Friday, March 20, 2015

Our SE Asia Trip! (Bangkok)

Preston and I just returned from an amazing two week trip to South East Asia. We spent the majority of our time in Thailand, but also visited Singapore and did a quick stop in Laos. It was incredible! After only living and vacationing in the Western part of the world it was such a dream to travel to the East and experience something completely different that what we have grown up with. The people were so sweet and welcoming and the food was TO. DIE. FOR. I thought the easiest way to remember the trips would be to break it up into chunks by cities, so below is a recap of our time in Bangkok!

Alright, Bangkok - where to start?! It is such a busy, vibrant, crazy city! I had heard mixed reviews and completely understand why - there is a ton of traffic, it can seem dirty to a Westerner, there are stray cats and dogs running around everywhere and there is always a LOT going on. But ya'll, it is so vibrant and alive. We went to Bangkok at the front and end of our trip because we got an incredible deal on a round trip flight out of there (more on that later). This meant we got to experience Bangkok for the second after visiting Singapore which is one of the most immaculately clean cities in the world (you cannot even chew gum there) and I was SO ready to get back to Bangkok. It was the craziest feeling, we were just ready to be back in the wild of the city and experience it one last time! With that said, here were my top three things we did while there:

Massages. Oh my heaven. Ya'll, it is 250 baht for a one hour Thai massage. THAT IS $7.60 USD. You better believe we did them everyday we were in Thailand outside of the days we were sun burnt. :) They were glorious, but with a little side of pain to them - they definitely stretch and knead all of your major muscles!

Street Food. I know that some people are grossed out by the idea of eating food from the street carts, if that is you - don't go to Thailand. :) The street food in Bangkok is known to be the best in the world and I completely agree. We got into Bangkok at 11:30 our first night there, meaning it was 1 am by the time we were settled into our hotel and we were starved! We went to a street food center close to our hotel and had the most delicious meal with huge beers for about $6 USD. Crazy! Here is a guide I found on what to make sure to eat while there. Also, eat mango sticky rice every single chance you get. And Thai Iced Coffee (Preston loved the Thai tea but I was 100% obsessed with the coffee.)

Chatuchak Weekend Market. We did this our second day there and it was the perfect introduction to the craziness that is Bangkok Markets. There are HUNDREDS of stalls selling every single thing you can image from elephant pants to coconut ice cream to pocket knives to naked mole rats. It is hot and sticky and you will be running around like a man woman sweating and downing water bottles while trying to do baht to USD conversions but you have to do it. We came away with some of our favorite things here and little did we know then, but the prices at Chatuchak are better than you will see at any other market in Thailand. Also, don't be alarmed if at every market people grab your arm to try to bring you into their booth. And don't be afraid to negotiate!

Overall, I really think a trip to Thailand would not be complete without stopping at the biggest most populous city. Leave all of your notions at home and be ready to embrace the crazy. :) I did get a question on safety recently and I never felt unsafe at all while there. You certainly have to be more careful with things like no sidewalks and a lack of speed limits and road rules in many areas, but from the people alone I felt completely safe. 95% of the Thai population is Buddhist (there are SO many beautiful temples) and have an incredibly strong belief system and morals that truly do translate to how they live. From a food safety perspective, we did two things that I think really helped us stay away from 'Bangkok belly' aka food sickness. I had both Preston and I start taking probiotics a few days before our trip and daily during our trip, and then only drank bottled water while there. People often assume food poisoning comes from street food but the vast majority comes from drinking water that our bodies aren't equipped to handle. I didn't shy away from any street food or any type of food and I felt great while there!

Overall our time in Bangkok was incredible and it was such a dream to experience my first big Eastern mega-city! I will be back with recaps of the other cities we visited next week. :)

1 comment:

  1. Everything looks SO SO SO amazing! Please keep posting more about your trip!!