Thailand-Beyond the Beaches

Tripoto
26th Apr 2018
Photo of Thailand-Beyond the Beaches by oneworldforall

Thailand-undoubtedly has the most beautiful beaches and offers the visitors with the most vibrant nightlife one can imagine sitting in the dreadful cubicle with piles of pending project deadlines.

But, for a change, I decided to explore Thailand in an altogether different dimension and it all started with the movie"The Bridge on the River Kwai(1957)".

Day 1

Landed in Bangkok in the early hours of Day1 and after a soundly sleep followed by a heavy breakfast at our hotel we took a tuk tuk to explore the nearby attractions. We had an evening engagement ,so we leisurely explored in and around Lumphini.

Be careful when your bargaining with the tuk tuk drivers,they are no less swindlers than our 'desi' auto and taxi walas. But once your happy with the rates be ready to enjoy the tuk tuk ride through the busy bustling roads of Bangkok.

Photo of Bangkok, Thailand by oneworldforall

When the lights got shinier in the evening , we decked up to our best dresses to attend the cultural show in "Siam Niramit".

The MRT station from our hotel was a 2 minute walk and after a 40 minutes metro ride we reached the MRT station Thailand Cultural Centre . Siam Niramit has a shuttle running from Exit 1 every 20 minutes.

We were welcomed with warm smiles and orchids and plethora of amusement activities before the actual show began.There was an option for the Buffet dinner,which we sadly declined after our entire noon gorging on local mee and satays.

Photo of Siam Niramit Theatre, Thiam Ruam Mit Road, Huai Khwang, Bangkok, Thailand by oneworldforall
Photo of Siam Niramit Theatre, Thiam Ruam Mit Road, Huai Khwang, Bangkok, Thailand by oneworldforall
Photo of Siam Niramit Theatre, Thiam Ruam Mit Road, Huai Khwang, Bangkok, Thailand by oneworldforall
Photo of Siam Niramit Theatre, Thiam Ruam Mit Road, Huai Khwang, Bangkok, Thailand by oneworldforall
Photo of Siam Niramit Theatre, Thiam Ruam Mit Road, Huai Khwang, Bangkok, Thailand by oneworldforall
Photo of Siam Niramit Theatre, Thiam Ruam Mit Road, Huai Khwang, Bangkok, Thailand by oneworldforall

Siam Niramit is an hour long spectacular extravagant cultural show “Journey to the enchanted Kingdom of Siam”-portraying the spectacles of the bygone years of the Siamese kingdom.Its a closed theater with state of art facilities, one of the worlds largest stage productions with a seating capacity of 2000.They have shows in Bangkok and Phuket only.

Courtesy-Google image

Photo of Thailand-Beyond the Beaches by oneworldforall

The cast was performing in the open stage with breathtaking special effects and unmissable surprises.The heart thumping beats of the traditional drum-klong sabatchai at the background and the stunning enactment of the 'Life at Palace " to the "overseas traders, the villagers and fisherman" to "the dance of the mystical Apsarasa- Blissful Heaven" where you are transported to a mystical mythological world.

From the tapping of Lao krathop mai(bamboo dance) to the sound of rainfall thunder and lightning, the stage effect was so real and enthralling. You will be just awestruck with the histrionic gestures.

It’s a no miss experience for anyone who would like to take a dig at the culture of Thailand.Unfortunately you cant use your cameras while the show is running.

Day 2

Day 02 and its Kanchanaburi- the town to the west of Thailand is known for the Death Railway, built during WWII.

After watching the movie "The Bridge on the River Kwai(1957)", I was awestruck and quite enthusiast to explore this heritage place and that's why the Kanchanaburi Bridge made it to my 'Travel Bucket List' and so did Thailand.

We booked the trip from our Hotel Travel agent and the guided tour started with a pickup about 8 AM followed by a 3 hour long road trip from Bangkok.

First stop was to Kanchanaburi War Cemetery also known locally as the Don-Rak War Cemetery where thousands of Allied soldiers are buried who were the victims of Japanese imprisonment while building the Burma Railway.

There was an unusual silence,some graves had visitors ,some had flowers laid near them still having fresh fragrance;some graves still awaits for their loved ones.They all just whisper War is never easy on anyone.

Photo of Kanchanaburi, Thailand by oneworldforall
Photo of Kanchanaburi, Thailand by oneworldforall
Photo of Kanchanaburi, Thailand by oneworldforall
Photo of Kanchanaburi, Thailand by oneworldforall
Photo of Kanchanaburi, Thailand by oneworldforall

We had a second stop over at the JEATH War Museum which was a 10 minutes drive from the cemetery. Displays at the JEATH War Museum honors the prisoners of war of the Allied forces who died during building the bridge. By the time it was finished 13000 Allied POWs had died, as well as tens of thousands of civilian laborers from Asian countries including India.

Photo of Thailand-Beyond the Beaches by oneworldforall

From the JEATH war museum we took a long tailed boat ride on the River Kwai to reach the bridge.

You’ll have the chance to take the train ride along the tracks of the Death Railway and even take a walk across the bridge itself before the train arrival.

I felt such privilege to walk across this bridge which took the sweat and martyrdom of so many POWs. The bridge stands tall as a salute to those brave Men.

We then took the train ride which follows part of the route of the Burma Thailand Railway Line .The train is now used by local Thai travelers, as well as tourist visitors. In the hour long journey you can have a great glimpses of the River Kwai out of the train window and the countryside of Thailand.

We had our next stop for lunch by a resort near the river Kwai before we headed back to our hotel to call it a day.

Photo of Thailand-Beyond the Beaches by oneworldforall
Photo of Thailand-Beyond the Beaches by oneworldforall
Photo of Thailand-Beyond the Beaches by oneworldforall
Photo of Thailand-Beyond the Beaches by oneworldforall
Day 3

Day3 ,we had decided to explore Ayutthaya and we booked a private guided tour from our hotel only.Departed from Bangkok city at 8 in the morning- a total of 10 hours tour,located 80 kms from Bangkok city.

Ayuthaya Historical Park also known as Ayuthaya Ruins was the capital city of Siamese Kingdom till the Burmese aggression and thwar in the 17th century.It is also Thailand's most magnificent UNESCO world heritage sight.

The ruins of the old city and the Buddhist temples, monasteries and statues leaves you captivated and takes you on a time travel to the era of Siam Kingdom.

Photo of Ayutthaya Historical Park, Pratuchai, Phra Nakhon Si Ayutthaya District, Phra Nakhon Si Ayutthaya, Thailand by oneworldforall
Photo of Ayutthaya Historical Park, Pratuchai, Phra Nakhon Si Ayutthaya District, Phra Nakhon Si Ayutthaya, Thailand by oneworldforall
Photo of Ayutthaya Historical Park, Pratuchai, Phra Nakhon Si Ayutthaya District, Phra Nakhon Si Ayutthaya, Thailand by oneworldforall

We visited some of the well known pagodas and its worth exploring the tales and histories of these shrines.

Wat Mahathat,- the temple of the great relic-a royal monastery also known for the head of a Sandstone Buddha statue entwined in the roots of a tree .The temple was constructed in 1374 by King Boromma Rachathirat.

The remnants of this medieval temple which witnessed war and savagery is a treat to the archaeologist and anyone with a interest for history.

Photo of Thailand-Beyond the Beaches by oneworldforall
Photo of Thailand-Beyond the Beaches by oneworldforall
Photo of Thailand-Beyond the Beaches by oneworldforall
Photo of Thailand-Beyond the Beaches by oneworldforall

Wat Yai Chai Mongkhon –A 14th century built temple 60 meter tall bell shaped pagoda surrounded by gallery lined with hundreds of Buddha sandstone statues.

The temple has monks performing ritual and rites in the present renovated pagodas.

Photo of Thailand-Beyond the Beaches by oneworldforall
Photo of Thailand-Beyond the Beaches by oneworldforall

Temple of reclining Buddha (Wat Lokaya sutha)- Reclining Buddha at this temple is 42 meters long and a height of 8 meters; clad in orange cloth and the head facing the west.

Photo of Thailand-Beyond the Beaches by oneworldforall
Photo of Thailand-Beyond the Beaches by oneworldforall

The tour included a short stopover at the Bang Pa-In Palace(summer Palace)-Palace used by the previous generation Siamese royalty and their consorts.

An architecture marvel showcasing a fusion Gothic, Siamese and Chinese cultures in the palatial buildings.

Photo of Thailand-Beyond the Beaches by oneworldforall
Day 4

Day 4 and Day 5 was all about shopping ,nigh markets, thai spa and local seafood and you shouldn't be leaving Thailand without indulging in any of these.

From super cheap shopping at Platinum fashion mall- a wholesale shopping center to the very upmarket Siam Paragon, gigantic MBK center we had our bags full!Don't miss the night markets!

As an advice it is good to carry currency card or have currency converted in India, i felt the conversion rate was comparatively poor in the city and worse in the Thai airport.

Photo of Bangkok, Thailand by oneworldforall
Photo of Bangkok, Thailand by oneworldforall
Photo of Bangkok, Thailand by oneworldforall
Photo of Bangkok, Thailand by oneworldforall
Photo of Bangkok, Thailand by oneworldforall
Day 5

Day 5 evening and we were all set to bid adieu to Bangkok.Left with a heavy heart and loads of memories and an excess luggage-till we drop to shop again!

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