The learning curve

It’s been a strange but enjoyable few days since leaving Bangkok. Whilst in the capital we had our Thai friends Venus and Michael to help us out but this has been the start of the independent travelling with just us, the backpacks and the guidebooks (and of course t’internet) to get us around. We’ve never travelled like this before and so it’s a steep learning curve.

Our main sources of advice for the trip are the ever excellent Lonely Planet guides (conveniently available in PDF format these days – one less chunky book to carry), (which goes into SE Asia in a bit more depth than LP) and tips from people who’ve already been to the places we’re going to.

Already made a couple of mistakes in Lopburi – a nice enough town but we really could have got there early in the day, seen the 3 hours worth of good tourist stuff and moved on to Sukothai that day. The good thing about not being in a hurry is that we can just chalk that up to experience. The other mistake was being in a rush and not paying too much attention to where the hotel was when booking. Ended up in the new town, 6km away from the tourist area in a town with few taxis. As a result there seems to be an exorbitantly (for Thailand) priced unofficial taxi system where foreigners are “fare” game for whatever they want to charge – we ended up paying the same in taxis (THB750) as we did for the hotel. Lesson learned 🙂

Screw ups aside the town was pretty cool and we had an unexpectedly good meal in a backpacker bar (Noon Guesthouse) where we stopped for a beer and didn’t move for a few hours cos the beer was cold and we were roasting 🙂

Starting to get used to the heat and humidity but it’s very tiring during the hottest part of the day. As expected really and it’ll become less of a problem as we go on

Top luggage items so far:
Small travel towel – folds up to nothing and is great for the day bag when you’re sweating pints
Piriton – cos we’re getting bitten a lot
Travel washing detergent – washing clothes in the sink is a bit of a culture shock but works well
Zip off trousers – instant shorts but easy to put legs back on when going into temples
Silk sleeping bag liners – great for when the hotel beds are of dubious quality

Nik has a blog post about Ayutaya and Lopburi ready to go when we get a wifi connection that will upload the photos -probably in a couple of days in Chiang Mai #firstworldproblems 🙂