Last day in Bangkok! We were up and packed and out of the hotel by 10:30am, a new record so far. Leaving our bags at the excellent hotel, we hopped on the BRT to Chatuchak weekend market. “Big” doesn’t even begin to describe it. Rows upon rows of stalls sling everything and everything that you could imagine abound, from fashion (originals, trendy items and knock-offs) to furniture to food.
It’s a truly overwhelming experience. Imagine the varying smells of food being prepared, animals of all shapes and species in their cages, several thousand of your closest friends, heat scorching all of the above and you might have an inkling of what sort of elements assault your senses. I almost gave myself whiplash trying to see everything at once.
We spent several hours there, but we barely scraped the surface. It would take days, and a better sense of directions than I possess, to take in it all. It was fabulous. A few of the highlights:
* Coconut ice cream served out of a coconut shell and homemade lemonade that I swear cooled down my body temp by at least ten degrees
* The menagerie of animals for sale, from puppies, bunnies and kittens to exotic birds, reptiles, squirrels, fish, turtles and one mammal that I think I’ve seen in National Geographic, but I’m not sure what it is.
* The wide variety of people that we saw. This is not just a tourist market, though there were plenty of us there. There were plenty of locals as well, doing their shopping or just hanging out with friends.
We headed back to the hotel and availed ourselves of the pool for a while before Heather and I decided to check out the Patpong night market before catching our night train. We should have known when the gentleman ate the front desk told us it was more entertainment for the “men.” This is code for, “strip clubs and ping pong shows.” Don’t ask about the ping pong–You’ll have to look it up. The market was lackluster, full of knock-off sunglasses and cheap tshirts, but we had a good time people watching.
After a dinner of stir-fried morning glory, noodles and some of the best Tom Yam soup that I’ve had so far, we retrieved our backpacks and Brian from the hotel and headed to the train station for our 10:55pm train to Champhong. From there, we caught the bus to the ferry to Ko Tao. I don’t think any of us were sad to leave Bangkok, but I did enjoy the time in the city.
Next stop: Ko Tao!
For additional information or to see a different perspective on the stories, check out Heather and Brian’s blog at The Travelmeisters