Our week in Bangkok was the polar opposite to what one might think a week in Bangkok might look like. When we arrived I was fully expecting to be met with a smokey atmosphere, busy and chaotic bars and a general party vibe. People everywhere.
What we actually got was a very pretty, colourful and pretty chilled out place. It was great, so many funky little places dotted about and all lit up beautifully with lanterns and fairy lights. My kind of place for sure but not what I was expecting.
Initially I thought we may be on the outskirts and it would be more like the image in my head when we ventured deeper but then I realised we where staying right next to Khao San Road. One of the busiest places there.
I realised after 4 days of being there that the reason we may not be seeing the Bangkok we have seen on TV is because in our old age, we are in bed by 10 o clock every night!
Yes, we used our time in Bangkok to relax and recoup. Travelling for so long is amazing but it does get very tiring. So we stayed in bed of a morning reading our books and researching places to go next.
Went out for some lunch in one of the lovely restaurants, browsed the unique stalls. Went back to lie down for a while, only to get back up to go and find some more food along Khao San Road and then… you guessed it, back to bed! We have been in Thailand for over a week now and have yet to even see a ladyboy!
We love all the colourful graffiti you see everywhere!Bars with bird cages, always a winner!Every restaurant bursting with colour!And the Tuk Tuks too!Swapping wine for healing tea!And swapping meat for tofu!
We absolutely loved Bangkok but for not one of the reasons I thought we would. I never pictured it as the perfect place to relax.
We spent our time there staying at Fatcat Hostel. We both loved this place. One of our favourite hostels to date.
It is owned by a couple of artists, who are so ridiculously talented. There was art all over the walls and it is just great.
The hostel is also a cafe and an art space. Plus it sold egg coffee so it was pretty perfect for us as far as hostels go!
It also actually had a fat cat that lived there and he was the most beautiful thing in the world. He is a little grumpy fat cat with piercing blue eyes and we love him! His name is Aun – translation – like a fat! He actually loves a stroke and is very friendly but if looks could kill.
The artist was a guy called Titikun and his art was fantastic. He often draws himself and Aun in his pictures.
I was fascinated by his work and told him he needs to get an Instagram!
Here are a few of his paintings:
And here is the man himself…
As you can see he paints himself incredibly well.
We loved our stay here and would definitely recommend at the very least coming through here for an egg coffee is you are in Bangkok.
We do have another two nights in Bangkok on our way to other places so we may try and get our one night and experience it of a night time. However we also found an amazing book store while we were there so have plenty to keep up occupied and lazy.
Thank you Bangkok for being so wonderful and …
The last 3 days we have been in Pak Chong and it has been anything but relaxing. It’s been full of adventure and trekking in the jungle! An incredible experience.
We came to stay at Bobbys Apartments and Jungle Tours. A great little place about an half hour drive from Khao Yai National Park.
This week was all about going into the jungle and seeing some wildlife and something we have been looking forward to for a long time.
The first part of our tour was an evening tour and our guide was quite possibly the funniest man on the planet. Everything about him was great, he was about 5 foot, with a bowl head, seemed to bounce when he waked he had that much of a spring in his step. He was so funny and had us all laughing the whole time. He referred to himself as Jungle Man.
A fitting name when he saw a snake on the road and chased it down to get a selfie with it!
Our tour started off with us all going to a natural spring and it was just beautiful.
A little hidden paradise at the side of the road. If you are not looking for it you wouldn’t know it was there.
It was stunning and the water was perfect for a swim.
A wonderful experience getting to swim here.
Just down the road from the springs was a little market with everything from fresh fruit, to fish, toiletries and clothes even scorpions and spiders to try too if you fancy… we did not.
We spent time at the market and then we went to the bat caves. They are incredible. Inside they are just like the caves at Ha Long Bay, those that seem to be dripping from the walls inside, giving them a melting effect. You feel like this is art and not something that has naturally formed.
We went inside with our flash lights and got to see all kinds of different bats, wrinkle lipped bats and horse shoe bats hanging from the walls, inside every crevice. They are really rather adorable.
We got a glimpse of a rare species that look like babies but they are just a very small type.
We left the bat cave as Jungle Man promised this was just the beginning and we were about to see millions of bats. I thought he may be over exaggerating slightly. We went onto our next destination and the sun was setting beautifully.
Then we got to an area and there was people huddling around all waiting for something. Then we saw one bat fly out from the the top of a hill, then two and then just like he said, millions of bats flew out.
It was an incredible sight. They all flew from the top of the hill to the bottom creating the shape of a snake in the sky.
This went on for the longest time, they just kept coming and coming and it was really impressive to watch.
A great way to end the evening.
We got back to our site and had dinner with our new roomie Deana, who is from Minnesota so we get along great, chatting about my love of her home.
We all got an early night as it was a 6.30 wake up for the next day. The Jungle Trekking!
We all woke and prepped ourself with bug spray and waterproofs and head to toe coverage for the jungle, even in the heat. You don’t want to be too exposed going in there.
We set off to Khao Yai National Park.
When we arrived to the car park we were greeted by lots of little monkeys running around everywhere. They were adorable and cheeky. Jumping into the trucks and stealing everyone’s snacks for the day.
There was a beautiful view from the top and a chance to use an actual toilet for the last time for a while!
So we used the bathroom, donned our leech socks and set off into the jungle in our van.
We had a new guide for the day called Ben. He too was very funny but a lot calmer than Jungle Man, who I personally don’t think would do so well in the jungle given his larger than life ways. I can’t see him being great at being stealthy. Although I do think he could climb a tree in the blink of an eye and get around quickly.
Ben on the other hand had a very calm voice and crept through the jungle, his ears always perking up at any sounds. Knowing exactly what to listen for and where to find wildlife.
With his expert ear it was no more than five minutes into the jungle we came across about 4 elephants in the distance, going about their da to day life. It was fascinating to see them, unaware of our presence, hiding in the tree’s. They are such beautiful beings.
As beautiful as it is though, it is incredibly scary. This trek was deep in the jungle, wading through vines. As we walked he told us about what wildlife there is, so my thoughts immediately go to ‘but what if they find us’ and he really didn’t have much more of a response than ‘then we run’.
So when we walked passed the trees covered in bear claws, it was pretty nerve wracking but that’s all part of the experience.
In this jungle there are bears, tigers, elephants, leopards, gaurs, poisonous snakes, pythons… the lot. So it’s a scary experience but Ben assures us that these things are actually going to be more scared of a group of us. He even said they may be around, they may see us but will not see them.
Terrifying. I know!
We did see a snake though and it was actually really cool. It was poisonous and the fact that you would clearly miss it because of its colours shows just how well these things blend.
On our way into the jungle we heard the gibbons before we saw them. They make such a great sound and this was one that Mel was most excited about as the gibbon is his favourite animal.
They are fantastic little things and we had a great view of about 4 or 5 of them swinging above our heads. There was a baby amongst them and two white ones. So it was a great sighting.
At one point we stopped at a little river and Ben somehow, spotted a lizard on the other side. He was always so quick to get out the telescope and position it for us to get the best views. How he spotted this I don’t know but we got some awesome snaps through the lenses.
We loved trekking through the jungle and learning about all the different species throughout the day. The sounds of all the different birds as we moved through was incredible. Not the sound of the sichadas though. They make a dreadful sound.
The trees’s in Southeast Asia are incredible and we seen so many beautiful ones deep in the jungle. Twisting and turning all around us.
Our trek was so successful and we had the best day. Conquering fears. All in all on our afternoon in the jungle we got to see:
A pigtailed Macaque
A black giant Squirrel
A mountain hawk eagle
Indian Munt Jac deer
Indo Chinese water Dragon
Green pit Viper
Giant forest Scorpion
A whole lot of unidentifiable birds
So we did pretty great! We love animals and nature so this was the perfect experience for us and we loved every minute. It cost £30 for the two days! Absolutely amazing.
But… it wasn’t over yet. At the end of the Jungle Tour we had the chance to walk down to a nearby waterfall.
It was a bit of a challenge getting down there with some steep steps but we knew it would be worth it and we were so right!
It was magnificent!
a perfect way to end our day before we all got back in our truck.
Buttt it still wasn’t over!!
Ben got a call telling him there had been an elephant sighting along one of the main roads through the park so we made a detour to it and there, as the sun was setting we saw a family of 18 elephants. Out in the open for us to see eating and playing and it was truly perfect.
What an incredible day 💚
So safe to say our Jungle Tour has been one of the highlights of the trip for us and we are now convinced we are a good luck charm for amazing animal sightings because we have been so lucky each time we have set out to see some wild life. From Monetary Bay, seeing 2 blue whales, 12 humpbacks and 24 dolphins to yesterday and getting to witness these elephants at the end of the day.
We have loved Thailand but after all that excitement we need a rest again so off to the islands now to see what these beaches are all about! 🏖
Much love 💕