Day 5: June 6


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5-1. Chiang Mai International Airport

Ms. Koh and I checked out the Westin Chiangmai Hotel at 7:30 AM. Then, we got on the hotel shuttle at 8:00 AM. Fifteen minutes later, we checked in our flight in Chiang Mai International Airport. The airport tax was 30 Baht. We paid it at the check-in counter. After that, I exchanged British Pounds for Thai Baht. The exchange rate was 69.37 Baht for 1 Pound. And I sent postcards at a post office. It was behind escalators. We took off at 9:15 AM and arrived at Bangkok Airport (Don Muang) at 10:15 AM.

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5-2. The Oriental Bangkok

We reserved the Oriental Bangkok Hotel two months before. The hotel had a limousine service to and from the airport. The car was a Mercedes Benz. We met a limousine driver at Domestic Terminal. At 11:10 AM, we arrived at the Oriental Bangkok. One of the concierges was Japanese. She was very helpful. She said that it was too early to check in the hotel. We talked our sightseeing plan over with her. She arranged a hotel limousine (560 Baht per an hour). And we asked her to reserve our lunch at Lord Jim's Restaurant in the Oriental Bangkok. At 11:25 AM, we checked in.

 Go "Welcome Fruits and Drink, the Oriental Bangkok"
Photo: Welcome Fruits and Drink, the Oriental Bangkok

We were shown to our room. There were "welcome fruits" on the table. A butler brought "welcome drink" in soon.

At 12:00 PM, we went to Lord Jim's Restaurant. The restaurant named after "Lord Jim". It was written by Joseph Conrad. He was a frequent guest of the hotel. I enjoyed international buffet lunch (859.10 Baht).

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5-3. Sightseeing of Bangkok

 Go "Garden and Golden Chedi, Wat Phra Kaeo"  Go "Prasart Phra Debidorn (The Royal Pantheon), Wat Phra Kaeo"
Photos: Garden and Golden Chedi, Wat Phra Kaeo (Left)
and Prasart Phra Debidorn (The Royal Pantheon), Wat Phra Kaeo (Right)

At 1:30 PM, we rode on the hotel limousine to go sightseeing. First, we went to "The Grand Palace and Wat Phra Kaeo (the Temple of the Emerald Buddha)". Admission fee was 125 Baht. "Wat Phra Kaeo" is the Royal Chapel. I had never seen such a colorful temple. And there was "the Emerald Buddha image". It was the most sacred Buddha image in Thailand. Photography was forbidden inside the building. In the 15th century, it was at "Wat Chedi Luang" in Chiang Mai. As we arrived there, it was a rain.

 Go "Reclining Buddha, Wat Pho"
Photo: Reclining Buddha, Wat Pho

Second, we went to "Wat Pho (the Temple of the Reclining Buddha)". Admission fee was 20 Baht. It stopped raining. There was a gigantic golden "the Reclining Buddha". The temple has also Thai traditional massage school. Visitors can get massages, or study massages here.

 Go "Wat Arun"
Photo: Wat Arun

Third, we went to "Wat Arun (the Temple of the Dawn)". Admission fee was 10 Baht. The temple is on the side of the Chao Phraya River. Towers decorated with mosaic of Chinese porcelain. Although the highest tower had staircase and visitors had a nice view of Bangkok from the halfway, it was under construction.

Finally, we went to "World Trade Center". It had two department stores, many shops, an ice skating rink, and mini movie theaters. We browsed around there. We returned the hotel at 6:45 PM and tipped a driver 50 Baht.

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5-4. Raad Naa Moo

 Go "Raad Naa Moo"
Photo: Raad Naa Moo

At 8:00 PM, I ate room service dinner at the room. I ordered "raad naa moo" and tea (568.70 Baht). I was surprised that a waiter brought them with a table and he set the table in front of my bed. I had to sit in the short side of the bed while eating dinner. It was a strange experience. "Raad naa moo" was stir fried large rice-noodles with pork. The taste was thin. I added the Thai fish sauce, "Nam Pla".

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Copyright © 1999 Mayumi Watanabe All Rights Reserved.