Thailand’s capital Bangkok is known for its vibrant street life and big contrasts. You can’t believe until you experience them on your own.
Being in Asia for the first time, it was a bit of a culture shock for me. It’s so different to everything I’ve seen before. But after a couple days you get used to it.
Although you might not believe me, Thailands and especially Bangkok’s infrastructure is actually really good. I arrived in the middle of the night at the airport and didn’t have to wait long to get to my guest house.
I used the app “Grab”, which is similar to Uber and cheaper than a regular taxi. You know the price and your driver before you get picked up.
From the airport you could also use the sky train, but you can’t reach every place in Bangkok with it.
While you’re in the city, a common way to get around is the tuk tuk taxi. They are almost everywhere, especially near tourist places. Make sure you know the price before you get in and very important: negotiate the price! Usually you can get half of the price or something in the middle.
To get to other places more far away, the bus and train system is really good as well.
Where to stay:
I was staying close to the famous Khao San Road, known as backpacker place. There are many hostels and guest houses, if you’re looking for a bit more privacy. And of course there are hotels too. Only “problem”: you can’t use the sky train to get there. Don’t worry, the taxis are really cheap and as I said before, it’s easy to get one.
It’s also no problem, if you don’t book anything before you arrive or if you want to extend a night.
Where to eat:
Bangkok is famous for its street food markets, so make sure you visit one. Famous is the Khao San Road or China Town. You can find single booths next to the streets as well. Import is to eat fresh food and nothing that looks like it has been there for a couple days. Be careful with meat, sea food and ice cubes. I had only good experiences, but it’s never wrong to be careful.
Street food is the cheapest food and you can get a full meal for a couple dollars/euros or even less than this.
If you don’t want to eat on the street, you can go to a restaurant. There is a big variation of vegetarian and vegan food, but of course most restaurants offer Thai food. Popular is Pad Thai, fried noodles/rice, Tom yung soup or mango and sticky rice.
What to see:
Since I was staying in the old Town of Bangkok I really liked just to walk around, discover a new, narrow winding street at every corner and see the different buildings.
Khao San Road
Like I said before, it’s full with backpackers. A perfect place, if you want to get to know new people and party. It’s really interesting how the street changes during the day. In the morning it’s just like another street in Bangkok and cars are driving trough.
In the afternoon there are a bit more people and some shops, but in the night it transforms into another street. There are no cars and so many people. It’s full with street food and the restaurants put their tables on the street too. You can try some insects like maggots, scorpions or spiders. The night market is really popular.
This part of Bangkok has lots of street food as well, but it’s less touristy. You can have a look at different shops, that offer really interesting things like different herbs.
River Boat Tour
Close to the Khao San Road there is a river, where you can buy a boat ticket for the whole day and get to the modern, new part of Bangkok with all the skyscrapers. It’s also great to get a different perspective from the boat and just enjoy the view.
Make sure you go to a shopping mall. In my opinion, it doesn’t really matter, which one you decide to visit. It’s more about the big contrast you can experience. There are really interesting ones like Terminal 21, which is built like an airport and every level is a different country.
I went to Central World and I was shocked. As soon as you get in, the air conditioning hits you. There are lots of expensive shops like Prada or Chanel and I felt like being back in Australia. I couldn’t believe that it was the same Bangkok, I saw a few moments before in the Old Town.
Bangkok is famous for floating markets. It’s basically a market on the water, where everybody has a boat instead of a booth. The one I went to was really interesting to see, but of course there are lots of tourists too.
Visit a temple
You can’t go to Thailand or Bangkok without visiting a temple. To be honest, I haven’t been that interested in temples, so I only visited one, but it was worth it. I went to the Golden Mount, which is close to the Khao San Road. It is located on a little mountain in the middle of the city, so you get a great view of Bangkok too. But there are so many different temples, so it’s up to you, which one you’d like to see.
Getting to know the vibrant and electric life of Bangkok was definitely a great experience, I can recommend to everyone. I hope you enjoyed reading my blog post. Click here to see some more photos of Thailand.