TO be honest this is my fourth time to visit Bangkok, and every time it gets better and better.
An enchanting city, it is full of warm smiles and a positive energy with a mystical vibe.
Growing up, I used to watch the 1956 film The King and I starring Yul Brynner and Deborah Kerr, one of my top 10 movies of all time. Although in Thailand, this film is banned due to its representation of the king. In Thailand, love for king is a way of life as evidenced by pictures of their King plastered all over, as well as by the practice of wearing yellow shirts on Mondays, because the color yellow in Buddhist tradition represents Monday, which happens to be the day the King was born.
When my sister called and told me she wanted to go to Bangkok, I immediately looked for flights. I thanked my lucky stars because Philippine Airlines now flies direct to Bangkok from Cebu. Through Skyscanner, I was able to get tickets for P10,000. Booking a hotel in Bangkok is a no brainer, we stayed at the Asia Hotel for around P3,500 per night with breakfast for two included. Asia Hotel has always been my go to hotel for its location and affordability.
Since we arrived in Bangkok on a Sunday, we immediately went to the Chatuchak Weekend Market. Known as the largest market in Thailand, with over 15,000 stalls selling different goods, from food, clothing, electronics, antiques, souvenirs, plants to furniture. Haggling here is a definite must. Wear comfortable clothes and don’t wear jewelry, to not attract pickpockets.
After the market, we decided to go to the MBK Center, a large air-conditioned shopping mall, eight stories high with 2,000 shops and restaurants. Some people call it the place to “shop til you drop”. MBK used to be the largest shopping mall in Asia during the ‘80s.
After cooling down at the MBK Center, we then moved to the River City Pier along the Chao Phraya River to grab some mango sticky rice and a glass of Yuzu lemon iced coffee. If there is one thing I keep coming back for, it is the Chao Phraya River Cruise, a two-hour dinner cruise with an international buffet and live band. The beauty of Bangkok is seen from a different angle, cruising along historic landmarks like the Emerald Buddha Temple and Grand Palace by night.