Three nights in Bangkok

For the past three days, I’ve been in Bangkok as a guest of the Tourism Authority of Thailand, taking part in their 50th anniversary celebrations. The weather has been warm, the food amazing, and the people friendly and welcoming. My introduction to the city has only wet my appetite for exploring more of this beautiful country.

It was only a few months ago that Bangkok was in the world spotlight due to the “Red Shirt” protests, which resulted in a number of casualties and severly impacted transportation within the city. However, with the surrender of the opposition leaders on May 19th, life is returning to normal. “Thailand is back in business,” encouraged Mr. Chumphol Silpa-archa, Thailand’s Minister of Tourism at a welcome dinner on Tuesday. Underscoring this comment, Travel & Leisure’s readers gave Bangkok and Chiang Mai the top two spots on their annual “Top 10 Cities” poll, announced just last week.

While Bangkok is certainly a modern metropolis with fancy hotels and open-air rooftop restaurants that afford a 63 story view of the city, it’s not hard to find the deeper pulse that gives the city its charm. One just has to walk down the street and enjoy the smells and tastes of street foods, get lost in the many markets, or give alms to Buddhist monks in hundreds of beautiful and solemn temples. One can take a tour of the extensive system of canals in a long-tail boat, passing homes, each with their own small boats that they still use for getting around, as they have since before there were cars and roads. If you’re lucky, you might be able to buy a mango from a floating “supermarket” – a merchant with a boat full of goods.

Posted by | Comments Off on Three nights in Bangkok  | July 15, 2010
Category: Asia

Comments are closed.