02.12.2019 - 03.12.2019
I still had never been to the Bangkok Flower Market and it was long on my list. On Monday morning I took the commuter bus boat from Si Phraya, the stop next to the hotel a few stops down to Stop #6, the Memorial Bridge.
From the boat, walk left along the River until you see the Yellow Building with this sign:
There’s an entry to the large wholesale Bangkok Flower Market there & the huge Market goes through and comes out on a busy street filled with more vendors and flower shops.
Flowers are an integral part of the Thai Buddhist religion and culture. Fresh flowers are prepared daily for the many Temples in Bangkok, the Hotels purchase flowers, and the Bangkokian’s incorporate them into their daily lives.
You will see flower wreaths and necklaces hanging in cars and taxis, and used in good luck arrangements in every establishment you enter.
The flowers were mostly all the same types, in huge quantities. Yellow mums and marigolds, orchids, roses and fragrant jasmine. The volume rather than variety was astounding and makes the market well worth a visit. I went mid-morning but I have heard that the locals are shopping here at 5:00 AM!
There’s a vegetable market inside as well.
Walking through the market building to the other end, it exits to a busy street with many flower shops.
I spotted a flower shop with a sign to a Tea Shop upstairs and went up for a mid-morning cup of tea. It’s called the Floral Shop Cafe at Napasorn. What a gorgeous place! It’s an old brick shop house thats a glimpse back in time. A bride was being photographed in there. This stunning shop was such a surprise and is definitely worth seeking out!
Bangkok often seems gritty and the streets are smelly but oh so interesting!
And discoveries like the Floral Cafe abound and evoke the city’s spirit of creative and culinary interests. I enjoyed my refreshing air-conditioned break and treats there!
The shopping malls on the other hand are 21st century. You can’t imagine how immense and fancy they are. The new IconSiam has several automobile showrooms including Maserati. Not just for tourists, the malls are filled with Thais. And everyone seems to have a credit card and use it too. This is a change I’ve seen over the last 5 years.
The neighborhoods evoke a different life. One can see homes without indoor plumbing or kitchens and air conditioned shopping malls with gorgeous designer bathrooms. The two are definitely intertwined as Thais rich and poor regularly move between both. Watching the changes as the years go by is fascinating. It’s reason enough to return to Bangkok over & over again.
Holiday Decorations are going up quickly. At the Sheraton the Pastry Chefs are building a huge Gingerbread House. Every piece is fragile and edible!
I packed and headed out for one last Thai massage and foot massage before my long flights home.
I got to the airport in the early morning hours, but day or night, Bangkok is lively and noisy. This airport singer was already working.
People ask me what’s the best way to get here from the US. I’ve tried flying through JFK, LAX and SFO via Taipei, Narita (Tokyo) and London and I think the Cathay Pacific (codeshare American) non-stop from Hong Kong to Boston is the easiest route. I’m flying Bangkok to Hong Kong, 2.5 hours to walk in the HK airport mall, then HK to Boston.
I’ll spend the night in an airport hotel in Boston and get the Dartmouth Coach bus home the next day. The trip is long 30 plus hours and the JetLag days longer. (This was pre-Coronavirus & I suspect that this unfortunate new flu episode will play itself out, I hope soon!)
But air travel to another world is amazing! How lucky I’ve been to be able to make this unhurried trip back to “The Land of Smiles” this year! #Gratefulforhealth&family