Today’s post is going to be a short one because there is no way I can put into words how wonderful yesterday was.
We took our time getting ready in the morning and accidentally missed breakfast. We ended up walking down the street to grab some street food and more water. I don’t think I mentioned before but you have to drink bottled water here. We sat in the cafe area of our hostel and enjoyed pork dumplings, grilled bananas, sticky rice & meatballs.
Yesterday was our day dedicated to visiting the Grand Palace! For those of you who don’t know what the Palace is here is a little history. It is the grounds where multiple religious buildings sit. This includes temples, halls & old living quarters. Up until 1925, The Grand Palace was where the King, his court & the royal government lived. The Grand Palace has been around since 1782 and is filled with the most beautiful handcrafted buildings I have ever seen. The pictures here don’t even begin to show you how beautiful the detailing is. The grounds are still used for religious ceremonies and other special events.
Recently the Thailand King (Bhumibol Adulyadej) Rama IX passed away. He was loved and worshiped by all and you can truly feel the sadness the locals are feeling. Everywhere you go there are shrines for him where people can pay their respects. At his time of death he held the longest reign as a King in history right at 70 years. A new King (his son I believe) was just sworn in last month so things here are undergoing some changes. When we were at the temples, locals were praying for the new King.
Unfortunately we weren’t able to go inside the physical temples because they had a special ceremony going on. We were able to see a glimpse of the Emerald Buddha but weren’t allowed in because there was a prayer being held.
The grounds are an extremely spiritual place and visitors must be modestly dressed. Shoulders, legs, ankles, & feet must all be covered. Should you forget this rule, they have clothes for rent outside of the grounds.
The mosaic design was so beautiful it pretty much takes your breath away. I know that sounds silly but I honestly have never seen anything like it! My favorite building was filled with purple and gold accents. I also found that the statues with red and gold were some of my favorites as well. When you take a closer look at the buildings and run your hands across them you really get a feel for how important this place is and how much work went into creating it. I couldn’t help but to get teary eyed. All I can really say is you must see this place for yourself one day!
During our time there we met two American girls who happened to be from Alabama! We took pictures for each other and learned that Maggie & Marilyn were finishing up their final day of their 5 weeks of traveling. It was nice chatting with some fellow southern girls. Hope you ladies made it back safe!
Last night we decided to walk across the alley to a hair braiding salon and did something Christina and I have both been wanting to do for a long time. WE GOT DREADS!! No I’m not kidding lol. Just 2 each but we both love them! It was a little hole in the wall shop but they did great work. They used our own hair as well as some extensions to make them longer. There was a street cat trying to play with the string while they were wrapping my hair lol.
We checked out of Laksameenari Guesthouse today and will miss it! Please stay here if you ever find yourself in Bangkok. I highly recommend it. The host is so wonderful and even gave us a parting gift.
Currently we are sitting at the Bangkok central train station awaiting our overnight train to Chiang Mai! Just to give you an example of just how important their king was to them.. there is a huge tv playing clips from when he died and also playing music dedicated to him. Our train won’t be here for another 5 hours so we have time to kill. We’re excited to see Chiang Mai.
We miss you guys!