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Bangkok, Tuk Tuks and Squat Toilets

5th / 6th Jun 2011 -

Landed in Bangkok about 3.30pm Thai time. Flight was 10 hours 35 minutes. I slept most of it so it felt fine.

We went through immigration and got passports stamped (which I love). Got a taxi to our only pre-booked hotel 'The Royal Asia Lesuire Hotel' which is in Sukhumvit soi 8. We booked on and it cost £16 for 1 night. (all the prices I mention is for both of us). The room has great views over Bangkok's skyline, hotel is clean and a wee bit above basic. Showered (because it's been a while and also it's 31 degrees and very humid).

We walked along Sukhumvit, where we saw everything possible- children begging, stray dogs, smelly drains, fake handbags and even sex toys.

We went for dinner and got straight in to the Thai food. We had chicken red curry, chicken in oyster sauce and beef with ginger and garlic with sticky rice and Chang beer. Went for few drinks after and Shannon insisted I get a Thai massage, I got a 30 minute foot massage for 200B which is around £4.00. It felt lovely can't wait for more. Went onto the roof top terrace to take photos of the skyline and then to bed.

Morning from Bangkok. We got up I had breakfast Shannon refused as it wasn't very appetising, we got the sky train from Sukhumvit to the National Stadium which cost 60B about £1.20 as we wanted to get to the train station to buy our train tickets for our trip to Chiang Mai.

However- we got a Tuk Tuk which the driver insisted he took us to a TAT which is a Thai agency travel. Basically a shop which tried to sell us a package which gave us the best deal- it was over priced and we made a quick exit. We got the driver to take us to the train station where we purchased two return second class sleeper train tickets to and from Chiang Mai which cost us 3400B which is £64.00. We will leave tonight at 7.35 and arrive at 9.40 tomorrow morning.

We then got the Tuk Tuk driver to take us to The Marble Temple, we went into the Buddah room we sat with our legs crossed and looked at the huge gold buddah in front of us (you have to sit cross legged so you don't point your feet at the buddah- it's offensive in Thailand to point your feet at anyone). We look at lots of buddah statues.

Then had to go to a thai export 'tailor shop' because Tuk Tuk drivers receive a coupon for gas every time they take a customer in. We had absolute no interest in buying a custom made Armani suit but quickly made our way out. We then went on to Khaosan Road and left the Tuk Tuk paying him 60B (£1.20) for a 3 hour journey. We had a look around it was busy and bustling we went for lunch I had chicken massaman and Shannon had red curry was lovely. There were so many lovely stalls selling clothes, shoes, DVDs, jewellery and even fake driving licences. I bought a lovely bag with elephants imprinted. We got a Tuk Tuk and asked to go to hotel in Sukhumvit he said yes but was rude and said it was too far, he too wanted us to go to tailor shop so we did but we came out within a minute and he wasn't happy so I told him to leave us, and he did- in the middle of somewhere we had non clue, got another Tuk Tuk and guess what, another tailor bloody shop we wandered around for 5 minutes pretending to be interested then driver took us as close to soi 8 as he wanted.

Moral of Tuk Tuks in Bangkok- stay with the same driver all day he will be happy to charge low price and only one tailor shop required. Went for a lemon shake and watermelon shake delicious then back to hotel to collect our suitcases.

Got a taxi to train station and boarded our train to Chiang Mai. We were sharing a berth with two Canadians who were lovely (didn't catch their names though), they were proper backpackers with rucksacks and asked how we were managing with suitcases arrhh we must look stupid! We had two sets of bunk beds which had little curtains to keep us hidden whilst we slept. We chatted to them and then went to the cafe for beers. The train was erm smelly (and it got worse) the toilets were squat toilets it was horrible to look at never mind use! The cafe you could smoke in and was vinyl table cloths and windows down with warm humid air pouring in, but that made it all the more interesting for experience. We watched 127 hours film in bed then Shannon climbed down the ladders to his bed...

#travel #traveldiaries #asia #southeastasia2011 #thailand #bangkok #chiangmai #marbletemple #khaosanroad #train

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