Welcome to Bangkok, everybody's first stop in Thailand.
It's been exactly a year since our trip to Bangkok, which feels like too long for how much I loved this place, but here it is!
Like many tourists, we started our trip out floating down the river markets. Damnoen Saduak Floating Market to be exact. One of the most touristy markets to visit, but if you have the time it's a fun first stop. I suggest buying nothing other than maybe a coconut drink...and maybe an expensive snack...okay and maybe hold a slow loris. Basically, you're going to be excited but know that it's about the experience and everything here is over priced!
Our first day in Bangkok we hired a driver and paid him for the entire day - way too much, but I'm really not sure how else we would have fit in everything we did.
After starting our day off with the Damnoen Saduak Floating Market we then headed to Amphawa, another floating market that had less boats out on the water and was more small wooden shops along the water. Both were such different experiences I recommend trying to experience both if you have time.
Some of my favorite portraits were in Bangkok. The people's warm personalities left me wanting to chat with them for hours asking them about their stories. When I'm taking photos on the streets sometimes I struggle with approaching individuals for a portrait, but after almost every picture we embraced with a hug and a few laughs. I was already in love with Thailand.
Some of the market food at Amphawa Market, along with my favorite portrait of a young girl sitting with a fan.
In Amphawa Market I felt like we were walking along people's front porches and judging by the scene laid out above, we were.
Above was also one of my braver moments when I asked to take this mans portrait and he nodded a yes.
Below, I made my way through the crowded streets of Amphawa Market with my favorite Lowepro sport backpack. It seemed like all of Thailand was beginning to fill the market streets after 5pm.
DAY TWO: The Royal Palace + Tuk Tuk Travels
We made our way via taxi to the Royal Palace where we bought Thai styled pants and cover ups, because you're not allowed to show your legs or shoulders and we started our afternoon in the Palace.
We wondered around, sitting for moments staring at the beautiful architecture and watching the crowds of different ethnicities make their way into one of the main temples to witness some sort of ceremony. Every now and then I would find myself distracted by my high body temperature covered with so many layers, but I’d again become immersed in the details that covered each and every tile and forget for a moment I was burning up! (I’m such a baby with being too hot)
After our afternoon of exploring the palace grounds, we finally made our way back out to the busy streets surrounding the exterior walls. We still had plenty of our day left and we debated what to do next and settled on just walking in a random direction - something we do often. Not soon after a man approached us suggesting we take his friends tuk tuk assuring us he’d give us a deal. Keep in mind this is only our second day and we hadn’t quite figured out the “system” here. In other words, what did this seemingly nice man really want from us?
We went to meet the driver and after agreeing on several locations for the afternoon and what was actually a heck of a deal we took off on our first tuk tuk ride!
The driver and his cute little boy, genuinely seemed to have our best interest in mind throughout the day. I know it might seem sad, but since we travel quite often we’re always a little wary of intentions, (as you should be) but unless we missed it…there never seemed to be an ulterior motive. Honestly, we were thrilled with the day and the places he suggested for us and like I said it was a reasonable price.
So did that simply affirm our love for Thailand? How could it not?
Overall, Bangkok is still a city with it’s ups and downs but overall the people were warm, welcoming and willing to help a couple tourists. The sights are full of breath taking architecture and the markets are full culture and color…oh and the food! We were sad to leave Bangkok, but knowing we’d end our trip back there we were eager to head to our next destination - exotic Krabi!