Bangkok & Pattaya

The first blog I had was initially supposed to be a travel blog... and in it, I wrote about my experience in Bangkok and Pattaya in 2005. Now since I'm going to Thailand again end of this month (but to Phuket instead), thought I'd just revisit some of the entries from before (especially now that the travel blog has been deleted from Friendster).

Note: Copy and pasted from my earlier Friendster blog

All about my trip to Thailand where I visited Bangkok and Pattaya (from 26 June 2005 - 30 June 2005). One of the best holidays I had thus far. Though quite deprived of sleep (only 4 - 5 hours of sleep everyday - thanks to the happening night life esp. in Pattaya), it was well worth it. For those of you planning to visit Thailand, GO GO GO! Happy reading.

Stuff I Picked Up in Thailand
Hmmm, since there's a limitation on the number of photos one can upload per month, better not post any irrelevant photos here. Instead, would like to share with you a few things that I picked up in Thailand (you may already know this):

  • Ending to a word - do you know that male and female has different ending to their words? [-ka] is for female & [-karp] is for male. Example: Kamkut-ka is said by a female while a male would say kamkut-karp which means "thank you". Since my vocab is limited... can't provide more examples :P
  • Mai pen rai - means "it's ok". E.g. If you've just spent 5 minutes bargaining but the price is still not right, walk away politely by saying "mai pen rai". You'll most likely be called back for the last price you're willing to pay :)
  • Airport tax - you'll need to pay an airport tax of 500 baht before leaving Thailand thus be sure not to spend every single baht with you
  • For smokers out there - cigarette boxes are printed with scary pictures of damaged lungs, stained teeth, haggard woman etc etc - government's plans in deterring people from smoking? Thought I read something similar in the papers a while back (Malaysia's Tak Nak campaign) that we'll be implementing the same approach?
  • Dustbins - not very sure bout this one, but I seriously think there is a shortage of dustbins in Bangkok for whenever I tried to locate one, will definitely not find any. My colleague told me about the portable ashtray that she carries around... maybe people in Bangkok throws their rubbish only when they're back home? Cos' Bangkok has clean streets
  • Free petrol redemption - if you ever wanna take a ride on the motor-taxi "tuk tuk", be sure to bargain but also remember to ask if there are mandatory stops along the way. Apparently, the "tuk tuk" driver said he gets 1l of free petrol whenever he fetches tourists to souvenir shops, jewelery centers etc etc (provided if you stay for a minimum of 10 minutes)
  • Floating market - there's no floating market at the Chao Praya river, just 1 or 2 'sampan' for show. Actual floating market is actually much further (sorry forgot the area name)
  • 7 eleven - there seemed to be a 7 eleven at every corner (just like how we have 'mamak stalls' here in M'sia). At times, you'll see a 7-11 at the beginning of a street, middle of the same street, ending of still the same street and 1 opposite the street. They seemed to be everywhere... in different shapes and sizes

10 baht = ~ RM1

Triple A - All About Animals

  • Check out this lazy tiger. Yawning away while I'm posing beside him (think it's a male, since it's lying down can't really be sure... haha). Anyway, this photo's taken in Nong Nooch Tropical Garden, Pattaya. Price: 50 baht for 2 pictures (own camera ok).
  • Looked yummy eh! Well folks, this is not an ordinary set lunch ok. It's crocodile meat! Well, I figured if we could eat sharks fin, mantis prawns, fish, crab (aqua-sort), what the heck right, might as well try crocodile meat. This was at the Crocodile Farm in Bangkok. Price: 350 baht (comes with salads and fries too). Taste? OK la though I'd probably not have it again :)

  • Baby elephant fishing for bananas from crowd. Took an elephant ride but unfortunately, friend dropped the camera when strap came off (sob sob). Anyway, elephant ride is a must-try. Great fun and nice view too! This was taken at the Samphran Elephant Ground & Zoo in Pattaya. Price: 400 baht per person (comes with photo taking opportunity too... see, the elephant is trained to pose for the camera).

Triple B - All About Boats

  • Picture of me at the jetty, waiting for the boat to arrive. This is the first boat ride I got in Bangkok along the Chao Phraya River. Not too sure if it's a speedboat cos' it's really just a long 'sampan' but with engine at the back (hmmm... if you know then let me know). Price: Dunno (comes with the tour package, but should be quite cheap one). Experience: Scary cos water will be splashing and sometimes when it gets bumpy, I start praying that the 'sampan' will stay in tact, cos you know la, the river can rival our Gombak River... euwwwww.

  • This is the double-decker cruise I took at night for dinner. Along the same river but on a much better conditioned boat. The Chao Phraya Princess Cruise where they serve you dinner buffet style while the boat is slowly cruising the river. There's also a woman in mini-skirt serenading you with songs in all sort of languages except Malay (Korean songs, Japanese songs, Arabian type n more cos' there were tourists from all over the world). Price: 800 baht per person.

  • This is another weird boat. Think it can be called a ferry cos' it's a boat but with chairs and hand rails like those in a mini bus. Behind me, a group of monks from dunno which temple.

  • Other scenery pictures taken from the boat rides. Behind the temple (the one blocked by a long ferry boat), that's where you can see carps (black ones) jumping on the surface of the river.According to the tour guide, the fishes came on their own ever since the temple was built (dunno how many years ago) and that in Thailand people call these the "God Fishes". Not sure bout you, but my friend said "Damn, wish I brought my fishing rod" (think it was a joke :P).

Triple W - All About Wats

In Thai, Wat = Temple.

  • Wat Pho. This world famous temple is located on Thai Wang Road next to the Grand Palace. It is Bangkok's oldest and largest temple. The gigantic gold plated reclining Buddha with inlaid mother-of-pearl soles is highly revered among Buddhists. At the temple, there is also this long row of metal bowls on stands... if you want to know if your luck is good or bad, all you need to do is pay a small token of 20 baht, then select a smaller bowl of coins. Then you're supposed to walk along the lines of the long metal bowls and to throw in one coin at a time. At the end of the queue, if you run out of coin before the last metal bowl, that means your luck is not too good. However, if by the time you finish and you've still got coin balance, then your luck is good. Think I counted 108 or 180 metal bowls.
  • This temple is called the Wat Srakes Rajavaramahavihara (known as the Golden Mount). Accordingly to the brochure that I have, Wat Srakes is a very important monastery in Thailand's modern history. King Rama I, builder of Thailand's new capital performed a royal bath in 1782 before he established himself as the new ruler. In layman terms, it's an important temple, but hor, you need to walk up a fleet of stairs that could challenge Batu Caves. Can die panting ok. When you're up there (it's situated on a hill, that's why it has the word 'Mount' I supposed), you can see the whole of Bangkok. Also, as you can see from the pictures, I could barely open my eyes cos' it's so HOT and sunny there in Thailand!
  • Wat Arun. Located on the west bank of the Chao Phraya River, this temple can be reached by boat from Tha Tien Pier, near Wat Pho. An important structure is a 79-metre-high pagoda or "Phra Prang" decorated with ceramic tiles and fragments of multicoloured porcelain. The name of Wat Arun literary means "Temple of the Dawn". But the most beautiful view of it can be seen from the east side of the river at sunset.


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