Thailand 2014: Songkran Celebration in Bangkok

I am already used to preparing my itinerary at least one month before I fly to my next overseas holidays (it took me more than 2 months with our Taiwan trip and 1.5 months with our Japan trip) so I was feeling very uneasy 3 days before our Bangkok trip because I did not prepare anything (except print a copy of Bangkok’s railway map, lolz).
01. Changi AirportLeaving Singapore’s Changi Airport

The trip is a 2D/2N holiday, arriving in Bangkok on a 12th April (saturday night) and flying back to Singapore on 14th April (monday night). Will be flying with another friend from Singapore and will meet up with another friend from Australia and one from Malaysia and together we plan to experience Songkran for the very first time. I just comforted myself with the thought that this is a very very short holiday so might as well go with the flow and see where the splash of water leads us.

Suvarnabhumi International Airport to City by Train
Train MapBangkok’s train map

I wanted to try going to the city from the airport using the train (the way we did during our Taipei and Tokyo trip) though most of the people suggested that I take the most convenient mode of transportation, the cab. Airport Rail Link (ARL) to and from Suvarnabhumi Airport has two options, the ARL City Line which leaves the airport every 15 to 20 minutes that pass by 7 stations with a fare ranging from 15 to 45 baht, total traveling time up to the last station (Phaya Thai) is 27 minutes. The 2nd option is the ARL Airport Express Line which only stops at the last two stations (Makkasan or City Air Terminal and Phaya Thai) the train leaves the airport every 25 minutes and fare costs 150 baht with a total traveling time of 15 minutes. For City Line Time Table, please click HERE

 

01. DInnerWe arrived at Suvarnabumi Airport a little past 7pm so we decided to have our dinner first. My dinner rice vermicelli and soda costs 410 baht.

03. GantryAfter dinner, we proceed to the train station located at the basement of Terminal 2

02. Ticket Vending MachineTicket Vending Machines are available outside the gantry, so we paid 45 baht for a ticket (City Line) to Phaya Thai station, the last station from the train map

04. TrainThe train is relatively new and convenient.

05. Phaya Taya StnAt Phaya Thai Station, you have to exit the station and walk across to transfer to BTS Sukhumvit Line, BTS Line or commonly called sky train is Bangkok’s above-ground train system.

06. Siam Stn When we arrived at Siam Station we transferred to Si-Lom Line (no nead to exit the station this time, just walk across to the opposite platform) to reach Surasak Station, the nearest station to our hotel, from there we decided to walk to our hotel. Total train fare is 37 baht.

07. NovotelAfter navigating the map I printed, we finally reach our hotel, still dry but hungry (again).

08. NOvotelOur home for the next two nights, Hotel Novotel Bangkok Fenix Silom. for my review of this hotel, please click the link.

09. DinnerWe met up with our friend from Australia who arrived in the same hotel earlier in the day and had our dinner on a nearby street eatery, the food is nice but we felt we were overcharge, the 4 food items plus soft drinks costs a little over 1,200 baht.

10. WetOur hotel was located on the other end of Silom road, as we walk towards the other end, “water fights” has started already so we came home wet. Sorry for the not so good quality photos, I did not bring my D90 ‘coz I don’t want to spend so much time “water proofing” it every time I will go out, I just used my Iphone (tucked inside a zip-lock plastic pouch) to take the actions from the “water fight zone”

11. BreakfastWoke up pass 9am and hurriedly ran for the buffet breakfast. I did not find my friend from Malaysia (who is checked in at another hotel) last night from the wet crowd of Silom so I sent him our hotel map so he could pick us up and explore the city together.

12. Battle GearI never really planned to join in the water fight, I initially just plan to take lots of photo but after our experience last night, it is very very difficult to get a good photo without getting wet plus the fun and excitement of joining the water fight is so infectious. There are a lot of water guns being sold in the street but you have to be good at haggling (which I not good at) so I bought mine at 711 store, 199 baht with free plastic pouch (to put your hand phone, money and other items). With full battle gear on, we braved the streets of Silom on the first day of Songkran.

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18. LunchWe went to Siam Paragon shopping mall and had our lunch at their food court, the chicken on top right photo is sooooooo good for 60 baht, you get a bigger serving (without rice) for 70 baht. You have to use a pre-paid card when you buy your food in this food court, anything unused amount is refundable.

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20Full and dried, we took the train from Siam and alight after two stations at Sala Daeng to join again in the water fight in Silom.

21. DinnerAfter a few more hours in the “war zone” we decided to walk back to our hotel and on the way we saw this Pad Thai store and decided to give it a try.

22. Dinner

23. DinnerFor 50 baht, the taste is really good.

24. Changi Airport
After the buffet breakfast the next day, we went our for a little while to buy some food souvenirs to bring back to Singapore and came home wet again. We hurriedly pack and arrived at Suvarnabhumi Airport, just 5 minutes before the check in counter closes. We arrived Singapore at almost past 11pm.

Additional Musings:
– 2D/2N for Songkran festival is very short, you should at least spend 4D/3N to fully experience the festivities.

– If you are not carrying a luggage (and just a back pack) it is much better (and cheaper) to take the train instead of a cab from the airport.

– Not all foods on the streets are cheap as you expect them to be, but the saving grace is…… I find the taste of almost all street food we tried very nice.

– If you are meeting your friends also from another country, better check in at the same hotel. I was not able to meet my friend from Malaysia after 2 days. lolz.

– The sweetness and warmth of Thai people is very evident during this festival. They have this white powder that they spread to someone’s face to wish you good luck. The way they touch your face with the white powder is so warmth and friendly.

– You will gain lot’s of during the “water fight”, you begin with gunning each other and then eventually you team up and gun another group, so enjoy and invest on a good water gun 😉

Final Conclusion:
I will definitely go back next year 😉

 

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9 thoughts on “Thailand 2014: Songkran Celebration in Bangkok

  1. Pingback: Thailand 2015: Bangkok’s Songkran Celebration | wanderfoolife

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