We stepped off of our plane this morning and the thick, polluted air hit us with a reality check that Bangkok isn’t going to be paradise. We realised more as we got into Bangkok that, the place is quirky, busy and very noisy! We were slightly disheartened when we got here – mainly because we had lots of waiting around to do and we were both tired and hangry (hungry and angry).
When we arrived in Bangkok we were completely lost. We had no clue where we were or supposed to be going. Obviously, there is a language barrier and a massive culture difference to what we are used to as well. Neither of us have been somewhere like this before so as expected it was a bit of a shock and will take us a few days to get used to everything.
We were expecting Bangkok airport to be just like the TV program ‘Bangkok Airport’ but turns out there are 2 airports in Bangkok and I don’t think it was this one. We landed at Suvarnabhumi Airport at around 6:30am. We had to fill in the Thai visa slip and go through immigration – even that we got wrong and had to re-do. After that, we went downstairs to get the train to Phaya Thai, where we would then get a taxi to our hostel (it was going to be cheaper that way and thought we would see more). Being Lozza and Sam, things do not always go to plan. We got our bags at around 7am, then went straight to the train which took a good hour to arrive as there were security issues or something. The train was probably just as packed, if not more, as the London central line in rush hour. We had to stand for the duration and people were hanging onto the bar above our heads and pressing their armpits onto our faces, it wasn’t the most pleasant experience of our lives – especially after 20+ hours of travelling.
Once we got to Phaya Thai, we literally had no clue where we were or what we were supposed to do. A Thai man that was working there kindly showed us where to get a taxi/tuk tuk etc. The same ‘friendly’ man also told us not to go to our hostel because it’s too early to check in and told us that we need to go to some reservation office and book the rest of our itinerary – which we have said from day 1 we didn’t want to do. He said to us that it’s literally around the corner from a shopping centre and our hostel, so we went with it. He put us on a tuk-tuk which only cost us 40 Baht, which is like 90p so we didn’t mind about that, but when we got there another man was already at the door waiting for us. So we went in, a lady tried to sell us a whole itinerary of different things to do and accommodation which we didn’t want to book. By this point, Sam and I were so done and decided to get the hell out of there (obviously at the disgust of the reservation office, should we feel bad about that? I don’t think so). So we went on to try to find out where we were, wifi and some water. Bangkok is seriously polluted. I am sat writing this with a really sore throat and stinging eyes already, just from the air! We got Wifi eventually and I got in contact with a friend I have living here who pointed us in the right direction. In case you didn’t realise, we did all of the above with 16kg backpacks on both of our backs. Yes very bloody stressful.
We got to our hostel (BRB Hostel Silom) which is lovely, clean and we are the only ones in a room with 4 double beds, so we are winning! We accidentally napped for 5 hours. When we woke up feeling a bit fresher than before we went for a stroll down to Patong night market which was pretty good. There’s loads of stuff there really cheap and they don’t hassle you that much. The hassling we experienced more was the men and women at the side of the road trying to get you to watch their ping pong shows.
We had some street food and came back. We listened to the advice from other travellers to go to the stalls that are busy and have locals there and where the food is cooked in front of you, which it was and it tasted okay but didn’t agree with me at all.
We expected Bangkok to be busy with loads of nice food. So far the first one is right, we have only had 1 meal today which has not liked me (Lozza) at all, and I have spent the whole afternoon on the sh*tter. I’m sorry I know this is vulgar, but we’re keeping it real here. We expected it to be a bit cleaner with more grass and trees etc but there just isn’t. It’s not littered as such but the air stinks of shit and is full of smog. Most of the Thai people are nice and polite which we knew from the start that they would be – with the occasional one trying to rip you off.
We haven’t even looked at how much we have spent today, and we didn’t check either so here goes…
Train from the airport – 90 THB
Tuk Tuk – 40 THB
2 Waters – 40 THB
Waffles and milkshakes – 500 THB
Coffee and water – 120 THB
Taxi – 80 THB
Hostel – 2400 THB (for 4 nights so 600 THB each night)
Street food – 100 THB
7/11 – 30 THB
Teatree Oil – 340 THB
So adding all of this up and using 1 day of accommodation in total we have spent: 1940 THB which converts to £44.95. So each we have only spent £22.47 equivalent and we haven’t even been trying to keep the cost down. We could definitely do it cheaper as well.
At first, we felt quite out of our comfort zone but as the day has progressed we are a little bit more comfortable with our surroundings and have a few contacts in Bangkok if we get stuck. Plus the hostel is really nice which is a huge bonus. It’s currently 1:30 am the next day, we can’t sleep because of our accidental 5-hour nap earlier, and it is absolutely pelting it down outside.
All in all, we are excited to see what Bangkok brings.
Pair of Plodders