Travel Tips 4

Bangkok - City of Angels

  Bangkok, also known as the 'city of Angels' and to the Thais as 'Krungthep' was established in 1782 By King Rama 1 as the capital of Siam. Over the past two centuries it has developed into a great metropolis with a population of over eight million. Like other major cities in the world, Bangkok has thousands of massive buildings, numerous luxurious hotels, shopping centres, and two international airports. I guess the one feature lacking is a casino, as gambling is illegal in Thailand. You also have to be careful when playing cards, the Pattaya Bridge Club and the bridge clubs in Bangkok are fully licenced and legal.  
  Although now a very modern city, Bangkok has retained its traditional charm. It has a mixture of East and West, the ancient and the modern. Its surface has taken on the look of the 21st century, while underneath the old ways are very much alive. So, despite its modernizations, Bankok is still well suited for the tourist to get a glimpse of the traditional arts, architecture, religion and other aspect of the culture of the Thai people.  

Places of interest in Bangkok

  The Grand Palace and Wat Phra Kaeo (Temple of the Emerald Buddah) are located in the same compound in the very heart of Bangkok; they are popular destinations for both locals and tourists. The Grand Palace is famous for its impressive buildings. Wat Phra Kaeo is renowned as the most beautiful and important Buddhist temple in Thailand.  

Vimanmek Mansions, the biggest golden teakwood building in the world, was built in 1901 by King Chulalongkorn the Great (Rama V) as a royal residence. It is located behind the old National Assembly Building . It was the private museum of the late king where priceless treasures and a collection of the king's memorabilia are displayed. It is open daily from 09.30 to 15.30.

  Wat Phra Chetuphon (Wat Pho), founded in the 16th century, is the oldest and biggest temple with the largest number of pagodas (99) in Bangkok. Wat Pho was the first open university of Thailand which used to offer courses in several branches of knowledge like literature, archaeology, astrology and medicine. It is well known for its huge reclining Buddha, 46m long and 15m high.  
  Wat Arun (Temple of Dawn) is attractive in its striking prangs (a kind of pagoda) which are decorated with millions of pieces of Chinese porcelain. Its central prang, the height of a 20-story building, is the tallest prang in Thailand from which a good view of the surrounding areas can be obtained.  
  Wat Benchamabophit (The Marble Temple) where King Rama V's relics are enshrined is one of the most modern works of Thai religious architecture. Graceful and tranquil, it is famous for its main chapel built in white Carara Italian marble to house a replica of Thailand's mist beautiful Buddha image, Phra Phutthacinnarat.  
  National Museum, the largest of its kind in Southeast Asia, contains an 18th century palace and a group of buildings housing Thailand's artidtic treasures fro prehistoric to contempory.  
  Wat Traimit houses the world's biggest gold Buddha image weighing 5,500 kg and it is around 700-800 years old.  
  Wat Suthat is a good place to see the blend of Thai and Chinese art, the style which flourished during the rein of King Rama III (1824-1851).  
  The Snake Farm is the world's second oldest of its kind, where venom extracting and feeding are demonstrated to the public.  
  The Weekend Market at Chatuchak park on Phahonythin road attracts thousands of people to see and buy all kinds of goods ranging from clothes to handicrafts, from garden plants to pets, from utensils to antiques; in short, just about everything.


  Sunn Pukkad Palace is situated on Si Ayuthaya Road. The palace was first opened to the public by the late Princess Chumphot of Nagara Svarga in 1959. There are several lacquer pavilions and collections of ancient Thai objects of art and artifacts.  
  Khamthieng House is a 160-year old authentic Northern Thai teak house which was moved in perfect condition from Chiang Mai to Bangkok.  
  Siam Niramit is where spectacular performances of Thailand's art and cultural heritage memorize the audience. It features one of the largest stage productions in the world in a 2000-seat theatre with amazing state of the art special effects.  
  The Floating Market. Though the more authentic floating market is at Damnoensaduak, Ratchabur Province, an excursion to the floating market in Bangkok is still worthwhile for those who love to see canal side thai life. Tours start in the early morning, mostly fron Tha Chang Landing near the grand Palace.  
  Siam Park. is an extensive amusement park for the whole family.  
  Samutprakarn Crocodile Farm. is the largest crocodile farm in the world with a crocodile population of over 60,000.  
  Ancient City. is the world's largest outdoor museum filled with replicas of Thailand's historic monuments and works of art.  
  Phuttha Monthon . is the Buddist precinct in the form of a shady park covering an area of nearly 1,000 acres ideal for relaxation and exercise.  
  Utthayan. is the most magnificant 3.8 km avenue of Thailand, leading to the front gate of Phuttha Monthon and lined with over 700 lamps each decorated with the figure of a mythical bird on top.  
  Rose Garden . a daily cultural show is given for the public.  
  Samphran Elephant Ground and Zoo . is located on the way to Nakhon Pathom and presents a unique elephant theme show.  
  Phra Pathom Chedi. is the world's tallest bhuddist monument standing 120.45 m high in Nakhom Pathom.  
  Thai Human Imagery Museum. is the first museum of fibre-glass human images of Thailand. Interesting themes include Thai Lifestyles, revered Buddhist monks and kings of the Chakri Dynasty.  

Downtown Bangkok

  Silom - Surawong - Sathon. From end to end, these three parallel streets are full of blocks of multi-story building housing a multitude of different businesses. The area is busy no only in the daytime. but also in the evening when people come out to wine and dine.
There is a small in this district which, for about 30 years, has been very well known to foreign visitors for its bars and nightclubs. Known as Patpong, this famous place offers various kinds of entertainment. In this area there are also skytrain and subway stations.
  Siam - Ratchadamri. This is the biggest and busiest shopping district in bangkok which is accessible easily by skytrain. Virtually all kinds of goods are for sale here, including cloth, clothes, jewlery, handicrafts, books and antiques etc.  
  There are several large department stores located here and also several shopping arcades and countless smaller shops as well as dozens of cinemas, theatres and mini theatres. So you can satisy all your needs if youstay in one of the dozen or so first-class hotels in the area..  
  The Pratunam Market next to the Indra Arcade, while not a high-class shopping centre, is worth visiting if you want to broaden your vision and see more about the ordinary Thai. It is also the market of garments for export.  
  Sukhumwit - New Phetburi. Sukhumwit Road is one of the three longest roads in Thailand, going right up to the Cambodian border in the East. But what concerns us here is the section from the inner city down to Sukhumwit 63 (Soi Ekkamai).  
  The cream of the district lies around the entrances to the lanes (Sois) off the road, where there are numerous fashionable resendences, hotels, apartment buildings and guesthouses, and also a large number of really good restaurants.  
  In the section from Soi Nana (Sukhumwit 3 & 4) crossroad to Soi Sukhumwit 21 (Asok intersection) there are many shops catering to foreign tourists, where jewellery, leather goods, ready-made garments and souveniers are sold. Tailoring and other made-to-order goods are also offered.  
  To the north of Sukhumvit Road is the extension of Phetburi Road which, at night, is brightened with colourful neon signs and enlivened by people going out to enjoy themselves in dozens of entertainment places scattered along the street. The area has both skytrain and subway stations.  
  Royal City Avenue, a 2.5 km street between Rama IX Road and New Phetburi Road, features several pubs, discos and restaurants. It was once the hottest spot of entertainment in Bangkok and attracts teenagers and stylish people to seek amusement in pubs. Though its popularity is now reduced, nightlife here is still lively.  
  Ratchadaphisek. The name Ratchadaphisek refers to the short distance between the Lat Phrao Intersection and the Rama IX Road Intersection, which is a busy commercial district containing several big department stores, office buildings, hotels and a large number of restaurants and nightlife establishments.  
  A little way off the road Is Thailand Cultural Centre, where shows and exhibitions are frequently held. There is a subway station nearby.  
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