5 Baller Things To Do In Bangkok
The time to splurge is now.
There’s no denying Aussies love Thailand. It’s probably because it’s an affordable beach holiday and you get to eat all the pad siew you like for a fraction of the cost you fork out at your local Thai restaurant. You probably went during summer break at uni on a budget of $20/day, 13 of which went towards $1 beers. The South East Asia backpack odyssey is a true Aussie rite of passage.
But if you now have a little more cash to drop and a few weeks of annual leave in desperate need of being taken, Thailand (Bangkok especially) is still a brilliant destination. Why? Because if you’re willing to spend a little bit more than, say, your average week’s food, transport and entertainment in Oz – in Bangkok, you can basically live like a friggin’ monarch. So, if you’re in the market for a holiday of epic proportions, look no further.
#1 Never walk anywhere
Don’t let those delicate feet touch the ground if you don’t fancy it. With the universality of tuk-tuks, bright pink taxis and orange-clad moto drivers (where you get a ride on the back of a motor scooter), you basically never have to walk anywhere if you don’t want to.
Ten minutes to the station in the scorching heat? No problem, you can whiz down on a scooter in two. Rather not navigate public transport to get from the airport? A cool $15 will get you into town (ignore the private transfer stands inside the airports and head straight out to hail a taxi outside). Fancy a tour around some temples? A tuk-tuk driver will happily relieve you of your cash – just negotiate first.
#2 View the latest release at a luxe cinema
Depending on which cinema you visit, you’re looking at $25 to $55AUD for a movie ticket that includes perks like unlimited canapés, bar service during the film, reclining chairs that will make you feel like you’re in business class, blankets, slippers, drinks, massages… The list goes on.
Kick back with bae for the most sumptuous movie date you’ll ever experience. Just don’t forget to stand for the actual King – everyone must rise for the royal anthem before all movie screenings.
#3 Dine like a god at Nahm
Nahm by Metropolitan at Como features a set menu for 1600 baht (around $60AUD). Travel blogger Christine Gilbert recently described her experience at Nahm as the best meal she had ever eaten, so that’s a pretty awesome exchange of your cash for goods and services.
While we’re on gorgeous food, you’ve heard of Tim Ho Wan, the world’s cheapest Michelin Starred restaurant? The famed Hong Kong hole-in-the-wall now has branches in several of the fancier malls of Bangkok, so you can sample the famed crispy pork buns to your heart’s content, for considerably cheaper than the Aussie prices (around $15 will see you swimming in dim sum).
#4 Ascend to Octave rooftop bar and survey the realm
Octave Rooftop Lounge is Bangkok’s only 360 degree rooftop plus cocktail combo certainly raises the bar (sorry). With cocktails starting from around $15 plus a chic sharing menu, you’ll get panoramic views of the sparkling city – and it’s not too difficult to nab comfy edge seats too.
#5 Acquire a wardrobe that befits your station
Possibly the most baller thing of all is to get yourself a fancy new outfit from one of Bangkok’s many tailors. Blokes should look no further than father and son team Jesse and Victor at Rajawongse Clothiers – they’ve fitted suits for the Bush family (yes, that Bush family) and more than a few spies and diplomats, but in their unassuming shop, no one is beneath their care and attention. For around $800 you can pick up a perfectly fitted suit, five tailored shirts and a couple of silk ties.
For ladies, Nickermann’s is the tailor of choice for dresses (from day to evening, business to bridal) and is ranked an impressive 7th of 375 on Tripadvisor for shopping in Bangkok. Both outfitters will take care of your shipping so you don’t have to fit anything into your luggage, either.
One last note before you book your flights: there’s an undeniable ick factor in the idea of visiting a developing country like Thailand and splashing your ‘farang’ (foreigner) money around, and you should always be respectful of the locals when interacting. On the other hand, Thailand is reliant on tourism for up to 20 percent of its GDP, and your tourist dollar facilitates an efficient transfer of wealth from a rich country to a much poorer one. So go and spend as much of your western cash as you fancy – just try not to be a dick about it.
(Lead image: Octave Rooftop Lounge)