Trials in Thailand

Some thoughts about our time in Thailand, expressed in superlatives:

Bangkok

Most unique tourist experience: Flying across 23 ziplines in the outer Bangkok rainforest (Flight of the Gibbons)
Most sketch red light district: Nana Plaza
Best place for a night market: Food festival outside MBK Center
Surprisingly disappointing dish: Pad Thai
Most efficient means of transport: a bicycle, as seen in Premium Rush and used in a Velo bike tour at sunset
Most epic opening to a movie: National Anthem and ode to the king, played before every theater showing
Fanciest mall: Siam Square Paragon, where the third floor seems dedicated to selling cars
Most technologically advanced public transit: BTS, with TVs lining the train so you can watch ads to pass the time
Worst English for tourists: The tour boat that goes up and down Chao Phraya
Best night scene: Khao San Road restaurants and bars
Best disguised red light district: Patpong
Smartest choice of floating market to visit: Taling Chan Floating Market, just 30 minutes or less from the city core
Safest place to get a Thai massage: The massage school at Wat Pho
Most expensive ticket for Muay Thai boxing: 2000 Baht at Lumpini Stadium
Best place to get a beer: Your pick of Tiger, Singha, or Chang beer tents outside of Central World mall – comes with live entertainment at each one!

Phuket

Most aggressive / obscene / un-unseeable red light district: Bangla Road at night
Most picturesque beaches: Ko Phi Phi area – Bamboo Island, Maya Bay
Best rainy day activity: Riding motorbikes to the Big Buddha and Phrom Thep Cape in the pouring rain
Worst show for tourists: Phuket PhantaSea
Most elusive island: James Bond Island

You can have a huge range of experiences in Thailand. From the hustle and modernity of the “New York City” of Southeast Asia – Bangkok – to the serene and movie-perfect beaches of Ko Phi Phi, there really is everything here. Though the hardest thing to find would probably be some authentic culture (not red light districts or tourist traps) and some good food. Seriously, why was it so hard to find good Pad Thai here?

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