I am not sure what it is supposed to represent but we couldn’t stop laughing when we saw this. It is right outside the” high end mall”, Siam Paragon.

We spent 4 nights in Bangkok when we first entered Thailand. We did not spend any time in the freak show side of Bangkok as, honestly, I find the whole idea of this kind of side show rather depressing. Not judging, just for me not an attraction.

This is the walkway from the BTS train (transit) to our hotel. They have a great system of walkways under their elevated train tracks. Which, once you see the roads, you truly appreciate. They didn’t spend a lot of money on sidewalks.

Karen found a fantastic little hotel called Bangkok Loft Inn. The service was phenomenal, location handy to the transit system and the rooms were clean. As well the super friendly bellboy directed us to a great street side restaurant right across the road.

The staff here were wonderful and accommodating. No one spoke a word of English but it did not matter. Beware if you try the Jungle Curry. I should have picked up on the hint when the server looked me in the eye and asked 3 times “Hot?” Then laughed to her co-workers when she walked away from the table calling out our order to the cook. They greeted us like family every other time we arrived after that.

If you are in Bangkok it is required to see some temples. There certainly are no lack in this city. We started by doing a hop on hop off boat trip up and down the Chao Phraya river getting a feel for the layout.

In addition to the larger tour and shuttle boats there are plenty of long boats zipping up and down the river. You can hire them for a personified trip if you wish.
The long boats on the river in Bangkok are loud and fast. When you get closer you see why. They are packing some serious horsepower.

We were a little limited in what to see as a couple of major locations were undergoing renovations and, sadly, King Bhumibol Adulyadej of Thailand had passed away in October and the Royal Palace was closed for official mourning for a month. It was notable the level of respect and reverence the population and all businesses displayed for his passing.

We spent a day exploring the buildings, Buddhas, and displays in the Wat Pho temple. This is apparently the birthplace of Thai massage.
Located in the Wat Pho, the Reclining Buddha (46 metres long and 15 metres high) is entirely gold plated. A very impressive sight to behold. And somewhat difficult to photograph.
There are more Buddhas in Wat Pho than any other temple in Thailand (over 1000 of them). It becomes a bit overwhelming at times.
Wat Pho is one of the six high level “Royal Temples” in Thailand. The diversity of images is incredible. As well the openness to allowing photography is a very welcome discovery as well. Show the appropriate respect and the workers generally go out of their way to help you get your shots.
These stone carvings are at nearly every gateway in Wat Pho. I am not sure of the story behind these Chinese guards other than they were used as ballast in ships that were trading with China. They all appear to be unique and certainly provide some good entertainment.
The architecture in Bangkok is a photographers dream. Our day at Wat Pho was an overdose in colour, shape, and design.
We went to a small courtyard in Wat Pho to escape the heat and found this oasis. Of course one of the resident cats had staked out his domain.
I find the street animals fascinating wherever we go. This old fellow looks like he has had a pretty tough go of it. However we found him in the Wat Pho temple where he seems to have found a more agreeable life.
We found this Buddha in one of the little side gardens. He is a little more what I envision when I think of Buddha, however there were very few of this type at the temple.

We also managed to grab lunch while we were there. There were dozens of stalls set up throughout the temple selling medicinal remedies and food. The whole atmosphere reminded me a bit of a fairground where the stalls were located.

We had a Thai pancake for lunch while we were at the temple. Very fresh and very tasty. The food has been awesome everywhere we have been.

After checking out some ancient history we spent a bit of time exploring the newer aspects of Bangkok. There is no lack of new construction and the business district had plenty of interesting buildings. The malls were also a reminder that there is no lack of money here in Bangkok.

The newest tallest tower in Bangkok. They had the grand opening in August, however it is definitely not complete yet. None the less it certainly is a very cool looking structure.
The Siam Paragon Mall is beyond anything I have seen before. The Bentley and Rolls Royce dealerships were just the beginning of over the top brand names and the size of the shops. Apparently there is a LOT of money in Bangkok.
This complex is being constructed right beside the Hilton. They seem to be working non-stop. We didn’t bother coming back in the middle of the night to confirm this.
If construction is the sign of a healthy economy then things must be good here in Bangkok. There were several sites going full bore around the city.

One activity we have found to be quite enjoyable is finding a tall building in a city and going to the roof top bar for a drink as the sun sets. Bangkok has several super popular bars just for this purpose that are very busy. However if you do some looking on the internet you discover gems like the 360 bar on the top of the Hilton. Reasonable drinks (for a rooftop bar at the Hilton), great view and no crowds. The service was superb as well.

View across the River from the rooftop bar on the Bangkok Millennium Hilton Hotel. Open to the public, no crowds and a great view. They made a lovely Expresso Martini as well.

Bangkok is not renowned for its’ parks. However if you are looking for a little relax time we found the Lumpini Park fit the bill. It is not polished and fancy, but it is surprisingly quiet with plenty of activities if you need entertainment. I enjoyed the fish, cats, and people for entertainment.

You just have to look to the animals to see how is best to deal with the midday heat and humidity.
Every cat we saw seemed to have its’ favourite nook or cranny to escape the heat.

We certainly enjoyed our introduction to Bangkok and look forward to visiting again. The people were friendly and when we looked lost someone quickly stepped up to offer us directions, which to me is a great indicator of the quality of people.

Welcome to our travel blog. Have you ever wondered what it would be like to say, "I'm out of here?" Well we did, and in 2013 we made it a reality. We sold or gave away all of our possessions other than what fit in our luggage and we set off on an endless adventure. Part of our goal is to share our experiences with others and hopefully provide some information, motivation, or just a moments escape. The general idea was to look for a place that would be ideal to settle down in. However in the meantime it is about experiencing life in different countries amongst different cultures and learning how to understand and appreciate each other. A large part of our time is spent housesitting which provides an excellent opportunity to experience more of the "normal" neighbourhoods as opposed to the tourist locales. Though we make sure to enjoy those as well. So through plenty of photographs and a running commentary come and share with us our life on the road.

2 comments on “Bangkok

  1. Bangkok looks amazing through your pictures! I love Thai food, but I have never heard about Thai pancake! It looks like something that you can eat for lunch or dinner 🙂

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