Temples and Palaces and Floating Markets oh my… Thailand has been amazing! We arrived on January 1st and sailed through immigration and customs without much trouble. We took a taxi to our airbnb condo situated in the downtown area. Bangkok is located on a broad delta plain where the Chao Phraya River enters in the ocean. The city contains 8 million people and is far more cosmopolitan than I expected. There are lots of high rise building, interesting modern architecture and huge fancy shopping malls.
Our first day was filled with starting school, see the previous blog post, and then we visited with Maddy’s step sister Nareekan who was kind enough to drive us around the city to see some sights. Our first stop after picking up Nareekan’s grandmother was the Wat Arun Ratchawararam Temple or the Temple of Dawn.
It was nice to have locals with us to show us our first temple and what respectful behavior is required, such as covering bare shoulders and knees; stepping over door thresholds; staying lower than statues of the buddha and never pointing your feet at the Buddha.
After wandering the temple for a bit we boarded a shuttle boat across the river to go see the Grand Palace, since it was still the New Years holiday in Thailand the Grand Palace was mobbed with people. It was still very impressive, with lots of gold leaf and towering monuments. The girls were running low on energy from the hot weather and walking around all day so we grabbed two tuk tuks and headed back to the condo for some pool time before heading out for dinner.