Riding the ghost town

Photos: Kajondej Thongmee

Like every year, the recent Songkran holidays saw a quiet Bangkok. With a large part of the capital's population having left for their hometowns, most shops and restaurants outside of shopping malls were closed. Roads were not congested, sometimes even traffic free. It's a great time for cyclists to enjoy a fun ride in the city.

For this year's Songkran, my buddies and I chose to explore the backstreets and alleys of Chinatown.

Bangkok's Chinatown dates back two centuries to the early days of the city as the capital of the Kingdom. It covers not just both sides of Yaowarat Road which international tourists are familiar with but extends to the north beyond Charoen Krung that runs in parallel with Yaowarat and to the south to the Chao Phraya River. With one afternoon to spend, we limited our target to the south side of Chinatown, which includes areas such as Talat Noi, Xiang Gong, Song Wat and Sampheng.

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