Bangkok Adventure Day 4
Thailand Travel Blog› entry 4 of 4 › view all entries
Waah! This is the last day! Time flies so fast indeed and we need to make the most out of our trip on our last day. Still high from our Thai massage experience from the previous night, I had to drag myself out of bed. As usual, I woke up at around 7 AM, still half-awake for me to take a bath. Some of my stuff were in my luggage, leaving enough room for my toiletries. Anyway, I told myself to enjoy our last day, even if I barely slept (usually I'm grumpy when I didn't have enough sleep). But hey, this should be an exception because we're on vacation right?
We enjoyed our last breakfast at the hotel. Even though our breakfast consists a wide range of Western delicacies, I can't imagine myself eating that kind of breakfast for the rest of the week (in other words, nakakaumay). After we had our breakfast, we went back to our room to do our final packing (waah! This is it!) and we checked out from the hotel at around 9 AM. We left our things with the hotel after our checkout.
For our last day, our itinerary is to visit the famous temples in Bangkok - Wat Phra Kew (Temple of the Emerald Buddha), Wat Po (Temple of the Reclining Buddha) and Wat Arun (Temple of the Dawn). Since we wanted to experience riding a ferry at the Chao Phraya River, we opted to take the train to Saphan Taksin (BTS Skytrain Silom Line) and then take the Chao Phraya River ferry at the Sathom station, just right below the platform.
I can compare the Chao Phraya River to the Pasig River in Manila. The water is muddy with a lot of water lilies (and other objects like water bottles or plastic wrappers). But its difference from the Pasig River is that its not stinky. I found the ferry ride to be relaxing, even though the river is nothing fancy for me since I grew up in Manila and most of the things that I can see are something that I've experienced in Manila, except for the temples and the monks. I spent the ride taking pictures (well what else should I do? I'm a tourist! =P). At that time, I really appreciate the wide angle feature and quick shutterspeed function of my camera =)
We arrived at Tha Chang pier, the nearest station to Wat Phra Kew and the Grand Palace. The weather is hot and humid, just like in the previous day. I had to setup my tripod for my camera so that all of us are in the pictures. But it was tiring to setup the tripod that day so I decided not to use it anyway.
Based from our research, we're supposed to wear long pants and closed shoes when we go to the temples. But when we arrived at Temple of the Emerald Buddha, I realized that there are people who's wearing sandals (and I'm wearing boots, can you imagine that?). Anyway, its a very hot day although it didn't keep us from taking pictures (camwhore kc kami bwahahaha!!). Even though it was not my first time to go there but hey, 2 years is still a long time for me to remember. During the last time that I've been there, the Grand Palace was under construction. Now, I'm proud to say that I have a picture of the new and improved Grand Palace.
After our stint at the Emerald Buddha, a man approached us that Wat Saket is open for only that day and that there's a free entrance to see the Lucky Buddha. He said that we can visit 3 other temples, all for the cheap price of 40 baht! Since we're all excited to see more temples and to ride a tuktuk, we all went for it. After a few moments, Rey felt that something's wrong and if we have read something about it. So we became alert on where we're supposed to go. After we saw a sign that points where Wat Saket is located and realized that we're heading the opposite way, Gen asked the tuktuk driver where we're going. Then the tuktuk driver told us that we should head to Thai Centre first. But since we had no time, Gen asserted to visit just the 2 temples that the man at the palace mentioned us. But the tuktuk driver was persistent to go to the Thai Centre since he has a free gasoline coupon that he can only avail once he brought us there. At that time, we knew that it was a scam where tourists are brought to a place that sells jewelries, and later, force them to buy some. We hopped off the tuktuk right then and took a cab going to our next destination, Wat Po.
The temple of the reclining buddha houses the largest reclining buddha of Thailand. It is 46 meters long and 15 meters high. This is the most famous backdrop of people who have been to Bangkok. During our visit, we did a ritual at the back of the status - distriubuting small coins in the bowls lined up at the corridor (parang lifesize na sungka). They said that it brings good luck :)
After Wat Po, we had lunch in a nearby restaurant (I forgot its name though). Rey, Dru and Gen had grilled chicken in basil sauce while I had chicken in green curry, which I've been craving since we arrived in Bangkok. This is the same restaurant where my parents and I ate after we visited Wat Po. Their menu includes Thai Iced tea with condensed milk, which I found to be tasty 2 years ago. But now, I found it to be bland and the reason why I ordered 2 glasses was due to my spicy (but delicious) meal. I left that restaurant with a smile on our face because of its good food and ambience.
The ferry ride back to Sathorn pier was a relaxing one, probably because I was tired from our temple hopping experience. I almost fell asleep inspite of the noise coming from the speaker where a tour guide speaks about Bangkok.
We reached the hotel at around 5 PM, which gave us enough time to freshen up before we leave for the airport. At 6 PM, a taxi picked us up to bring us to the Suvarnabhumi airport, Bangkok's new airport. I was impressed at the departure area (unlike at the arrival area). It reminded me of Changi International Airport from Singapore and KLIA but I think its bigger. Two years ago, we departed from its old airport, Don Muang - Bangkok International Airport, which I find to be a bigger version of NAIA. I'm really impressed with Bangkok's new airport. Lucky for us that even if we flew with AirAsia which is a low-cost airline, we departed from Suvarnabhumi airport, just like the other international carriers :) Another thing that's worth mentioning here is that on our way to the depature gates, there's a lot of duty free shops inside that entices passengers to buy (as if the tourists' shopping in Bangkok is not enough!).
We're supposed to sleep on our way back to Kuala Lumpur. Gen and Dru sat at the right wing of the plane while Rey and I stayed at the left wing. Rey and I chatted about our entire stay in Bangkok - the place, the culture, the experience, things that we saw and how similar it is to Manila and things that we've noticed around us (*wink wink*). We talked and laughed in the plane and needless to say, the nap that we're supposed to do didn't happen. Time flew so fast that we didn't notice that we've chatted for almost 2 hours when we arrived at the LCCT airport.
Back at KL (waah!), we hired a cab that's supposed to take us to our respective houses. However, there was a misunderstanding so we ended up taking a bus from the airport going back to KL Sentral. That's where we took our nap. After we took off the bus, I realized that the 1 hour 45-minute bus ride is almost the same as our plane ride from Bangkok.
Rey lived in KL so he took his own cab to his unit while Gen, Dru and I took the same cab going to Petaling Jaya. The original setup was to drop off Dru first at Ehsan but since it was late, Gen thought it would be better if the cab driver would go to Menara Jaya (my place).
Overall, I really enjoyed our Bangkok experience, even though its my second time. On my previous visit, I didn't enjoy it that much, probably because I just saw a few things - I was confined at the Pratunam area and was only able to visit the temples in Bangkok. Also at that time, I can't help but compare it to Singapore - where people are disciplined and the city is neat and organized. But since I've lived in Malaysia for a while and I know what to expect, plus the fact that I'm in good company (naks), I love it! Now I'm looking forward to our next misadventures (san kaya? sana outside Southeast Asia naman *wink wink*). I realized that one of the reasons why I liked it this time is because I know that it's close to home - the culture, the friendly people, the scene, the chaos, the sights, the good food (syempre kailangang kong sabihin un). But even if Manila has the potential to compete with Bangkok, it is sad to note that due to the events that's happening to our country, we can't do anything about it.
Anyway, all I can say for now is Khop Khun Ka Bangkok! =)