Arrived! Bangkok Day 1

Tag: Bangkok, Destinations, Thailand   Type:
January 29, 2011   5 Comments
After getting through an overly tedious passport & visa queue of well over an hour at the airport, we grabbed our bags and met an organised taxi transfer to the hotel.

As we left the smart terminal building we were hit by a fantastic wall of tropical heat, heavy warm air, which truly marked our arrival somewhere a million miles away from the cold of London. Exciting!

 

Our hotel was the Legacy Express, on Sukhumvit 29, Soi 1: clean and newish, with surprisingly good food in the always empty restaurant. We would happily stay there again – recommended. Our first beer in Bangkok was, not knowingly, in a girlie bar….one of them told Carly how beautiful she was. We drank up and left.

Chao Phraya River Bangkok Arrived! Bangkok Day 1

Chao Phraya River Bangkok - Mercifully away from the congestion and fumes of the roads. A great way to move about Bangkok

The next day we set off on the first full day of our travels, deciding to play it safe and hit the main tourist sites. An easy skytrain and boat ride later we desembarked at the Maharaj Pier and headed towards the Grand Palace.

Temple at Grand Palace Bangkok Arrived! Bangkok Day 1

Temple at Grand Palace Bangkok - click to enlarge and check out the little men holding the Temple up

We wandered a bit before being approached by a tourist policemen, who couldn’t wait to tell us we wouldn’t see anything the way we were going and do we have a map and we should go here first, then here, then here etc. We were apprehensive – all he had to give confidence in his authority was some ok English and a nice jacket with tourist police written on it – do we trust him? Then he pointed at a tuk tuk and said we should use the ones with the white number plate as they are registered ones. The tuk tuk started pulling away as we approached but stopped in time (suspiciously choreographed?) and our man said he would drive us where we want for 20 bht (less than 50p) per hour. Our helpful chap negotiated the price on our behalf – 10? No, 20. OK, 20.

Wat Benjamabophit Marble Temple Bangkok Arrived! Bangkok Day 1

Wat Benjamabophit Marble Temple Bangkok - Off the tourist trail apparantly but a beautiful temple inside and out

We went with the flow and got in and whizzed off – kind of glad to have some direction but not certain we were in control. The tuk tuk went down the side of traffic, barged in front of others as is the norm, and scuttled down side streets as it wove us towards God knows where – our helpful samaritan had explained to him to take us 1) to the tourist office (which proved irrelevant for us at that time), then 2) on to Wat Intharawiharn, a huge golden buddha, then 3) the Marble Temple, and 4) the Golden Mount and finally the Grand Palace.

Audio MP3

MP3 sample of the Golden Mount bells and monks. A huge temple you climb via the steps wrapped around it

In between he took us to a tailors to give us the chance to buy a made-to-measure suit so that he would get a petrol coupon…he seemed a decent fellow so we went with the flow. The suits by the way would have cost nearly £100…not exactly a brilliant bargain.

Outside of Emerald Budha Temple at Grand Palace Bangkok Arrived! Bangkok Day 1

Outside of Emerald Budha Temple at Grand Palace Bangkok.

Our driver turned out to be a good ‘un! He parked up at our various stops and walked us to the temples and in broken English was a great help. After 2 hours of burning about we had had enough of the fumes we were breathing in and headed to the Grand Palace. We jumped out, handed over 50 bht (£1) and felt we had been given a great, exciting start to Bangkok at a ridiculous price.

Bangkok Day 2 >>



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5 Responses to “Arrived! Bangkok Day 1”

dad and sam
January 29th, 2011 @ 1:15 pm

Wow….how many more days are you going to keep up this commentary?

Margie
January 29th, 2011 @ 3:01 pm

This is brilliant. I have been looking out on this site for some content to start coming in, and am terribly impressed by the pictures and the sounds. You have got off to a great start, well done! You don’t have to maintain this sort of standard, it must have taken some time and thought.
I love the idea of Carly nearly getting kidnapped into a girlie bar. Take great care! Lots of love Margie xx

Ben
January 30th, 2011 @ 3:07 am

Thanks guys! dad and sam: we’ve got more lined up for later but I’ll have to disappoint you that it won’t carry on being a daily update…. ;)

Alex
January 30th, 2011 @ 11:18 am

Sounds amazing Ben! Put some more posts up will you! :)

Jess
January 30th, 2011 @ 12:52 pm

sounds great and exactly as I remember the sensations of Thailand…look forward to next episode

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