Brighter side of Bangkok

24th Sep 2015
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All Glitters
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Temple of Dawn
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Wat Pho (Reclining Buddha)
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Beautiful structures in Wat Pho
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Street food outside Wat Pho
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View from Lebua
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Bangkok at night
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Chatuchak market
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Siam Niramit show
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When I returned from my trip from Thailand a guy friend of mine asked "Even girls like Bangkok". Then I realized what he was hinting towards. Bangkok has and will always be linked with the soapy massage parlors, red light districts, strip clubs. It has so much to offer from palaces, temples, cheap shopping, good street food, cheap transport, parks. Bangkok is so vibrant and well planned. I bet you will love it for other reasons too. My reasons to fall in love with Bangkok.

Temples - Thailand is a Buddhist country and there are temples all over the city. Trip to Bangkok would not be complete without visit to these temple. Temples are beautifully decorated with glittery and colorful glasses. Almost every temple has a strict dress code. No short pants and sleeveless tops. There are around 400 temples in Bangkok. Wat Phra Kaew which is located in the Grand Palace, Wat Pho (Reclining Buddha), Wat Arun (The temple of Dawn), Wat Mahatat are worth a visit. Plan a trip to these temples early in the morning before tourists start crowding them. You can also get to see the monks performing their daily rituals. Most of these temple close by around 5-6 pm. All these temple are located along the Chao Phra river so taking the Chao Phra river boat is the fastest and cheapest to reach these temples. You can buy the day pass which costs 150 baht and hop on and off at multiple spots.

Shopping - The best thing that you can do in Bangkok is shop. It is indeed a shopping paradise. Shopping anywhere is cheap but you will get some real dirt cheap stuff in the street markets. Prominent amongst them are the Chatuchak weekend market and Pratunam market. Chatuchak market has around 27 sections with 15000 stalls. You can find anything and everything in the world at one place from handicrafts, toys, clothes, bags, accessories, antique wood carving, local souvenirs, garden decorated plants, trendy fashions, food. Do not forget to carry the market map. It will help you in locating stalls that sell your requirement and save time. Pratunam is a similar street market but smaller than Chatuchak. You can also consider shopping in malls like Central Plaza, MBK, Platinum which are not highly priced.

Floating markets - These markets are located next to body of water and vendors sell stuff like fruits, flowers, trinkets, food from their boats. Visiting a floating is like a half day tour. Most of these tours start early in the morning and last for 4 hours. Most of the best floating markets are located at around 80-90 kms from Bangkok.

Street food - I have a separate blog on Thai food.

Massage parlors - Every street on Bangkok will at least have 2 massage parlors. A traditional Thai massage ranges from 350-400baht for 60 minutes. They also offer neck and shoulder massage, foot massage, oil massage and a variety of other services. I had taken the traditional Thai massage and it was worth every minute.

Parks - Bangkok has a lot of parks and green spaces in the city. You can easily spend half a day there lazing around. Few of these parks also rent cycles.

Cheap transport - All major tourist attractions in Bangkok are well connected by BTS Skytrains or MRT Subway. Taxi charges 35 baht for first 2 kms while tuk tuk charges somewhere around 30 baht but ride in it once for the experience. Avoid tuk tuks during peak hours.

Shows - Thailand has a rich cultural heritage. There are a lot of night shows like the Siam Niramit show, Calypso Lady Boy show, Aksra Puppet show. I watched the Siam Niramit show. It is a mixed show which shows the history, culture and lifestyle of Thailand. Worth a watch for the sets and how quickly they change them after the end of one show. Tickets cost 1500 baht for a normal seating and 2000 baht for a VIP seating. They also offer dinner prior to the show at an extra cost. Dinner starts at 6 pm so you can skip buying tickets with dinner.

Nightlife - Without any doubts Bangkok has the most happening nightlife. I had visited the Skybar Rootop at Lebua, the place where Hangover 2 was shot. Worth every penny you spend. It is on the 64th floor and from there you get a panoramic view of Bangkok.

I stayed in Bangkok for 5 days and enjoyed every minute of it. If you still haven't added Thailand to your bucket list, visit it once and I bet you will visit again. Do find your reasons to love Bangkok !!