Thailand: Boat Trip along Chao Phraya River in Bangkok

Another activity I enjoyed in Bangkok was the boat trip along Chao Phraya River. I have learned that it is the main river that runs from North to South Bangkok. It is a major transportation artery in the city and it has a vast network of ferries and water taxis.

During our boat trip, I noticed that many locals and tourists alike prefer this way of getting around Bangkok as its streets are often choked with heavy traffic jams. I think it’s an easy way to go up and down the river to the city’s main attractions and to other areas that are more easily accessed from the river than the rail network.

bkk1

Our cruise along the Chao Phraya River was indeed lovely, peaceful and fun as we explored the city from a different perspective. On top of that, the views were stunning and we got nice breeze on a scorching day in Bangkok.

bkk16Even though Bangkok has become a contemporary city, I think a boat trip on the Chao Phraya River as well as the canals are still charming for whoever wishes to seek the tranquil atmosphere amidst the bustling city.

 

 

Advertisements

Thailand: Visiting 4 Awesome Temples in Bangkok

Bangkok has many temples and to me they are all eye openers. They are rich in culture and interesting history with amazing architecture and sculptures. Plus, they are all full of vibrant colors. All this opulence makes one feel so small.

This was taken at Wat Arun. 🙂

When we had a chance to spend a couple of days in the City of Smiles, we made sure to include visits to several temples in our itinerary. Despite the hordes of tourists, it was well worth it as each temple offers tremendous exhibits.

Here are the temples we managed to explore in Bangkok.

Wat Arun

Wat Arun river view.

The first temple we visited in Bangkok was Wat Arun.  It is also called the Temple of Dawn and has about 200 years of history. It is situated on the west bank of Chao Phraya River. It’s a beautiful temple with lots of interesting details. It’s also nice and offers a different charm when illuminated at dusk. This temple is a must-see.

We took a ferry that stops there. We wandered around the place and we climbed up to the top of the temple. At the top, we had great and breathtaking views of the river and the city. It was quite fun to climb up the stairs, but quite scary and hard getting down.

Wat Phra Kaew

temple9

Taken outside the room where the Emerald Buddha is.

Wat Phra Kaew is located inside the Grand Palace. It is also known as the Temple of Emerald Buddha as it enshrines one of Thailand’s 15th century most revered Buddha statues, which was carved out of single block of jade. The Emerald Buddha itself is fairly small, it sits up high but is clearly visible. Plus, the wall paintings in the prayer room are beautiful! I have learned from our guide that the king changes the robes of the Buddha three times a year to correspond to the changing seasons and to bestow fortune on the country.

While inside the temple, we were not allowed to take pictures of it and no shoes allowed.

Wat Pho

The beautiful Reclining Buddha.

We went to see Wat Pho right after we explored the Grand Palace as it is just situated behind it. Wat Pho is also known as the Temple of the Reclining Buddha, and was built during the Ayutthaya Period. The golden statue is very beautiful, and it is really huge – 43 meters long and 15 meters high, and the impressive feet of the Buddha are about 5 meters long and 3 meters high. It is one of the most important temples and one of the most popular sight-seeing in Bangkok.

Our visit took us about 30 minutes, and it was totally worth it.

Wat Intharawihan

The Temple of Standing Buddha

From Wat Pho, we took a tuk-tuk to see Wat Intharawihan located at Wisut Kasat Road, also near the Chao Phraya River. It is also known as the Temple of the Standing Buddha. The giant golden Buddha statue stands 32 meters high and 10 meters wide. It’s holding alms bowl, which I have learned from our guide that monks still use today to accept food given by the locals. Many devotees visit the Buddha every day as it supposed to give devotees success. It’s quite a spectacular sight!

Little Lilly Travel Tip:

  • Wear decent clothes (no sleeveless, no short shorts).

Have you visited any temples in Bangkok? Which temple is your favorite?

Thailand: Wat Pho in Bangkok

The Wat Pho in Bangkok is located south of the Grand Palace. It’s known as The Temple of Reclining Buddha as it houses the gigantic statue of the Sleeping Buddha. It’s the oldest and the largest Buddhist temple complex in the city as it contains thousands of Buddha images that were taken from abandoned temples in Ayutthaya and Sukhothai by order of King Rama I. It’s also considered as one of the most attractive and most visited temples in Bangkok.

Beautiful Buddha.

It was a wonderful experience.

I have learned from our guide that Wat Pho was the first public university in Thailand that was specializing in religion, science and literature. Also, in 1955, a school for traditional medicine and massage was established there.

The grounds inside Wat Pho are nice to wander through.

Peaceful!

This enormous gold plated Reclining Buddha represents ill health and end of life. It’s highly ornate. It is 46 meters long and 15 meters high. The soles of the Buddha’s feet are 5 meters long and 3 meters high. That made me feel so little standing before this massive, massive figure. Conspicuously, the wall paintings are amazing too. Also, the statue is surrounded with Buddhist and Thai symbols.

Massive Buddha.

One of the highlights of Bangkok.

It truly is impressive to see this place as we took a couple of hours walking around the complex. The temple and its surrounding were absolutely incredible! It is a busy place, so there is no time to relax and reflect, but definitely worth a visit.

Stunning Wat and a must see!

Little Lilly travel tip:

  • Wear decent clothes as you visit the temple.
  • There are guides offering their services at the entrance and we’re glad we had hired one.
  • I think visiting the temple on the weekdays is better than on the weekends.
  • It offers traditional Thai massage, you may fancy trying it after the tour.
  • Beware of scams near the temple.

 

 

Thailand: Lazying at Jomtien Beach in Pattaya

It had been a full 3 days on the beautiful Jomtien Beach in the southern part of Pattaya. We’d spent hours lounging in the shade of a large tree by the ocean, eating, drinking, talking business, reading a book, getting sun, and strolling around the city.

doing nothing and everything.

Jomtien Beach is located in the southern part of the bay area in Pattaya. There are bungalows, beach-side hotels, high-rise condominiums, shops, restaurants and bars there. It also offers water-sport activities such as jet ski, parasailing, hire a small sail boat, etc.

Jomtien Beach.

100_0362

Getting some sunshine while enjoying the breeze the view. 🙂

During the weekends, Jomtien Beach becomes crowded as many tourists and locals flock there to escape the scorching heat in Bangkok. When we went there, I noticed that Jomtien Beach was by far quieter than Pattaya Beach. The beach is best for sunset walk and has good views for pictures; however, the water quality seems isn’t good and it’s not very clear when compared to other beaches that I have been to.

Beautiful sunset.

Apart from the fact that I grew up 5 meters away from the beach for about 21 years, I really love relaxing at the beach simply because I can read for pleasure while listening to the sound of the crashing waves that makes me fall asleep. I feel like the repetitive gentle bass beats truly dissipate stress and bring about a blissful state of calm. It certainly makes me more calm and relaxed and if I am relaxed I am happy. Overall, I would say that we had a wonderful and relaxing time at Jomtien Beach.

so quiet, I like. 🙂