Unexpected Thailand

Posted by Crooked Compass

24 Hours In...Unexpected Bangkok

Whether you are flying from Australia, USA, Britain or some other far away destination, it is likely that at some point you will transit in Bangkok, the capital city of Thailand. Why not take advantage of the plane ticket you purchased and break up your journey with a 24 hour stopover. Bangkok is a fascinating, exciting an intoxicating city to visit. With over nine million inhabitants living within the city you will find yourself encountering every walk of life, from the extrmely poor to the mega rich; they all congregate in the one city and each feels at home as the other.

Over the years Bangkok has received a bad rap for being a destination that was better known for its GoGo Bars and fake designer handbags stalls. However, a visit to Bangkok can be culturally immersive and that mini break you are looking for as part of a stopover or pre/post your tour kicking off. Check out our list of unique accommodation, dining, transport and experiences to immerse yourself in a different side of Bangkok; don’t forget to pack your sense of adventure and open mind for a couple of our suggestions!

Bangkok Stopover - Crooked Compass

Unique Accommodation: Bangkok Tree House

Tucked away in a patch of Jungle on the banks of the Chao Phraya River, this quirky eco- hotel with bamboo and glass architecture is accessible only by boat, bike or foot.

Bangkok Tree house is perfect for those looking for an alternative experience in Bangkok. Accomodations options range from basic open air treetop ‘nest’ rooms with mosquito nets, to relaxed 2 story rooms featuring glass walls and furnished rooftop terraces, all having river views. For the full nature experience, try the “View with a room” which is an open-air platform under the stars and surrounded by mangroves.

Located just outside the city centre, the Bangkok Tree House allows you to sleep under the stars in a natural environment without going up any home comforts and also offers free bicycle rental to explore the ‘Green Lung of Bangkok’.

Insider Tip: Being a totally ‘green’ environment this accommodation may not be for everyone. You will enjoy the Bangkok Tree House if you love trees, plants, exotic lizards, birds, firflies, cicada, butterflies and mother nature.

Sleep amongst the stars Photo Credit: Bangkok Tree House

Unique Dining: Cabbages and Condoms

Yes you read correctly, Cabbages and Condoms! This is one restaurant with a difference; using a quirky name to get attention and highlight a serious issue. It is also a great place to enjoy some seriously tasty Thai food, knowing that part of the profit goes to a good cause is also another reason to visit. Money from your meal is used to support development programs initiated by the Population and Community Development Program (PDA). The restaurant motto is ‘our food won’t make you pregnant’ - one of the more unusual tag lines we have seen in the city.

The theme of the restaurant is defiantly half of the fun, as you wander down the leafy path you discover your first condom character. Throughout the restaurant there are a series of life size mannequins dressed up in rubber; Captain Condom, a bride and Father Christmas are just a few to mention. Although there are plenty of amusing things to keep you entertained, it is the atmosphere on the terrace that is worth a mention. Picture thousands of fairy lights hanging from the trees and a bubbling man made waterfall with traditional Thai music in the background. If you are looking for a different dining experience then head to this restaurant with a cause.

Social enterprise, fairy lights and yummy Thai food Photo Credit: Cabbages and Condoms

Unique Transport: Chao Praya River Boat System

One of the most interesting ways to get around Bangkok is the Chao Praya river boat system. Blessedly free from the traffic that wracks the rest of the metropolis during day light hours, the riverboats whistle, chug, roaring splash their way up the river. You can see the reasons that Bangkok used to rely on their canal system in place of roads. Wats open onto the river an heavy barges loaded with sugar or coal drift by. Vegetables speed down the river from upcountry farms ready for market and police skiffs glide along looking for smuggled goods.

Insider TIp: If you are a morning person (or just having a bout of jet leg and are up early) head up the river to Thewat(N15) Pier for a morning snack and a wander through the flower market. Don’t forget your camera, brighten up your Instagram feed with some colourful flower photos.

Unique Experience: Jim Thompsons House

Unlike any other; homeowner and famous silk entrepreneur Jim Thompson mysteriously vanished in the jungle, and his home became a living museum of sorts. Since his disappearance in 1967, little has changed in the home that was the 'talk of the town' and the 'city's most celebrated social centre’. The house consists of a complex of six traditional Thai-style houses, teak structures that were purchased from several owners and brought to the present location from various parts of Thailand.

Jim Thompson House Bangkok Photo Credit: Jim Thompson House Museum

 

Make this experience yours and speak to our team about creating a unique Bangkok stopover for your next visit.

Prefer to travel independently? Our Crooked Compass App is packed culturally immersive travel ideas. A brilliant tool for travellers who are already on the go, to those who are still in the planning or daydreaming stage, the app is an informative platform showcasing some of the world's best-kept secrets. Available on the App Store or get it on Google Play.