Bangkok is becoming more and more popular among people from every part of the country, whether because of sex tourism or cheap food, it is still attracting visitors of every age. This capital of Thailand is booming during past years and you should be the part of this big boom. Before you decide to go, read these 7 things to know before going to Bangkok and get ready for anything!
1. YOU’LL SWEAT…A LOT
Exactly. Bangkok is hot and humid. The weather in Bangkok may change quickly, depending on the time of the year. If you visit Bangkok during the high season, that is from November to March, you may expect sunny and hot weather with the minimum of showers, but high humidity. When I left the hotel room after washing my hair, it remained wet for the whole next hour. If you happen to come for e.g. in May, an umbrella won’t be enough. There are several showers during the day, that come absolutely randomly and you don’t even have the time to hide. These showers are very intense, but short – just always bring a raincoat or an umbrella with you.
2. YOU’LL STUCK IN THE TRAFFIC JAM
Like anywhere in Asia, big cities are crowded with cars, buses, motorbikes and people. Here in Thailand, there’s an unwritten rule, that if your car is bigger than the one next to you, you can go first. There are thousands of cars on the streets, any time during the day and I strongly recommend you to use metro. Taxis are cheap, but if you want to transport from one side of the city to another, it may take more than two hours. Forget about renting motorbikes or bicycles, local drivers aren’t considerate at all.
3. YOU’LL HATE EVERYONE, WHO SAY „TUK TUK, MASSAGE or TAXI“
As you will be passing the streets of Bangkok, there will be taxi drivers everywhere, constantly asking you, whether you want a taxi, women try to offer you cheap massage or tuk tuk driver try to convince you to take tuk tuk ride for „the best price“ like they say. It is all nice, but if you are not interested, all you can say is „No, thank you“ as kind as possible. At the end of my visit, I got very tired of saying NO and being kind at the same time. I wasn’t even able to respond to plenty offers, which may seem rude, but I was pretty tired of this. But this is Bangkok and remember, act kindly, these people are just trying to make money like you do in your home country. When I got off the car, after my first tuk tuk drive of my life, the driver wanted me to drive it a bit out of the busy streets, but I rather refused :)
4. YOU WON’T BE STARVING
If you like eating, then Bangkok is the right place to go. Asian food is very tasty and cheap. There are hundreds of restaurants all around, stalls, fast foods and people selling food on the streets. If you are tired of fancy and expensive restaurants, in Bangkok you can have perfect Pork Satay just for 1 dollar or full menu for 2 dollars or even less. Not very fancy restaurants (should I call them restaurants?) are very cheap and usually very tasty. Order typical Thai beer – Chang with Pad Thai, which is typical Thai food and enjoy the rush of Bangkok.
5. YOU WON’T SPEND MUCH
Thailand is pretty cheap country for visitors, that’s why there are even more and more people from the whole world coming to every year. Probably, the most expensive is the flight, that gets you there, but everything else is almost for free, comparing to European or American prices. Do you remember those 35 dollar bills in the New York’s restaurants? Forget about them! In Bangkok, you won’t spend that much. Public transportation is cheap, taxis are cheap, food is cheap and even the accommodation (depending on, where you are staying) isn’t expensive. Even the local flights around Thailand and to surrounding countries aren’t expensive and you can fly for e.g. to northern Thailand for around 20 dollars. Check Tiger airlines, Air Asia or NOK airlines for special deals.
6. YOU’LL BE DIRTY AND SMELL BAD
Bangkok isn’t the cleanest city I have been to. Although, I wore flip flops while there, since the extreme heat and the humidity hit you everywhere. Streets are dusty and there’s a lot of garbage all around. Of course, there are districts, that are fancier than the others, but generally, Bangkok is a dirty city. As you will be walking around the China town, get ready to smell some really bad stuff, fishes, sweat… everything. Bad smell is mixing with the smell of gasoline, smell of food from the streets, the smell of the river and all together it makes the perfect smell of Bangkok :) It is just a matter of time until you get used to it.
7. YOU’LL LAUGH A LOT
Although Bangkok doesn’t smell good, is crowded and hot, people are very relaxed and easy going, with a smile. Thais are very open people and I have never met people like them, probably. Most of them are Buddhists and the major principle of Buddhism is – you get what you give. They smile, so they expect you to smile back. They are very generous and kind to visitors (except by driving) and I felt very comfortable in Thailand. Nobody has tried to cheat me, get more money than deserve and I didn’t have any bad experience while there.
Under all that dirt I found kind people living their own lives, willing to take you to the other side of large Bangkok just for a few dollars, ready to prepare the best Pad Thai right in front of you and happy to let you to drive their tuk tuks :) Everyone, go to Bangkok!
Milan Bardun, because it is better to travel, than to arrive