When I was talking to some friends about going to Bangkok one suggested not planning anything and just going straight to Khaosan Road. I was told Khaosan Road had plenty of places to stay at and tons of foreigners so I could easily find some travelers and ask for advice at some cafe. I’m not sure I would have been able to sleep too well if I had.
I went to Khaosan Road twice. The first time was for breakfast with my hostelmates where I ate too much and wasn’t able to able to do much the rest of the day. I went to a small pad thai restaurant with them and got pancakes with pineapple and a watermelon smoothie. It was delicious but too heavy with the intense heat. Afterwards we wandered around for awhile, past people selling scorpions on a stick, t-shirts, bags, street food, fisherman pants, and fake ID’s. There were a lot of bars and restaurants, tattoo shops, souvenir shops, and massage spas.
On my last night in Bangkok I went with another hostelmate to use the post office that was open late. I wanted to send post cards and it was fairly simple at the post office in the foreigner area. We had a bit of difficulty finding it but luckily were able to ask people and find our way down the right side streets.
Khaosan is an road with an eclectic collection of foreigners from all over and Thai shops. After sending the post cards we looked around at thai massage places. After all it was what my hostelmate wanted to do and it was my last night, might as well, right? We looked at several different places. Some were expensive, and as we walked down the street all the prices seemed to go down or be competing with the nearby shops. My hostelmate was interested in one with large glass windows we we could see into. Mostly because we could see it without going in and it seemed clean. But as we circled back they had begun prepping for a big night crowd and put a lot of seats outside. Which kind of makes it less of a relaxing spa like event and more of a grab an expensive drink and sit with friends or meet your neighbor kind of event.
We ended up at the same place I had breakfast at that had massage rooms on the upper floors. The host was super friendly and made us feel welcome, making sure it was warm enough because it was so cold before we went up. I’m a bit ticklish and found the experience a bit torturous. My hostelmate fell asleep. I think I would have preferred maybe a foot massage or back massage rather than a full Thai massage which was a lot of bending in and a stranger using all their body weight to try to make me less tense. However I ended up having a lot of energy afterwards which was nice. When we left the music got louder as the bars prepped for the night crowds. I don’t think I would have been able to sleep in a hostel too close to Khaosan road.
I didn’t feel comfortable walking around Khaosan Road by myself. I prefer to wander around without people coming up to me trying to sell me things or having to haggle fare prices for taxis or tuk tuks. There were always people around, but at night the crowd was a much more drunken type of crowd. There wasn’t much on Khaosan Road that I actually enjoyed. If restaurants or things you want to do are closed it is nice that they’re still open usually along Khaosan Road, like the massage places and the post office.