So after adopting that cliche proverb ‘Carpe Diem’ and quitting my job – a year of saving every penny I could later, I jetted off to Bangkok. With a little help from a great student holiday company called STA Travel, they made the whole booking experience so easy.
We decided to layover for a few hours in Muscat, Oman (because it was the cheapest option of course). At the time, this country was being dubbed as the ‘next’ Dubai due to it’s extraordinary oil wealth.
However, 5 years later and Oman has become a thriving metropolis. The country is now brimming with tonnes of luxury hotels and idyllic picturesque beaches. So if you decide to fly Oman Air like I did (and did not disappoint whatsoever), make sure to spend a few days there rather than hours and see what this new kid on the block has to offer.
At this point in my life, my only real experience of a holiday, was an All Inclusive resort hotel destination. Lounging by the pool, with my most difficult decision each day being how many plates of food could I eat at the buffet.
So in comparison, Khao San Road is the craziest, most ‘anything goes’ attack on the senses place, absolutely jam packed into a fairly small street.
I would put my house on the fact that this is probably the only place in the whole entire world where you could: Eat a Scorpion on a stick, ‘enjoy’ a questionable Ping Pong show, drink a shot of Whisky laced with Snake Venom AND get a Mike Tyson-esque tattoo all at the same time!!
You will most likely wake up on the first morning at 3am local time due to the jetlag. So naturally Day 2 was spent paying the equivalent of £2 to be driven around in a Tuk Tuk all day courtesy of a very friendly Thai fellow who could clearly tell we were tourists from a mile away.
The architecture was stunning and so varied, I was blown away. Thailand have such a rich history and one of the few remaining countries with a Royal Family. Photographs of the Monarchy adorn almost every building and they are beloved by the Thai people. Make sure to wear appropriate clothing to visit any temple as the Buddhist Monks are very strict in this regard and will not permit entry to anyone showing their legs, or even shoulders. Trust me, you wouldn’t want to miss out on these works of art due to a poor wardrobe decision!
With Vietnam on the horizon and how strict the country is with Visa restrictions, we decided to get our passports stamped at the Vietnamese Embassy, rather than doing so in the UK. You receive a 28 day Visa but have to arrive on the day you have had stamped in your passport – there would be nothing worse than an unforeseen circumstance causing you to miss unnecessary days in Vietnam because you were TOO organised!
Nevertheless, we didn’t want this to be a chore so our chosen mode of transport was a quaint little canal boat which was the equivalent of a local bus in the UK. A lovely lady with incredible spacial awareness and reactions, traverses the edges of the boat collecting fares whilst avoiding the low bridges and other obstacles along the ever winding routes through the city.
This seemlessly took us within walking distance of the Business District and the Embassy for around £0.20p – I loved this place! We paid Express for our stamps and knew we’d be on our way to our next destination (Chiang Mai) in a matter of days.
We decided to spend our evening in the world famous Chinatown – as much as I enjoy exploring menus and taking in the buzz of each restaurant, I had already chosen our eating spot thanks to its glowing reputation. Well in fact their our TWO rival seafood restaurant situated directly opposite eachother.
Curry, Tom Yum, Oysters – the place had it all (which I’m sure T & K Seafood did as well) and everything was absolutely delicious.
Our short but incredibly sweet tour of Bangkok was unfortunately over, but we knew we’d be back at some point. As we were only a few days into our travels, we were feeling quite flush with cash so decided to upgrade our overnight train to Chiang Mai to first class. Our own cabin each, a bed and personal air-conditioning, it was bliss. 13 hours of Thai comfort, for roughly £25 and you save a night’s accommodation – savvy!
Well thank you for reading once again! I know this is all brand new but I hope it’s providing some tips and tricks for your own travel journeys.
Same again next Sunday and I look forward to any likes or comments .
-Visit the magnificent Grand Palace and numerous other significant temples -Tick off your visits to major sites like Wat Pho, Wat Arun, Chinatown, and a flower market all in one day -Learn the rich history and culture of Thailand from an experienced guide -private air-conditioned car -Explore the local way of life of Thai people at the market
Spend an evening enamoured by classical Thailand dance. Sit down to a meal of traditional Thai cuisine and watch as bejewelled dancers perform mystical routines to the percussive classicism of Thai music. Traditional costumes and delicious cuisine combine for a memorable evening.