After exploring the city of Bangkok for an entire day and night by ourselves, the following day we planned to do a few tours. This AirBnB Experience was of a floating market and an orchid farm just outside of the city. This was our chance to experience local foods and fruits brought to market by farmers, and a guide to experience everything we wanted to try and eat. Not only for the food, but we were excited to finally get to see and ride on the traditional Thai Longtail Boats that are inexorably tied to the way Thai people, still to this day, navigate across water ways. Though floating markets, which are just markets accessed by a canal, have not been used commercially, this floating market was reintroduced in the past few decades not only for tourism, but to also bring back a part of Thai culture that has been lost in the modern world due to automobiles.
We hopped on the train from downtown Bangkok, headed west out of town, where we were told to meet up with our tour group at a gas station. Slowly, each couple rolled in and we eventually met up with our guide when she popped out of a very fancy looking passenger van with bubble tea and teas for us all. We loaded into the van’s comfy seats and were off to somewhere, while our guide Vicky began to share with us facts about the area and Thailand in general. In this group, we had one couple from Germany, a family from India, and an American couple from Washington. But soon after, we arrived at the Khlong Lat Mayom Floating Market, where we walked up and down the isles as Vicky would buy food and have us try and eat everything. To my surprise, so much was delicious and I wished we could’ve had more.
Following our time at the floating market, we hopped into a longtail boat where we headed down the canals to explore this network of waterways. Eventually, after passing a few temples, homes, and waterside boat noodles, we reached Baan Suan Bonus Cafe for lunch. This place was so unique and beautiful, tying in a vibrant jungle feel into an outdoor restaurant. We all sat down and ate a lunch at one big table, sharing some foods as they got passed around. There, Vicky told us more about her life and how the Covid years affected her, her family, and tourism in general, which in summary, was devastating. But afterwards, we wandered around and ended up in the herb garden where many of the ingredients from our lunch came from.
After lunch, we had one more stop on this AirBnB experience tour, an orchid farm. I was truly blown away by the shear number of beautiful orchids in such a small area. Hundreds of gorgeous orchids of purple, reds, yellows, and pinks scattered the rows of the farm. I had no idea it took almost 5 years to grow one big flower on an orchid plant. Throughout this tour, the group began to really open up to one another. It’s amazing how close you can get to random strangers over the course of a few meals and a shared experience. Afterwards, we all got photos while holding a bouquet of orchids and were each given a flower to go home with back on the boat.
After the orchid farm, we all piled back into the boat and made our way back to the floating market where we picked up our van again. Even though our tour was over, and it really was unforgettable, we kept the adventure going with the American couple from the tour, exploring Bangkok together. First headed up to the rooftop bar of our hotel for a few Chang beers while overlooking the sprawling city. We got to trade traveling stories of where we’ve been and where we’re headed to next. After a few beers, we headed back down to the street to wander the streets of Bangkok. We finally tried the infamously smelly Durian fruit (which was not great), got our first Thai massage on the trip (which was an amazing foot massage), wandered down random alleys, and even ended up at a couple of art galleries. The afternoon was capped off exploring an area with a beautiful, golden, ornate temple. The details in every corner of the architecture of these temples were stunning. But like all traveling buddies you meet along the way, we had to part ways and say goodbye to our new friends since they were headed north and we were headed south to Phuket. But this was just the start to our amazing trip to Thailand, for we still had a whole bunch of exploring to do down by the beaches and to go scuba diving!
Hi there, my name is Zachary Kenney and I’m an adventure filmmaker & photographer. My passion is to tell stories that will hopefully motivate you to go live a more adventurous life. Whether that is to experience the view from the summit of a mountain, or wandering through a new town on a road trip. Currently based out of Park City, UT.