Temple Tuesday: Grand Palace, Bangkok

Yesterday, for my Temple Tuesday pilgrimage, I got the underground MRT to Sala Daeng, the BTS Skytrain to Saphan Taksin, and then the ferry up the river to stop 8, just outside the old Grand Palace.

Everything seemed to JUST be working out for me - as I arrived at the enormous front gate they were just about to stop tourists entering for the day. The soldier on guard was pulling the gate shut when one of the other guards shouted "Quickly, get in! Get in!" I slipped through and made my way down to the ticket booth. The lady at the counter took one look at my travel shorts and said, "You will not be invited to enter. You are not in long pants. You must go up to the first door outside the gate and borrow something long. Have a ticket now first." She sold me my ticket (500 baht) and then said to the couple behind me "Sorry, we're closed for today. Come back tomorrow."

Ten minutes later I was wearing a borrowed wrap skirt (200 baht deposit) and entering the Grand Palace grounds proper. 

I thought I had seen impressive buildings already in Asia but the gold stupas, glittering halls and amazing 18th century palace left me wandering about mouth agape. The old throne room (where no cameras were permitted) was truly impressive, with the throne seated under the four umbrellas the King was crowned beneath. 

Of course, when you travel solo, sometimes it's difficult to get a snap of yourself at these places but a lovely obliging soldier walking by was able to help out.

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