I have to be honest, after my trip to Bangkok in 2005, it wasn’t my favorite. This is the main reason why I’m just flying through. I was in Bangkok for less than 24 hours for a long layover. I stayed at this amazing hostel, The Yard, in the Ari neighborhood of Bangkok. Ari is an up and coming neighborhood that has cute cafes and restaurants. The Yard was one of the best hostel experiences I’ve ever had; I loved the ambiance, the other travelers and the location which was away from the craziness of downtown. I’m not someone who likes to stay at a hostel all day so I ventured to the Chatuchak weekend market which is only opened Saturdays and Sundays. It’s one of the biggest markets in the world and there are vendors who sell everything from clothes to food to home goods. It was also conveniently only 2 stops away on the metro.
The main reason I don’t like Bangkok is the taxi drivers. I actually have an aversion to them. Talk about frustration. They are notorious for never turning on their meter so you either have to get out of the taxi or haggle like crazy. I did the latter until my face was blue. It left me completely exhausted. Uber just started in Bangkok but oftentimes, their GPS wasn’t accurate so I would end up in random spots. I found it useful to use Uber to and from the airport.
I really wanted to eat street food on Yaowarat Road in Chinatown so after I negotiated with a taxi driver, I headed that way. Chinatown is insane! Be prepared for Times Square on crack. After sampling a delicious mango sticky rice, I plopped down at Lek & Rut (red restaurant) one half of the famous red and green restaurant rivalry. The line at the green restaurant was too long. You sit at these plastic tables and chairs in the midst of pure chaos. It’s hot, noisy and crowded but it’s all part of the Bangkok experience! I ordered a scallop curry, veggies, cockles and a cold Chang beer. Eating street food is a part of the South East Asian experience so get over your fears!
If this is your first time in Bangkok, you should definitely check out the temples especially Wat Pho which houses the largest reclining Buddha as well as the floating markets.
The cute restaurant at The Yard Hostel
The bar and also where you get your breakfast at The Yard
My room has a little balcony
The common room
So excited that the cafe at The Yard served fresh salads
Shopping and indulging in fruit at the Chatuchak Weekend Market
Mangosteens! We don’t get those in the States
Grilled Seafood at Chatuchak Market
Walking past the Grand Palace at night
Yaowarat Road in Chinatown
Kitchen at Lek & Rut on Yaowarat Road
No night in Bangkok would be complete without Chang beer
All the locals were ordering the cockles so that’s what I did
Mango sticky rice
Waiting for my pad thai
Pad thai to go which was only $1
The Yard’s cute backyard
The breakfast is free and adorable!