Adelaide, South Australia, Australia
February 3, 2002
Now grab your copy of the colour-coded map from the Overview entry and start exploring!
1. People Watching
This excursion is ideal in the early morning when Lumphini Park comes alive with traders and locals preparing for their day.
* Catch a public boat to Tha River City.
* Taxi or tuk-tuk to Lumphini Park for a unique glimpse of everyday Thai life. You shouldn't pay more than 40B for this short trip of a few kilometres.
* Return to the river via the Bangrak flower and orchid market. This is a lovely local market full of colour and vitality, typical of the many surprises that await in this incredible city of contrasts.
* Explore the Indian markets around the Shangri-la and Oriental hotels. You can even contrast the markets with the shops in the air conditioned malls of these exclusive hotels - often acknowledged as two of the world's best.
* Visit the incredible antique shops in the River City shopping complex before catching a return boat to your accommodation.
2. Spicy Food – Spicier Entertainment
This is a good evening excursion, combining authentic Asian cuisine with some of Bangkok’s more interesting nightlife.
* Catch a public boat to Tha Oriental. Beware that the last boats sail at around 6pm (if you're staying at the Royal River it doesn't matter, they have their own boat).
* Wander down Silom Road for great Indian food (western end) and quality Southeast Asian restaurants, coffee houses and bakeries. The selection is mind-boggling, the quality high, the prices low.
* After dinner, walk or take a short tuk-tuk ride to nearby Patpong markets and some traditional red light action.
* Return to River City in time for the last boat shuttle (to the Royal River Hotel) or catch a taxi.
3. Bargains in Banglamphu
Avoid peak traffic hours for this one, but it can generally be done any time.
* Catch a public boat to Tha Phra Athit.
* Explore the city’s biggest market district at Banglamphu, then walk down the khlong to Wat Rajanadda and its unique Buddhist market featuring fascinating magic charms, amulets and love potions. It's a pleasant 20-minute walk down the khlong, but there's also a public boat that goes down to a stop at the Golden Mount.
* Across the road is Wat Saket and its artificial hill (the Golden Mount) that provides good city views.
* Walk (or catch a boat) down the khlong to the pier for the ride home.
From journal More Bangkok For Your Baht