Bangkok – Part 3

I am currently being treated to a nice hotel because I’ve had food poisoning for about 5 days now, which sucks but it’s also very nice to have a laundry service and a pool 😉 So, now is probably a better time than ever to catch up on the ever growing list of blog topics. Headphones in, Katy Perry on, lets go.

Saturday 6th May

Today was the day we had re-scheduled the bike tour to. (Remember that? The first time I was ill?) Unfortunately for us, our second hostel was a lot further away from their office than our first one back in Silom. Due to this, finding transportation their proved to be difficult. The office was not close to a metro station and it was the other side of the city. We have now discovered how helpful it is to use Uber in the cities, but we were yet to discover that at this point, we walked to a taxi parked up on the side of the road and showed him the address. Something that surprised me about taxi drivers here is, if they don’t think where you want to go is worth their time, they will just straight up turn you down, which is exactly what happened.
By this point, we were seriously running out of time and our final alternative was a Tuk Tuk. The journey took about an hour in the traffic, with car fumes hitting us from all angles, I don’t think we’ve been in another Tuk Tuk since that journey. It was an overpriced, horrible journey, not to mention the fact that where he dropped us off was still a 20 minute walk away and we were already 15 minutes late. GREAT. We had to bomb our way to this place with traffic fumes in our lungs and only google maps on our side, fearing we would be holding up a whole group of people waiting to cycle their way around the city.

Once we got there, completely out of breath, we discovered we were thankfully the only people booked on for the day and quickly tested out the bikes before heading off with our tour guide, Teddy.
The tour lasted 5 hours and was 22km of cycling with frequent stop offs for sight seeing the best of which being, the tallest Buddha in Bangkok, China Town, and feeding turtles.
We cycled through little side streets full of locals, dodging their mopeds, cats and bumps in the path. There were multiple little twists and turns, lets just say I’m not very experienced at bike riding and at one point I may have crashed into a fence due do one of these little twists. I managed to leave unharmed that’s all that matters and it was fun, we saw parts of the city we would never have even heard of. At the temple, Teddy taught us how to fold a lotus and give them as offerings to the Gold Buddha.

It was actually extremely educational, I learnt this round happy character is in fact not Buddha, but the Chinese God of happiness ‘Budai’.

But, by far the most interesting thing I learnt is that the Swastika is actually an ancient religious symbol for many religions, including Buddhism, where it symbolises eternal cycling of life.

My favourite part of the day was definitely feeding the turtles with lettuce at the end 🙂

Once we made it back to the office, we were given ice cream and offered to use their fish spa. I hate fish spas but decided to try again anyway to their pet Cockatoo’s delight, who was mimicking my giggles and squeals.

Sunday 7th May

We had heard of the weekend floating market ‘Khlong Lat Mayon’ from a youtube video, which promised it to be a market full of food but shy of tourists. It was quite a way out of town, but we tried Uber and boy we never going back.

The market was bustling with locals walking around the multiple food stalls, it was so difficult to choose where to stop and actually buy something due to the people pushing you along and the sheer amount of food stalls. I honestly think we had one of the best meals we’ve had in Thailand here, glass noodles with fresh prawns, pork, thai tea. It was amazing and I would defiantly recommend going the little extra way out of town for this market experience.

After the market we made our way in an Uber to Wat Pho. Our driver was really friendly and spoke very good English, he told us he would have to drop us a little way away from the attraction as it’s dangerous for an Uber driver to go by taxis and Tuk Tuks. They hate the Uber drivers so much, there have been incidents of beatings in some parts of Thailand. We of course understood and got out round the corner from the main entrance.
Wat Pho would be my number one thing to see in Bangkok for sure, because it houses the Temple of the Reclining Buddha. This huge golden Buddha is 15m high and 46m long, just it’s feet are 3m high and 4.5m long. It was truly remarkable to behold. An expedition of the importance of Buddha was up for the month, going in there we learnt how many Buddhists oppose to the image of Buddha as tattoos and household items to non-Buddhist people, which was honestly something I had naively never thought about and I found it extremely interesting. Of course they would hate images of their God being printed onto toilet seats by some company in the Netherlands, and being tattooed onto people’s bodies who have never shown respect to him.

That night we went to dinner in Chinatown and boy was in good to get Chinese food instead of Thai for a change. Duck rolls and wontons mmmm. We managed to get a really cheap noodle soup meal and left happy and full. However, one thing that did upset me about Chinatown was how many places promised Shark Fin soup on their doors. It is a delicacy here in Asia but of course I am going to preach and urge people who visit here not to be swayed into trying it, the negative economical impacts are ridiculous. When the fin is cut of the shark, they don’t even kill the animal most of the time, they just let it sink back to the ocean floor unable to swim, until it starves to death.
Not a nice note to end my blogpost on, but an important one.

Anyway, that’s the end of the Bangkok series for now WOOHOO! So, next blogpost will be about the beautiful ancient city of Ayutthaya. Hope you’ve enjoyed so far 🙂

Lon x

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