I took the Citi link train from the airport to the City centre of Phaya Thai. I am so engrossed in the street food carts and market stalls in Siam Square that I don’t notice I have been walking in circles for the past hour. With no luck finding a cheap hostel, I resort to my lonely planet guide which tells me this is the expensive part of the city. I speak to a friendly tuk tuk driver and ask him to take me to banglamphu, the tourist ghetto of Th Khao San. For my first ever Tuk Tuk I did quite well in negotiating a good price $150Baht, considering I had no idea what to expect. I was only ripped off 50Baht (about $2AUS) but that’s okay because my driver spoke little English and took me on a bit of a tour of the Temples on the way there. The roads are organised kaos. There are lanes and footpaths but they don’t mean anything. Tuk tuks drive into oncoming traffic outside of their lanes, motorbikes drive on the footpaths and people just turn their vehicles around in the middle of the road when they need to do a uturn and just push their way into flowing traffic. It is terrifying, exhilarating and down right hilarious.
He dropped me on the corner of Khao San Rd where a local approached me with a map. He asked me where I was staying and I told him I had not booked, he looked at me and shook his head and said ” no good, very busy you need go book something now”. He pointed out the tourist information centre on his map and another local approached us and told me he would show me the way and walked me to the information centre about 800m away.
A young Aussie guy from Byron bay then greeted me and booked me in a hostel owned by another Aussie girl. If you are travelling South East Asia to escape the Australian culture…think again Thailand is full of Aussies not only traveling but working and living here.
I dumped my bags at the hostel and headed out for my first taste of street food. Pad Thai and a Chang beer. The reality that I was in Thailand had finally set in, and man it felt good.