The next 3 days we explored the metropolitan areas of the Bangkok city itself. The first day we explored the areas of the Royal palace and its surroundings and the next 2 days was exclusively dedicated for exploring the various markets. Since I was expected to do atleast some work these 3 days, we were able to explore the city only post lunch time, which believe me can get quite exhausting too :).
The entrance fee for the Grand palace is a steep 500 Baht/person and surprisingly this is applicable only for the foreigners Entry for the local residents being free of cost. Obviously we were a bit pissed with this entrance fee since even in India the entrance fee disparity for foreign vs local visitor would be of the ratio 2 to 10 times and not close to infinity as in this case. Hence this infinite value had a huge contribution in pissing us off :P.
But since we had come all the way to visit this place, we paid the fee and by then got to know the special dress code applicable here wherein shorts and sleeveless tops are forbidden, which believe me is a tough thing to come to terms with, considering the very liberal society Thailand has come to be associated with. If you want to experience their liberal outlook just go to some of their beaches or market or rather any other public place as a matter of fact. The entire tour of the palace takes around an hour or two if done in a leisure pace. Once inside one would be bombarded with everything made of gold. Golden palaces, golden statues, golden stupas, golden thrones and everything golden one can think of. This palace is kinda new considering that it was built just a couple of centuries back, but it was quite impressive. There was a huge crowd visiting this place even though it was a normal weekday, so one can assume what it would be like on a weekend or a holiday.
One more advice for those travelling to Bangkok is to get a city map, which helps to move around, since very few people would be able to help you (in terms of language communication) to move from place to place in the cheapest possible manner. We planned our tours around Bangkok in such a way as to get down at the nearest metro station and from there either walk or take a local transport depending on the distance.
|A monk meditating|
|Leaning Buddha Of Wat Pho|
|Steep Stairs to Wat Arun|
The next 2 days we explored the markets of Bangkok , primarily the cloth/apparel/accessories markets which can make ladies go crazy :). Day one, we went to the Platinum Fashion mall which is walk-able distance from Ratchathewi and Ratchaprapop metro stations. There are floors and floors of clothes and accessories. Prices are reasonable but not dirt cheap. This place closes down completely by 7pm. From there we went to the night market near the Indra regent hotel. This market which is literally on the streets starts only at around 6.30 pm and goes on till midnight and the prices here are much cheaper than anywhere else. Also one can find some Indian restaurants in its vicinity if one is already homesick :).
|Siam Square At Night|
|Indra Regent Night Market|
|Chatuchak Weekend Market|