Monday, August 8, 2011

Bangkok - The Grand Palace and the Emerald Buddha Statue

So, after cruising all the shopping centres at the districts which pretty much sum out what we did the first day, the next day, we went to the Grand Palace which is easily accessible by BTS from my place. First of all, we took BTS from Chong Nonsi station to Central Pier which is located at the Saphan Thaksin station. 

Then, once reached Saphan Thaksin station, we walked heading towards the exit that'll lead to Central Pier. At Central Pier, you will notice there are many people queueing up for the river cruise. At that pier, there are two types of boats/ferries. One is that you can have the whole boat by yourself or with your friends while the other is like a public speed boat. Of course, the former will cost you more than the public speed boat but you get to have the whole thing by yourself. More spacious but not budget conscious. We made a mistake which was we took the 'private' boat. Two persons sharing is not cheap. However, the experience itself worth it. Cool, river breeze brushing your hair, caressing your face, with the views of skyscrapers and antique buildings by the riverbank. 

'Private' boat

Some of the scenic views you'll get along Chao Phraya river

Me enjoying the ride and the cool breeze

Our stop is at the Chang Pier, the closest stop to our destination, the Grand Palace and its Temple of the Emerald Buddha. We walked across the road and headed to the main entrance of the Grand Palace. The entrance fee is 350 Bahts per person.

At Chang Pier

Some of the local delicacies you'll notice while at the pier

When we entered the palace, the first word on my mind was F***! It was damn majestic and vast! There are many buildings inside the compound, each has its own unique appeal. The designs of each building are very detailed and made of gold. Whether it is real gold or not, I'm not so sure about it. Lets the pictures do the talking.

Before we entered the compound

You may have notice that these buildings are mostly of old designs and are not allowed to enter. You can just look at and admire the intricate and detailed exteriors these buildings spotted. By the way, the King of Thailand still stay in the Grand Palace though I'm not sure whether he was in during our visit. His palace? Here's the picture.

A very modern building who follows the planning of the old palace

Another highlight of the palace have to be the Wat Phra Kaew, also known as the Temple of Emerald Buddha. As the name suggests, the Buddha statue is made of emerald and was enrobed in a gold gown that change according to the season. At the time of visit, it was summer, so the robe wore by the Buddha statue was breezy. No photography is allowed inside the temple but if you want to snap a photo of it, you can do it outside of the praying hall.

The Buddha is in the middle but the poor quality...

More pictures to go!

Phrana Si Rattana Chedi

A mythological giant known as yak

There are many drawings like this, depicting the lifestyles of the ancients

A monk was seen at the palace

Thailand's version of Buckingham guard

Can't resist...hehe

Sharing is caring. A word of advice and a piece of information.

To enter the Grand Palace, you have to dress accordingly for there are dress code to follow. For guys, no shorts and sleeveless shirts. The same goes to fellow ladies. No slippers or flip flop as well. Revealing cloths are a no-no. All these rules are quite reasonable considering you are entering the house of the King. However, should you forgot about it, fret not for there is a booth for you to borrow clothes, mostly traditional Thai clothes. You need to put deposit, though. It's worth the trouble.

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