“Land of Smiles” “Land of Street Food”. Its hard to walk the streets of Bangkok without crossing paths with a food cart serving anything from street meat to fresh fruit. Over the past few years Bangkok has become one of the hottest tourist destinations and a backpacker’s dream. For only a few dollars —> baht you can eat like a king, feasting until your body literally hates you.
What most don’t remember through the mirage and appeal of Bangkok is that this is still a third world country. This isn’t your eat.pray.love. On day one I found myself trying to escape the smell of rotting meat (and feet) and trying to stay alive in Chinatown as motorcyclists came flying down dark narrow alleyways. Chinatown alone was an eye opener, read any travel guide on Bangkok and they say “eat street food in Chinatown”. NO. Now I am a pretty adventurous person, I will eat practically anything, and if a city has a Chinatown I am there. I am telling you WE DO NOT BELONG HERE. At times I thought I was going to get run over, or get attacked by the swarm of a hundred cockroaches that escaped a tarp and later I watched crawled all over a street cart….serving food.
With that said I hate to be negative especially about Thailand, it was a culture emersion, a culinary adventure, and in my opinion a must visit at least once in your life. The people are as nice as they say, and the street food puts our Halal and pretzel carts to shame.
Now I am no Trip Advisor BUT due to lack of photos (it was hazy and cloudy every day and I wasn’t loving how they came out) I decided to list my top suggestions of what to do in Bangkok:
- Grand Palace & other Temples: Bangkok literally has dozens of temples. Just a heads up don’t go on the weekend, we were just one of hundreds of tourists trying to navigate these temples (oh yea and cover up).
- Chatuchak Weekend Market: (will touch upon in a later post)
- Floating Markets: With so many to choose from, Damnoen Saduak, Amphawa, & Khlong Lat Mayom just to name a few its worth traveling slightly out of the city for.
- Get a Massage: Dirt cheap… seriously.
- Take a Cooking Class
- Explore Transportation: Wherever you are going try and mix it up with how you are getting there. Taxi’s are extremely accessible,but traffic is a pain. The skytrain was extremely easy to use, or if your gutsy ride a tuk tuk.
- Gaggan: A bit pricey… okay very pricey, but Gaggan is the # 1 restaurant in Asia and closing in a few years. Truly an experience and a + if you like Indian food.
- Visit Lumpini Park
- Take a Ride Down (or Up) Chao Phraya River
- Eat, Eat, and then Eat Again