We were in Thailand for a short trip and spent some time in Bangkok before taking the flight back home… We tried to make the best use of 24 hours that we spent int the city…
- We arrived early evening on a bus from Pattaya and checked into Holiday Inn Silom
- The rooms were modern, spacious and had good views of the city skyline. Hotel is right next to an outlet mall so while some of us headed for a quick round of shopping others headed to the pool. The hotel was decent with family crowd. SS Tip – Check hotel reviews before booking as some cheap deals may be not be at ‘suitable’ hotels.
- We made bookings for dinner on Chaophraya River Princess cruise. The river cruise starts from River City mall which is close by. Traffic is bad so suggest you just walk down to the mall. The cruise operator has multiple cruises so check the number of your cruise before boarding (gets quite crowded while boarding).
- Once in the cruise there is a lower deck which is air-conditioned and has live music. Upper deck is open air and is quiet (tables and decks allotted at time of booking). Even if you are sitting in lower deck there is a public area at the front to enjoy fresh breeze and take pictures. The dinner buffet had a good spread and the views of temples, bridges and skyline were what made it worthwhile!
- After the cruise we headed to the night market. You can walk or take the Tuk-Tuk (there are quite a few of these waiting near hotels and tourist places).
- Patpong is a typical street market with 3 lanes of stalls. If you are in the side lanes you will see the `waitresses` inviting people into the bars. Ignoring this we stuck to middle lane! Market is colorful and has some good locally made things like t-shirts, mats, bags, etc (lots of fake branded goods also sold here). Do haggle before buying!
- SS Tip – There is a strict dress code at the temples wherein knees and shoulders should be covered before entering. Some places offer free coat to cover yourself, while some insist you change (wear a layer on top) before you enter. Shoes need to be removed and kept outside before entering the main temple section where buddha statue is (socks are fine).
- In the morning we set off for Temple visits. Our first stop was Wat Traimit to see the Golden Buddha. The huge status is made of 5 tons of gold! This place is right next to Chinatown so you can combine the two.
- We then headed to Wat Pho to see the famous Reclining Buddha. The sheer size of the status is amazing – add to it the detailed carving of face and feet and this becomes a must-see sight. This temple complex is large and there are lots of other interesting buildings. The architecture is intriguing and you can easily spend a few hours here.
- We then headed next door towards Grand Palace. There is a combined entry ticket of 500 THB for temple complex and the palace.
- Temples and building were absolutely grand in this complex. Mix of gold and bright colors makes the structures stand out. The emerald buddha temple is one of the most beautiful temples I have visited.
- There was Memorial service on the Sunday when we went and some areas were cordoned off. But we still got to see the palace from outside.
Back to Airport
- After all the temples we headed to Baiyoke Sky Hotel for lunch and Indra Square for some more street shopping!
- 45 mins bus ride later we reached the airport. However, you can’t bid adieu to Thailand without massage – so I headed to transit hotel for a 1 hour traditional Thai massage before the flight! SS Tip: There seemed to be only 1 massage place in concourse G after immigration and its tucked away in a corner.