Thailand will always be so memorable to me, it was the first country I've visited for my FIRST INTERNATIONAL TRAVEL. Yes, literally, the first foreign country I went to.
What was my experience in Thailand like? I'd share below, some of the things I could remember we (JC D and I) did in Thailand.
First to spend a different legal tender!
|Conversion at that time was P1.60 = 1THB|
First view of a foreign land!
|I am always thankful that my first international travel granted me a window seat. Thanks Cebu Pacific!|
First, stamp on my passport!
|My first time to fill up that immigration form and have this first passport, have my first stamp!|
First, foreign country airport!
|I was so thrilled to have landed in a foreign country's airport!|
|And yep, shameless photo op everywhere!|
First time to be on a "Foreigner Lane"
|Foreigner be like!|
We stayed at D&D Inn, at Khao San Road.
|View of D&D at night!|
|Perfect location of D&D Inn at Khaosan!|
It's a busy street at day and night time, but yes, it's really busier and lively at night.
What to do in Thailand?
1. We rode a tuktuk to take us Temple-hopping, the tuktuk (tricycle) driver knows the popular temples in town. So day 1 in Thailand was literally, temples, temples, temples!
Travel tip #1: Negotiate the price, don't believe everyone you meet's suggestion. Some of them are schemes to lure you to take the tour they are subtly endorsing. We were told the grand palace was close, this spot is not open at this time, and some more things, but later on realized, it wasn't true. Still, we were able to visit places. In some of the temples we've visited, we took pictures almost all around.
2. Khao San Road Exploration! Street food! Night Cafe! Night Market! And all other fun things at Khao San!
Travel tip #2: Trust your taste and instinct. There are some more exotic food (street food) offered but I didn't try them, because it's hard to have an upset stomach while in a foreign country. So just choose from what you think your tummy would be comfortable digesting.
|Well, well, hello there Donald! The barbeque isn't from Mc Donalds though. 🙂|
|Yep, there's a train! Mini-train! haha|
3. We went on an Elephant Ride! Yus, I did ride an elephant, for the first time of my life, in Thailand!
Travel tip #3: We booked for the elephant ride. Already paid. But as we rode on the elephant's back, we were told that for the elephant to really enjoy the ride, we've got to buy the bananas to feed them with. I forgot how much was that for. But yep. Get ready with some extra money.
|You can ask the other tourists/travelers who rode the elephant to exchange the favor of taking pictures. 🙂|
4. Floating Market! Yep, a must-do in Thailand. Visit the floating market. It's floating market because the vendors are on the river water, on their boat/banca (is it what it's really called?) to sell their items or merchandise. At Damnoen Saduak, Thailand!
Travel tip #4: Make the most out of it. Usually, your tour guide would give you certain number of hours/minutes to stay and explore. So, as you explore the floating market area, go to the highway and check out some stores. Check out the highway and take pictures with the road signs! Haha
Travel tip #5: Bring extra cash when on a river tour, so you could also buy some souvenir items. There are cheap items here. Just know how to haggle with the price.
|So you know what you have to do here? Gossip Cafe! haha|
|How about this for a great photo?|
|Yep, fruits anyone?|
|Yep, it's in a river! Floating! Hello vendors!|
After the floating market exploration, we needed to sit down. And yes! Another opportunity to try their local food.
As we visited the floating market area of Thailand, JC D has this ritual of sending a postcard to himself. From the country he traveled to his Philippine residence address. I followed his lead, but didn't send the postcard to myself, sent it to my mom instead. My way of saying,
"hey Mom! Thanks for being so great that I was able to travel the world now. I remember you, wherever I am right now. I love you!"
|Before I posted the card! Mom received it actually after a month. 🙂|
On top of the floating market, we had to check out, and yes, take a selfie!
5. River Tour! After the floating market escapade, we are off to another booked tour. The river tour starts at the floating market area. There's a designated area where you're going to ride a banca/boat for the river tour. You'll go through the areas in Thailand.
Travel tip #6: Get ready with your camera. You can expect that your camera is safe in the river tour. No need to worry for splash. It's a river not a sea. So, no high waves to worry about. And yes, you can't miss the beautiful views you'd be seeing. Or at least structures and designs you want to capture. 🙂
As the river tour goes on, you'll see different structures and designs, can't help but click.
|This design is not really common in our country, so I clicked!|
As we finished the river tour, I took the chance to have this photo below taken at Baan Sukchoke Country Resort.
|Can't take a solo pic. Photobombers all around. haha|
6. Visit one of Starbucks Cafe! Some friends back in the Philippines are asking for a "pasalubong" or at least, buy some items for them to reimburse the cost. Either a mug, tumbler, or whatever. So, why not try Bangkok's Starbucks?
|Like a model? Bwahahah|
7. Visit a McDonald's? Yep, they have some unique Thai-based menu.
|Only in Mc Donalds Thailand!|
8. Find some Monks, and take a picture with them? I didn't know if it's a rude thing to ask, they don't speak much to us. But, we approached, they said okay, and yes, I posed with them. Thanks to your generosity Mr. Monks! T'was my first time to have a picture with monks. Also first in Thailand!
|They didn't look at the camera, but they did say, it's alright. They seem to be busy discussing something. 🙂 Despite that, thank you for allowing my rudeness, and responding with kindness my brothers. 🙂|
9. Relax and enjoy the pool area of your hotel! D&D has a pool area at the rooftop! Take time to enjoy the "time of your life!" Live in the present. Enjoy! It's not every day that you'll be in some hotel, in one of the greatest city in Asia, the busiest night life and where fun happens!
|Like a boss! 🙂|
I am ever grateful for my friend JC D aka Caloy for tagging me along with his travels. It was initially a trip for five but the other friends of ours weren't able to secure their passport on time. So, we were left with no choice but go on a duo travel!
This first time to travel abroad was worth all the experience.
Travel tip #7: If it's your first time to travel (or even if not depending on the immigration officer at the airport), get ready with all possible documents to be asked for presentation.
- Return ticket.
- Hotel Booking.
- Credit card.
- Government Issued ID (like PRC, SSS, etc.)
- Approved leave form (for government employees usually).
You'd also be typically asked for the reason of your travel, who you're with, if you have a job, where do you plan to stay, etc. Keep calm, don't panic, these are normal questions. They are not suspecting you. Don't tremble. 🙂
My experience was, when Caloy presented his passport and ticket (his was stamped almost full! Naaaaks!) took the immigration officer to stamp his passport not more than two minutes. Mine was different, the immigration officer saw that it has never had a stamp. First timer blues. She went on to ask searching questions? 🙂 But, I guess I managed to pass 'em. Thanks to Caloy for preparing all those documents.
How about you? Where was your first international travel? How was it? Feel free to share below. 🙂
Got questions? Ask 'em on the comment section below.