Sunday, February 8, 2015

Bangkok Day 3

Bangkok Thailand - February 2015


Today is the first day of any official Avalon tours, the company running the river cruise. Our tour guide, Guide Bank (yes), spends some anxious moments attempting to explain that he was supposed to pick us up on Thursday but had the flight number 515 which was cancelled. We explained that we had told our agent that the flight number was changed to 519 back in November and had been told by email that she had changed it with the company in Bangkok. We'll see but we want compensation for paying for our own transportation.


We meet three other couples that will be with us. Seems the rest of the passengers are starting in Cambodia.
Bangkok was an add on.
The couples are:
Quebec
BC
Texas.

After another luxurious breakfast, we were planning to skip lunch as the tour was advertised as morning. I have used the tour outline (in italics) as my basis below, changing the order as required.

 February 7 Bangkok


Photos are straight from our cameras, not enough time to photoshop!


First stop the TEMPLE OF THE RECLINING BUDDHA, the oldest and largest Buddhist temple in Bangkok. It houses more than 1,000 Buddha images, including the 49-foot-high and 151-foot-long massive Reclining Buddha.


Wat (Buddist temple) Pho is known also as the Temple of the Reclining Buddha, its official name is Wat Phra Chettuphon Wimon Mangkhlaram Ratchaworamahawihan (Thai: วัดพระเชตุพนวิมลมังคลารามราชวรมหาวิหาร). The temple is also known as the birthplace of traditional Thai massage.


As you enter.


OK it is our first temple but WOW!!! Can I say they only got better in Bangkok?? I will post lots more of this temple.


 That is gold leaf left as offerings.





Stop at the stunning GRAND PALACE, featuring the TEMPLE OF THE EMERALD BUDDHA.



It is Saturday and this is PACKED with tourists. Proper attire is mandatory the attendants will yank you out of the line and you are provided with free clothes to cover up. You are packed together and the guide warned us that the Chinese and Koreans will be very pushy LOL.



Looks peaceful, deceiving.


The Grand Palace is a complex of buildings at the heart of Bangkok. The palace has been the official residence of the Kings of Siam(and later Thailand) since 1782. The king, his court and his royal government were based on the grounds of the palace until 1925. The present monarch, King Bhumibol Adulyadej (Rama IX), currently resides at Chitralada Palace, but the Grand Palace is still used for official events. Several royal ceremonies and state functions are held within the walls of the palace every year. 

A palace guard, on duty, opens the gate for a car.












I later regretted not counting the number of times we removed our shoes on this trip!



There are certain areas you are not allowed to photo, the Emerald Buddha is one, but John got this zoomed photo. The Buddha is clothed according to the season.




Next up is a BOAT RIDE through the klongs, Bangkok’s canals, to see the family homes, temples, and the way of life that give this city the nickname “Venice of the East.”

We walked from the \palace to the river front. One of our of group, an older man with hip and knee replacements had a lot of trouble with the heat. The guide made sure we all had cold water and even got wet towels for him.




Getting into the boats was challenging for most of us. First you step on the tire and then onto the canvas siding, onto a seat if you are short.




Now I just have to worry about getting out.

















A little shopping.



Getting out was quite the challenge, between the bobbing boat and getting splashed. Someone quiped that they hoped our river boat was going to be a little easier to get on and off.

Finally lunch time in a local restaurant, Bank has chosen the menu.



 The remainder of the day is at your leisure. (Breakfast, Lunch)


Back to the hotel, and the guide is upselling tours for tomorrow. Two couples opt for Ayutthaya. where we have booked a private tour, and one couple plan to go shopping at the floating market.

We spend the rest of the afternoon at the pool on the 37th floor.




Around 8PM we took a cab to Chinatown, 200 BAHT. Quite the experience, we were a little overwhelmed by the crowds and traffice. Every available space was set up as a restaurant.









3 comments:

  1. Beautiful shots, and so very different from what I'm used to.

    ReplyDelete
  2. Wow Jackie, you certainly are having an amazing trip... The Buddahs are fabulous . I know a lot about Buddahs as my husband has started taking a very bizarre liking to them .. He is have a midlife crisis I think :-) But they are fascinating. And YES .. WOW that first temple is very impressive. All looks over crowded. I don't like it like that but it all looks very interesting and the food is divine , I am sure. Take care .. Oh yes , just read on your page , that you are heading even further .. what a trip !!!!!

    ReplyDelete
  3. I have just discovered your blog and what a fabulous trip you are having, Enjoy!

    ReplyDelete