Bangkok Snake Farm, Grand Palace and Sukhumvit at Night
We had planned to leave early, but the effects of the jetlag had surfaced. Waking up at 7am, every part of my body was screaming – “We won’t let you go anywhere!” At 9:45am, it was still a struggle getting out.
We were going to be late unless we rush, and had to skip breakfast which we did.
GPS and internet were a life saver, and we made it just in the nick of time to the Snake Farm for the presentation. The ticket cost 200 Baht per person, and we saw many varieties of snakes and their features. The highlight of the visit was handling the Burmese Python. I am normally scared of animals, but when it comes to now or never – it’s the now which takes over. Venom extraction happens on weekdays which I would’ve also liked to see.
We went to a tiny mall that seemed popular with students and had expensive restaurants on ground level, a food court and Tesco Lotus underground. I opt for safety, and my husband experiments. I got a Mango Berry smoothie, and he got a coconut fresco (both 40 Baht each). He didn’t like the drink and I said I’ll drink it. A few sips and I felt like throwing up. It left a disgusting aftertaste, and in it went in the waste bin. On the second attempt he thought he had bought mango, and found it strange that he was given sugar with it. That was another bitter fruit, and sugar just made it worse. Finally, he went for the safer option – Sushi, and got snacks from Tesco.
We got a bus after waiting for about 30 minutes to Si Phraya Pier and an Orange Flagged boat to Ta Tien Pier. As we were trying to get off the boat, the boat started moving and a lot of people got confused why the boat was in such a rush to move. We got off at the next stop – Chang Pier along with most of the people.
My husband saw a fruit trolley and bought strawberries. The vendor asked if he wanted sugar – not sure if the strawberries were bitter, he said yes. I tried one, and the sugar was bitter as well – it was pinkish in color with salt and pepper which just made it worse.
The Grand Palace has signs saying “Do Not Trust Wily Strangers” as a lot of tourists are conned by tuk-tuks attempting to take them elsewhere by saying that the Grand Palace is closed.
The entrance is relatively expensive – 500 Baht pp, and your legs, and shoulders need to be covered, otherwise you’d have to borrow clothing at the front gate. The architecture shows the level of intricate artwork. Some of the faces reminded me of psychedelic experiences that people have described.
The Gold on some of the Murals had a distinct shine.
We got more fruits from street vendors and walked to the famous hippie Khao San Road. En route we saw lots of parked cars, protesters wearing the Thai flag and blocked roads. There are Halal shops North West of the road on the way to Chakkaphong Mosque where we had late lunch.
To get out, we waited for the bus which didn’t come after 30 minutes. So we took a tuk tuk to Hua Lamphong and negotiated the fare from 200 Baht to 150 Baht and still felt we were probably being ripped off. While traveling I felt stinging in my eyes and throat near a crowded area. My husband said it was tear gas. Luckily the tuk tuk driver didn’t crash when he covered his face with his hands and had really watery eyes. There was a lot of police presence all the way till Hua Lamphong and were trying to clear the roads of traffic.
To get an idea of the night market we decided to try the nearby Sukhumvit. There were transvestites near Nana area. Once done with food (chicken mandi rice [overcooked dry chicken], hummous & lebanese bread), we thought about taking a tuk tuk back. When we approached one – he quickly put a poster in his car away. My husband said something which I didn’t hear, but a few seconds later realised it was probably something to do with prostitution. We declined to ride and he laughed realising our reason. We decided to take the tram (BTS) and the Metro (MTS) back to our hotel instead. While walking to the station, there I noticed a lot of tuk tuk drivers holding posters.
By the time we got to the hotel at 11 pm, our legs were stiff, but it was too late to get a massage.