Sunday, August 24, 2008
I just returned from a short free and easy holiday in Bangkok just to see for myself what it has to offer. Plus a birthday gift for my wife! Here are the impressions I got. Bangkok is a tourist friendly city. From the new Suvarnabhumi International Airport to the city 50 minutes away, depending on the condition of the traffic snarl, you will be able to find lots of taxis that run on meters. In the city you can also use the tuk tuks but be aware of not being fleeced. For a cheap ride they will taken you to retail outlets to buy Thai silk or gems. There are lots of places to see and visit but the weather can be very hot and humid, much like Kuala Lumpur. The city is quite disorganized and ill-laid out. The adventurous will find it a fun place to be in. Signage is mainly Thai so you can get lost in unfamiliar places. Cost of living quite high although taxi fare still cheap at average of under 100 THB within the city. Compared to Malaysia, my impression is we enjoy a better living standard, better traffic (our jams are a lot less frustrating too) and places of visit of equivalent standard. Malaysians are as friendly as Thais. We have a better standard of English which is certainly a big plus to foreign travelers. Admittedly Bangkok has the river cruises that we lack, and some excellent cultural shows, like the Siam Niramit, worth going to. What we lack we make up in other ways. Overall impression? A nice place to go. Other than that Kuala Lumpur can stand up to Bangkok anytime.