Wat Ratchabophit : One Of The Most Beautiful Temples In Bangkok!

Posted by : foongpc | Friday, May 27, 2016 | Published in

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Almost anyone who goes to Bangkok would have visited or at least heard of famous temples like Wat Arun and Wat Pho, but many would probably not heard of Wat Ratchabophit.

So during my third day in Bangkok, my friend and I decided to visit this less famous but no less amazing Wat.

After a good breakfast at our hotel, we walked to the nearest BTS Skytrain which is the Surasak Station. I noticed that the famous Blue Elephant Restaurant is just walking distance to the BTS station. I have never dined at this restaurant before - maybe I should try it one day!

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I also noticed that Eastin Grand Hotel has direct covered walkway to the BTS Station, so if you don't mind paying more for accommodation, this hotel sure looks very convenient!

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We took the BTS Skytrain to Saphan Taksin Station where we alighted to take a boat at the Sathorn Pier to Tha Tien Pier. From Tha Tien Pier we walked past Wat Pho and followed the map to cross a canal to reach Astadang Road. Wat Ratchabophit is located somewhere there. The walk from the pier to the temple was about 25 minutes.

Seeing barbed wires on the road reminded us of the political rally happening in Bangkok at that time. Luckily the place was safe and we did not encounter any problems.

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The first thing I noticed about Wat Ratchabophit was the door. There were two guards or watchmen on the door.

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This door to this part of the temple was closed. Later I found out this door led to the Royal Cemetery. We went over to search for the main entrance.

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We found the main door opened with the guards in blue uniform welcoming us.

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I could not help examining the guards up close. They were pretty special, although maybe a tad eerie. I have never seen any temples in Bangkok with uniformed guards in 3D standing at the door!

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After walking past the guards, we saw this beautiful structure in front of us.

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Behind this structure is a circular building.

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Two elephant statues guarding the entrance.

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Hand painted glazed tiles and mirrors made the temple looked so beautiful!

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Closer shot of the exterior wall. So, so pretty. I could not help admiring them again and again.

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Wat Ratchabophit is a Buddhist temple built during the reign of Rama V in the late 19th century. It has an unusual design in which the wiharn (prayer hall) and ubosot (ordination hall) are linked by a circular courtyard. In the middle of the courtyard between the wiharn and ubosot stands a large gilded chedi (pagoda).

I felt a sense of calm walking along the circular building.

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Look at those colourful images on the wall!

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You can see the chedi rising above the circular courtyard from here.

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Very clean and very quiet. I like it very much as there were not many visitors to this temple.

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Forgive me, but I needed to take one more shot even though they were similar looking. LOL.

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The beautiful flower decoration hanging on the ceiling.

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Excuse me, but I needed to take a closer shot. Haha.

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Oh my, will I ever stop admiring the exterior walls?

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Oh my God, this is awesome. Clearly, one of the most beautiful temples I have ever seen in the whole of Bangkok! How come Wat Pho and Wat Arun are more popular?

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I think this is the door that leads to the ubosot. But it's closed during the time of our visit. What a shame! I heard that the ubosot looks like a Roman catholic church inside! Apparently, Rama V was influenced by European architecture.

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More shots of the intricate patterns and designs on the ceiling.

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Sorry, but I just had to take another picture of the door again. LOL.

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Elaborate decorations with gold.

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Chinese deity images.

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The tall chedi in the middle of the courtyard.

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The chedi as seen from outside the courtyard. Oh wait, did I show a similar picture earlier? LOL.

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Approaching the inner circular courtyard, where the chedi stands in the middle.

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Patterns and art work on the ceiling.

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The chedi rising above us.

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We were in the courtyard, in between the chedi and the circular building.

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A few different shots of the chedi.

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The building below the chedi.

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Love this picture!

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OK, one last shot before I call it quits. LOL.

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We were back at the front again with the elephants. It was time to leave.

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Wat Ratchabophit is such an amazing temple! I highly recommend a visit. I might even come here again just to try my luck in entering the ubosot. But the best thing about this Wat must be the lack of crowd and tourists. I hope it will stay that way for a long time!


Red Pork Rice, Starbucks And Bicycles For Rent In Bangkok

Posted by : foongpc | Tuesday, May 17, 2016 | Published in

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On my first day in Bangkok, I met up with a Thai friend for lunch. No, you are not going to see him here as I did not take any photo of him. Haha!

Anyway, as soon as I have checked in to my boutique serviced apartment and settled down a bit, I left the hotel to meet him somewhere in Silom. Outside, I saw these red vehicles lining the road. I wondered what they were as I have not seen them in Bangkok before.

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As I walked towards the nearest BTS Skytrain station which is Surasak Station, I came across these bicycles.

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It was my first time seeing bicycles for rent in Bangkok! I found out later it is known as the Pun Pun Bicycle Sharing Scheme. How nice if Malaysia has a similar system!

First, you need to register at the Pun Pun website (www.punpunbikeshare.com) and collect your smart card which you can then tap on this machine to key in some kind of verification code.

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Then you choose the bicycle that you like and tap your card on the dock to unlock the bike.

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It seems that if you fail to return the bike by the end of the day you will be fined a certain amount. Not sure how that works though. Maybe they could track you down using your address or something. Wonder if tourists are allowed to rent these bicycles?

I did not try it as using the MRT, BTS, tuk-tuk and boats are more than sufficient to get me around Bangkok easily without much hassle.

I met up with my Thai friend at a restaurant along Silom Road (not sure what's the name) to try khao moo daeng or red pork rice.

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The dish is actually red barbecued pork with some sausages and egg with rice covered in a type of slightly sweet red sauce. It tasted good, but not to the extent that I must eat it again. LOL! But I don't mind having it again, of course.

This is the restaurant where we ate. Notice the Chinese characters?

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After lunch, we walked over to Starbucks for some coffee. My brother had, before my trip, asked me to get the Starbucks card from Bangkok, as he wanted to collect Starbucks card from different countries.

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However, I (or rather my brother) was in for a disappointment as the Starbucks card in Bangkok was nothing special. I did not even bother to get the card.

Anyway, I ordered coffee and my Thai friend ordered tea.

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We chatted for some time, before we said good bye and went on our way. That was half a day gone. I spent the remaining part of the day window shopping at Siam Paragon. But let's talk about that in the next post, shall we? :)


My Stay @ Marvin Suites, Bangkok

Posted by : foongpc | Wednesday, May 11, 2016 | Published in

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During my trip to Bangkok back in 2014, I stayed at Marvin Suites, a boutique serviced apartment.

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Located at a quiet street off Sathorn Road, it is within 10 minutes walking distance to Surasak BTS Skytrain station.

I was quite pleased to see the modern looking lobby came complete with books, magazines, newspapers, a TV, a computer, a phone and a coffee machine!

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I did not get a chance to read any of the books though.

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Neither did I get the chance to use the computer. Too busy exploring the streets of Bangkok! LOL.

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This is my room. I have forgotten which floor it is. Haha!

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The room was cosy and clean. I love it!

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Hair dryer, tissues, instant coffee making facilities and an electric kettle - the usual stuff that I expect from a hotel, or rather in this case, serviced apartment.

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The phone and a menu to order for food to be delivered to the room.

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A mini fridge and a safety box were also provided.

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The safety box where I kept my valuables.

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Nothing in the fridge except for two complimentary bottles of mineral water. Well, that's OK as I never ever eat anything from fridges inside hotel rooms. Not worth paying for the exorbitant price when you can get similar stuffs from 7-11 nearby at a fraction of the cost.

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Wardrobe with hangers and an extra pillow which I did not bother to use during my stay.

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The flat screen LCD TV was very important - I watched Thai dramas and Thai music videos every night in my room! Haha!

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The view from my glass window. Not spectacular as expected, but I'm OK with it.

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Another view from the other window. The thick curtains were great to block out the hot sunlight in the daytime.

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Surprisingly, I made instant coffee every night during my stay here. I don't usually drink coffee in hotel rooms during my travel. Not sure why I did it this time, but I just liked it. Haha!

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My cup of hot instant coffee! Awesome.

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I liked that the electrical sockets in this suite were suitable for my three pin plug. I did not have to use an adaptor, unlike in other hotels which I have stayed before in Bangkok. Cool.

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The room was clean and neat, but what about the toilet and bathroom? Very, very important to check them out and I am glad to report that they were pretty clean too! :)

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They provided the usual stuff - shower gel, shampoo, hand soap, and towels. However, no toothbrush, toothpaste and shaver, I am afraid.

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Ooh! I love the rainforest shower! Not sure about you, but this alone made my stay here well worth it! You simply can't imagine how long I spent taking my shower every night! Haha!

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Overall, I was very satisfied with the room. The wifi was pretty good too, though at times it was a tad slow. I only did not like one thing - the room did not have a full length mirror! I always prefer a full length mirror near the door so that I can check how I dressed up before I leave the room.

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It was enjoyable staying here all by myself .... until my friend joined me on the second night. You see, I want this room all for myself. I don't like sharing room with others hahaha! Unless the room is too expensive of course. But for this room, I paid about RM150 per night which is reasonable.

Oh yes, another thing worth mentioning is the breakfast provided by this serviced apartment. I love their breakfast! Every morning I looked forward to have breakfast at their restaurant/cafe.

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The restaurant/cafe had a nice ambience and I could just relaxed while eating here.

This was what I ordered every morning without fail. A cup of coffee and a glass of orange juice. So good.

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You can choose from three different sets of breakfast. I love this Western breakfast with eggs, sausages, mushrooms, tomatoes and baked beans. Yummy!

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No matter which breakfast set you choose, toasts with butter and jam were provided together with a glass of orange juice. Honestly, this may look simple and not a big deal, but I felt it was my best breakfast ever!

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The staff at this serviced apartment were friendly and nice. That made my stay here even more enjoyable. I would definitely return here again next time!

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Marvin Suites
Sathorn Soi 11,  sub soi 2,
Sathorn Road Yanawa,
Sathorn, Bangkok.
www.marvinsuites.com