Tag Archives: Thailand

Third Thai’s A Charm – Bangkok (Day 5: Chatuchak Market, Terminal 21, Siam Paragon)

With my girlfriend by my side, it was mandatory to visit Chatuchak Market before we left Thailand. We spent most of our afternoon here to do some last minute shopping. Like always, the place is cramped with locals and tourists alike so be prepared. Definitely a must-visit place for bargain shopping of all sorts.

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After, we moved to Terminal 21. A mall which wasn’t open yet when we first visited Thailand. This mall has a unique concept where each floor has it’s own unique world city theme. Popular cities like Paris, Tokyo, London and Rome are represented here. No love for Manila?!

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True story: We had dinner in one of the open diners in the market at Terminal 21 which I will not mention the name of. I chose this specific place because it was: 1) A cuisine that I like, 2) Prices seem to be affordable and 3) There was no line. I should have noticed these red flags but I was too stubborn to look for another place to eat at. Food seemed to be okay since we were starving at that point. As I received the change of our bill, I noticed that I was short a whole THB 500. When I asked the lady to re-check and give me the missing amount, she seemed startled at first. I then insisted that I was shorted and she immediately gave me my THB 500. For a fact, I really believe that she intently shorted us our change as she was neither apologetic nor surprised about the incident.

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By nighttime, we then moved to our last stop – Siam Paragon. We checked out the Paragon Cineplex but did not have the time to catch an actual movie. After that, we did some last minute buying at the supermarket where we also had some tapas for our light dinner.

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It was already 9 PM so we decided to grab a tuk tuk to head back to Loog Choob Homestay to grab our luggage. From there, we took a cab to head to the airport.

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This officially marks the end of my 3rd trip to Thailand. This is definitely my favorite trip out of the three by far. Ayutthaya brought it’s own quaint appeal which I really liked. Navigating around Bangkok as a repeat visitor was much more fun this time around. And yes, Baan Thai House and Loog Choob Homestay were both gem of a finds.

I should be back again soon! Next stop: Chiang Mai!

– The Tourist Pao

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Third Thai’s A Charm – Bangkok (Day 4: Wat Saket, Jim Thompson House, Asiatique)

Today was the last full day of our Thailand trip. Despite my 3rd visit in this wonderful country, there’s so much left to see here. We started our day by eating in one of the nearby restaurants which served some yummy pork noodle bowls. I am not quite sure what this dish is called but I am giving it two thumbs up!

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From Loog Choob Homestay, we headed to our first stop – Wat Saket. We actually have a view of this temple from our roof deck. At night, it was lit up and you can see the “Golden Mount” from afar. This place is an active temple and we noticed people walk in a unified circle motion around the mount. We didn’t stay that long as we did not want to disrupt their flow of motion.

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Our next stop was the Jim Thompson House. I actually have no idea what this place was about apart from it being a “must-see” in most travel guides. Apparently, he was a successful American who eventually moved to Thailand. He was into the whole Thai silk industry and was also a collector of Asian antiquities. The result of this would be the museum which contained restored Thai houses as well as his collection of antiques.  It also had a shop that sold Thai silk wear under his own name.

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The museum was a fantastic visit from all throughout. Guests were provided a guided tour in batches. After that, you can go around and take photos on your own leisurely time. The great mystery surrounding this outstanding gentleman is his disappearance during his visit to Malaysia. Something I only picked up before the tour ended. I felt a slight eeriness at that moment…!

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From the Jim Thompson House, we visited the Bangkok Art and Culture Centre. If you’re into the whole modern art culture, this place is for you.

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We then passed by several malls while walking around the streets of Bangkok such as Siam Paragon and Central World Plaza. If you’re into bargain shopping, you should go check the nearby Platinum Fashion Mall.

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It was already nighttime at this point and we had one more stop left. We visited the newly opened Asiatique. This is an open-air mall in the Chao Praya River which contains lots of shops, eateries, restaurants and other activites. If you have one free at night in Bangkok, I recommend visiting this place.

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As I’m writing about Asiatique, I checked Google and this was on the same side of the river where we came from. Makes me wonder why we had to ride a boat to cross the river?

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Well, that’s it for our last full day in Thailand.

Third Thai’s A Charm – Bangkok (Day 5: Chatuchak Market, Terminal 21, Siam Paragon)

– The Tourist Pao

Third Thai’s A Charm – Bangkok (Day 3: Wat Pho, Wat Arun, Siam Ocean World, Baiyoke Sky Hotel)

After two days in Ayutthaya, it was time for us to return to Thailand‘s capital city of Bangkok. It’s officially my 3rd time in Thailand so we are going to visit some of the landmarks that we missed during my first two visits. For our first stop, we headed to Wat Pho which is right across the Grand Palace. The main feature of this temple is the gigantic reclining Buddha statue. You definitely won’t be missing this as visitors will be flocking this part of the temple.

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After visiting the reclining Buddha, we headed straight to Wat Arun. Since we were situated on the opposite side of the river, we decided to ride a water ferry for the quick river crossing.

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From Wat Arun, we headed first to check-in at Loog Choob Homestay. This is where we will be staying for the rest of our trip. I strongly recommend staying at this place if you’re already familiar with Bangkok as it’s situated quite hidden and not within the touristy destinations. Very affordable, very friendly and accommodating family-staff, great design… what more can you ask? No wonder they’re among the top B&Bs/Inns in Tripadvisor and has even won a Traveler’s Choice Award.

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After our quick check-in, we headed to Siam Paragon. The reason is to visit Siam Ocean World. Being a fan of marine creatures, I can’t get over the fact that we didn’t have time to visit this place during our first visit. Siam Ocean World is currently the largest aquarium in Southeast Asia. It definitely did not disappoint despite the quite pricey entrance fee.

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Our last stop for the day was The Observatory Point at Baiyoke Sky Hotel. All I can say about this place is, it’s worth the visit for the view at the revolving deck on the 84th floor. Everything else that came with it, don’t even bother. The place is quite date and very touristy in nature. We were lucky to spend a few minutes on the open observatory deck as it started to rain afterwards.

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That’s about it for our 3rd day in Thailand. Let’s keep the ball rolling!

Third Thai’s A Charm – Bangkok (Day 4: Wat Saket, Jim Thompson House, Asiatique)

– The Tourist Pao

Third Thai’s A Charm – Ayutthaya (Day 2: Temples)

Our second day in Ayutthaya is another day of more temple touring. Not that I’m complaining… For today, we hired a private tuk tuk guide to tour us around the temples.

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Our first stop was Wat Yai Chai Mongkol. This temple is well-maintained and had several attractions to enjoy. You can even go walk up the temple and view the surroundings.

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Next was Wat Mahathat. Probably one of the more well-known temples to visit and is a must-see when you’re in Ayutthaya. Don’t forget to check out the large Buddha head that’s enveloped by a tree.

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We also passed by Wat Na Phra Men. One of their active temples inside the Historical Park.

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Our fourth stop was Wat Lokkayasutharam. The main feature of this place is the large outdoor reclining Buddha. On a side note, we had an accident before we reached this destination. Our tuk tuk abruptly braked when a motorcycle backed in front of us. My girlfriend hit her left side on the metal railing of our tuk tuk. At that moment, I panicked and thought we would be ending our trip short. Thank goodness she just ended up having a bruised arm and a bit of bleeding in her mouth. No broken tooth and all… Phew!

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We rested for a bit to recover and moved to our fifth stop – Wat Mongkhon Bophit. This was probably the temple I liked the least. I prefer old “ruined” temples over modern looking ones.

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Our last stop was Wat Phra Si Sanphet. Most of the structures seemed to have been restored to it’s old beauty. I could just imagine how much more beautiful it could have been if it was in it’s original form.

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By this time, we were so exhausted that it was time for us to grab some really late lunch. We ate in a riverside restaurant and ordered several dishes like tom yum and grilled river prawns. Just what I needed to cap our tour in Ayutthaya…

After our lunch, we went back to Baan Thai House. Dipped a bit in their pool before having our traditional Thai massage. By this time, the weather was getting rainy. We had a few drinks at night and even had a bicycling fiasco. I guess that’s another story to tell. This wraps our last day in Ayutthaya as we’re moving back to Bangkok tomorrow.

This place definitely has it’s unique charm! Definitely one of my favorite destinations so far.

Third Thai’s A Charm – Bangkok (Day 3: Wat Pho, Wat Arun, Siam Ocean World, Baiyoke Sky Hotel)

– The Tourist Pao

Third Thai’s A Charm – Ayutthaya (Day 1: Wat Phanan Choeng, Wat Phutthaisawan, Wat Chaiwatthanaram)

When I first visited Cambodia in 2011, I was inspired to see more ancient temples similar to those in Siem Reap. After careful research and what my budget permitted, I decided to visit the ancient city of Ayutthaya which was just a stone’s throw away from Thailand‘s capital city of Bangkok. For numerous reasons, our trip to Thailand seemed to be the perfect choice for us back then. This trip marked my 3rd time in Thailand.

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Our trip starts once we arrived in Suvarnabhumi Airport. From there, we traveled around 2 hours by land to Ayutthaya. Our first stop was to check-in at Baan Thai House. We booked their Deluxe Lake Villa which has a nice view overlooking the grounds. We were able to meet the owner Leena who has been helpful to us even before we arrived in Thailand. This place is definitely a true gem! I recommend that you stay here if you plan to visit Ayutthaya.

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After we settled, we decided to join a boat tour which we were fortunate enough to book late in the afternoon. We were lucky that there was no one else on the tour so we had the boat all to ourselves.

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Our first stop was Wat Phanan Choeng. The highlight of this temple is the large golden buddha statue.

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Next was Wat Phutthaisawan which featured an outdoor reclining buddha. The grounds also contained several statues lined up together.

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Lastly, the highlight of our first day was Wat Chaiwatthanaram. It was unfortunate that we did not enter the grounds as there was an entrance fee. This temple is probably the best if not one of my favorites during this trip.

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The weather was getting a bit gloomy and sun down was nearing so we decided to end our first day in one of the nearby night markets. Of course, our day will not end by trying some thai milk tea and rice cakes.

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We headed back to Baan Thai House after. So far, so good for our first day in Ayutthaya. We can’t wait to see what’s in store for us tomorrow!

Third Thai’s A Charm – Ayutthaya (Day 2: Temples)

– The Tourist Pao