Tag Archives: Lumphini Park

Thursday, Friday… Caturday! (and a guest from England)

Auste and I have been very lucky to meet so many great people on our ongoing journey in Thailand. We keep in touch with many of them and everyone seems to have something interesting going on. One of these people informed us that he was coming back for a short visit and asked if we needed anything from the UK. As excited as we were, we asked for a pricy and fragile lens for our camera that we couldn’t get in Thailand. Long story short, and as odd as it sounds, we changed our minds and asked for a pack of sea salt instead.

We finally met our guest and gratefully received our long-awaited salt from Asda. The anticipated conversations turned out to be with a jet-lagged, sleep deprived, and hungover man due to all the free booze on British Airways! All that was fine for us, as these three ingredients make people say funny things. However, as he was coming from England, he was greeted by the tropical heat which prolonged his acclimatisation, big time. In his own words: “I was fine until I stepped out of my room”. I guess we got used to the heat, so for us the time when the sun starts to set is perfect to get out – the air starts to cool down and if you’re anywhere close to some trees, you can even feel a gentle breeze. But those who have just arrived can’t feel much difference.

Park Society at Sofitel So Bangkok

We went up to Park Society rooftop bar at Sofitel So, right next to Lumphini Park. We like that place so much we have been there three times already… It’s the view of the park that makes it so cosy. Wednesday 4th of March was a Buddhist holiday so no alcohol was served, which worked to our favour as we discovered our new favourite drink – virgin Mojito. We’ve been making it at home every other night since.

Park Society at Sofitel So Bangkok

We wished our friend a good sleep and remembered a cat café close to the BTS. It’s called “Caturday”, located just off Ratchathewi BTS – take exit 2, walk past the nerd restaurant and turn left at the “Cocowalk” sign, it should take about 60 seconds. This hip cosy café shares walls with a very active nightlife bar area – in case you get a caffeine hit, or should I say catteine hit, hehe!

Caturday cat cafe BangkokCaturday cat cafe BangkokCaturday cat cafe Bangkok

As we walked in, we had to take off our shoes and wash our hands, and only then proceed to the playground. There were pillows and cushions on the floor, and regular tables too. In between them there were artificial “trees” for the cats to climb and get away from all the restless iPhoners and Samsungers trying to take selfies with them.

Caturday cat cafe BangkokCaturday cat cafe Bangkok

The coffee was good, so were the cakes. We didn’t have any hot food, but people next to us had something with a very appetising aroma, I think it was some pasta. Prices were decent, ranging between 80-120 for drinks and 120+ for desserts.

Caturday cat cafe BangkokCaturday cat cafe BangkokCaturday cat cafe Bangkok

Obviously the cats were cute as they always are. The ambience was very relaxing, with vintage-like decorations and soft music in the background. Vigilant staff were keeping an eye out for any cat trouble, at the same time looking out for any queries from customers, and made you feel like home.

Caturday cat cafe Bangkok

Unlike the Makura cat café at Seacon Square (far out in Bangna), Caturday had more tabby cats. Most of the felines at Makura were flat-muzzle persian-style cats, but very soft and fluffy. We also wanted to give “Cat café by Dome” a go, but there were cameras and film crew inside, and we didn’t feel like shooting for a ‘Whiskas’ commercial. It’s right next to Udom Suk BTS though, exit 4 and take the soi 103 – it’s just under a minute away.

More photos of kittens here.

For more pet-friendly cafés just have a look at this user friendly and up-to-date online magazine about Bangkok.

Caturday cat cafe Bangkok

Little truck tales: Discover Thainess festival

Bangkok is amazing. It feels weird saying this as just a few months ago we had the opposite opinion of any big city. Of course, there is traffic, noise and pollution, but somehow they’re nicely balanced by beautiful urban things like architecture, green spaces, and fun things to do.

We live on a quiet street with predominantly working-class Thai families with kids, therefore this makes our experience so much more interesting. Observing the kids playing outside, witnessing the impressive triple-parking system, or just exploring the local market seems like enough of Bangkok for new residents with busy schedules.

I felt quite embarrassed telling somebody that we live in Bangkok and we haven’t seen anything touristy yet. Bear in mind though, that for months we were looking for a decent place, job hunting, sorting all the paperwork, visa-runs, bank accounts, etc. But now we’re able to find some time to explore the surrounding areas.

Discover Thainess festival
Two kittens and two boxes.

Discover Thainess festival

Saturday. As always, first things first, we were discussing how many coffees to buy. After my dental check-up at Thong Lo we bought 3 coffees for the two of us and sat next to some shop on the street. Coffee at 7-11 is surprisingly good, and for 25 baht (50 pence) per cup you don’t really mind sitting outside a random shop! We also had some biscuits, but they weren’t enough to quiet Auste’s rumbling stomach. Next stop was some grilled sweet potatoes from a wandering street vendor, but they had some living things in them (since when do worms like potatoes??), so I knew Auste wouldn’t think of anything but food anytime soon.

We got off at BTS Chidlom and somehow by accident (or faith?) ended up at the Central Food Hall. 3 massive sections of cheese, a huge quality bakery, several deli bars with plenty of tasty choices… We were like two kids in a candy shop. We wanted to buy EVERYTHING. You see, we love food. We love good food. We left with a bag full of freshly baked bread and all sorts of other goodness. Nibbling the bread bite after bite, walking past various posh hotels, we followed the BTS Silom line all the way PAST Lumphini park without a single coffee shop in sight, until we reached Sala Deng. More coffee, and MORE FOOD. We walked back to the park and stopped by the gate. Of course there were loads of street vendors with surprisingly low prices, so… we got fried egg with rice. MORE FOOD.

Can you believe we were finally AT the park, and not at another food shop? But it wasn’t an ordinary day at the park. We came to explore the Discover Thainess festival organised by Tourism authority of Thailand. As soon as we walked through the main entrance… we decided to find a green patch of space for a picnic. Now I know it sounds silly, but just laying down on the grass in the park with our feast of food was the best part of the day!

Discover Thainess festival

And then we went to explore the festival. There were women spinning silk and weaving linen next to stands of beautiful scarves and traditional Thai clothes to purchase. There were others carving wood or even using popped rice to make all sorts of beautiful things.

Discover Thainess festivalDiscover Thainess festival

It reminded me of a similar festival in Lithuania – where you have all sorts of craftsmen dressed up in traditional costumes demonstrating how tools and things worked in the past. Then there were performances – even more beautiful Thai costumes and traditional dancing.

Discover Thainess festivalDiscover Thainess festivalDiscover Thainess festival

Everyone, even the food vendors were dressed in traditional Thai clothes. And there were tons of food… we even found some nice vegetarian options!  I couldn’t resist the coconut ice-cream served in a coconut, with fresh coconut shavings – one of the very few Thai sweets that we both like.

Discover Thainess festivalDiscover Thainess festival

Everywhere we looked there were so many vibrant colours and sounds, and everyone seemed to be having a good time. It was also strange (and nice at the same time) seeing so many Thai people and very few foreigners, even though it was a tourism-related festival.

You can find more photos from the festival on our Flickr page here.

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