Bangkok on a Bicycle- 5 tips to a successful trip
Travel Tip no 1. Make sure you dress appropriately for any temples or places of worship. Generally women are required to wear modest clothing that covers their shoulders, and upper arms, as well as legs and even ankles in some places. Failure to pack what’s necessary means you’ll have to rent a shirt that someone has probably already worn before you that day.
We arrived in the city in the early morning, and were vaguely horrified by the concrete jungle covered with smog that had us dripping with sweat within seconds of leaving the airport. Our first attempt at sightseeing left us feeling harassed, annoyed and apprehensive at the thought Travel Tip no 2. Make sure your socks don’t have holes in them, you’ll have to remove your shoes before you enter said places of worship.
Travel Tip no 2. Make sure your socks don’t have holes in them, you’ll have to remove your shoes before you enter said places of worship.
there, and there was still another day to go. Swamped by hawkers, punters and beggars we made our way to the Grand Palace Complex where the exquisite architecture and beautiful mosaics and statues made up for the noise, the constant attempts to sell various forms of art and the assortment of potential pickpockets and scam artists.
The highlight of our day turned out to be a ride on a tuk-tuk. Not one of the tourist variety, but rather a government issue vehicle that cost us the equivalent of R10- this for a 4 hour ride around Bangkok. We were assured the tuk-tuk would take us to wherever we wanted to go, but alas the pay-off for our sunny ride around the city was an attempt for the driver to earn commission from his friend’s jewellery and suit making stores.
Travel Tip no 3. Always agree on the price of your transport and destination with the driver before you start moving, many tourists have been misled in terms of fare and have ended up in some unusual destinations.
Travel Tip no 4. Beware of the food! Thai food is absolutely delicious, but only eat in proper restaurants until you get a little more used to the food. General rule of thumb is if you can’t cook it or peel it, don’t eat it! A number of mobile pavement eateries seem to serve up food that resembles our pets that are hanging on hooks over fires and grills. I don’t care to elaborate too much on this point for animal-loving reasons. Try to drink bottled water at all times, and even use this water to brush your teeth. Bangkok Belly is not a joke!
Enjoy your trip to Bangkok! It is a very different city, but if you look past its frenetic and often poverty-stricken exterior, you’ll find a place where there is much to eat, drink, see and do. The
Travel Tip no 5. Don’t take a bicycle tour unless you can actually ride a bicycle. Don’t laugh, it’s amazing how many people think that a riding lesson is included, and have never actually sat on a bicycle seat before. The concrete pathways that form part of the tour are narrow and if you’re not careful you’ll end up in the water. Wear loads of sunscreen, and don’t forget your hat and sunglasses. Make sure that you have a bottle of water wherever you go.