Tuesday was set aside to explore some of the many shrines in Bangkok. We started off at the Erawan shrine, which was crazy busy – there were so many people giving offerings of all kinds, and lighting lots of incense. It’s a Hindu shrine with a Thai representation of the Hindu creation god Brahma. It was extremely busy, with Thai dance troupes who are hired by worshippers in return for seeing their prayers answered. Right next to Alexander McQueen, might I add.
We then moved on to Central World shopping centre, where we watched the ice skaters and looked at the fancy designer shops. We weren’t in the mood for a big lunch, so we stopped off at The Pancake Cafe for Nutella pancakes – which ended up being a serving big enough to feed a family of four. They were delicious, obvs.
Outside Central World, we found the Ganesha shrine. Ganesha is considered a master of intellect and wisdom and visitors here wish to be blessed with artistic success and accomplishment.
Next to Ganesha, is the Trimurti shrine, or The Lover’s Shrine. Legend has it that those who pray here for true love will have their dreams fulfilled. There are lots of young adults visiting the shrine constantly – and it’s apparently especially busy on a Thursday evening. Visitors drop off offerings such as red roses, red candles or red colddrinks throughout the day, and there’s always a steady stream of visitors.
Once we had seen Trimurti, we made our way to the Phallic shrine which apparently gives luck in fertility. No, I’m not trying to fall pregnant – it was something that was worth just visiting, as it’s a little garden FILLED with wooden penises.
We had walked all day, and were exhausted, so we made our way back to the hotel again to rest before our last night in Bangkok.
Later on we made our way to Terminal 21 which is an amazing shopping centre. It is basically 9 stories high, and each story is dedicated to a different city: Tokyo, London, Rome, San Fransisco, etc. The mall itself is made to look like an airport – so you have boarding gates on each floor, airport signs showing flights to the different floors, and the security guards are dressed as pilots! It was freaking incredible. The attention to detail was out of this world.
Look at the entrance to the toilets on the London floor..
We were in awe at this place. Unfortunately, it’s in the more upmarket area of Bangkok, so things are much more pricey but it was such a great experience that it was worth it. We went to dinner at a fancy-ish restaurant (ignoring the cockroach we saw). Ross had something called Sukiyaki and I had something called Shabu Shabu. It’s basically a big pot of soup, with a thousand different ingredients thrown in – your choice of meat added with tofu, eggs, noodles and tons of veggies. It was.. different.. but still quite yum.
My favourite part of my dish was the glass noodles.
We explored a little more after dinner and the view from the top story was insane – they have the longest escalator I have ever seen! The whole escalator isn’t even in this shot, I couldn’t get it all in.
Once we were satsified that we had explored each floor, we made our way to Soi Cowboy across the road. Soi Cowboy is a red-light district and is a really short street (only 150 metres long), but it is totally filled with go-go bars, strip clubs, ping pong shows and massage parlours. It is totally lit up with bright neon lights everywhere. It was a massive shock to our systems as we walked down the street. Some of the Thai girls were grabbing at me, everyone shouts hello, you see people getting questionable massages from girls, and everyone just seems so open and free about their sexuality. There are half-naked girls everywhere in the street, and a decent amount of lady boys thrown in for good measure. It was quite the experience.
We were sad that it was our last night in Bangkok (ALREADY?!), but I was comfortable in the knowledge that we had enough time there to see all we had wanted to see, and we didn’t miss out on anything. We were ready for a little more of the island life, and I could barely sleep with the excitement that we were leaving for Phuket the next day!