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Expert comments on our itinerary?

Aventura, Florida
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Expert comments on our itinerary?

Would appreciate any comments/suggestions on this plan for Bangkok arriving November 8th. We are seniors interested in culture and antiquities. We are coming from Siem Reap so no jet lag.

Saturday

Arrive Suvarnabhumi 2 p.m.

evening Asiatique for dinner and Calypso Cabaret show

Sunday

Grand Palace

Queen Sirikit Museum of Textiles

Wat Phra Kaew Museum

Longtail boat tour canals to Taling Chan Floating Market

Wat Arun

Monday

Day trip with guide

Ayutthaya Historical Park

Bang Pa In

elephant experience

Tuesday

Wat Pho

Bank of Thailand Museum

Ananda Samakhom Throne Hall

Vimanmek Mansion

evening Noy Lava sunset dinner cruise

Wednesday

National Museum

Chinatown

possibly a shopping mall

Thursday

Day trip with guide to Samut Sakhon/Samut Songkram

salt farm

Maekhlong Railway Market

Wat Bang Kung

Wat Sattatham

Wat Amphawa Chetiyaram

Friday

Lumpini Park (early morning)

Suan Pakkad Palace Museum

evening Khon Masked Dance at Sala Chalermkrung Royal Theatre

Saturday

Chatuchak weekend market

evening Siam Niramit show

Sunday

Samphran Elephant Ground & Zoo

possibly a shopping mall

A few questions.

About how long from BKK airport to the Peninsula by taxi on a Saturday?

What is our best/safest way to get back from Siam Niramit after the show (around 10 at night)?

Should a longboat charge be per person/per hour or just by the boat/per hour?

Which is the best river bus pier to walk through Chinatown?

Will I find silk kimono-style robes at the Chatuchak market?

Thank you so much for your time and expertise.

Co Van Kessel Bangkok Tours
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Pawtucket, RI
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1. Re: Expert comments on our itinerary?

Some tourists also have a good time when they just go with the flow and play it by ear.

Do a forum search for transportation from airport. Maybe 500 posts asking same or similar question. See FAQ's on the side. Usually under an hour by taxi. Depends on traffic.

You might get more help with fewer questions in a single post.

Forum search will answer some of your questions or get you in the right direction.

tripadvisor.com/…46915451

Bangkok, Thailand...
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2. Re: Expert comments on our itinerary?

Book a tour for Siam Niramit. Free transport.

Airport to city is 40 to 60 mins.

London, United...
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3. Re: Expert comments on our itinerary?

Taxi from airport allow about an hour,

Best way to get back from Siam Niramit is to either book a tour as suggestd above or make an arrangement with the taxi driver that takes you there.

Longtailed boats usualy charge by the boat per hour or per set tour.

Pier for chinatown is Rachawongs (N5)

bangkok.com/attraction-waterway/chao-phraya-…

I have in the past seen robes such as you describe at Chatuchak and also in Pratunam but of course merchandise changes all the time.

Hope that helps

Aventura, Florida
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4. Re: Expert comments on our itinerary?

Thank you LondonChris, that helps a lot.

I thought traffic might be lighter on a Saturday than on a weekday?

We don't want to go to Siam Niramit with a tour because we want to go early and may possibly want to leave early. Could we trust that the taxi would come back or should we book a car service, unless you think taking the BTS back to Central Pier would be an option if we were stood up.

Any thoughts on the itinerary? Is any of it too ambitious or have we left out anything important?

Thanks again for your help.

Bangkok, Thailand...
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5. Re: Expert comments on our itinerary?

Tours go early like 2.5 hrs to allow for dinner. You cant really leave early cause the show is still going and its very good.

Your plan looks really packed. Id drop a couple of things. Bkk is fun to just walk around.

Edited: 22 August 2014, 17:54
Vancouver
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6. Re: Expert comments on our itinerary?

Hello, Retired Floridian... I think your itinerary is great! Judging by the kinds of things you said you want to see, it looks good, but you may want to cut out a few things as the days go by as that's a pretty full itinerary and you may want and/or need some down time to just take a stroll, eat some tasty street food, mingle with the locals, enjoy the markets...

As for the Siam Niramit show, you don't need to book a tour - just flag a taxi and perhaps have your hotel write the name in Thai for the driver. It's a good idea to have dinner somewhere, either before or after the show as the dinner they offer at Siam Niramit Cultural Centre is not great. Try and get there at least a 1/2 hour early as there are interesting things to look at before the show. It might take you 1/2 hr to 40 minutes to get there by taxi, depending on the traffic. The show starts at 8 pm. It is a really wonderful show - over 500 costume changes, amazing set designs, a real mosaic of the culture and history and music and food, architecture, religious structures, etc. of Thailand in the north, south, east and west of the country. The show was created and designed by the man who created the Opening Ceremonies for the China Olympics. After the show, it will be easy for you to get a taxi either to a restaurant for a late dinner or back to your hotel. When you come out of the building, there is a very large parking lot full of taxis and attendants who will get you into a taxi very quickly. Bring a business card from your hotel with you to show to the taxi driver on your way home. Have the hotel staff write your hotel name in Thai on the card, if it isn't already there.

You mention the Loy Nava Dinner Cruise - there are 2 sailings - 6 pm sunset cruise and 8 pm - after dark. I recommend the 6 pm time as you get to see the sunset and also all the beautiful wats and historical buildings all lit up after dark. I really enjoyed the cruise last year. It is a rice barge, holds about 35-40 people, and you will have your own table. Great service and food, good photo ops so be sure to take your camera... You can make arrangements to be picked up at your hotel and brought back to it after the cruise - Go to their website and you will be able to book your menu (either Thai or Western food), as well as arranging hotel p/u to the pier and back - there is no charge for that service. It is a 2 hour cruise, very interesting to be out on the river with all the other gaily lit up boats, and much to see on both sides of the river.

Another place I recommend strongly is the Erawan Museum - it is the most beautiful of all the museums I've seen in my travels. It really is exquisite! 20 minutes by taxi away from the museum is a very large venue called "The Ancient City"... inside the grounds, which are extensive, are many, many reproductions of the historical sites of Thailand in beautiful detail. This is not a "Disney" type place - The landscaping is fantastic as is the detail of the buildings done to scale. There are signs at each site on the grounds explaining what the significance is of each place. Because the grounds are so large, you can rent a golf cart and travel over the many paved paths to see all the sights. It's a fun and non-strenuous way to get around and see a lot. If you decide to go, and I highly suggest you do, go early - it opens at 8 am and takes at least a couple of hours to see everything.

Regarding Chachuchak Market on Saturday of your itinerary, be sure to get there early - I think it opens at 9am and it is a covered market and HUGE! and it gets very hot in there by 11 am... Take a hat, and bottled water - you can buy it there as well. You can go by BTS (Transit) or by taxi. I have mobility issues so I used taxis a lot. I don't know your situation but if you plan to use the Skytrain and MRT, be aware that there are no escalators going down, just many,many steps, and the UP escalators only go part way up and then there are more stairs up to the platform. Supposedly, there are elevators somewhere in the transit system - I never could find any, and apparently you need to find an attendant to unlock the elevator for use, and attendants are pretty much non-existent in that regard. So if you have bad knees like I do, a taxi is your friend... :)

Go into air-conditioned malls or buildings if the heat gets too much! Use the boat system on the river to get around as well. It is cheap and a great way to see different aspects of Bangkok. Have a great Trip!

Vancouver
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7. Re: Expert comments on our itinerary?

One thing I forgot to mention.... regarding taking taxis, when you flag a taxi down, open the rear door and tell him where you want to go and if he'll use the meter. If he says yes, get in and away you go. If he tries to bargain with you on the fare, leave the taxi and flag down another. Only go with the ones that use their meters. The taxis that try to bargain, are not desirable as they can be unpleasant. A taxi driver who agrees to use the meter, you will have no problems with. Just pay the fare on the meter at your destination and maybe give him a few more baht if you liked his service.

Another thing, taxis that hang around hotels mostly will try and bargain with you for as high a fare as they can get, and will mostly refuse to use their meters. Don't bother with them, even if your hotel says they'll get you a taxi. Just walk out to the nearest roadway, and put your hand out, palm down, and a taxi will be there instantaneously! Just ask him to use the meter and get a confirmation on where you want to go...

Taxis are cheap and air-conditioned, but the real problem is the traffic gridlock in Bangkok. It is really bad, most of the time... So leave early for wherever you want to go. Hope this helps.

Washington DC...
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8. Re: Expert comments on our itinerary?

Do more shopping malls and food courts/street food!!

Aventura, Florida
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9. Re: Expert comments on our itinerary?

Skeezix, thank you. Very helpful details.

The only thing is, you say to knock off a couple of things and then give me two more to do. Would you choose the Erawan over the Suan Paddak Palace Museum? Or possibly we could plan Erawan and the Ancient City for Sunday and move the Elephant Zoo to a different afternoon. The problem with the zoo, it is in the opposite direction from everything else and my husband is keen on seeing the elephant show (3:30 to 4, we don't care about the rest of it).

Vancouver
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10. Re: Expert comments on our itinerary?

Sorry about that... you're right. You've got your itinerary almost set and I come along and add a couple more. It's just that the Erawan Museum is so beautiful and spiritual, and the Ancient City is also fantastic, and I thought I'd suggest them because they are so wonderful. I can't compare Erawan Museum with the Suan Paddak Palace Museam as I haven't seen it.

As for the Zoo, I have only seen the one in Chiang Mai so can't advise on that. Could you go to the zoo the same day you go to Chachuchak Market? Why not google Ancient City and Erawan Museum online and see what you think after having a look at both places. You could also google: "pictures of Erawan Museum" and that would give you more of an idea of it. Your plate is already full, so I won't make any more suggestions.

Edited: 23 August 2014, 00:13