Bangkok’s Secret Sites
The City of Angels, as Bangkok is affectionately known, has more guide books dedicated to it than any other city in Asia! I’m sure you’re fed up reading about the Grand Palace and Khao San road, so lets have a look at some of the less well known, but still awesome, things to see and do in Thailand’s Capital…
Goddess Tubtim Shrine: This crazy place plays host to literally hundreds of phalluses in all shapes, sizes and colours. They stand tall and proud and offer a very unique photo opportunity. Some of these things reach 10 feet tall, all offering respect to the female fertility spirit, so if you’re trying to have kids just pop in, leave a gift and get back to your hotel asap!
Located near the British Embassy, in the grounds of the Swissotel.
Erawan Museum: Perhaps more specifically the massive 3 headed elephant (orginaiting from the Hindu elephant, Erawan) that sits on top the museum. The ‘Elephant of the Universe’ took 10 years to build, stands over 43 metres tall, 39 metres long and weighs 250 tonnes! The museum itself is impressive, within the elephant is a collection of priceless religious artifacts but it’s the elephant that will really take your breath away. Located on Sukhumvit Road, Samut Prakan – take a taxi.
Baan Bat: Any fan of Thai culture will have seen the parade of monks at the crack of dawn carrying their alm bowls around the city. Baan Bat is Bangkok’s last remaining hand-made bowl ‘factory’ Located in a small backstreet near The Golden Mount Temple you can’t fail to hear the noise as people bang out the brass to form the bowls, a sound that you could have heard as far back as the 18th century in exactly the same place.
Corrections Museum: Morbid tourism at it’s grisly best, a day at the corrections museum and you’ll get an insight into all the gruesome punishment dealt out to Thai offenders in the not-so-distant past (the prison was only moved in 1990). Take a special look at the ‘elephant ball’, which prisoners were squeezed into, and elephants were encouraged to kick it around, but often ended up getting frustrated and simply standing on the ‘ball’. Nice. Take a taxi to 436 Mahachai Road, near Rommani Nart Park
Mae Nak Shrine: Stemming from the love story of Mae Nak Prakanong whose husband was drafted to go to the war. During his service she died during childbirth but her spirit didn’t want to leave her child and husband so she remained. Her husband returned and carried on his married life as normal until he discovered she was a ghost. A local doctor captured her spirit in the bottle and now the shrine is attended to 24 hours a day – a very creepy affair indeed.
Located at Sukhimvit Soi 7, 900m from On Nut BTS station.
Ok, you won’t find these five gems in your guidebook so set your lonely planet down and experience the hidden Bangkok. Happy travels!
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