Thailand Day Two: Markets and Pubs

This is the second post in my series of Thailand vacation posts. If you missed it, the first one is here.

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Nicole and I ate a quick breakfast in the room; danishes from the 7-11 on the corner. Then, we  stopped at the street side café for more delicious soup. It was quickly becoming a staple of our trip to Thailand, much like the coconut ice cream from the night before. [divider_flat]

The Skytrain

The skytrain, Bangkok’s elevated subway system, was only a 5 minute walk from our apartment. It stops all over downtown and central Bangkok, but it only has a few stops outside of central Bangkok. Fortunately, we were near one such stop. We took the skytrain across Bangkok to the weekend market. Along the way we saw hundreds of protesters camped out, sleeping in the streets in tents. Before our arrival, Thailand declared a state of emergency for two months. Thailand was going through some serious political tension and the government was holding an emergency election February 3rd, the day after we left.

[box type=”alert”]I expected, to some degree, that the protesters would affect our trip or our ability to enjoy Thailand, but, in general, they kept to themselves and weren’t remotely interested in tourists.[/box]

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The Weekend Market

weekend market in Bangkok thailand

The weekend market, open Friday-Sunday, is massive. It would take days to see everything there. The market is set up like a giant flea market with lots of little stalls selling everything imaginable. There are stalls selling clothes, shoes, pet supplies, art on canvases, sculptures, coconuts, postcards, leather belts, wooden elephants, almost everything imaginable. Lots of the goods we saw were name brand, or knock-offs, and selling for a fraction of the price of what they would go for in the states. For example, Nicole and I bought Beats headphones for about $7 each.

We spent the afternoon at the market buying tons of presents for our families. Clearly, we weren’t the only ones with this idea. The market does enough tourist business that there’s even a DHL in the market offering cheap flat rates to send your boxes home.

Lunch

Shrimp Pad Thai at the Weekend Market

After we shopped to our heart’s content, we had a delicious meal of shrimp Pad Thai. It was about $3.  So far, everything in Thailand has been absurdly cheap. Nothing we’ve done or spent money on has been more than $3-5. The meal was delicious and the food was served quick.  In Asia, I’ve never had to wait more than a few minutes for my food to arrive.[divider_flat]

Our Trove of Thai Treasures

After lunch, we headed back to the apartment, via the skytrain. Back at the apartment, I sorted through my gifts for my family and wrote a few post cards. I’d bought so many souvenirs already. My family was going to get a second Christmas.

presents from the weekend market
presents from the weekend market

Fish and Chips

For dinner, Nicole found the best place in Bangkok to eat fish and chips, her guilty pleasure. We took the skytrain over to the Londoner, an English pub in downtown Bangkok that brews its own beer and makes delicious English food. Unfortunately, due to the protests in Bangkok, the Londoner was not serving alcohol, including their own home-brewed beer, and was buffet only for the day.

cheesy fries in bangkok thailand

Forlorn, distraught, and dejected, Nicole and I walked next door to another pub called the Royal Oak where we enjoyed some Australian Tennis and fish and chips. It was surreal to find a corner of Thailand filled with Brits, Aussies, and pubs. From inside of either of the pubs we visited, you would think you were in Britain or Australia instead of Thailand.

Thai Massages

After Dinner, Nicole and I went across the street to a massage parlor- not that kind- and had Thai massages. We had hour-long back, neck, and shoulder massages for about $5. It was my first ever massage and a great experience. I planned to get many more in the coming days.

Day Two in Thailand: Recap

Our second day in Thailand was fantastic! We ate delicious Thai food and English food. We bought tons of gifts for our families, and we got to enjoy warm weather in Thailand. Overall, it was an awesome day.

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