Travel: Day 1 - Exploring the City, Bangkok to Khao Yai 2017

Travel date: 03/06/2017

All information provided are based on what I remember, so please take note. 

Visited Bangkok after many years and I must say it has really changed a fair bit.
Still, very nice to see familiar places and navigation in general got easier. 

Flight from Singapore > Suvarnabhumi Airport, Bangkok 

Booked an early morning flight but I was caught up with a work event last minute so I had to change my flight to a later timing. First time taking a plane like I am going home - just a tote bag and passport! Most of my things were with J and he went over first. Luckily it was only a short 2-3 hours flight away. 

It was actually alright to fly alone.. short distance wise at least. 

Airport > Paya Thai

joel jie lin

By the time I touched down, it was already in the evening. Changed some money over at the airport (By the way, it was better to change in Singapore than in BKK). Took the train to city and we alighted at the last stop - Paya Thai. 

Journey Time: 30 mins
Cost: 45B

This is actually my favourite way to reach the city. No problem with jam and you will most of the time have seats. Very affordable as well!

Paya Thai > Siam Square

First thing we did was to head over to Siam Square! To be honest, I have never really walked around Siam area despite visiting quite regularly in the past. The MTR was great and relatively easy to navigate around with the signs and all. 

Cost: Forgotten 

Siam area was pretty nice. Went over to Siam Centre because I wanted to pick up some bath bombs from Lush. (You will see why soon!) and we settled our first meal in Greyhound Cafe

greyhound cafe bkk siam center
Greyhound Cafe

My first visit as well; a lot of first visits for this trip!

Food was pretty alright and because I don't really eat in cafes/restaurants in BKK, I was quite surprised when I saw 'tax and service charge' in the receipt. #suaku

greyhound cafe siam center bread

greyhound cafe siam center phad thai
Phad Thai

greyhound cafe siam center crabmeat pasta
Crabmeat Pasta

greyhound cafe siam center half chicken wings
Half Chicken Wings

Cost: Forgotten, but around SG cafe pricing

Then it was about time for us to head to our next destination, Khao Yai

Booked an über for it and after waiting for roughly 20 mins, the ride got cancelled. The jam was really bad in town and the driver took the wrong route. In the end we can't help but to hop onto a cab, luckily we did because it rained like crazy the very next moment. Cost us double of what uber quoted but gonna cover the driver's to and fro right! 

Time check: 9pm 
Cost: 3000B

Tips to Travel from Bangkok to Khaoyai

1) Taxi, cost roughly 3000B

This is the easiest way, and we chose this mode of transportation because it is a new place and I am not sure how the traffic will be like. Also, it was really late when we set off and God knows what can happen.

2) Grab/Uber, 1800B

Much cheaper but to be honest, I am not sure if they will really drive all the way up or not. It is not close to the city center and probably not close to their homes... You can try your luck!

3) Drive

After surveying the roads, it is actually not that hectic on the expressway. Get BKK city traffic out of your head. The roads are relatively large, straight and well-lit. Just take note of large vehicles and prepare enough for the tolls along the way.

4) Public minivans/buses

We chose this mode of transport back because we are in Khaoyai town and we need to reach the town of BKK city. (unlike BKK city > hotel near Khaoyai natural park when we headed there). There are few cabs/grab around so we decided not to risk it. Imagine we dropped at the town and there's no transport.. It was really cheap per pax (few hundred Baht?) but I got so sick on it. Maybe it's just bad luck; the van I was in had aircon installed but it was as good as none.

Bang Kok > Julius Hotel, Khao Yai

Julius Hotel
Cost: 1,900 B/2 nights ($79/2n)

Chose a budget hotel for a quick night rest (Actually 2!). It is close to the place we picked for our tour package the next day, which is the most important factor.

After close to 3h drive, we finally reached our destination. Oh by the way, you can choose to drive there but we were not that confident so...

Juldius J2 Khao Yai Room

Very fuss-free EXCEPT I saw a rat ran into our room before even unlocking the door. Couldn't find it when we were in and saw it again when we were about to sleep. However, we were so tired to do anything so we just went to bed... with a rat in the same room.

Room was really quite big and clean if you don't consider the rat incident. Then again, it is never considered clean when there are rats running around.
Both are photos I took from the net but it was quite close to what we stayed in.

This post has been sitting in my drafts for the longest time and here you go!
Feel free to ask if you have any questions~