This picture was taken on the Chao Phraya River (chow pry uh). My friend and I attempted to go to one of the infamous river markets via boat. It was 1700 Baht for the two of us, and the market we saw consisted of two boats selling overpriced trinkets. I advise you NOT to attend a river market. However, the long tail boats are helpful for traveling to tourist locations like Asiaique, Grand Palace and China Town. The tickets are cheap and the views are a sight to see.
IN-CITY, CITY ESCAPE
Bangkok, like any large city, has something to appease just about everybody (unless your like me, and hate the city, and prefer the country). But even amongst the smog, extremely loud transportation, and sidewalk hazards (loose wires, random poles, missing tiles), there is an AMAZING escape that’s smack dab in the city. They call it the “Green Lung,” or Bang Krachao (bong cra chow). If you are traveling via MRT, get off at Khlong Toei and take motorbike to the port, or just take an Uber or Grab (download both apps) to Klong Toey Port (klong toy-ee). Upon arrival, walk toward the water and they will automatically assume you are traveling to the Green Lung/ Bang Krachao. The boat ride is about 10 baht there, 80-90 baht back. However, when you get to the other side of the river, you will arrive at a bike rental. RENT A BIKE! It is the ONLY place in Thailand that is safe to ride a bike. The map they give you is not much help. Your best bet is to screenshot google maps prior to going.
Wattana Panich – 336 Ekamai Soi 18, Hours 10a-8p Daily
This restaurant is 40 years old, and so is the beef soup. Yes, the huge pot of soup you see upon entering is the same batch from 40 years ago! Before you get disgusted, its A.) delicious, B.) the entire batch isn’t 40 years old. They have added to the original broth over the years, but still contains some of the original. They boil it for about 10 hours each day, store it at night, then bring it out and add to it the following morning. The broth and bits of beef that melt in your mouth will not let you down! When ordering your meal, order #6. I prefer small noodles, but the large noodles are tasty too!
Note: Take BTS Ekamai, then get motorbike or taxi to restaurant.
Zanzibar- 139 Sukhumvit 11, Hours: 5p-1:30a Daily. (BTS Nana)
When dining at Zanzibar, you will forget you are in a smelly, noisy and overpopulated city. You will teleport to a jungle that serves you delicious food and great cocktails.
Note: I highly recommend the Chicken Satay and Som Tum with fried fish on top.
Chok “choke” 99, Hours 10p- 4a
This bar was recommended by a tuk tuk driver outside the BTS Siam Station. It was around midnight when my friends, visiting from the states, wanted to go out. You would be surprised how many places shut down before midnight! Not only that, I could not find anything on Google that was open and nearby. So, we walked from the stairs of the station to the sidewalk. I asked a random driver if there was a nearby bar/club open. He didn’t speak English. So I went to the next. He gave us two options, one being Chok 99. It was hidden off a side soi (street) and we were the ONLY white people. Only Thais. It was a BLAST! They played EDM/House Music and the dance floor was full of people. We got a table for 3000 baht (included service, table, 2 bottles of Sang Sam (rum), and mixers). This is truly a hidden gem because NO frarong (foreigners) will be able to tell you about it.
Note: The only way I know to get there (it’s not on Google) is to go to BTS Siam, find a Tuk Tuk and ask for “choke 99.”
- Always look down when you walk to avoid missing sidewalk tiles, dog poop, mysterious puddles… these streets can be fatal people!
- Tipping: masseuses, nail techs, tour guides.
- Haggle. When Thais see a fralong (foreigner) it means $$$$. Don’t waste money just because of ignorance. Taxi: ฿300 or less. Clothes: ฿250/item. Thai suite: ฿ 6500- 15,000. Extra tip: See how much the locals are paying before you buy.
- Wai-ing goes a long way! Bring your hands together in front of nose (in prayer pose) and bend head down while smiling and saying “sawadee ka” (suh-woh-dee-kah/cup).
- Bring tissues, hand sanitizer and bug spray with you AT ALL TIMES!
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