Bangkok for beginners

I’ve just finished a delicious bowl of green curry rice, a few steamed pork dumpling and spicy mini fish cakes, all for a negligible amount of 100 Baht which is close to 3 $. If just this piece of information is not enough to have you sold on traveling to Bangkok then let me try and convince you with all the amazing things you could do if and when you actually get there.

Lets start with a few facts.  The full name of Bangkok is – ‘Krung Thep’ or Krung Thep Mahanakhon amon Rattanakosin mahintara ayuthaya mahadilok phop noppharat Ratchathani Burirom udomratchaniwet mahasathan amon piman awatan Sathit sakkathattiya witsanukam Prast. Puff…… I bet shakespeare heard that and then said ” What’s in a name?

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Well, Bangkok as you may know is the capital of Thailand and originally houses the ruling royal family at the Grand Palace. The city is world famous for its notorious red light district, street food and temples. Not sure in that order but who knows, it just may be! What I do however know for sure is that food and the activity of eating is a religion in the country and thats specially true in this city. It is a form of sport that is taken very seriously by the locals. Food is available all day long at every nook and corner in every shape, smell, taste and size you could ever think of. You’ll get to experience an array of food stuff including things you may not even consider edible. Such as crunchy frog legs best in a chilly basil stir fry, protein filled grilled cockroaches and bugs on a stick. Hold on, don’t sweat! These are just some of whats on offer, over and above the usual boring meat,fish and the freshest seafood of course 😛 besides if you’re not daring enough you could totally skip being adventurous. If however you are up for some fun, here are few of my favorite things to do in Bangkok.

Eating – Eating and more Eating 

Chatuchak Market – is definitely the mother of all markets and is your one stop shop in the city. If in transit with just 2 days in this city over a weekend, This is where you need to be. It’s humongous and could be compered to Mexico’s Central de Abasto the worlds largest food market. Chatuchak consists of 27 sections selling everything under the sun and houses over 15,000 stalls. Trust me this is one heck of a place to get lost in. Foodies flock to Section 27 for a trip to heaven. * Chatuchak is a weekend market operating (Sat – Sunday from 6am to 6pm) but is also open on Fridays as a night market from 22.00pm to 07.00am (Section 16 to 21, Gate 3)

Floating Market of Amphawa Floating Market tops my list for the best and most authentic food i’ve ever eaten in Thailand. It’s a bit of a drive away from the city but a journey totally worth making. Fresh catch of the day cooked on long boats by local women and handed out to people sitting at the edge of the water. Restaurants entertain only about 10 to 15 people at a time and so try and be quick to find a spot closest to the water.You order and pay for as many courses as you like. Stay put for as long as you like taking breaks with a chilled Singha or fresh coconut juice that can also be ordered at nearby stalls. Amphawa Floating Market is open every Friday, Saturday and Sunday  from 15:00 to 21:00 am.

 

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Damnoen Saduak Floating Market is one place I learnt a tough lesson. That lesson being – You snooze.. you Lose! If you’re an early riser or have only a morning to spare then hail a cab or bus and set off an on hours journey to get to Damnoen Saduak floating market. Open from 7 am to 12 noon this trip requires a quite previous night and being a morning person – skills I unfortunately do not posses 😦 The ride around the market is about half hour and cost about 100 baht per person. *warning – do not take the trip in the afternoon cause you will be charged 10 times the price by private guide crooks and I promise you’ll land up seeing closed stores and dirty water strewn with trash all for a hefty 2000 Baht.

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Another one of my favorite places to eat is the Central World Mall. Don’t be fooled by this food court. It has probably around 100 food outlets in total and around 50 on the 6th floor. For all dumpling lovers head to Din Tai Fung also located on the 6th floor to see an army of chefs prepping for the hungry shoppers souls.

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Artbox Thailand – Bangkok’s fist container market needs a separate post all together however for my food lovers and arty farty peeps check Art Box Thailand which is a pop up market that takes places over a few weekends. The next one is scheduled for 18th – 20th of march 2016. Stay tuned on – www.facebook.com/Artboxthailand for more information. I found some cute merchandise made by startup artist and tons of little giveaway goodies too. The food was phenomenal. Not to miss the live music, hip people and chilled atmosphere.

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Bankok has some of the best street food in the world. The stall vendors are clean, organized, systematic and maintain high standards of hygiene by using disposable items to pack food. I highly recommend you eat on the street and not be afraid of living out of the box. If not you will be missing out one of the most beautiful gifts this city could give you… Its Food.

Shopping 

To point out one shopping place would be crime as Bangkok is every woman’s shopping paradise. It doesn’t really matter how many bucks you’ve got in that pocket of yours, you are sure to find a ton of things you like. I personally prefer going to – MBK mall for a few cheaper tid-bits. I walk along the street between Siam station and MBK mall sometime in the evening after 6 to find my 200 baht bargains. If you’re feeling loaded and got tons to spare? Central world or Central Mall are your fashion and high street brands one stop shop with the later being a kind of  Macy’s of this metropolitan city.

The famous Kaosan road also know to be a backpackers district is good for holiday or beach wear shopping. Its also a perfect place to find great bargains if you happen to be traveling around the country or region for a few days.

Drinking

Late night drinks at Kaosan road for anyone between the legal drinking age to 30 years. I have long surpassed the glaring nightlife and personally recommend sundowners at Vertigo located on the 61st floor of the  Banyan tree hotel. The 360 degree view of this bustling city is breathtaking under a burning Bangkok sky. Stay on for dinner if you please on the other side of the ship but not without a reservation. Don’t expect spectacular food though its more of the view that you’ll be taking in. The open pop up Changi and Singha bars are scattered around the city and can be found at the corner or open arenas of malls. A live band and chattering crowd makes it all very inviting and a whole lot of fun. If you not into that sort of stuff then buy yourself a few beers and hang out at the pat pong area. Be ware though of being propositioned by a 100 hookers while sipping on those cold beers.

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Sightseeings

For a city also known as the city of Angels its Temples are a must see. Wat Phra Kaew / Wat Pho & Wat Arun being the top 3. Each needing a few hours to explore.

If you are a history buff then a trip to the Grand Palace followed by the National Museum which the largest in southeast Asia and the National Gallery housing some stunning pieces of art is an absolute must.

Cooking classes 

Read full post on : https://questandmark.com/2016/01/02/just-wok-it-out/

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Travel

There is noting not to love about Bangkok apart from the insane traffic. I recommend you use the BTS sky train and live it up like  local. Make sure to always have change for the ticket vending machines to avoid standing in long ticketing queues. Another quick mode of transport is the bike taxis. If you fancy being a dare devil then use these fast pacing, lane cutting motorist that will get you anywhere in the least time possible however not without a few mini heart attacks 🙂

Well, every time I get back from this city I battle serious craving like an absolute addict and count down until I can go back again. With the hope of being able to travel again soon to  land of Angels I wish you a very happy journey!

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5 Comments

  1. pritha13

    What’s in a name?!! Hahah! I had no clue bangkok’s name is something else! Didn’t read the whole article as it was too big! (sorry!) but read a lot and loved it!

    Like

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