A day out sight seeing in Bangkok

Trip Start Sep 21, 2005
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Friday, March 3, 2006

Day 114 Thurs 2nd March 2006
A day out sight seeing in Bangkok

We got up around midday today, Hunter decided to stay at Madras while Linda and I went out sightseeing. We took the MRT to the train station then caught a cab to the Palace complex. It was really hot again and I kind of wish I had brought my umbrella with me. We paid BHT 250 to get into the Royal Palace Complex. There were lots of different buildings, some were temples and others were used for various Royal occasions. I was totally blown away by the detail on the exterior and interior of the buildings. There was gold everywhere and everything was spotlessly clean. You really have to go there to appreciate the shear splendour of it all, but if you can't get there, just check out some of the pics we took. The inside of the temple that had the Emerald Buddha in it was covered with amazing paintings from historical events that are significant to Buddhism (I think that's what they were). We also went to one of the buildings where Royal funerals are held, here the wallpaper was all HAND painted! If that isn't attention to detail, I don't know what is.

We got out of there around 2.30pm and decided to walk over to Khao San Road, this is where all the Backpackers usually stay and it's not the nicest place in Bangkok, but it's just one of those places you have to go to. We started walking down the road towards Khao San and we came across a young couple sitting on a bench, they stopped us and asked where I was from, it turned out the boy's girlfriend didn't think I was from England and he did. Obviously he was right but that got us talking, they were both studying at Uni. He was a very chirpy kind of guy and more than willing to point us in the direction of a few sights that were not on the map. He also introduced us to the concept of the White Tuks and the Yellow Tuks. A Tuk with a yellow number plate is a private one, and they usually rip you off. A Tuk with a White number plate is a Government owned one, and they are really cheap. It's what all the Thai's use but the only problem is if you're a tourist, they take you to gift houses and stores where they get commission, even if you don't want to go! The guy got a White took for us and told the driver to take us to a couple of temples and where the standing Buddha was, all for the seemingly cheap price of BHT 50. First we went to the Place where they have a HUGE standing Buddha statue, then a couple of really nice temples, there was no one else at any of these temples so it was very quiet and peaceful. The fact that a priest in one of the temples was watching TV (IN THE TEMPLE) took some of the novelty away. At one of the temples we met a Thai guy from The States, he told us about this store that sells Armani suits but at factory direct prices, they were only opening up for foreigners for two weeks and today was the last day. I don't think neither of us were going to buy anything but off we went. The place was just a regular shop, they tailor suits for you but you don't get the Armani label (well you can but it's just fake), it wasn't what I thought it would be so we got the Tuk driver to take us to Khao San Road, but he insisted on stopping at another Tailors on the way. By this time we both just wanted to get to Khao San road, we gave the driver BHT100 and sent him on his way. He got a bit upset with us because we didn't want to go to any more stores, but hey he got paid double what he should have!

Khao San was just what I thought it would be, full of tourists and backpackers. I instantly realised that it was probably the last place in Bangkok I would want to stay. We were both starved by this point and got some noodles from a street stall and walked through Khao San Road. We walked over to the Golden Mount next, everyone said it was nice to watch the sunset from there but when we got there the temple at the top was closed and we had to ask them to open it so we could go to the very top. The sunset was not that good but the view of Bangkok was amazing (see vid). After walking around all day the last thing we really needed was stairs!!! Just to put the icing on the cake when we were leaving, we walked half way down and the exit was locked! We had to walk back up to get someone to let us out. We got onto the River Boat from there, it was awesome! It was really quick and dirt cheap, it only cost us BHT 12 each to get back to Madras. It by far the best way to get around from where we are, but the only problem is knowing where to get off!

We got back to Madras at around 7pm. We met a couple of new guy's, Derek was from America and Yagel was from Israel. Derek, Hunter, Yagel, Linda, Non, one of Non's friends and I all went to watch a Ladyboy show this evening. It was like a really bad Cabaret show but performed by Ladyboys. We just sat there laughing through most of it. I didn't think much of it and I can think of better ways of spending BHT 600, but I guess we've been there and done that now. Non and her friend (a middle aged fat Italian guy) went off after the show and the rest of us went out. We went to a bar that Hunter thought was good and just around the corner from where we were. It turned out to be much further than he thought and not that good a place AT ALL!!! I was hungry again so ordered some food, my rice came on the plate in the shape of a heart (see pic), and the curry I ordered was disgusting! We moved on from there to Patpong and the usual Radio City/Music café missions took place. There were a couple of really good bands in Music Café tonight, and the podium is officially mine now! We ended up at Macs again, and this crazy Thai girl came and sat on our table, she was drunk and quite funny but she had this really high pitch voice that got annoying after a while (see vid). Hunter was practicing his Thai with her and we were all having a good laugh, then she asked me to buy her KFC, at that point we all got up and just walked out on her. We came back to the hostel at 3am and went up onto the roof. We stayed up there talking about everything and anything till 6am. The only reason we went down was May came up at to bring out the rubbish, that's when we thought it's time to call it a night. Yet another superb night, how long will it all last I wonder...
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