I took the metro to the Saphan Taksin BTS station that’s a staircase away from Sathorn Pier. There are ferries on that pier that go up and down the length of the Chao Phraya River. There were stalls selling black clothing for mourning the late king of Thailand, Bhumidol Adulyadej. He had just passed away a week before I flew there.
Crossing the footbridge from the Sathorn Taksin BTS metro exit to the pier, I saw this chicken walking around.
I took a ferry to Tha Chang (N9) pier to head to Bangkok’s Old City and the Grand Palace area.
6 second video clip of the ferry
I walked around there but was not able to get into the Grand Palace since the funeral for Thailand’s late king was going on.
Mourners in black were queued up outside waiting their turn to go in to pay their last respects.
I had lunch at a dining/ entertainment complex called Tha Maharaj.
There were also meals being given out. I was given a plate, pretty good. A second lunch.
And also water stations every few meters. It came in handy since it was a very hot walk.
Here are a few other photos of the Old City:
Lots of vendors were selling photos of the late king as souvenirs.
I took the much cheaper cross-ferry pier from the Tha Tien (N8) pier across the river to Wat Arun- the Temple of Dawn. (The ferry earlier plies the river lengthwise. This one goes “across”.)
The temple was under construction, but it still looked good. I also got to take some great graffiti shots right outside it.
Unfortunately, when I was ready to head back to the old city side of the river, the ferry had ceased operations for the day. Because Thailand’s prince was going to that temple for some funeral rites for the late king.
So I had to take a taxi which took the long way round to get back to the part of town where I came from.
Before I found a taxi, I walked around a couple of streets surrounding Wat Arun:
I even found these two great pieces of graffiti outside the temple.
I had the taxi take me to Khao San Road. I took some photos, got some graffiti shots, got shooed away by a seller of fake IDs.
Three sets of different graffiti:
One was a memorial to the Bloody May 1992 protest in Thailand.
According to Wikipedia:
Black May, or Bloody May is a common name for the 17–20 May 1992 popular protest in Bangkok against the government of General Suchinda Kraprayoon and the military crackdown that followed. Up to 200,000 people demonstrated in central Bangkok at the height of the protests. The military crackdown resulted in 52 officially confirmed deaths, many disappearances, hundreds of injuries, and over 3,500 arrests. Many of those arrested are alleged to have been tortured.
One was a standalone piece on the side of a building’s upper floor, and one was on a corrugated tin fencing a building.
Here’s the Rama VIII suspension bridge the spans the Chao Phraya:
After my Khao San Road jaunt, I took a taxi back to Ratchathewi, where I was staying. Those taxi rides let me experience the infamous Bangkok traffic, which I had previously avoided previously on this trip because I took the metro and boats.
While looking for a cab, I saw these cool double decker buses parked under a bridge. They’re for ferrying around the late king’s mourners.
I had dinner at La Monita Taco Truck in the food court of the Siam Paragon mall. It was all right. I walked around a bit more and took some night shots of the area surrounding that mall.
Here’s a photo of the old Scala Theater, which opened in 1969. According to Wikipedia, it’s the Scala is “the last remaining operational standalone single-screen cinema in the country”.
Click here to see more photos from this trip on Flickr.