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The express boat on the Chao Phraya River is a fast and inexpensive mean of transportation in Bangkok. Our hotel, the Navalai River Resort in Khao San is at pier 13. From there we can take the boat to Skytrain stop Saphan Taksin.
On the boat ride, we enjoy a slight cooling by the air flow. The express boat also stops at many of Bangkok’s attractions.
Bangkok has different express boat lines, marked by different colored flags. Not all express boats stop at all piers. The boats without color and those with the orange flag stop at all important piers.
You can pay the fare right on the boat, but you should have small change ready, e.g. 20 Baht. See route map and fares of Chao Phraya Express Boats
Please note: You also find “Tourist Boats”, which stop at the main attractions. On the boats, a guide gives explanations about the route and sights. However, you have to show that you like to exit the boat, otherwise the boat passes by. Moreover, the tourist boats are more expensive.
The first stop after departure from the hotel is the Siriraj hospital, where the deceased king has spent Bhumibol his last years. On the other side of the river is the Grand Palace with Wat Pra Kaeow and Wat Pho. Wat Arun is on the right riverside.
Also worthwhile to see are the flower market Pak Khlong Talat and the Oriental hotel. Already Ernest Hemingway and other writers have stayed in the Mandarin Oriental hotel during their stay in Bangkok.
It is always interesting to watch the maneuvers of the boats at the pier. The diesel exhaust gasses are less pleasant.
Extra tip: In general, one should always have a respiratory protection in the southeast Asia. One notices the need of it sometimes only when returning.
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