Our two days and one crazy night in Bangkok consisted of £2.50 espresso martinis, karaoke sing offs, an underground rave in a derelict hotel reminiscent of The Shining and a sunrise hostel lock-out. We definitely embraced the fluorescent spirit of Bangkok!
It all began pretty low key; on day one we found our bearings, stumbled across thousands of Thais dressed in black, still congregating daily to mourn the death of the king months after his passing.
Less than a mile away and in the starkest of contrasts, we first dipped our toes in to the high octane and infamous backpackers’ Mecca Khao San Road, and surrounding streets.
(Don’t be a snob about avoiding this place, it’s worth it for gawping opportunities alone).
Day two sent our Bangkok experience into overdrive. We caught up with the fabulous Maya Patel, colleague of Chris who’s also travelling for six months. We spent an hour or so taking in the majestic Grand Palace, before hatching our plan to make the most of Bangkok’s legendary nightlife.
Veering away from Khao San Road, we headed south to the just as lively but marginally less crazy Patpong.
Avoiding the ping pong scammers, we downed some roadside Pad Thai and unidentified meat scruttocks on skewers, and headed to Bangkok’s gay institution, Telephone Bar.
We sank a few £2.50 espresso martinis (our favourite tipple and as good as many we’ve had for a tenner) before heading upstairs to the Karaoke lounge, taking a group of European guys we’d just met along for the ride.
And so began the beginning of jäger bombs, George and Elton harmonising, Rihanna sing offs with a group of Thai boys, Gangnam Style (below) and a descent in to Bangkok’s underbelly.
Post karaoke and not ready to go home, we headed to dance club God. All pulsating beats, Muscle Marys with their tops off and seedy nooks and crannies, the spectacle of it all was as entertaining as the dancing.
After lights up at 3.30am we, Maya and our newfound friends weren’t ready for bed (despite a 7.30am alarm call).
A taxi driver insisted a party was still going on uptown, but the ghostly hotel lobby he dropped us off at told a different story.
How wrong we were!
On the second floor, imagine a Hackney Hipster warehouse rave but playing EDM instead of hard house, a few bemused Thai locals and some lethal local Red Bull. We danced a bit more and inadvertently chatted to a 6’11 basketball player from Texas who wanted his presence there kept on the down-low.
Taking in the weirdness of it all, we stumbled out around 6am, shattered, sweaty and a bit worse for wear.
Sadly by this point, James’ phone had died, and with it a screen grab of our hostel door code. Locked out, he made a mad dash to a nearby 7/11 to charge it up in time for a one hour nap before our taxi to the airport arrived.
Not the best preparation for a 9 hour journey to Koh Lanta!
We’re writing this broken, battered and sleep deprived in a hammock on our beach bungalow balcony, desperate for bed but grateful our Bangkok experience lived up to its crazy reputation! Now on to island hopping and no doubt more party times. For now though, sleep….