26.04.2007 - 29.04.2007 36 °C
First day out and about we got the skytrain to the famous Jim Thompson house (Silk mogul), he was the millionaire dude that disappeared mysteriously in the 70's, but who has a cracking big wooden house now that tourists can walk around... not to mention the beautiful store attached to his house that sells all the silk products - which of course i had to see and a half hour left with a bag full of silk scarves small and large!
In sweltering heat and humidity we decided to visit the royal palace where you had to cover up and wear long sleeves and cover your legs - not good! Guys are normally ok with tshirts etc but me with a vest top on ended up with Ger's woolly v neck jumper (random..) and a pashmina wrapped around my legs, and i think i lost about 2 stone in the hour we spent walking around, apart from that the place was well cool..
Once we finished we wanted to head on north of the city to the teak royal mansion however we fell for the oldest line in the book and believed a tour guide called Mos when he told us it was closed and that he would arrange for us to visit other temples etc... this only turned out to be 2 suit shops, 3 jewellers and a chinese store! Pure gangster but hey funny though sitting in the back of a tuk tuk all day just so thay can get free petrol for us going into these stop off shops.. and then just to take us to random buddha temples that not even locals go to and that sell birds!!
The following day though we did make it to the big royal teak Vimamek mansion - cool because not a sinlge nail was used to put it together but yes again you have to cover up so very warm!! The irish influence was even in the house as the king at the time had waterford crystal in his jacks!!
The Dusit zoo is next door to the big mansion so Ger wanted to go in and say hi to his big bear relatives..! haha not a very good zoo though as most of the animals looked as if they wanted to leave with us.. bit sad really.. but Ger was well excited..
I thought this pic of a turtle was class it reminded me of dinner around the McParland kitchen table too..!
From the hostel we stayed at you could take trips out to Kanchanaburi to visit the bridge over the river Kwai, the death railway and the Tiger Temple. We left at 630 in the morning and it took 3 hours to travel out to the river Kwai this is a must see as the whole day was fab..we took a boat trip down the river and then walked across the bridge and then you can get on one of the original trains and go across it and onto the death railway - wooden tracks around a mountainside!
From here you go on to an elephant farm for some trekking if you fancy it and then onto the Tiger Temple. This temple is run by monks and they started by taking in wounded or orphaned tiger cubs but the place is huge now and they have all sorts of animals walking about freely now.. you gotta sign a form as well before you go in to say that they arent respnosible basically if you get eaten whilst walking about!! But there was about 16 tigers in the place and the handlers took your camera from you and placed you beside each tiger and took your photo for you while you petted the tigers! they are huge beasts too but it was absoulutely brilliant to be able to get so close to them even better to be able to walk away with all our limbs still intact..
We left Bangkok the following morning to fly to Siem reap, Cambodia. We meet up with a couple Andy and Jane who we met on our China trip and also 2 friends from Dublin so the 6 of us headed away for a week together.. great to catch up with Andy and Jane again even if Andy is a Man U fan... myself and Jane were able to spend our time shopping when the footie was on..lol
Bangkok wasnt as seedy as we had thought but highlight definitely was the bridge and the Tigers... oh yeah and finding the Dubliner pub where the spuds and gravy was fab!
Until next time..
love Deb and Ger