Thailand Trip

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Day 1 (Friday, 02-12-05)
Our maxi cab came at 8 am; we reached the airport slightly before 9 am. Had our breakfast at the Terminal 1 canteen before checking in. Our flight, FD3502 is at 11 am. The flight is around 2 hours. We reached Bangkok at about 12 pm Bangkok time. Their time is 1 hour before Singapore.

We checked into Asia Hotel before proceeding to Mah Boon Krong (MBK) for lunch at the foodcourt. We took the Bangkok Mass Transit System (BTS), it is similar to our MRT but just that all the stations is elevated. They are still using our Farecard system, the same as Singapore last time. Their one day pass cost TH฿100 and allow you unlimited rides for the day. TH฿100 is around $4.20 SGD.

When we are at the foodcourt, the 1st thing that comes to my mind is that the food is very cheap compared to Singapore. And they even provide tissue papers on every table in the foodcourt.

After lunch, we took a quick walk around the top level of MBK before going back to the hotel to get ready for dinner with my mom’s friend. As my mom knows a lot of people there, almost all our meals are provided.

For dinner we ate at Ban Khun Mae, it is a Thai cuisine restaurant. The food was good of course.

After the dinner, we proceed to Siam area. We went to Siam Center’s Nike Boutique. The design of the shop is the same as the Nike Bird Boutique in Singapore. After that, we went to Siam Discovery Center and into their Kipling Boutique. There is a huge trademark Kipling monkey right behind the door, and the handle of the door also featured their monkey.

At night we went to Lumpini aka Suan Lum night bazaar. Things are quite expensive there as in the stated price before bargain.Day 2 (Saturday, 03-12-05)
Had American Breakfast at Asia Hotel’s Coffee House, the food kinda suck there. Can’t imagine going to eat the same breakfast for the next three days.

After breakfast, we went to Chatuchak Weekend Market, as the name goes, it only opened on weekends. And oh boy the market is just plain huge, you can’t shop the whole market in just one day, you need around two days. Prices are pretty reasonable there before bargain.

After the Chatuchak Market, we made our way down to Emporium Shopping Complex located at Sukhumvit. Got a Levi’s Jeans from the Emporium Departmental Store. Had a Starbucks Ice Cafe Latte Grande for TH฿100 before eating lunch at a cafe called Piri-Piri Flaming Chicken. The Piri-Piri tastes good, but it is a bit spicy.

My dad went back to hotel to rest while the rest of us went to Fortune Town IT Mall to look at some IT stuffs. For their underground trains, they called it MRT. As opposite of their BTS, all of the stations are underground. They are using the system similar to our EZ-link, but for those without the card, instead of getting a temp EZ-link and getting a refund later, you buy a chip which can be tapped upon entering and you need to insert the chip upon exiting. I think it is quite a good idea.

The IT stuffs there are rather expensive compared to Singapore besides their original game which is half the price of Singapore. But if you intend to buy it, you need to be careful. Most of the game boxes and manuals are in Thai, but the game itself is in English except for EA games like FIFA 2006, Need For Speed: Most Wanted, etc. The iPod/PSP selling there is more expensive compared to Singapore.

Had dinner at Chester’s Grill Fast Food, I was expecting the food there to be average as there were not many people in the shop, but turn out the food is better than average.

At night we went to to watched a play entitled, Siam Niramit. The play is good; there is a small stream of water which acts like a river across the stage, there is rain, there is lighting, and lots of casts are involved. It is quite interactive with the audience because the cast always comes out around us then proceeding on to the stage rather than them just appearing from backstage. The play lasted for about 90 minutes.

Day 3 (Sunday, 04-12-05)
It is quite a free and easy day. Thus we splitted up. My family went to visit my mom’s friend and LiXiang, and I went to walk around.

We went back to Chatuchak Weekend Market again because LiXiang did not shop enough the last time round. After that, we went for lunch at Outback Steak House located at Siam Discovery Center. The food there is quite expensive for me because I have no idea how much does it cost in Singapore’s Outback because I had not been there before. But nevertheless, it is worth the money, the food is good.

We wanted to see how it is like watching movie in Thailand, thus we watched Chicken Little at Entertainment Golden Village (EGV). It is the same as GV here. It cost TH฿120 for a movie, which is like only S$5 and the seats there are very flexible. You can just lie back and enjoy the movie because the seats will be tilted back. But the odd stuff occurs just before the movie starts, we all have to rise for the King’s Anthem. No idea why we need to do that before watching a movie, but it is rather odd.

Chicken Little is disappointing and it does not live up to its hype, and the movie is rather short too.

For dinner, we had a Japanese and Korean buffet at Princess Hotel with Thai Glico staffs. The food there is very good. The Japanese and Korean section is separated by the dining section which makes it looks quite distinct. And the deco’s are different for the two sections. Impressive.

After dinner, we took the Tutu for the 1st time to Khao San Night Bazaar. There are a lot of pubs at the side of Khao San Night Bazaar, and I think this night bazaar is meant more for teenagers as the stuff they sell there are quite fashionable. LiXiang like this night bazaar a lot.

Day 4 (Monday, 05-12-05)
We took a tour package. First stop is one of Thailand’s most popular place, the floating market. It is located at Ratchaburi, quite off from Bangkok. We got to take a 20 minutes ride on a motorized sampan to the floating market. It was quite fun seating in the motorized sampan.

We did not shop around the floating market but rather the area around it. It is a famous tourist attraction because the prices of stuff there are very expensive. They cut your carrot head (in Hokkien).

The second stop is to a Teak Carving company. The amount of effort put into each, and every piece of work are fantastic. You sometimes wonder how they do it or rather how long they take to do it. All those people carving teak have no educational qualifications. They learn how to do it from their parents. But apparently, it is a fading tradition.

The third and the last stop is a temple called Wat Phra Pathom Chedi.

We stopped at a small shop selling One Tambon One Product (OTOP) snacks, heard that this brand is quite popular overseas too.

After the half day tour, we managed to squeeze some time for light snacks at Crystal Jade and some shopping at Isetan.

We went for dinner with my mom’s friend and her family to a restaurant which sells shark fin. I am not too sure of the name. But the claypot shark’s fin is very nice. I ate two claypots of it =p

Went back to the hotel after that because we needed to pack our stuff as next day we are departing for Chiang Mai.

Day 5 (Tuesday, 06-12-05)
We left for Chiang Mai via a domestic flight from Bangkok to Lampang. The Lampang airport is so small that it has only one airplane at any time. It has only two flights per day, 1 in the morning and 1 in the evening. Ours is the morning flight. Thus after the flight, basically they just closed the airport till the evening. Weird stuff.

We went to visit the Thai Glico’s Lampang Sales Office before having lunch at a hotel named Wienglakor Hotel, but nevertheless the food there is good.

Next stop, we visit a temple which is about 700 years old named, Wat Phra That Lampang Luang Temple. This temple requires us to take out our shoes quite often. But there are two phenomenon which left me puzzled.

First, there is this small hole in one of the building which light pass through it and there is a shadow cast on the table. But if you look carefully, it is the shape of the pagoda, but at the top of the pagoda, you can see a Buddha standing on it. But what puzzles me the most? When my brother went to the side of the building, just behind the small hole, he did not see any small hole at all. It is just a wooden wall with no holes. Where the light came from? I have no idea.

Second, there is this room up the stairs, where only males can enter. Once in the room, the person in charge close the door and it is total darkness, I can’t even see my hand, next he opens a small hole at the door and thus there is a shadow cast on the white screen, guess what? it is a picture of a pagoda also, but it is in color. But this is what baffles me the most. After a while, there is this shadow monk walking around the pagoda right on the screen. I was like huh? After everything, we went out of the room. I ask my mom is there anyone walk pass the area just now and she say no. And the weird thing was that there is no pagoda in front of the door at all, so there is no way the pagoda image can be cast. Weird stuff++

After the visit to the temple, we finally get to checked in at Royale Princess Chiang Mai. This hotel is so much better/nicer than Asia Hotel. And the best part is that there is a night bazaar named Chang Klan just outside the hotel.

We had dinner at a restaurant called The Gallery. The food there was average nothing special about it, just that you can choose to eat in the restaurant or a boat. It was raining. Thus we did not eat in the boat.

After dinner, we went to Chang Klan Night Bazaar, quite a lot of nice stuff to shop from there especially portrait paintings. My brother had one done.

Day 6 (Wednesday, 07-12-05)
It was raining in the morning, and thus we cannot go to the elephant camp, we suggested shopping, and we proceeded on to Central Airport Mall, a shopping center in Chiang Mai.

Went there and we were told they only open after 11 am (if I can recall). Thus we went to visit Wat Phra Thart Doi Suthep.

After the temple trip, we went back to Central Airport Mall. It is quite huge a shopping center, and you can find almost anything there. Spent almost the whole day there shopping. LiXiang and my mom bought some stuff from there.

After returning to the hotel, we went for Thai Massage, TH฿150 for 1-hour foot, shoulder and back massage. The foot massage is the best. First time paying for a massage, if not normally LiXiang will do it for me =p

Dinner was at Khum Khantoke, it is quite a tourist attraction. The way they served the food is very unique. It is something like The Rice Table style in Singapore. We will sit on the floor and they will put a small circular table where it contains the dishes. And we will eat from there. And we are not allowed to wear shoes in, after the meal, we get to watch some performance, but it was quite lousy. They only open at 8pm for dinner and their theory is that, we start eating together and end eating together and watch the performance together, everything together. Food there is average.

Went to the Chang Klan Night Bazaar again to see whether there is anymore stuffs to shop as we will be heading back to Bangkok the next day.

Day 7 (Thursday, 08-12-05)
Luckily it was not raining in the morning. Thus we manage to go to the Orchid, and Butterfly Farm followed by the Maesa Elephant Camp. We spent most of our time at the Orchid section instead of the butterfly section because there are nothing much to see in the butterfly section.

Next stop we went to Maesa Elephant Camp, which is quite high up in the mountains and thus, it is very cooling. We managed to catch the 9.40am elephant show, the elephants there are so much talented as compared to the elephants at the Singapore Zoo, judging from the elephant shows.

Next stop we went to Queen Sirikit Botanic Garden which is even high up in the mountains, the air and view there is just fantastic. You can enjoy the nice cool air while looking at the beautiful flowers, the flowers there are the most beautiful flowers I had seen. Must see if you are in Chiang Mai.

After all the sight seeing, we had lunch at Pongyang Angdoi. It is lower in the mountains and the view there is fantastic, and the food there is also good. Eating the good food and seeing the beautiful scenery makes you feel so relax.

After lunch, we went to Chiang Mai International Airport to take a plane back to Bangkok.

Reached Bangkok at about 4.30pm and we went back to Asia Hotel and check in again.

We prepared for a formal dinner with the MD of Thai Glico at Expresso in Hotel Intercontinental. The spread there is fantastic, by eating a little of each dish you can get full. We forgot to take photos after the dinner, wasted.

After the dinner, went to the night bazaar which is near Chit Lom, just opposite Isetan. The stuff that they sell are quite cheap and unique.

Day 8 (Friday, 09-12-05)
Went to the grand opening of Siam Paragon, it is a shopping center just beside Siam Discovery Center. It is so huge, but most of the stores are not occupied yet and in there houses South East Asia biggest underwater world. Our local brand Breadtalk also has an outlet there.

After the grand opening, we went to BMK’s foodcourt for lunch, we wanted to go Outback Steak House initially, but it is not opened till 11.30am, which will be too late for us, we have to be at the airport by 2 pm.

Took Air Asia FD3505 back to Singapore. We reached Singapore at about 8 pm.

Notes
1. I feel quite safe in Bangkok because almost everywhere you go you will see security guards, like every platform of the BTS, has a security guard, every level of the shopping center got at least two security guards, and at junctions near crowded areas, there is always security guard diverting traffic. And all of their security guards are young and fit unlike Singapore’s one. And they carry batons around. Even their uniforms are nicer than ours.

2. Try their Mc Donald’s Pork Samurai Burger, it is nice.

3. Thailand also has Baskin Robins Ice Cream. Singapore used to have, but I have no idea why it closes down, their ice cream is nice.

4. Siam area is like Singapore’s Orchard Road, and MBK is like Singapore’s People’s Park.

5. I like the attitude Thai People have towards their work; you can see that they put in a lot of effort in their work. Very positive attitude.

Expenses
Myself
5x Nike T-Shirts – (890+850+850+890+790=4270)
1x Levi’s T-Shirt – 350
2x Levi’s Jeans – (2555+1450=4005)
1x Adidas HP Pouch – 250
1x Laughing Dog Draw String Bag – 295
1x War Hammer 40k And War Hammer 40k Winter Assault – 1050
1x Angel Bear – 490
1x Wire Robot – 180
1x LV Money Wallet – 75
Total: TH฿10,965, S$446.13

Friends
3x Pyramid Bag – 250
2x Bracelet – 200
1x LV Wallet – 350
1x Small Pouch – 40
1x Wooden Bangle – 50
Total: TH฿890, S$36.20

Grand Total: TH฿11,505, S$482.33

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