Tuesday, 11 September 2012

Bucket list : travel alone {BKK GUIDE}

READ THIS IF YOU'RE ONE OF THOSE WHO KEEP ASKING ME ABOUT BKK ON MY FORMSPRING!!

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It has always been my "dream" to travel alone cos I love the idea of getting lost in a city, meeting new people, taking chances with food, enjoying everything at my own pace and overcoming fear alone. I guess I just like adventures in a different way. Had always wanted to do it in Hong Kong or Aussie but I'm probably too familiar with the former to really "get lost". 

Anyhow, I finally did it except that it was to a city I'm really familiar with and it was more of for work than for myself. Got myself a plane ticket and a room just 2 days before flying off.

So, if you don't already know(YOU WOULD KNOW IF YOU FOLLOWED ME ON INSTAGRAM ^^), I went to BKK last Tuesday for 2 days! I will be doing a mini BKK guide so keep reading (:

Typical Bangkok street


Taken before my flight @ 6.35am!
Makeup - concealer, foundation, blusher, eyebrow pencil, mild eyeshadow, lipbalm.
Didn't want to put on too much make up since I was travelling alone!


My hotel - Glow Pratunam. I wasn't allowed to check in yet cos it was only 10am so I took a cab to Thong Lor for brunch!


Very laidback ambience



So I ordered Roast signature which came with complimentary orange juice and cappuccino for 385baht after tax ($15SGD). The food was pretty good but wasn't fantastic but the coffee was really really fragrant. I loved it, and I'd go back again just for the coffee. They are very known for their coffee so do give it a try when you're in BKK. 

Roast 
Roast, 2/F, Seenspace, Thong Lor Soi 13, Bangkok, Thailand



Another cafe which I wanted to try but I was too full from brunch. Shall try it the next time I'm there!



Strolled along thonglor area and I was loving it. It kinda reminded me of Harajuku for some odd reason. It's just quaint, laidback and i just felt "away" for real.


Sweethound cafe.


And for those who are wondering where I got my eyelash extensions done, I did it at take care beauty salon in Bangkok. It's a very established parlor in BKK so the prices are a bit steep for bkk standard. Did mine for $50 for 110 strands (55 each eye).


Eyebags from my lack of sleep. 


Cha cha cha bubble tea shop! Tried it, it's not bad but I think I bought the wrong flavor.



Worked the whole day after brunch and checked into my room after that.


Super roomy and I love it cos I love space. Bed was mega huge for me I honestly think it can fit 5 me(s). Not to mention it was FREAKING comfortable. Mad love the room really!!


Connecting wardrobe to bathroom! And ipod dock for me to charge my phone and blast music, and the powerpoints are customized to fit international plugs!!
Next time I don't need to bring iphone charger and travel adaptor already!! :D


FOUR complimentary bottles of water, 4 pillows, 2 huge bath towels, 2 face towels, two hand towels. 
ALL FOR MYSELF HIAK HIAK HIAK


A room tour video for you girls (:




The view from my room. Platinum mall on the right!


Hotel outdoor pool which I didn't get to use cos of menses. There are gym and steam room facilities too!




Evening view from my room. That building on the left is Grand Diamond Suites Hotel!


Went for thai massage!! I always go to this thai massage parlour called Chan thai massage. It's next to Baiyoke sky hotel. It's 200baht ($8SGD) for one hour of thai massage/foot massage! 


Room service for dinner! Damn yummy fried rice with chicken wings and it was only $6SGD!! <3




Entire oufit will be launched in next TJM collection (: love it!


My hair ends are so dry now but I'll be going to Salon Vim soon to save my tresses!
Did more shopping for TJM for 2 hours then decided to give myself some "rest & relax" time before I left for the airport.


Lunch at Another Hound cafe at Siam paragon. I had only 1.5 hours left before I had to leave for the airport and my initial plan was 

Lunch - 30 mins
Shop - 1 hour
..........

But being the foodie I am, I spent my entire 1.5hr in the cafe just eating and sipping my tea. I don't have any issue eating alone so I was enjoying my meal to death hahaha.

Check out the super awesome red velvet waffles!!
Nomz, one of the best waffles I ever had in my life.


Camwhoring by myself in the cafe. I looked like a self-obsessed idiot hahaha.

Flew by scoot and it's now my favorite budget airline!!


Super a lot of aunties and uncles, and er.... china people. They were so noisy -.-


Me in specs, cos the colored lens were giving me problems!

So, as promised, I'm gonna do a BKK guide(my way of travelling) for you!

1. FLY
The best combination to travel is to fly to BKK by Jetstar in the morning and fly back via Scoot at night. These two airlines are the most comfortable budget and best priced. However, it doesn't work all the time so just keep checking between Jetstar, Scoot, Tigerairways, Airasia. 
If possible, I'd prefer to fly to BKK by Scoot cos it's really v comfortable but they only have late afternoon flights outbound.
You can also check Thai airways. Sometimes they have pretty good deal.
SUBSCRIBE TO ALL THE AIRLINES' NEWSLETTER SO YOU WILL BE FIRST TO KNOW ANY PROMO/DEAL!

2. STAY
In preferential order,

a. Glow Pratunam Hotel ($78- $100/night) - New, spacious, clean, extremely comfortable, unstable wifi cos it's a new hotel, good facilities and extremely convenient for those who want to shop a lot (opposite platinum mall and located right next to pratunam market)

b. Ideal hotel pratunam ($70/night) - Clean, small, rather comfortable, very convenient (5 mins walk to platinum mall and next to pratunam market)

c. Grand Diamond Suites($100/night) - very spacious and extremely convenient(right next to platinum mall), lighting a bit dim

d. Baiyoke sky ($80/night) - tallest hotel in thailand, pretty grand looking, spacious, 10 mins walk to platinum walk, awesome view and breakfast

These are some hotels which I stayed in and would stay again. I don't really like staying in budget hotels in Bangkok cos thailand's kinda "dirty" if you get what I mean, and usually budget hotels are priced so low at the expense of its location. 
But if you're on a tight budget, you can consider
- Citin pratunam ($50/night)
- First House hotel ($40/night)
- Baiyoke Boutique ($60/night)
- Budacco Hotel ($50/night)
- Indra regent ($60/night)

3. PUBLIC TRANSPORT
Taxis and tuktuks are the most popular form of transport in BKK besides the train(BTS). Tuktuks are usually more expensive than taxis cos tourists like to take it. Haggle as much as you can. Even half of their offering price is fine, then work your way up to reach a compromise. When taking a taxi, make sure you ask for meter. It's a lot cheaper than their offering price. BTS is also very convenient. Maps are easy to understand and it's very cheap! However, it's better to share a cab when travelling in a group.

4. FOOD
There are many nice food in Bangkok be it thai cuisine or international cuisine! Try the roadside stalls if you don't have a sensitive stomach. It's cheap and good. Roadside stalls for coconuts, crepes, padthai, fried rice, chicken wings, cup corn, coconut ice cream. It's never ending.

Recommended eating list (Google the names for more info/address)
a. Ban Khun Mae
b. Somtam Siam soi 5
c. MK steamboat (MUST TRY THEIR ROASTED DUCK)
d. Sukishi
e. Mango Tango @ Siam
f. Greyhound Cafe/ Another hound cafe
g. Fuji restaurant
h. Platinum foodcourt
i. Mr. Jones Orphanage
j. After you cafe
k. Wanton mee stall @ Petchburi soi 19
l. Chinatown for seafood and cheap bird's nest
m. Central world
n. Sukhumvit area is famous for restaurants, so google it 

Haven't tried some of them but I got them online (:
Use Tripadvisor to find nice food and hotel prices/photos! It's my favorite travelling research tool.


5. SHOP
- Platinum mall (MUST GO)
- Chatuchak market (only open on sat & sun)
- Siam square (for local designers and indie stuff)
- Siam night market
- Siam Paragon (for high-end boutiques and interesting food basement)
- Asiatique (new night market but too commercialized and pricey to me)
- Union mall (similar to platinum but smaller scale)
- MBK (boring place but you can buy lots of handphone/laptop accessories on the top level)
- Terminal 21 (interesting airport concept)
- Bangkok airport DFS (one of my favorite place to buy makeup cos it seems slightly cheaper than Sg's DFS, and they have Nars!!)

6. NIGHTLIFE
- RCA is a stretch of road filled with clubs. Route 66 is one of the best clubs there followed by Slim.
- Khaosan Road (laidback backpacker's trail. Think beer, music, friendly expats, roadside food)
- Central world movie theatre (sometimes I love spending my night in this theatre cos the seats are MAD comfortable and spacious. It can also be reclined!!)
- GO FOR MASSAGE IF WANT TO RELAX YOURSELF. They open till late (:


That's about it for my BKK guide. I hope this answers all your questions to BKK and helps you fast-forward your travelling research a little. I don't know much about places of interest as I've never really toured Bangkok before. But the common ones are the floating market, Patpong nightlife (tranny shows), Dreamworld etc. 

Remember to be friendly in Thailand cos it's their culture. Thais are really really nice! Enjoy yourself in the land of smiles (:

Xx,
Sophia



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