2 Days, 2 Outfits, Sightseeing, Shopping, Street Food and Traditional Thai Massage
Now that I am settled in my new home away from home New Delhi, it is time for me to explore! I have no more excuses not to visit South Asia, a region that has fascinated me for a long time.
Generally, when my husband and I are appointed to a new duty station, we always try to make the best of it, by visiting the surrounding countries. When we were based in Ethiopia, we managed to visit many neighboring countries such Kenya, Tanzania, Uganda, just to name a few…
My first getaway in south Asia was in Thailand, 3 days in Bangkok and 3 days in Phuket.
I arrived in Bangkok early in the evening, so I did not have the chance to do much. I was exhausted from the trip and had only one thing in mind, have a great meal and get some rest before my first fully booked day of sightseeing.
My first impression of Bangkok, I honestly loved it! It is definitely a sensory overload, the street vendor, the street food, the tuk tuk and motorbikes slaloming in between cars during the legendary traffic jams. It all gave me a feeling of a well organized chaos. I was very much impressed by the synchronicity of tradition and modernity, huge skyscrapers coexisting with majestic Buddhist temples.
Let me tell you the Thai people are beautiful, I simply love the way they carry themselves and their elegant, yet fashion forward sense of style. I know its rude to stare but I couldn’t help myself, I had so much fun observing the street fashion. Right then and there I knew that this trips shopping spree was going to be epic...
The Thai people are genuinely nice and polite, as a globetrotter, I have had crazy encounters with people who never or rarely saw an African, some were nice and some less pleasant. Let me tell you I did not feel uncomfortable or uneasy one single time during my stay in Thailand. Of course some were intrigued by a 5”11 dark skinned woman strutting down the streets of Bangkok or Phuket. Whenever I caught someone staring I would simply smile and most of the time they would smile back.
The Grand Palace
On my first day in Bangkok, I headed bright and early to the Grand Palace, I was very much impressed by the architecture, gardens and colors.
Even though it was off season, I must admit that the grounds of the palace were flooded with tourist from all over the world. It was actually very difficult to take pictures or selfies without someone photo bombing the shot.
For the record the Grand Palace was built in 1782, it was destined to be the residence of the king and the site of administrative offices.
The most renowned buildings of the compound are the Royal Hall, Throne Hall and The Temple of the Emerald Buddha. The royal compound covers an area of 218,000 square meters and is surrounded by four walls 1900 length.
The exterior of the Grand Palace was animated and crowded with snake charmers, food stands, street vendors and tuk-tuks.
Wat Pho: The Temple of the Reclining Buddha
The Wat Pho was truly one of the highlight of my Bangkok sightseeing, it is located right behind the Temple of the Emerald Buddha; in my opinion it is a must see for any Bangkok first time visitor.
As one of the largest temple complexes in the city, it is renowned for housing the giant Reclining Buddha.
It is an easy 10-minute walk between the Grand Palace and Wat Pho but I opted for a quick tuk tuk ride just because it was on my bucket list and I thought it would be fun.
The energy flowing within the temple was outstanding, surprisingly in the midst of tourist chaos, I felt calm and centered. I did not take many pictures there, because I wanted to live the moment and take in all the beauty.
The reclining Buddah is 15 metres tall, 46 metres long, so large that it feels like it’s been squeezed into the building. Laying there with an enigmatic and serene expression on his face, as is he knew something we knew not of.
Personally I was infatuated with the Buddha’s 5-meter-long feet, beautifully decorated in mother-of-pearl illustrations of auspicious laksanas of the Buddha. 108 is a significant number, referring to the 108 positive actions and symbols that helped lead Buddha to perfection.
For the record you will need to take your shoes off to enter, as it is a revered image, all visitors must wear appropriate clothing cover up shoulders and skin above the knee.
Wat Pho is also a great place to get a traditional Thai massage. It is considered the leading school of massage in Thailand, so if you to choose to get it done there you really are in good hands.
Damnoen Suduak: floating market
Once I arrived at the market, I was taken to the water in a traditional long-tail boat, my driver paddled, between boats selling fresh produce, delicious Thai food and regularly made stops at souvenirs stands, offering various items.
Located at around 100 km from downtown Bangkok, Damnoen Saduak is a world famous floating market and the bustling scene is a timeless snapshot of the exotic Thailand.
Floral Kimono GP & J BAKET X H&M
Black High Waist Wide Leg Pants UNIQLO
Basic White Spaghetti Strap Top H&M
Black Slip On Sneaker H&M
White Leather Watch LACOSTE
White leather wrap bracelet DIOR
Pearl and Silver Earring Necklace and Bracelet Set
I was quite exhausted from my full day of sightseeing, even though I wanted to maximize my shopping experience at Platinum mall, I slept in on day 2 since most of the shops opened between 9:00 and 10:00am.
Though intended as a wholesale shopping center, the Platinum Shopping Mall houses many retail stores selling clothing, accessories, and cosmetics. It has a wonderful flea market feel to it, and you can haggle freely with the vendors.
Platinum Fashion Mall is situated in one of the busiest districts in Bangkok, Pratunam. The wholesale shopping mall comprises of 6 storey of fashion stores, restaurants, food court, cafes, and even a 11-storey residential condominium within the same building.
Street food is a quintessential part of the Bangkok experience. Wherever you go in the city, food stalls are plentiful and you will find a high concentration of them in busy areas and offer a wide variety of dishes.
Street food in Bangkok provides convenient, delicious and cheap meals and it’s one of the purest ways to get in touch with the local culture.
The seafood is amazing, if you are a crustacean lover like myself, you will really enjoy delicious dishes. As a true foodie, I gladly tried and experimented all the delicacies the kingdom of Thailand had to offer I particularly enjoyed the: crab curry, grilled meat and seafood skewers, raw papaya salad and fried rice…
Traditional Thai Massage
You cannot go all the way to Thailand and not treat yourself to a traditional massage there, It is a richly rewarding holistic therapy. I am a massage enthusiast may it be Swedish, hot stone, aromatherapy, shiatsu or African…
I have always wanted to experience an authentic Thai massage, lucky for me the hotel where I was staying was surrounded by so many massage parlors, I only had to cross the street and pick one that suited my standards. I opted for a 60 minute Traditional Thai massage and payed 400 baht. Seriously all I can is say money well spent.
I Loved the Zen vibe in the massage parlor, the masseuse truly pampered me. She started massaging my feet and work her way up to my neck and head. She applied rhythmic compression and deep stretching to the different energy lines of my body.
When the session was done I laid in the chamber completely relaxed for 30 minutes. I felt energized mind body and soul, I was ready to tackle the last portion of my Thailand getaway and head to Phuket.
Basic Black Tank Top H&M
High Waist Denim Flared Pants ALAYA BY STAGE 3
Black Slip On Sneaker H&M
Golden Face Earring SHEIN
Golden Watch SWATCH
I only spent 3 days in Bangkok, so I know my opinion on the city I quite limited, but in this short amount of time I truly loved what I saw!
Have you guys ever been to Bangkok? What were the highlights of you trip there? How did you experience it?
Feel free to share in the comment section down below.