This week’s blog comes from our Thailand Adventure competition winner Mia, she’s an Exeter University graduate and a keen travel blogger! With a serious travel bug from her time in Australia and a hunger for new adventures, we thought Mia would like to delve into the wonderful world of Thailand and blog all about it.
So her she is to tell us all about her time in Thailand, let’s start with the buzzing capital Bangkok…
Our time in Bangkok went by in a blur of sights and sounds; the ding of street vendors on the move, the growls of the tuk tuks and the sizzling of noodles.
When you first step out in Bangkok it can be a pretty overwhelming place, but if you give it the time of day you’ll meet some awesome people and have equally great experiences. Here are my top five things to do to get you through your first few days:
Grab your camera and traveller trousers and head to some of Bangkok’s most spectacular sights. Must sees include The Grand Palace, Wat Pho (giant reclining Buddha) and Wat Arun. If you can, make sure you climb to the top of Wat Arun but the views are supposed to be killer and it’s the one thing I wish I had been able to do. The temples have some serious bling in them and the architecture is incredible. If the culture isn’t enough, you can even get a pretty epic Thai massage inside Wat Pho!
Foodie haven. I have never seen so many weird and wonderful foods, half of which do not look edible, but give them a shot, you might be pleasantly surprised (I’d give the fish heads a miss though!). The colours and smells that follow you along the Yarowat Road are second to none, if I can give you one piece of advice it would be to make sure you try the street food! A lot of people are really wary of it, and if you are too scared to try it, trust me you’re missing out. As long as the street vendors cook it in front of you, there should be no issues. It doesn’t get much better than sitting out on the buzzing streets with the locals!
2. Lumphini Park
This place is an oasis of calm in the middle of the madness that is Bangkok. When city life becomes a bit overwhelming just grab a book and take yourself off to Lumphini Park. Walk around the gardens or lie on the grass and have a nap, this park is the perfect place to chill out. If that’s not your thing and you fancy something a bit more active, join in with one of the free aerobics classes that are held daily. Although, I would recommend planning ahead and wearing trainers if you want to join in, my choice of flip flops almost ended in me doing flips…
3. ABC Bike Tour
This is possibly one of the best experiences I had in Bangkok. The tour takes you through Bangkok’s railway arch community and across the river into the ‘green lung’. Michiel is a great tour guide and teaches you all about Bangkok and even some of the lingo as he takes you off the beaten track to show you the real Bangkok. Just don’t do what I did and crash into a bucket full of water outside of someone’s house!
4. Koh San Road
You’ve seen the sights, tried the food, and now it’s time to party. The Koh San Road is a backpacker heaven, it’s the best place to meet fellow travellers. This is the place to get all your RayBerrys – knock-offs galore. This street is crazy, get your buckets in and go for a bar crawl. Watch out for the tuk tuks, the driver WILL run over your feet! Don’t worry my toes didn’t break, I just hobbled around the next morning and tried to milk it as much as possible for the story!