Bangkok: Chocolate Ville and Damnoen Floating Market
With Myanmar and Laos trip, Thailand is meant to be more relaxing. The mister and I were here to just go and explore new places. The first thing we did the moment we reached Bangkok was to visit Chocolate Ville. There are no chocolate at all and surprisingly, there's only one restaurant here, and is actually the entire Chocolate Ville.
We came two hours before it opens. we stayed outside and waited until the gate opens at four in the afternoon. There was a food cart selling desserts and a good looking facade where you can take looooots of photos.
The ambiance was so western, you wouldn't believe you're only in Bangkok. We didn't make any reservation but peak seasons might take some time to order your food and wait for your turn.
Dining in the park? Exactly! There are lots of table and seats available and at least 700 people dining here.
Other than food, it's a great spot for photography too. You can take as many photo as you can and on the day time itself & night were something totally different.
Beautiful, isn't it? It's completely different and you have to be there to experience this. The restaurant opens at 4pm. You can plan your morning activities then reach here before 3pm and opt to stay 'til evening.
Soi Nawamin 74, Yak 3-8, Kaset-Nawamin Road, Klong Kum Subdistrict, Bueng Kum District, Bangkok, Thailand
Words | Chanwon.com
We are not a fan of anything touristy (weh?!) but floating markets sound even more interesting and appealing that's why to visit at least one of them is in our bucket list in Thailand. There are two main floating markets near Bangkok and we only went to one, just to experience a local vibe.
Damnoen Saduak is a morning market (like any other market of course), it starts at eight in the morning and finishes at twelve noon. Guess what, we arrived one in the afternoon hence the empty market photos below (hanggang dito ba naman, late pa din?!! eek!)
A Thai lady approached us and almost dragged us to buy boat tickets. We tried to refuse and assured us it was impossible to get there on foot. Sadly, she got us to buy tickets. Little did we know that we can see everything without a boat if we kept walking on the road towards the market. There are plenty of walkways and bridges.
"This popular floating market in Ratchaburi province is a mainstay of marketing material for Thailand’s tourism industry. That means it attracts huge numbers of visitors hoping to catch that quintessential image of a grandma paddling her wooden boat along a canal to buy a pineapple — or better still, that whole traffic jam of little rowing boats that makes up the picture-perfect postcard image of a trip to Thailand."
But be warned: authentic floating market material this is not. The line most often touted about Damnoen Saduak, by those who know Thailand well, is that it’s ultimately a tourist trap.
If you’re still keen on a visit to Damnoen Saduak, expect much of the action to be on land rather than on the water itself (which we weren't aware of beforehand). The typical experience involves taking a small boat around the market with a handful of other tourists, but since we were too late to see the action in the morning we went round the boat with a few stores open.
We had the chance to buy few fresh items from passing vendors, in truth most of them are triple the regular price.
I scream for ice cream!
our boat driver brought us to the souvenir shop. glad we didn't get anything as the prices, like what i said, were triple the real cost outside Saduak.
It’s then on to a large assembly of stalls set up on the canal’s banks, selling all manner of tacky goods from postcards to the kind of souvenirs you’ve likely already seen by the bucket-load on Khaosan Road, at Chatuchak weekend market, and elsewhere.
Funny, there were other late tourists like us
If you want to see Damnoen Saduak floating market at its most authentic — at least as far as that’s possible — best advice is to go as early as you can or, even better, stay overnight nearby and then get up at the crack of dawn for a wander.