the most picturesque temple in the city, because it was surrounded by scaffoldings and we are sick and tired of seeing scaffoldings in touristic places this year. We didn’t go to the top of State Tower (the building were The Hangover part 2 was made), because well, they didn’t let us in.. Apparently black dress is not enough if you’re wearing flat sandals. All these I’ll visit next time, because you have to do something during the next holidays in Thailand.