Still don’t have any plan this weekend? Neither do I. (I’m just kidding.) Some people would prefer spend their time strolling over a fancy air-conditioned mall in a typical very hot day in Bangkok. Really? Not sure if they have ever felt like getting bored of those humdrum places, but I do. Recently, I take myself to expose more spots and events happening around Bangkok, ranging from flea markets, museums, galleries to non-chain restaurants and cafes. And I must say I’m so impressed on quite a number of spots I swing by.
Here, I feel jubilant to share my favorite neighborhood lying alongside Chao Phraya River which was once a residential area belonging to one of Thailand’s ruling-class families in over two centuries ago, Wang Lang. I believe that it had been changing a lot over a period of time. Thank to tons of food stalls and clothes shops, nowadays this full of historic place is one of the most visiting spot by both locals and foreigners, but it is beautifully reserved to remain Thais’ way of life up to this day. Here are 4 reasons why you should visit the fascinating Wang Lang (as soon as possible).
How to get there: Get off the BTS SkyTrain at Saphan Taksin Station (S6) (Exit No. 2), and take the Chao Phraya Express Boat from Sathorn Pier to Wang Lang Pier (Siriraj Pier).
Here is like a massive food kingdom. It would probably take more than three times visiting to finish them all. Just a few steps away from either pier or bus stop, heaps of food stalls are lined up right by the street, from Thai desserts like kha nom tank tak (poorman’s pancake), kha nom buang (crispy pancake) and kha nom krok (coconut pudding), to much-loved street foods including gai ping (grilled chicken) and moo ping (grilled pork). Moving inside Wang Lang Market, there are several local favorites comprising Orathai Sushi Wang Lang, an affordable sea of sushi and takoyaki with prices starting just at B5 (yes, B5 !!!), or an only 7-inch homemade pizza (vegetarian, hawaiian, seafood, sausage, ham and mushroom, crab stick, tom yum and carbonara) by Jimmy Pizza which will set you back at B149-189. Still hungry? Khun Dang Guay Jab Yuan and Wang Lang Bakery await you right away.
Photo from theTripPacker
I would never be more happier sharing this. Opposite Orathai Sushi Wang Lang, a compact enclave of second-hand clothes shops (which always get most of my bucks) is located out there. Here you will find a vase variety of outfits from an ordinary t-shirt to a very winter snow boots or fur sweater. I once got a (just only) 300-baht Lee balloon jeans in excellent condition and three chic shirts knocking me back only B100. But don’t worry, there are still lots of brand new apparel around if you prefer. I recommend the one offering a pile of crew-neck t-shirt with only B100 each.
Photo from Siriraj Museum – พิพิธภัณฑ์ศิริราช
First of all, I must admit that I feel incredibly amazed of these museums I found in this area because there is a lot more than I expect. Well, it all begins at the oldest and largest hospital in Thailand Siriraj Hospital which is also a valuable learning resource for both medical students and general public. Dubbed in Siriraj Medical Museum, there are up to 6 museums to explore; the highlights include Congdon Anatomical Museum exhibiting a human organism and the development of human fetus, and Touch Exhibits Museum in Honor of Her Majesty the Queen offering one-of-a-kind experience for those who are visually impaired to interact with learning materials and items by ‘touch-feel’ approach. The rest are Ellis Pathological Museum, Songkarn Niyomsane Forensic Medicine Museum, Sood Sangvichien Prehistoric Museum and Labotory and Parasitologu Museum. Plus, the latest one from Siriraj’s expansion is Siriraj Bimuksthan educating you in the history and development of Siriraj Hospital and its medical progression; moreover, it also features historical evidence around Wang Lang – Bangkok Noi area such as Thai ancient weapons, pottery and more.
Scenic Boat Route
The best (and the most impressive) way to get here is, undoubtedly, taking the Chao Phraya Express Boat. Why? Because you will experience one of the world’s most stunning scenic riverside vistas which is fully equipped with splendid temples such as Wat Arun (Temple of Dawn) and Wat Rakhang (Temple of Bell), old historic building like Bang Rak Fire Station and many charming hotels comprising Shangri-La, Mandarin Oriental and Royal Orchid Sheraton. Moreover, you can also expand your visit to a new hipster gathering spot Tha Maharaj, and either walk or take tuk-tuk to nearby attractions, namely Wat Phra Kaew (Temple of the Emerald Bhuddha), Sanam Luang, Museum Siam, Sao Ching Cha and China Town as well.