So today started with a trip to Siam Centre – a large shopping centre with lots of quirky shops and cafes. We ventured into one in particular called Moomin Cafè which was themed on… you guessed it – the Moomins. This was more of Tom’s scene as he loved watching the Moomins when he was younger but the food we had was beautiful. We had pancakes and a smoothie each and they were delicious! It was a taste sensation and something very different to what we have experienced so far. The waiters in the restaurant brought over adult sized Moomin characters to come and sit with you, so whilst we ate our pancakes we sat with Mamma Moomin! It was a nice touch. It was an expensive meal though – coming in at £10 each – which is pretty dear in Thailand but the food was well worth it!
After that we moved on to Saphan Taksin, via BTS (sky train), where we jumped onto a Chao Phraya Tourist Boat. For 150 Baht (about £3) we travelled up and down the river, stopping off at different places along the way. Firstly, we stopped off at Ratchawongse Pier where we ventured into Chinatown – a labyrinth of vibrant tightly packed market stalls selling anything and everything. The air was filled with so many rich smells coming from street vendors selling food; and the perfumery from the stalls; and the occasional waft of sewage from the gutters below! If you get a strong enough whiff it can knock you off your feet – and that’s a nice way of putting it. I haven’t mentioned it before but the smell of Bangkok’s streets aren’t too pleasant – it’s very potent to say the least!
Next we hoped back on the tourist boat and headed to Tha Tien Pier where we got another ferry across to Wat Arun (Temple of Dawn). We hadn’t planned on visiting anymore temples today but as we were on Chao Phraya we thought we may as well heard over and see it. Most temples require you to cover up your knees and shoulders and we hadn’t planned for this so I bought an elephant sarong for 100Baht (£2) from a stall outside the temple and Tom bought some Thai pants. It turns out Tom didn’t need to bother but I did. Although I enjoyed this temple, it wasn’t as special as Wat Pho- but this was mainly due to the fact that it was under construction so it was covered in scaffolding. Still, the architecture is so intricately detailed and elaborately designed that you are forced to admire the beauty of this holy place.
After that we ventured back across the river and down to Central Pier, where we caught another boat to Asiatique – a nighttime market full of places to eat and shop for all price ranges, plus a future zone which included a Ferris wheel, and lots of fair type attractions. Earlier on in the day we’d met a guy called Russel from Canada. He came to Wat Arun with us and then we’d arranged to meet him at the entrance to Asiatique because he seemed like a nice guy and he was travelling solo. All three of us had a wander around Asiatique, before tucking down on some traditional Thai cuisine. Again, this didn’t disappoint.
Before we left Asiatique we grabbed the opportunity to see Bangkok in all its glory from the heights at the top of the Ferris wheel at sunset. We caught it at the perfect time as the sun set and the city transformed from daylight to dusk, into a spectacle of luminosity! It was an incredible experience that I shall never forget. Especially as I took about a million photos and videos! It was the perfect way to end the second day in Bangkok.