We returned to Bangkok for a few days as we had to leave Cambodia on 3rd May for our visa and were due to start at the elephant sanctuary in Cha’am (south of Bangkok by 2 hours) on 7th May. Whilst we were in Bangkok we arranged to stay with Will again at his flat via Couchsurfing. During our time there Dave’s dad (Steve) had has timed it so he was there so we got to spend a few days/ evenings with him too. We arrived late about 9 pm eventually and Will showed us up to his flat, giving us the tour of his decorated place now he had managed to get his stuff over. There was also another Couchsurfer (Matt) staying at the same time and we met him too. We had arranged to meet Steve that evening so we hopped on the sky train a couple of stops to Nana station where he was staying close too. We went out for dinner at Viva restaurant where Dave’s dad ordered several different Tapas dishes thankfully as we couldn’t think any more about ordering ourselves. There was Andulcian sausage, nachos, chicken and guacamole chips. We celebrated actually getting there and seeing him with some Changs (definitely back in Thailand). After dinner we checked out Steve’s fancy hotel suite, walking past a famous BJ bar apparently, and picked up a few things he had brought for us. On the way back to the station Steve walked us through Nana Plaza area which is filled with practically naked women, prostitutes and “interesting” bars. Walking past them was enough so we made our way back to the Skytrain and back to Will’s.
We slept off the journey the next morning before getting breakfast 7/11 toasties and getting out some Thai money. We walked to Central World and wandered around Uniqlo so Dave could purchase a few more clothes. We browsed Central World looking at the prices of the cinema and at the new food court. There was also a toy convention so we looked briefly at some of the toy models and stalls there. For lunch, we walked to Siam Paragon and looked at their food court. Dave had a Cinnabon but nothing else jumped out at us so we went back to 7/11 again for noodles to have back at Will’s.
In the early afternoon, we met Dave’s dad at our Skytrain station and made our way to Asiatique getting off the Skytrain at Saphan Taksin to get their free shuttle boat from the dock there. Asiatique is an old area of docks along the riverfront that have been turned into fancy restaurants, bars, and souvenir markets. We went into the Happy Fish restaurant and had Cafe Affogato’s (Espresso and ice cream) something that Steve had never tried. We explored the shops and markets- it has a very cool vibe but it is not a budget friendly place to eat and drink. We had some Margaritas at Fire and Wine but none of us fancied food there so we got a taxi back to Soi 11 area (we actually got two taxis as one turned the meter off and refused to put it back on so we got out and found another one). We had some Thai food at a restaurant on Soi 11 but it wasn’t great with things being watery and lacking flavour.
The following day we got up and had breakfast whilst doing some research about trains we needed to get the following day. Then we made our way back to Central World to the cinema. We thought we would treat ourselves to the first class cinema experience that they offer to see Guardians of the Galaxy 2. We booked tickets at a separate counter with a red carpet rolled out then made our way to the pre-cinema restaurant area. In there we could choose a free drink as well as a free fruit cocktail and there was a selection of canopies spread out around a central column. Naturally, we worked our way around the column trying everything as we were the only people in there. When the film was due to start we were shown our seats in an empty cinema (it was a weekday in the middle of the day). The seats were basically reclining sofas and we were given blankets as well as a soft drink and popcorn. There was even a button we could press on our seats if we wanted our drinks or popcorn refilling. Dave gave it a go for the sake of it but I was way too full at that point! We enjoyed the film and the experience even if it was quite expensive for our budget.
We went back to Central World in the evening with Dave’s dad as he wanted to check out the restaurant Shibuashi. You pay a flat fee and get an hour or two where you can make your own hot pot in front of you choosing items to go in it from a conveyor belt going around the restaurant. They also did a sushi buffet which was also very tasty. After stuffing our faces with food we went back to Nana area to the Kiwi pub having a beer whilst chatting away. After this, we stayed at Steve’s hotel for a drink (wine and margaritas) in the lobby/ bar area whilst we were serenaded by piano. Then we were actually on the BTS headed back by 11 pm (first time since arriving in Bangkok).
In the morning we met Dave’s dad and headed to his usual Starbucks for coffee and breakfast. This was our last day here so we headed to Planet Scuba and Dave spent a while finding the right mask and snorkel to buy from the clearance items. We did some research about Malaysia and looked at different flight options for getting to Borneo. We went to the look Big C supermarket to get some bits for the journey the next day and to get a card for Will to say thank you for having us. On returning, we booked all the 4 flights we had looked at whilst they were cheap (KL- Kuching, Kuching- Kota Kinabalu, KK- Singapore, and Singapore to Bali all for £135 each). In the evening we made our way up the Skytrain line to where Dan and Alice were staying with friends. When we eventually found them as the terminal is huge and complicated, we went back to their friends flat and had a very fun evening catching up and having a few drinks. We would have stayed there longer but we wanted to catch the last Skytrain back at 11ish and had an early start the next morning. It was great to see them though! With a bit of train shuffle running, we made it onto the last train and back to Will’s to pack up our stuff for the morning.
In the morning we made our way to Hua Lumpong train station via the Skytrain and MRT and bought our tickets to Cha’am for 40 baht each, saying bye to Bangkok again.