Palaces and Pagodas

If there’s one thing that Bangkok knows how to do well, it’s palaces and pagodas. Over the last year, we’ve had the opportunity to take in dozens of them. While mom is visiting, we have tried to show her the best of the best from the big names like Wat Pho and the Grand Palace to smaller temples and shrines hidden along the backstreets and khlongs. As you can see in our collage, Thais really know how to load on the mirrors and murals to create some seriously glam architectural creations.

Freda’s Taling Chan Adventure

Whenever we return to Bangkok, we always head straight to Taling Chan’s floating market to satisfy our cravings for fresh seafood and the best green papaya salad in the country. It was also the obvious place to take Freda for a delicious meal and an authentic Thai experience.

What makes Taling Chan so special, as we mentioned in a previous blog post, is the fact that it is hardly known among tourists. The weekend market is mostly a local affair with plenty of food and entertainment. It’s definitely worth Continue…

Bangkok Super-City

Mom is discovering that little old khlong-filled, polluted Bangkok has morphed into a modern, vibrant Asian capital. We’ve been exploring the elevated walkways, malls, restaurants, inner-city parks, coffee houses, and movie theaters of downtown Bangkok and she is taking in all the Continue…

Skytrain to Suvarnabhumi Airport

Traveling from Bangkok’s international airport to the city center has suddenly become a lot more fun. With the opening of the Suvarnabhumi Airport Rail Link in August 2010, costs for traveling between the airport and the city have dropped dramatically – at least for now. A promotional ticket for 15 Baht ($0.50) takes visitors from the airport via Makkasan SARL to Phaya Thai station in downtown Bangkok. And although the ticket price will likely be tripled to 45 Baht early next year, taking the train is still going to be cheaper than taking a bus (150 Baht) or a taxi (250 Baht). Even better than the price, travelers literally fly over the city’s notorious traffic jams. What’s more, visitors will no longer have to fight unscrupulous taxi drivers to get them to turn on their meters or pay inflated prepaid taxi rates.

In addition to the regular commuter line, a non-stop express line runs between the airport and Makkasan SARL near Petchaburi. Priced at 100 Baht, the express lines features more comfortable seats and shaves 10 minutes off the trip.  Bizarrely, the express line stops at Makkasan station and requires passengers to change to the commuter line to travel downtown to Phaya Thai.

Freda Arrives in Bangkok

Mom, known to many on our blog as Greeneyes, has joined us here in Bangkok for a bit of urban adventure. Greeneyes is no newcomer to travel. In fact, she has been to Bangkok before, although that was nineteen years ago when Bangkok was still most definitely a third world capital. We can’t wait to show her Bangkok a la 2010.

Mingling with the Stars

After six months of traveling through the Philippines and Vietnam, we’re finally back in Bangkok. We haven’t had much time to write since we’ve been hanging out with our new BFF, Brad.

OK, perhaps BFF is a little bit strong for a promotional statue for Madame Tussauds, but he poses well. We found him lounging around in Siam Discovery as dozens of Thais crowded around to photograph themselves with the hunk (of wax).

Yes, Bangkok is the latest location for the world’s most famous house of wax. If you want to see more including tons of Asian movie stars and historical figures and don’t mind the $23 entrance ticket, Madame Tussauds is now open for show business. (We didn’t feel like shelling out $46 for some plastic stars, so we had to content ourselves with the few freebies scattered around the mall.)

Northern Vietnam

Our amazing time in Vietnam is slowly coming to an end. From the traditional hill tribes of Bac Ha and Can Cau to hip Hanoi to magnificent Halong Bay, the North is just as impressive as South and Central Vietnam. Although we are sad to leave, we are more than happy to have explored this diverse region. Follow along in our 4-minute video and see for yourself, why you should definitely be planning a trip to Vietnam in the near future.

Quan An Ngon – The Mother Lode

Like miners prospecting for that legendary vein of gold, Thomas and I have been scouring Vietnam for culinary treasures. When we finally set foot into Quan An Ngon, I screamed, “Eureka!” – well, at least mentally.

Fodor’s states that Quan An Ngon “just might be the best restaurant in Vietnam.” But don’t expect super-chic poseur portions with vertical stacks, flash-dried mousse, or chemo-cuisine. Nope, this restaurant is all about Continue…