I arrived in Bangkok in the evening of the 8th of December 2013, I wasn’t able to sleep well due to te jet lag and the sound of helicopters in the sky. A coup d’etat was near? The following morning there were the final manifestations against the corruption of the government, events reported in the Thai political crisis (2013-2014). This is what I saw 5 meters from my hostel. I gave my support wearing for all my permanence in Thailand the wristband with the Thai flag, symbol of the protesters.
The Wat Pho is a Buddhist temple complex where is kept the largest collection of Buddha images in Thailand, including a 46 m long reclining Buddha.
Buddhism is very important in Thailand. Every boy is expected to be a monk for a couple of months at least.
The Grand Palace is a complex of buildings that has been the official residence of the Kings of Thailand (before Siam).
The Baiyoke Tower II skyscraper offers a nice view of Bangkok, unfortunately you can't see the sunset as the Sun gets soon hidden by the pollution.
Khaosan Roa is the backpackers area of Bangkok. Here Di Caprio, in the movie The Beach, drinks the blood of snake, but isn’t at all a Thai tradition.
If you don’t fear, street food is very satisfying both for your palate, both for your wallet. Here I had finished a delicious slow cooked pork belly (from the morning) served with rice and spring onions marinated in soy sauce.
Is time to go back home.
Kitchens are everywhere in the market areas, just trust your nose.
I ended up there by case.
You may hear in Bangkok of the floating markets, where people do shopping riding a boat. Unfortunately some of them become very touristic, if you decide to go there anyway, plan very early.
Is good sometimes to join with people during travelling, the trip becomes more comfortable. We are now going in Chiang Mai, in the north of the country.
Based in Chiang Mai, you can apply for a lot of "adventurous" activities in the surrounding jungle. Be prepared to bargain the price.
We have shown our passports to the customs and we can start a trekking in the jungle in the north of Thailand, the border to Myanmar is close with its opium plantations. A good guide will avoid them, besides to spot the snakes in your path.
The trek will take several days, we are going to spend a night in a Karen village, a population apart from Thais and Burmese. Every hut is bamboo made with a fireside in the middle and is designed as a palafitte to provide shelter to the farm animals.
Dinner time with the local products. The fat taste of a pork full bred outdoors is something that really confuses with the beef.
According to the guide, we are passing paths used by the Japanese army to escape at the end of World War II.
Finally out from the cave.
In a jungle you can appreciate the gift of a new sun. Don't underestimate the hot of the day, during the night it can be very cold and even with a ski mask I wasn't fully comfortable.
Another jungle, this time in the south of Thailand, close to a paradise.
The movie The Beach ends with this question: What is paradise? Is this what I was looking for? I can only continue my search.
Someone says that there is a hidden lagoon in this limestone mountain, another piece of paradise. I have to see, I can deal now a jungle.
I would stay there forever, but the shadows are inclement.
To find the paradise I have to move very early in the morning, in order to avoid hordes of tourists ruining the landscape.
We are now landing. Moreover, as close to the equator line, the Sun will be very strong at midday and everything will appear soon grey.
Paying for a private boat won't be free but the shipwreck sensation in being the first landing there is priceless.
A very narrow piece of land is linking two islands: Ko Poda and Ko Po Da Nok. But the tide is rising.
I wasn't able to stop.
The tide has risen, are we all able to swim?
Doesn't matter how early you wake up. Not always you will be the only one in the beach.
The last night, let's enjoy Christmas before taking the train back to Bangkok.
The trip is over, time to reach the airport. Did I find the paradise I was looking for?