Krung Thep, City of Angels, is the Thai Name for Bangkok, Thailand.

Bangkok is one of the world's most exciting & stimulating city.  Bangkok is 24 hour excitement .. adventures, sights, sounds, tastes ..vivid technicolor memories. 

Bangkok is Environmental Stimulation .. Cultural Stimulation .. Culinary Stimulation

Bangkok, Thailand: Where the 21st Century West has melded into the Ancient Far East

 

Bangkok is the 22nd largest city on the planet. A short trip from the congestion that dominates ultra modern Bangkok is a rural Thailand that is defined by the wonderful laid back traditional Thai mai pen rai  (don't worry, be happy & smile) lifestyle.

 

 

 

 

 

 

Bangkok is a 21st century city.  Boingo ( the world leading network provider)  alone has over 4000 Wi-Fi hot spots in Bangkok.

 

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The taxi que at Suvarnabhumi (pronounced 'Su - wanna - poom') Airport.

September 28, 2006: Bangkok's new US$3 billion airport, Suvarnabhumi Airport opened It can handle over 75 flights per hour & 45 million passengers per year.  Tourism accounts for almost 15% of the Thai GNP & this new airport is designed to make Bangkok the leading air hub & tourist destination in Asia.

A doctor can bury his mistakes but an architect can only advise his clients to plant vines. Frank Lloyd Wright (1868-1959)

Abandon it.~ Frank Lloyd Wright (1868-1959), asked how he would  improve Pittsburgh

4 months after opening Bangkok's Suvarnabhumi Airport, AKA Cobra Swamp Field,  is suffering from cracked runways

.. cracks large enough to pose a safety risk. 

More than 100,000 sq meters (1,000,000 sq feet) of runway are affected. The the construction was bonded by Diphaya Insurance.
Repair costs are expected to be more than Bt1 billion,

Suvarnabhumi airport is built on a drained swamp .. Cobra Swamp .. Suvarnabhumi is known by locals affectionately  as Cobra Swamp Field..

Both domestic & international flights in January 2007 are being delayed dues to runway safety.

January, 2007.  Foundation problems are now being noted in Suvarnabhumi's terminal .. & all is attributed to corruption in former PM Thaksin's ousted government ..

The Suvarnabhumi runway cracks were reported in the Bangkok Post 2 years prior to the airport opening.   A lawsuit was threatened by the PM Thaksin's cronies /  contractors.  The Bangkok Post published a retraction & the editor who uncovered the faulty construction was fired!

24 August 2005, Bangkok Post news editor Chadin Thepaval was forced to resign by ousted PM Thaksin because of his correct report about cracks in the runway of Thailand's new Suvarnabhumi Airport.

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The "looped pathway" of the Chao Praya River, through Bangkok, is known as an elephant ear.

I lub the klong tu mutt.  Khun Tem

Lupini Park is an green oasis of serenity hidden in the bustle of Bangkok ..  Lupini is perfect for a jog, skate, bike, walk

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Transportation via ultramodern Sky Train & Sub Way & the klongs..  MBK Shopping Center has it's own sky train stop

  Bangkok is Shopping Paradise! 

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Grand Palace Bangkok, Khmer ruins in Buri Ram Province, 30 story office building built to look like an elephant

Bangkok / Pattaya / Hua Hin Road Map. 

Bangkok's best waitress, wearing Bangkok's best T-Shirt

 

Lupini Park is an oasis of serenity hidden in the bustle of Bangkok

A recommended limo service is Swasdee Limousine

Tel: +66 6-533-4822   Fax:+66 2-928-4655  Email:   alann@asianet.co.th

Airport - Sukhumvit  Thb600     Ayuttaya RT 1500     Hua Hin 1 way 2500

Direct links to over 200 Thai hotels & apartments .. 45 Bangkok Hotels with free WiFi Internet.

Relatively young & modern Bangkok, founded in 1782, is surrounded by City State Archeological Sites

Tokyo Joe's, Bangkok's home to the Blues, has moved to a beautiful new home .. 3 months remodeling Jeff's new club + move!

IT'S BEAUTIFUL!  ... check it out ..   Directions?  02 661-0359

25/9 Sukhumvit Soi 26 (1 long block past the Emporium, take a right on to Soi 26, Tokyo Joes is on your left 1 block, directly opposite the TARA Hotel)

give Big Jeff a  "high 5 well done"    (it's Jeff's voice on our videos)

Thailand Maps   Thai Visas come in 4 flavors: Tourist, Work, Marriage & Retirement.

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Google " Bangkok Serviced Apartment " for Bangkok's best short term accommodation options: 

The 'coolest hot rod', :-o)) , water taxis are on the Mekong, at the Golden Triangle. 

   

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Perfect Thailand health souvenir: a professionally designed exercise program?

Europeans, Aussies, Japanese, Chinese, Americans .. businessmen, entrepreneurs, tourists & expats all trying to meld into the uniqueness that is the Thai culture and the structured chaos that is unique to Bangkok.

 

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Bangkok is modern high rise office buildings surrounded by busy food cart vendors.  The carts often have rice cooked in traditional 3" diameter section of bamboo.. way better than any rice pot.. + the bamboo serves as take away packaging

Fruit carts are on most streets with chilled fresh watermelon, papaya or pineapple for 10 BT, 25us cents.

The fruit stands / vendors will cut any fruit into snack-able chunks of fresh fruit

Above: Diane Stratton (obviously Ms. World Figure) getting a fresh pineapple & papaya  snack after her workout.

A multi coarse meal is possible by shopping at several different carts .. get the specialty of each cart to make a multi course meal.

 

The food cart kow  is excellent! ( Thai word for meal & rice is kow )

  Food carts in front of 5 star restaurants is common & the cart may be better!

Easy to find stops on Bangkok's most famous canal / klong, Klong San Saep

  • Klong San Saep is parallel to & between Sukhumvit - New Petchaburi.

    • Easy to find stops:

      • Ekkamia / Petchaburi: behind the green high rise w/ McDonalds, left side of the building.  Between the green high rise & the bridge.

      • Soi 3, several blocks down the 6 lane section from Sukhumvit. ..at Suk & Soi 3 facing the 'Nana sky train station'  it is too your left!

      • Chitlom: behind the Central Department Store  .. from the sky train it's the opposite side from Silom Square & down Chitlom 2 blocks.

      • WTC: between the WTC ( facing WTC to your right ) & Petchaburi, cross the foot bridge, left to the Klong stairs.

  • The 'Main Klong Bus Route' ends at the Ratchada Bridge ( near the World Trade Center  & Panthip Plaza ) & smaller Klong buses continue all the way to Wat Pho.

    • Exit the Klong Station stairs left, there is a food bridge over Ratchada.  Exit the foot bridge & WTC is too your left & Pantip Plaza ( electronic wonderland ) is to your right past the fish market on the other side of the Klong.

  • The fish market has a quite fantastic selection of fresh fish ( beautifully arranged & displayed I must add ), pick your fresh / live seafood item & they cook.

    • The mixed natural colors of fresh seafood artistically displayed is quite beautiful.  & the street hawker is a trip.

    • Bangkok is a traffic nightmare.  From 6:30 a.m. until 9 p.m. street traffic is all but gridlock.

The new sky train is wonderful in certain sections of the city.

  • Purchase one of the multi trip or  multi-day unlimited passes to avoid 'foolin' with' right change coins

    • A sub way system is under construction that will connect with the sky train.

    • Subway partially opens July 3, 2004.

International flights arrive at Bangkok's Don Muang.  30 minutes ( at midnight! ) the from city center.

  • Link to Don Muang's site ( w/ Thai airline Thailand domestic schedule  )

  • The money exchange at the airport does not provide the best exchange rate .. BUT ,, you need Thai baht as soon as you exit the terminal!!

  • A few 1000s THB 'can' get you through your first few hours .. if your flight arrives at night you might want to get more spending money 'til the banks open.
  • 24 hour ATMs are 'everywhere' outside the airport, but you need Thb to leave the airport.

The Chatuchuck / JJ Market offers incredible shopping opportunities.  Google Satellite Image of the market.

  • Located adjacent to BTS Mo Chit Station & the southern bus terminal.

    • Mo Chit is at the southern end of the sky train.

    • Mo Chit is also the southern bus terminal.  For both cross town & cross country buses.

    • You cannot miss the market from the Mo Chit Sky Train Station.

    • All mass transit goes to Mo Chit.

  • & trust me it is a huge ( HUGE ) market!  It covers 142,000 mē or almost 35 acres.

  • It can be incredibly warm in the crowded aisles.

    • Weekends process as many as 300,000 shoppers each day.

  "I love JJ market .. it's quite the scene."  Khun Tem

Most Bangkok & Pattaya hotels will arrange private limousine transport to your hotel. ..

  •  600 THB, $15 US, 12 EU, 19.75 AUD.  Double to Pattaya.200 - 300 THB more than taxi, but you will get out of the airport 30 minutes faster.

  • Go to the taxi stand, do not mess with hustlers with private cars for hire.

  • Most cab drivers speak some or little English, there are bilingual attendants at the taxi stand.

  • The 'attendant' at the taxi stand is 110% multi-lingual, tell HIM ( the attendant ) your desired location. 

  • Do not wait for the taxi to get on the express way to determine if the driver really knows where you are going!

  • Once you learn your important street names & master pointing from the back seat .. getting around in Bkk is easy.

  • On my first trip I took a Bangkok city bus bus from the airport ( like the stupid guide book said I could! ), I saved 400 THB / $9.50 & was totally confused & lost.  Take the taxi, if you can afford air fare you can afford the 500 THB/ $10. taxi to town!

  • Link to the Suvarnabhumi Airport site  at Nong Ngu Hao, AKA  "Cobra Swamp Field".

There are 2 Muay Thai / Thai Kick Boxing venues in Bangkok.  They alternate nights so there is a Muay Thai event most evenings.

http://www.muaythai.com/ Rajadamnern Stadium, Bangkok, Thailand . 72 kg Muay Thai extravaganza comprises 8 invincible contenders all over the world. The winner gets 1,000,000 Baht.More detail ... lots of pics of Thai Professional Muay Thai Boxers.

  • Sit in the mid-priced seats.

  • The cheapest seats are really really really  crowded.

  • The rowdy Thais 'vigorous & enthusiastic  betting', :-), in the cheap seats is as much fun to watch as the kick boxing event.

  • If there are no Thais betting it is a tourist, WWF style, 'fixed' event!

    • The WWF style events in tourist areas ( Walking Street, Pattaya & Bangla Road, Patong Si ) are lots of fun, but staged.

    • There is more dramatic kicks & blows in the scripted WWF type Muay Thai.  Much like WWF has more action than Olympic Greco Roman wrestling.

  • In the mid 1970s 5 top Hong Kong Kung Fu champions came to Bangkok for a martial arts face off.

    • None of the 5 Hong Kong Kung Fu masters lasted 2 minutes!  All 5 were carried out in less than 2 minutes of the 1st round.

The blending of rural & urban life, that is the prevalent in the west, is not present ( yet ) in Thailand.  

Metro-Bangkok has 10% of the people & 99.99% of the traffic jams while the rural areas comprise 99.99% of the geographic area.

Khun Tem's favorite places .. & for each mentioned there are 100s that should have been mentioned.

  • The Buffet at the Baiyoke Tower hotel is OK "kow" (Thai word for meal & rice = kow) ( I would not eat it at street level, but, it's not at street level), the night view from the top of the tallest hotel in Thailand is spectacular.

Daytime view from Baiyoke Tower .. 

Baiyoke nights are quite illuminating ..  .

  • Country Road , Sukhumvit Soi 19,  <66> 02 433 4828  near Robinson's Department Store,  is a favorite stop.. 

  • The first floor restaurant / club has Thai bands playing hits from the 60's, 70's & 80's.  Paul Simon to Jimi Hendrix.  Better than the Filipino Jazz bands at the fancy hotels.

  • Khun Bob is a world class guitar slinger .. Request Hey Joe or Wild Thing for a Rock & Roll Performance to be remembered .. a 100 Tbt bill accompanying the request will result in an immediate rendition.

  • This same band has been playing at Country Road since 1997.

  • Some late nights they play at Country Roads I, several blocks down Suk at Asoke.
  • The second band each night is an Issan Lao Band .. the dance floor gets real crowded when the Western rock is replaced by Issan Rock ,, watch the Thai lasses from Issan  go wild!

  • Tykeo Joe's

  • On occasion there are elephant handlers selling bananas to feed their elephants in the Country Road / Soi 19 parking area.

    • Spring, 2004.  The authorities have deemed the elephant side walk acts to be hazardous to traffic & less than

    • There is a 'Lao Disco' on the 3rd floor that has Lao bands all the time, more traditional Issan music

  • The Thai disco dancers include a combination of the traditional Thai / Lao dance hand movements with modern disco dancing is quite interesting.

  • The same hand movements used in traditional Thai dance are integrated into pop dancing by the crowd!

  • Some serious "get down Traditional Thai dance"  .. funky Thai disco from the Issan lasses.

  • Makes me smile big time to attempt the combination of the 'classic Thai hand dancing' with modern disco

  • Traditional & full dress, Thai Classical Dance is certainly worth at least one dinner theater type evening. 

  • The Nairi Hotel's lobby bar, on Silom Road, pours a generous snifter of Martel XO for 300 baht.  Non intrusive, Filipino Pop Bands playing easy listening western pop music.

  • The Nairi bartenders have proven to be a wealth of information on several occasions.

    • Good information warrants a good tip!

Check out some of the local bands.

  • Players from all parts of the world playing music, from jazz to hard rock, in a true world fusion form.

  • There is quite a Jazz scene in Bangkok.  Check out the Bangkok Post for bands.

  • There is a developing Blues scene.  Soi Dog Blues Band,  plays a good selection of John Lee Hooker / Stevie Ray Vaughn blues.  The Dutch lead guitar player, Jeff, &  Thai players do play the blues .. Khun Toy, bass, has the biggest smile in Bangkok!

 

2004: Jeff has opened a blues club of his own, along with Danish Iggy.

  • Tokyo Joes, 3 blocks past the Emporium on Soi 24.

  • 25/9 Sukhumvit Soi 26 (1 long block past the Emporium, take a right on Soi 26, Tokyo Joes is on your left 1 block, directly opposite the TARA Hotel)

  • Tel 02 661 0359

  • Bargain food & drink ... some interesting Thai culinary adaptations to assorted western & Japanese dishes.

  • It's located in a mostly 'Japanese Area' ( Tokyo Joes ) & is about 30 meters off the street.. small sign.. real hard to see from a taxi on your first visit.

  • taxi coming from Suk  ..  .. 3 long blocks down .. right side coming from Suk .. a convenience store like grocery mart on right is 2/3 way down  .. ..it's on the right ..( & not the 7-11 just past the Emporium that's on on the left ) .. after passing the 'convenience grocery mart' 1.5 long blocks.. 200 meters from Suk  .. start repeating  slow .. slow with hand motions over the front seat back, from the back seat hands in front seat pushing down as repeating slow  .. over & over .. or get out & walk the last 50 meters ..

  • The Sunday blues jam is a blast.

  • Catch Georgia & The Blues Coolies on Tuesdays in 2006

  • Big Jeff did the 'voice over' for our weight lifting video featuring Mr. Thailand & Ms. World Figure.

  • Big Jeff is quite knowledgeable regarding weight lifting,  down to detailed Kinesiology.

The 9 piece(!) house band at the Siam Square Hard Rock puts out some jams that are hard to sit to

  • .. high energy classic rock boogie dancin' .. a close packed enthusiastic crowd... cover + pricy drinks..

  • Experienced Hardened Rockers station them selves under the ceiling mount A/C ducts..

The open air Tuk Tuks are an adventure & the drivers know many interesting & the out of the way shopping opportunities.  

  • Tuk Tuks are often more expensive than taxis!

  • They get a 'commission' for taking you to a tourist trap shopping venue.

  • Agree to 'view products' in several tourist retail shops & a smart tuk tuk driver will drive you around for FREE!  

  • Just ridin' & lookin' for the sake of ridin' & lookin'!

  • Major & organized "Gem Rip-off" scams are possible. 

  • DO NOT BUY ANYTHING ON A TUK TUK JEWELRY TOUR .. guaranteed rip-off.

  • The street vendors are often over priced but interesting.  

 

Weightlifting Video Filmed in Thailand

& if you love your Brewed coffee..

Chiang Mai

Bangkok Gyms

Bangkok  

Udon & Ubon

Shopping paradise

Thai beach resorts

Thailand Festivals

A 'cooperative guide' can more than save you his fee 

   Thai Hotel & Apartment  

Link to Don Muang's site

Angelic Audio .. Manufacturers of Audiophile Tube Amplifiers.

Call Kris .. <66> (02) 661-2853 - 4

 .. or stop in, 220VOLTS on Sukhumvit near Soi 30 .. just down from the Emporium.

Bring in your favorite CD / DVD to find out what it should sound like. . 220VOLT has a  plush audition room!

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