Travel photographs make a connection with people and place 1) because it in a way transports me to another place and moment but 2) through someone else’s eye.
Brief travel articles have made appearances on the blog before. Say hello to The ‘Trotter Log’. It will be the first of a photo series on my travel adventures. Marking the first with Thailand.
“Travel is fatal to prejudice, bigotry, and narrow-mindedness, and many of our people need it sorely on these accounts. Broad, wholesome, charitable views of men and things cannot be acquired by vegetating in one little corner of the earth all of one’s lifetime. – Mark Twain
N and I are blessed with two beautiful boys and that means we have to consciously set aside time for travel. By God’s grace, we were able to last year and wanted to pick a place without a hassle for a visa. And so it was a week-long trip to Thailand with two of our closest friends accompanying us. Divided between picturesque Koh Samui and the vibrant city of Bangkok here is my first log for the year.
It started on a bad note with us missing our connection flight to Koh Samui (in spite of us rushing through the airport like maniacs) and then getting another flight there. Our flight landed at Samui airport past sunset. It was a small airport with a unique open-air design. We proceeded to baggage claim surrounded by rain sound and a nice cool breeze.
Once the car rental was done we drove around where our hearts took us. The car rental place was owned by a British national. We stopped when the sky was too beautiful to just drive by and at clearings on either side of the road with beautiful views of the ocean. The trees and streets reminded me so much of Kerala, India.
Located by the Lipa Noi beach the ambiance and view at the Five Islands Restaurant Samui was enchanting. The food was delicious and this was our first Thai food experience after getting there. The Thai curries were the highlight and they had some really nice mocktails as well. The best part of being there was having our meal facing the beach.
The night market scene is insane here. We visited the packed roads by Chaweng Beach road. There are the clubs and pubs. Most of the places have live music playing and some of them were so good. In between all that noise and energy, we did find some great restaurants. El Gaucho was one of them.
The moment we walked into the Argentinian restaurant we went “Woah!” The lights made all the difference. The food was amazing and we had the best time here.
The same night we all went for a midnight stroll around our resort. My husband came up with the wonderful (at the time ‘not’) plan of walking all the way to the end of the ocean pier which was by the beach. I thought it was crazy and was paranoid. It was 2 AM and a full moon night. But it turned out to be amazing. The pier was bobbing with the water and we all lied down and looked up at the stars.
We had mixed feelings leaving Koh Samui. Our flight to Bangkok was in the afternoon and this time we got to see the airport in daylight. It is unlike any airport I have been to before. It has a very relaxed vibe with restaurants and some shops. The design of the airport is in tune with its beautiful natural surroundings. The runway has lovely views on both sides. There was one particular hill with a temple right on top which stood out.
Next stop Bangkok
I loved it right from when I got into the cab that took us to our hotel. It was such a busy and lively city. It reminded me both of Dubai and cities in India like Bangalore.
We settled in and headed to the Dome which is a collection of rooftop bars and restaurants atop the Lebua. The Lebua State Tower building is a landmark because of the golden dome that stands approximately 30-meters tall on the rooftop towering over the loud streets of Bangkok.
On our final day there we decided to do some shopping. Destination- Asiatique the riverfront.
Split into four categories Asiatique has a night bazaar and a mall with many dining options as well. The Chareonkrung District has a number of small boutiques and is perfect if you are looking for cute souvenirs, colorful handicrafts, funky jewelry, and clothing.
The Factory District focuses on premium fashion stores and gadgets including an Apple store. The Waterfront District has a range of upscale dining options with the likes of Italian, Thai, Japanese and seafood restaurants. The Town Square district is a space for bars and outdoor events.
The past year had very many trying times and this trip let me breathe.
Have you visited Thailand? Do you have a favorite memory?