April 24, 2016
Well, I made it. Roughly 24 hours of traveling, and the start of my Southeastern Asia travels have begun!
I believe it was Confucius who said “to beat jetlag, ignore the jetlag” (ok, maybe not) and that was exactly my plan after arriving at 6:30am Thailand time (7:30pm EST). I made it to my hostel, Bodega Bangkok (stay here!) at 8am, but check-in isn’t until the afternoon. I loudly declared that I needed friends and something to do.
So, here we are. Six strangers from all over the world, running around Bangkok on a self guided walking tour!
First experience – water taxi. It’s a boat with minimal seats, ropes hanging from the ceiling, a ledge running the perimeter of the vessel, and roughly 5 seconds allowance to disembark the boat or you’ve missed your shot.
We arrived at Wat Saket – The Golden Mountain. This was the most stunning temple I saw in Bangkok. To reach the top, you walk up 400 around the outside of the building, where you get a 360 degree view of Thailand from up in the sky. The gardens are extremely well kept, and they have bells and gongs to ring on the path for good luck.
Next was Wat Pho – The Temple of the Reclining Buddah. The draw of this temple is a giant Buddah (138 feet long) which is covered in gold leaf. His feet at 15 feet high, and decorated with mother of pearl. He looked pretty comfortable as well in his lying position.
Next came Khaosan Road, and China Town. Khaosan Road is a party street, with vendors lining the roadway and alleys selling anything imaginable. You bargain your life away here. China Town was, well, China Town. I’ve heard that the street food here is phenomenal, but didn’t get to try any.
That night, I went to Soi Cowboy with a new friend, Ellie from England. It’s a bit of a controversial street, as it’s lined with prostitutes, strip clubs, and loud bars. Yes, it’s quite tasteless to go there, but it seems to be a right of passage for many backpackers and travelers. Honestly, it reminded me a lot of Amsterdam – and I found the Red Light District there to be underwhelming. Still managed to have some drinks and some fun, but by the end of the day, I was absolutely exhausted.