With Philippine Airlines serving direct flights from Cebu to Bangkok thrice weekly, it is easier for us south siders to explore Amazing Thailand. I have been to Bangkok multiple times, and I’ve been coming back for two good reasons – shopping and food trip. Not to mention Bangkok’s cultural heritage experience is truly intriguing and captivating.
My recent Bangkok jaunt was a brief overnighter. But had a packed, full whole day itinerary which included shopping at Chatuchak Weekend Market, Tor Kor Fresh Market and Asiatique, a visit to Wat Arun Temple, and Chao Phraya River Cruise.
For the benefit of readers planning to go to Bangkok for the first time, I included some temples I have visited in the past trips to help you plan your itinerary. It’s easy to fall in love with Thailand – its rich culture, warm people and delicious food can easily charm tourists from around the globe.
The Capital’s Heritage Sites
Bangkok, the country’s capital, is a famous destination in Southeast Asia for several reasons. For one, the city is teeming with cultural heritage sites; the Grand Palace, Wat Pho and Wat Arun to name a few.
Going around the temples of Bangkok, it’s quick to distinguish Wat Arun’s uniqueness. The Buddhist temple that lies on Thonburi’s west bank of the Chao Phraya River is partly adorned intricately in colorful spires. Wat Arun just recently reopened after a four year renovation.
One can get a good tour around the temple in an hour. Wat Arun exact address is at 158 Thanon Wang Doem, Khwaeng Wat Arun, Khet Bangkok Yai, Krung Thep Maha Nakhon 10600, Thailand, and is open from 8:30AM to 5:30PM. Entry to the temple is 100 Baht (price as of December 2017).
Grand Palace and Wat Pho Reclining Buddha weren’t on the itinerary during the recent jaunt to Thailand since we only stayed overnight in the capital , but would love to share these captures with you from my previous travel to Bangkok.
I would say that a visit to Bangkok won’t be complete without having a glimpse of The Grand Palace. The alluring complex was built in 1782 and has been home of Thai royalties and administrative government for 150 years. Majestic architecture that gleams in gold. The structures intricate detail is indeed a testament of how creative and skillful craftsman the Thais are.
The Grand Palace is situated in Na Phra Lan, Old City and is open daily from 8:30AM to 4:30PM. Entry to the Grand Palace is at 500Baht.
First timers must not miss to visit the 46 meter long reclining Buddha. Only about a 10-minute walk from The Grand Palace, Wat Pho does not only house the city’s longest Buddha, but also a popular place to get a traditional Thai Massage. It’s suggested to tour the Grand Palace first, then to Wat Pho where the Reclining Buddha is, and end the tour with a satisfying traditional Thai Massage. Well, Wat Pho is recognized to be the leading massage school in Thailand, so you are sure that you’re getting the best experience. 😉
The temple is open from 8:00AM to 5:00PM and entry is at 100Baht.
A Shopping Utopia
Bangkok is a shopping utopia! And one of the most famous places to score affordable finds is at Chatuchak Weekend Market. This place carries just about anything you can think of – apparel for men and women, from handicrafts to furnitures, from li’l cute knick knacks to adorable pets, and even fresh fruits and local delicacies. One of my personal best buys here is a Thai goddess carved piece made from teak wood for only 800 Baht which I got from my recent trip in Thailand. Quite a great buy! Plus discovered that the freshly made peanut brittle with pandan and sesame seeds is far more toothy from the generic taste of our local ‘Pinyato’ or peanut caramel bars . Bought two packs for pasalubong and my dad’s became an instant fan! Chatuchak weekend market is open every Friday from 6:00PM to 12Midnight, and on Saturday and Sunday from 9:00AM to 6:00PM.
Asiatique Night Shopping is another famous shopping complex in Bangkok that combined a mall and a night bazaar experience. Good deals on shirts and apparels, soap and bath bombs, liniments and oils, and local snacks and delicacies were a few of the economical buys one can revel on here. Plus, the riverfront property is brimming with food shops and refreshment outlets serving beer and cocktails. Even had time to grab a bottle of local beer, Chang, with good buddy and fellow travel blogger, Edgar of The Eazytraveller, after a few rounds of window shopping at Asiatique. Since I got most of the pasalubong stuff at Chatuchak Weekend Market, I only got a bath bomb and local liniment at Asiatique.
Asiatique Riverfront is open daily from 5:00PM until 12midnight.
We also had a quick swing at Tor Kor Fresh Market to buy some pasalubong and fresh fruits. It’s where I got to try Thailand’s Kanyao Durian. So far the best durian I had – creamy and sweet, very close to a durian yema. Yum! Tor Kor Fresh Market is open daily from 6:00AM to 10:00PM
The Chao Phraya River Cruise
A two-hour dinner cruise along Chao Phraya River is a relaxing way to end a full day of shopping and temple visit. There’s live entertainment as we were sailing, and was treated with stunning views of The Grand Palace, Wat Arun and the Rama VIII Bridge.
I have been to Bangkok several occasions, and it’s about time I get to explore what’s beyond Thailand’s capital. Do drop by my blog again this week for the second part of my recent adventure in Thailand, and I’ll be sharing with you my 2-day Pattaya itinerary.
Sawadee Khap! 😉