This is my first time traveling with 3 other ladies to Bangkok and I really learn a lot from this trip in terms of getting along with people who has different interests from me and managing my expectations. I think it is important to agree to disagree and really sit down before the trip to decide which are the places we die-die must visit and which are the places we can compromise on if our travel companions are not that keen to go.
I wanted to visit the Hello Kitty Cafe and Saxophone Pub again in Bangkok but as my companions were not interested, I had to give those places a miss. Learn to give and take (and keep the friendship) and maybe I can save those places for the next time. 🙂
We also started a general fund before the trip where we each contribute equal amounts for food and transport so that there would be less hassle for everyone. By the way, I have a penchant for Thai food and Thai Language, having studied Thai as an elective in the university.
I have divided the 3N Bangkok trip into 2 parts: Food (Part 1) and Things to do in Bangkok (Part 2).
My travel companion had the foresight to rent the overseas Wi-Fi router from Changi Recommends at Changi Airport. This light-weight and portable device provides reliable internet connection on the move when overseas and taps on the local high speed 4G network. I find this more convenient than having to purchase SIM card from Telco shops overseas (some countries are not so tourist-friendly) and also cheaper than SingTel DataRoam which starts from $15/day.
1. The device allows users to connect up to 8 mobile devices (laptop, tablet and smartphones).
2. Convenient pick up and drop off at Changi Recommends booths. Payment is during drop off at the end of the trip.
3. There is no need to change SIM card (troublesome for us Iphone users) and no additional data roaming charges!
4. Instant connection everywhere (even in remote places) and we need not depend on public hotspots or free Wi-Fi.
5. Rental rates are affordable at $12/day for non-European markets and $25/day for European markets. Details can be found on their website.
1. We shared the fully charged router connection between the 4 of us and even after charging it with a fully charged portable charger while on the move, the router ran out of battery within half a day. Probably we shared and upload too many photographs on Facebook and WhatsApp.
2. Take note of the Fair Usage Policy in some countries – 250MB is probably enough if you cut back on Instagram and Facebook usage, particularly so if you are sharing the connection with 3-4 people.
3. There is no multi-country plan available as one would most likely travel to more than one country if you are traveling to Europe for a holiday.
1. Ban Khun Mae Restaurant
This popular Thai restaurant well known for their authentic and affordable Thai dishes is located just opposite our hotel – Novotel Bangkok on Siam Square. Our hotel is strategically located with massage shops and the Siam BTS located within a stone throw away in the heart of downtown Bangkok.
The restaurant was very crowded with both locals and tourists and a long queue was forming as no reservations were allowed. Thankfully, we were ushered to the second floor after a while and the food came quite fast.
The Steamed Snapper with Lime is a must-order here! I observed that almost every table had ordered this dish. Although I cannot take spicy dishes that well, I really enjoyed the gravy (tasted sweet, sourish and spicy all at once), it was so mouth-watering! My friends gladly took the chilli from the dish.
You can say this to the waiter:“Kor menu noi kha” – Can I have the menu please?” “Phet nit noy” – “Just a little spicy.” “Mai ao phrik” – “No Chillies.” “Gep tang kha” – “The bill, please.” “Kor tit-chu noi kha” – “Can I have a serviette please?” “Kor naam-plaaw noi kha” – “Can I have water please?”
The Green Curry Chicken was disappointing. There were only 4 miserable pieces of chicken and we had to fish around for more. My friend even had to share her piece with me because I had not tried the dish yet.
Ban Khun Mae Restaurant
458/6-9 Siam Square Soi 8, Rama 1 Road,
Patumwan District, Bangkok 10330
Opening hours: 11 am to 11 pm daily
2. Mango Tango
Located just across the road from Ban Khun Mae Restaurant is the popular Mango Tango which really reminds me of Hui Lau San in Hong Kong – all things mango! The long queue outside the shop did not deter us as we thought “the queue so long, must be good!” – typical Singaporean mentality.
Siam Square Soi 5
Opening hours: 11.30 am to 10 pm daily
3. Sabx2 Wanton Noodles
After the shopping in Platinum Mall, we crossed the road and walked down till we found Soi (Street) 19 and the eatery was not difficult to locate (near Shibuya 19). There were a lot of Singaporeans and Hongkongers in the eatery – a lot of tourists flock to this place to try their famous wanton noodles and braised pork trotters/intestines.
We were surprised that the staff were conversant in basic mandarin. We pointed to some bottled drinks outside the eatery (their kitchen is outside) and the staff informed us that it was Chrysanthemum Tea in Mandarin.
This unassuming wanton noodles only cost 50 baht and I could finish it in 3 mouthfuls! There was no chilli oil, sauce or gravy, just pork lard and lard oil. My health conscious friend could not stomach it and gave the entire bowl to us. She ordered another dry wanton noodles “Ko Song“ (plain), without any pork lard. Frankly speaking, I don’t find anything spectacular about the wanton noodles, but this unique pork lard flavour could just be what many people are craving for that is so hard to find nowadays.
Sabx2 Pratunam Wanton Noodles
4/32-33 Soi Petchburi 19, Pratunam, Bangkok
Opening hors: 9 am to 4 pm daily
4. T & K Seafood Restaurant
It is said that the green shirts (T&K Seafood) are better than the red shirts (Lek & Rut Seafood). The seafood did not disappoint, it was so delicious and surprisingly cheap! We ordered 9 dishes (too much for the 4 of us!) and the damage was only 2230 baht!
The cooking was all done outdoors. We choose to sit indoors (air-conditioned) as we do not want to risk sitting next to the busy road side. As we were seated on the third floor, the staff ingeniously transported the food upstairs by using a pulley system from the ground floor.
The environment in the restaurant was not as clean and comfortable as Ban Khun Mae. To maximize the capacity, the owners even hacked the walls to add a 1/2 floor between the second and third floors for diners to sit on the floor (very low ceiling). But with food this tasty, I’m sure diners would not mind where they are seated! 🙂
After the heavy dinner, we walked down the stretch of Chinatown to try their local street hawker foods and shop for more Thai snacks from Lin Zhen Xiang 林真香’s flagship store opposite T&K Seafood.
For someone who is obsessed with cleanliness like myself, I can’t wait to return to this place soon as the good food beckons! 🙂
T & K Seafood Restaurant
49-51 Soi Phadung Dao, Yaowarat Road, Bangkok
Opening Hours : 6 pm – 10 pm daily
“One’s destination is never a place, but a new way of seeing things.” – Henry Miller