Wednesday, July 18, 2012

Bangkok’s Most Popular Parks

Bangkok has several lush, beautiful parks available for the use of residents and tourists alike that want to experience the natural beauty and splendor of this fine city.  Many of these parks have excellent facilities, such as swimming pools, tennis courts, picnic areas, and more.  Whatever outdoor activities your family likes to do, there will be a Bangkok park that would accommodate them.

The best-known park in Bangkok is Lumpini Park, a tranquil place that is the oldest of the city’s many parks.  It covers more than half a million square meters (57.6-hectare (142-acre)) and was established in the 1920s as a craft and flower market.  This never came to be; Lumpini Park instead developed into a go-to spot for various outdoor activities.

Chatuchak Park

Chatuchak Park, located next to the market of the same name, is within downtown Bangkok and contains a beautiful Thai Literature and Herb Garden that visitors absolutely must experience for themselves.  Visitors can take a row boat onto the pond or watch the fish swim and eat; they can also visit nearby soccer fields and tennis courts to take in a little more intense activity. 

This place can be really crowded in the weekend as tourists flock to the Chatuchak Market. This park is open from 04:30 until 21:00 every day.  Visit the Youth Traffic Garden and Train Museum while in the area.

Queen Sirikit Park

Queen Sirikit Park was established as a tribute to Her Majesty the Queen on her 50th birthday in August of 1992.  Visit the tree garden, where the trees of Thailand’s provinces are arranged to represent the shape of Thailand itself!  Don’t forget to check out the nearby Children’s Discovery Museum and take in the park’s Lotus and Water Lily Yard, botanical gardens, and gorgeous pond.  This park is open from 5:00 until 18:00 every day.

King Rama IX Park

King Rama IX Park was built to commemorate His Majesty the King’s 50th birthday in 1987, and was commissioned by Suan Luang Rama XI.  There are several zones within this park, each with different attractions: ‘Sanam Rat’, which contains areas for sports and festivals; Rommanee Garden, which is an imitation of the various landscapes of Thailand; ‘The Garden of the Great King’, with its Ratchapreuk trees, whose yellow colouring represents the King.  The park has several other attractions that must be experienced, including a Lotus Garden and Rock Wall Garden.  This park is open from 5:00 until 18:00 each day.

Santichaiprakarn Park

Santichaiprakarn Park is unique in construction as it is centered around one of the city’s old fortifications – few of which still exist, making this park a very special place.  This place is popular with street performers and artists.  Bars and restaurants are very close to this park, as is the Khao San Road, which makes Santichaiprakarn a very popular destination; it’s right in the middle of all the action!

The next time you visit Bangkok, take in one of its beautiful parks and escape city life for a day. Bring a blanket, some snack and a book and you’re all set to enjoy the sun. 

For more articles on Bangkok and surroundings also see

Monday, July 16, 2012

After-Dark Shopping Experience in Bangkok

If you want to spend most of your day in Thailand meeting elephants, touching snakes and watching shopping in the floating market, you may do so without ever having to worry about not having the chance the shop. There are a lot of night markets in Thailand that are open until 12 midnight. You can finish your tours in the day, head to the night market for shopping, before hitting Khao San for some drinks.

Below are some of the night markets you should check out.

Major Ratchoyothin Market

Major Ratchoyothin Market and Khlong San are very similar in terms of the merchandise they sell. Whatever you find in one will mostly likely be sold in the other too. However, the Major Ratchoyothin Market is becoming more popular because it is closer to the the Major Ratchoyothin Cinema as well as the IMAX Complex. Some people opt to shop while they wait for their movie or go straight to shopping right after the movie.

Ratchada Night Bazaar

Formerly known as Ratchada-Lad Phrao Junction Night Market, the Ratchada Night Bazaar is often called the ultimate night market in Bangkok. You will find some ridiculously low priced shoes, leather bags, books, jeans, CDs, home decorative items, assortments of knick-knacks, furniture and antiques. There are a lot of pre-owned goods as well.

The Ratchada Night Bazaar actually started off as a market for the second-hand vespas as well as used car parts but it is has now evolved to become one of the best night markets in Thailand. When you enter the market, you will be welcomed by some of the best food stalls in the country. Some people find it impossible to go through all the stalls in a single night. It’s a big market and there are many items to check out.

Sanam Laung / Khlong Lod

They are best known for their second hand items. Expect to find some brassware, old magazines, old books, motorbike parts and remote controlled toys in addition to the usual handmade trinkets, fashion accessories, T-shirts, sneakers, clothing and other items. However, it is very important that you know how to examine the items you want to buy. Many of the items on display look perfect but they don’t necessarily function perfectly.

Saphad Phut Night Market

Except Wednesdays, the area around Memorial Bridge along the Rattankosin side of this river is packed with shoppers and sellers looking to trade entertainment items and apparels including CDs, DVDs, jeans, sneakers, T-shirts, video games and many other items.

You can also find some counterfeit brand names such as Armani, Fred Perry and Ralph Lauren and other creative pieces. The prices are exclusively cheap and bartering is actually not necessary. The Saphad Phut Night Market is quite popular among the teens. It normally opens from 17:30 or much later in a rainy day. It stays open till midnight. Rush now and get your goodies.