Bangkok, Thailand

It’s my second time in Bangkok and the bustling city still offers some of the most varied activities and experiences you can do in a lifetime. With its great food, smiling people and amazing cultural sights and heritage, no wonder Bangkok is the most popular Southeast Asian city for tourists.

Day 0: Flight to Bangkok via Cebu Pacific at 7:30am, arrived by 10:30 am

• To go to Bangkok City Center

From Suvarnabumi Airport, go to the basement and ride the Airport Rail Link to Phaya Thai station. The station is connected to the BTS Sukhumvit line, from there you can ride to your hotel or take a taxi if you’re checking in Khao San.

DAY 1: The Grand Palace, Temple of Reclining Buddha (Wat Po) and Temple of Dawn (Wat Arun)

A. The Grand Palace – Still too many tourists, but you cannot deny the grandness and awe-inspiring architecture of the place. Don’t miss this if you’re a first timer in Thailand, it’s the most popular attraction for a reason. Entrance: 500 baht

• To go to The Grand Palace, ride the BTS to Saphan Taksin Station, go to Exit 1 and walk towards Sathorn (Saphan Taksin) Pier. All boats in Chao Phraya River operates here.

• You can choose to ride the tourist boat for 60 baht (unlimited for 290 baht) or the regular orange commuter boat for 20 baht (choose this). The Grand Palace is in, the 5th stop.

• After alighting at the Pier, walk 200 meters or just go with the flow of the people towards the entrance. Buy your tickets for 500 baht.

B. Wat Pho – My favorite Buddhist temple in Bangkok. The famous Reclining Golden Buddha is always a feast in the eyes and the temple complex itself is pretty large. There are cute cats roaming around.

• Ditectuok: Wat Pho – Located at the back of The Grand Palace, from the exit, just turn around and its a 500m walk.

C Wat Arun – The temple is beautiful especially during late afternoon. This sight is pretty iconic.

• Directions: From Wat Pho, walk towards the ferry Pier , pay the 8 baht fare.. It’s a 5 minute ride.

To go back at Saphan Taksin, ride any ferry going towards Sathorn Pier.

Tip: If you’re staying in Khao San, the end pier stop is located within Khao San Area.

Alternatively, Sanam Chai MRT is now open and you can alight at this station and walk towards Wat Pho/Grand Palace.

DAY 2 : Floating Markets (Amphawa and Damoen Saduak) and Meeklong Railway

This 13-hr Klook tour is probably the most sulit tour you can book as it covers the most popular floating markets in Bangkok area and you will have firefly watching activity as well.

Book this activity via Klook: https://www.klook.com/activity/3020

Meet-up of the activity is Century Mall, located closely at Victory Monument BTS.

From Bangkok, you will be traveling for 2 hours to arrive at the first stop.

a. Damoen Saduak – You will catch a boat for six people and cruise the market for about 20 minutes. Instagrammable but very expensive and touristic. The food is good, but I don’t suggest buying stuff here. There are better shopping areas. Must try: Coconut ice cream and Mango Sticky rice

b. Meeklong Railway Market – You will ride a train going to the railway market, and be like a celebrity waving at passerbys. Interesting experience, and it kinda reminds me of Shifeb railway. The market is very cheap (like 2x cheaper than Damoen) and you should definitely buy some of your pasalubong here. Food is also affordable and delicious. Must try: Thai milk tea, noodles

c. Amphawa Market – Best Market of all three. It’s not touristy, it’s a floating market situated in a beautiful canal and it’s the cheapest market among them. The food is also cheaper and more delicious. Must try: Grilled seafood, Crocodile meat

d. Firefly watching – In Amphawa, you will ride a boat to see the fireflies in the Meeklong river. The 30 minute cruise is the highlight of this KLook tour. Simply amazing.

Finished the activity by 7:00pm and we arrived at Bangkok at 9:00pm.

DAY 3: Chatuchak and Ancient City

a. Chatuchak Weekend Market – like Divisoria, but it’s 10x nicer. This is the shopping mecca in Bangkok as it offer cheap prices on different goods and variety of food stalls. Must Try: Buy cheap wallets, Tshirts..

• Directions: Ride to Mo Chit BTS Station, and follow the sign to Chatuchak Weekend Market. You can also follow the crowds of people going there.

b. Ancient City (Moang Buran) – Dubbed as one of the largest outdoor museum in the world, Ancient City offers replicas of the famous temples and attractions in Thailand. Featuring attractions from the 77 provinces in Thailand, this place is incredible. If you only one museum to visit in Bangkok, this should be the top of your list.

Directions: Ride to Kheha BTS station , 40-minute travel from Siam BTS. Exit at Exit 3,and ride the songtheaw going to Ancient City (8 baht) or take Grab (80 baht).

c. Asiatique – Open door mall, with great selection of goods and services.

Directions: Ride the free Asiatique ferry at Saphan Taksin

DAY 4: Kanchanaburi Day Tour

Kanchanaburi is a very historical place, it’s one of the most iconic locations during World War 2 and the ”Death Railway” is one of the most sombering memories of the war.If you have seen the film ”Bridge over River Kwai”, you will he touched and fascinated by the place. It’s one of the more interesting day trips from Bangkok.

The price of the tour is 850baht (much cheaper than Klook) and it includes lunch. Travel time from Bangkok is 2-4 hrs depending on the traffic.

a. JEATH Museum – Interesting museum with some historical artifacts during the war.

b. River Kwai Bridge – The historical and iconic bridge during World War 2, many POWs died during the construction of the bridge. This place is scenic, very Instagramable.. You can take pictures of the train passing in the brifge. Don’t miss the nearby temple in the end section of the bridge.

c. Riding the Train (Death Railway) – The highlight of the tour, you will ride the train for 1.5 hrs and watch the scenic of Kanchanaburi mountains. During the ride, you will experience cruising the a 1km wooden bridge section in which many soldiers died.. ”Estimates vary but, of more than 60,000 prisoners of war enslaved on the Death Railway, almost 13,000 are believed to have died, in addition to as many as 90,000 southeast Asian civilian forced labourers.”.

d. Sai Yok Noi – Beautiful waterfall and the last stop after riding the Death Railway..

g. Kanchanaburi Cemetery – This memorial serves as the burial of those who died in war. The place is somber and thought provoking.

The tour finished by 4:00pm and unfortunately, travel time to Bangkok took 4 hrs since its Sunday and the traffic is heavy.

h. Iconsiam – Probably the most beautiful mall in Southeast Asia (honestly, walang sinabi mga malls natin). The place is simply amazing.. The interiors are world class and they have an array of beautifully curated shops. There’s an Apple Store here.

Directions: Ride the free Iconsiam ferry at Saphan Taksin.

Additional tips:

TIPS:

1. Bring PHP and exchange your money (in php) in Superrich as they offer the best rates. Bringing dollars won’t change a thing, since you are actually double converting your money and you lose during conversions. And the Thai baht is too strong against USD/any currency. 5,500 php =3000 baht. There’s a 220 baht charge when you withdraw to ATM, so just withdraw one time.

2. Again, buy your sim card, tickets and tours in Klook, as you can score discounts.

3. . For accommodation, stay near BTS Station, for easy access to the city’s attractions. I suggest staying in these areas:

a. Silom (Sala Daeng or Chong Nonsi BTS ) – if you want nightlife and easy access to the Bangkok’s red light district.

b. Siam (Phaya Thai, Siam, Ratchathewi BTS) – This area is near famous shopping malls in Bangkok and very central as its a transport hub. I stayed in Siam Eco Hostel, and its just a 5 minute walk away from the Airport Link.

c. Sukhumvit (Sukhumvit MRT, Nana, Asok BTS) – This area is full of shopping areas and probably the most tourist friendly.

Stay in these three areas. I actually don’t recommend staying in Khao San, since the transportation there is not good and it’s full of white tourists.

4. Buy a Rabbit card, if you’re staying more than a few days in Bangkok. This is like a beep card that you can use for paying fares.

5. For cheap and delicious food, try their 7-Eleven and the various food stalls in their streets. Food ranges from 70 baht to 150 baht.

6. Important: Respect the Monarchy in Thailand, there’s Lese-Majeste law.

Budget:

Transportation:
Plane (Cebu Pacific) RT – 2800 php
Airport Rail Link RT – 140 php
Rabbit Card (via Klook) – 490 php
Grab (Car and Bike) – 500 php

Klook Tours/Tickets – 2500

Pocket Money: 5,000 php

Accommodation: 5000 php

Thailand used to be much cheaper the first time I visited (1.3 baht vs 1.8 baht to peso), but it’s still affordable if you plan accordingly. And it’s still amazing. Enjoy, Bangkok!

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