Tuesday, 26 October 2010

Ko Samui - finally sun and beach again :D

On 21st October I brought my parents to Ko Samui. We took a plane from Bangkok to Surat Thani, followed by a bus to Don Sak pier before boarding the ferry to Ko Samui Nathon pier. From there we were brought to our resort by minibus.
The Mae Nam Resort at the name giving Mae Nam beach was great. A private beach and not many tourists in sight :) The visibility in the water was down to a few centimeter due to the heavy rain around. But luckily we had no rain at all at Mae Nam beach. A few clouds here and then, which helped us to not get a sunburn right away^^
On the evening we were wandering around the small town a bit, but not much was to be discovered. The next day, after relaxing at the beach and getting the first sight of a sunburn, we walked the other direction in town and found a nice little market. My parents loved the Asian market style and fresh snacks for pre-dinner :)
The next day we took a tour around the island. Seeing the price of 350 baht it was easier and faster to see the attractions on Ko Samui this way. Starting at the village of Plai Laem to visit the Wat Nuan Na Ram, followed by Wat Phra-Yai at BigBuddha beach. A view over Chaweng beach before continuing to the grandmother and grandfather rock at Lamai beach. After a monkey show - a monkey picking coconuts - the mummified monk at Wat Khun Aram waited for us. The day finished with a visit to the Namuang1 waterfall, which was not worth a visit, if there wasn't that jeep-safari like journey towards it through the forest :)
My parents did hold tight when the vehicle climbed the hills up and down :D
Back at the resort I had to pack and leave for a visa run over Kuala Lumpur back to Bangkok. Yea, I and visa do not get along well^^ On the ferry from Nathon to Don Sak I enjoyed one of my best sunsets before enjoying the view of the full moon over Ko Samui. A minibus brought me to Surat Thani centre, a minibus to the train station at Phunphin, where I had to wait 4.5h for the train to Hat Yai :( Hat Yai is a laid back town which welcomed me with a superb Hokkien Mee soup for breakfast, before the minibus service of Thai airways brought me to the Hat Yai airport. The following flight to KL and BKK was simple routine :)

Mae Nam beach

Wolfgang relaxing at the bungalow

in the morning in front of our bungalow

Wat Nuan Na Ram - the 14 armed female Buddha

Wat Nuan Na Ram

BigBuddha at Wat Phra-Yai

viewpoint over Chaweng beach

grandmother rock near Lamai beach - guess how grandfather looks like ;)

lagoon-like next to the grandmother rock

small monkey and big gorilla^^

mummified monk at Wat Khun Aram

on the road to Namuang1 waterfall - like a roller-coaster

view from the top of the jeep on the way back from the waterfall

sunset from the ferry on the way to Don Sak

My parents visit me in Thailand - one day in Bangkok

My parents arrived at tuesday (19.10.) evening at Bangkok airport, where I picked them up to their hotel.
As they were tired from the long flight I was just looking for a nice dinner to them before sending them to sleep :)
First they were caught by the heat and humidity^^ Then the narrow streets, packed with people, made them feel a little intimidate :P Well, that is Asia after all ;)
Astonished by the dirt at the backyards, beggars, prostitutes and souvenir sellers, they still could enjoy the fine Thai food. Well, Sukhumvit at late evening is not the best first impression of Thailand you can get.
After a fine sleep I picked them up the next day to go to Chao Phraya by BTS and then using the public boat to reach Wat Pho (and so they saw the way to the Grand Palace, to be done on their own later^^). We picked up some local icecream, my dad was impressed of :D
From Wat Pho we entered a taxi to Loha Prasat. After enjoying the semi-great view from the top and the nice architecture of Loha Prasat and eating some Thai snacks, we continued on the canal boat to Pratunam. The ride on the canal boat was quite an experience to them, something most tourists do not get in contact with.
A short walk over Pratunam market to the Bayioke Sky Tower to enjoy the view and semi-sunset (due to clouds in the west) over Bangkok.
Another ride on the canal boat made my parents think about evacuation plans from the boat and how to survive the grabbing hands from Thais who can't swim - just in case :)
A walk through another narrow market street near Ramkhamhaeng brought us to a fine spa to enjoy a 1hour Thai massage for 150 baht.
The day was finished with a buffet dinner and my parents ended up in their hotel room with full bellies and a short night before flying to Ko Samui :P

Wat Arun from Chao Phraya river
eating an ice its taste is only surpassed by it's simplicity
Wat Pho
the emerald Buddha at Wat Pho
Loha Prasat

nice view, great building :)

Bayioke Sky tower - highest building in Bangkok

view from Bayioke - unluckily cloudy weather and too much city dust

Saturday, 9 October 2010

Bangkok clubs

So during the 3 weekends I have been here in Bangkok I went to visit some nightclubs :)
The clubs here are pretty cool! Good music, great ambience and mostly some good party crowd.
So far I visited Route66, Spicy, Narz, Climax, Gullivers, Gazebo and Slim. More to come :P
Usually I'm lazy to take pictures in clubs + my camera is broken. But sometimes friends bring along their cam. So I can show you some pics :)
Update (16.10.): I will continue this post with nightlife news, as it makes no sense to open a new post for each weekend^^ So you will see this one being extended each weekend ;)

Rose, I, Lex, Jasper

Jasper, Rose, I, Bee, Lex

Boky, Rose

I, Lex, Jasper

Bee, Rose, I, Boky

Greg, Torrain, Rose, I, Bee

Rose, I
Nut, I, Rose

Friday, 1 October 2010

back in Bangkok

Lately there are problems to open the attached pictures. Use the gallery on the right site if you like to view them in full size ;)

On Sunday (26.09.) I came back from Indonesia to Bangkok. I was really luckily because June - one of my supervisors at university - picked me up from the airport and helped me to arrange everything for my apartment.
Then I just needed Sunday and Monday to take a rest^^ It was quite a big change from Indonesia back to Thailand... I was used to get a long quite sufficiently with Indonesian language... now in Thailand I hardly knew any words and couldn't read anything. Also I had to get used to the neighbourhood of my apartment, till I could find everything I need :)
On Tuesday was my big shopping day^^ At least got 2 shirts and a towel :P
Wednesday and Thursday (30.09.) I went sightseeing. Unluckily my camera is totally broken by now - at least the display. In Sumatra got water into the display and parts of it stopped working. The pictures are still ok but I could see less and less on the display. 2 days before leaving Indonesia even the last bit of it was shut down. So when taking pictures now I just can guess about the shooting... so some pictures are not too good anymore :(
Anyways... on wednesday I took a simply walk through chinatown and started my temple game with Wat Traimit and Wat Samphanthawongsaram (Wat = Temple)... yes there are simply too many temples in Bangkok and most of them are beautiful. Then I visited Lumphini park before having some nice Dim Sum for dinner^^
On thursday was my long journey. Starting with the Chao Phraya express to cruise over the river to the grand palace, seeing Wat Arun on the way. From there walking along the river to see WatPho and further on through a market to the King Puttayodfa memorial and Wat Ratchaburana. Then heading away from the river to Wat Suthatthepwararam and the Giant swing. Next to see the Democracy monument, Loha Prasa, Phrakan Fortress and the Golden Mountain. Then using the canal-boat to Pratunam to enjoy the sunset from Baiyoke Sky tower. First I only found my way to the 14th floor which was a car park, but offered great views anyways^^ Later I found an elevator to go to the lobby at 18th floor from where I could have gone to the observation deck on 84th floor. But sunset was over already, so I decided to use that next time :)

view over Silom (business district) from the roof of my apartment
Wat Trimit (Golden Buddha)
Wat Samphanthawongsaram in chinatown
Dim Sum :D
taking the Chao Phraya boat

Wat Arun from the boat

Wat Pho (next to Grand Palace)

Wat Ratchaburana (next to King Puttayodfa memorial)

Wat Suthatthepwararam

Democracy monument

Loha Prasa

Golden Mountain (the real one was to big to catch on my camera :P)

sunset from 14th floor of Baiyoke sky tower