Travelling SE Asia // 4 Days In Bangkok!

Monday 7 March 2016

Sawadee-ka from Thailand!

We started our travelling journey a week ago today, which is so hard to believe! It's Monday evening here right now, the sun is going down so the sky is a lovely pastel colour and the heat is still intense, but not as melt-inducing as this afternoon.
It's Monday afternoon back home, as I'm writing this, almost lunch time and I'm as far away from my old Mondays as it's possible to be! I'm sitting in the common, restaurant area of our most recent hostel (Noom Guesthouse,   in Lopburi), drinking an Iced Lemon Tea, trying to soak in the slightly cooler air blown about by the several fans dotted about the room. Life at home, in my old job seems like an absolute lifetime ago!

We arrived in Bangkok last Monday morning, and by about lunchtime we had made the 40 minute taxi journey from the city's main airport, Suvarnabhumi, to the infamous backpacker area, Khao San Road. Luckily, our hostel was on a narrow side street just off Khao San, so it was pretty quiet at night and during the day it was a nice place to chill, away from all the madness of the city.

Our hostel was New Joe Guesthouse , and it was definitely a great first hostel to stay in! It had a beautiful, half inside half outside restaurant/chill area, which is where David and I spent the majority of our evenings in Bangkok. They played football and other sports on a TV on the wall, so David was happy, and they had good enough wifi and music playing so I was happy enough to just relax and catch up with people from home! There were also a couple of resident cats that wandered about the place , and I may or may not have nearly died of happiness when one of them jumped up and lay down beside me!

We stayed in Bangkok for 4 days, which was just the right amount of time to spend in the city, in our opinion. Everything I read before we left home said that Bangkok is a love it or hate it city, that it's absolutely manic, that people usually hate it the first time they visit, and love it the second, and so on.

We actually found that it wasn't nearly as bad as all that, and yet 4 days was still more than enough time for us. We didn't love the city, but we didn't hate it either, and I don't think either of us are absolutely dreading having to go back!

Unfortunately, despite all of our reading and preparing, we managed to get scammed twice in 4 days! Twice! They were annoying, but we didn't let them bother us too much, all part of my new attitude of embracing the things life throws at us! But I think I'll go into more detail in another post and save this one from being waay too long!

What We Did In Bangkok

The Golden Mount: This was actually a stop-off on our first scam, but it turned out to be the only stop that was worth it! It's an ancient Buddhist temple built on top of a artificial mountain, in the middle of Bangkok. To get to the top you have to climb 346 steps (at least, that's what the sign says...We didn't count them as we climbed!), but the views over Bangkok are pretty incredible! There are loads of trees and carvings on the way up, along with a coffee shop and plenty of photo opportunities. You can find out more about the history of Wat Saket here!

Khao San Road: This is the infamous backpacker street in Bangkok, and while David and I aren't exactly looking for the massively crazy party scene on our travels, just walking up and down this street a couple of times was an experience in itself! Market stalls take over most of the street, food stalls are crammed in every spare inch of space, and anything that's leftover is taken by people carrying trays of insects, glow sticks, hats, fake tattoo sleeves and wooden carvings that make the hugely annoying cricket sound! We wandered this street a couple of times a day, and despite most sites recommending that you eat elsewhere, had our dinner there 3 nights in a row, with no nasty side effects, thank you God!! It's a great spot to sit and people watch, and as most of the restaurants have seating areas that spill out onto the street, it couldn't work out better!

Honestly, apart from this we didn't really do much else in Bangkok! We walked around, ALOT! From being abandoned by our tuk-tuk driver and having to find our way back to our hostel (more on that later!) to walking to the Grand Palace, queueing for the changing rooms so David could put trousers on, only to change our minds and walk back for lunch because it was too busy, crowded and hot, we definitely did alot of walking!

It was nice to have a couple of days to relax and get our bearings before actually starting on our travels to the North of Thailand. The heat and the culture is such a shock to the system, that it did take us a day or two to feel like it was real life and we weren't just dreaming everything!

We've just spent a couple of days in Ayutthaya, and today we arrived in Lopburi, a town famous for its resident monkeys! So keep your eyes out for those posts in the next week or so! As well as more info on our two scamming experiences!