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Wednesday, November 2, 2016

Day 4 : Safari World, Chocolate Ville & Big C

Early morning, I woke up, got ready and changed into the new ethnic print cotton blouse which I bought at Asiatique The River Mall the night before. It was loose, but it was really comfortable and cooling. I looked alright in it, and when I met up with  my friends downstairs at the lobby, he thought so too. He actually discouraged me to buy it the night before because he thought I would be looking like an old auntie, wearing a bright orange coloured top with crazy prints. Lol. I'm glad I proved him wrong.

It's more shopping this early morning .... and my friends and I bought folded umbrellas for THB60 (only!) each. These were made in Thailand, and the vendor himself assured us that the umbrellas would be more durable compared to those made in China.

I bought 2 floral print blouses, and 3 eyelet blouses. The thing was over here, we needed to buy more than 1 piece to get a cheaper price. For example, if we bought 1 piece, we would have to pay THB200. If we bought 2 or 3 pieces, we would only pay THB150 and sometimes, if we bargained, we only had to pay THB130 or THB120. Hence we ended up sharing out the things we bought. Most of the blouses were one size and could surprisingly fit us whether we were big or small.

Then we hurried back to the hotel and gobbled up some breakfast. Eating was the last thing on our minds right now as shopping was top priority. Lol. At 7.45 a.m., the driver picked us up. We went to Safari World and would spend the day here.

The first part of the safari experience was so wonderful. After we settled the admission tickets, our van was driven into the park, where we could see animals in open space. Just the sight of the animals cheered us up immensely.




Then our vehicle entered a fenced enclosure .... and there outside of our vehicles were ....

Tigers!! 

More of them! 

We saw a couple resting on the platform, and a couple of others were playing nearby .... I think we were all so ecstatic looking at this .... but the 8 km drive-through quickly ended.

The second part of the safari experience had us visiting the park on foot - it's much like a zoo. This was not as fun as it was just like any other zoo. That day, there seemed to be an influx of tourists for India .... so much so that it felt like I was in India instead of Thailand. Lol!

  
At the entrance ... 

Our guide dropped by a stall and bought a mini coconut pancake snack ..... 


Mini coconut pancake

It was hot from the pan, the edges crispy, the cake itself was chewy, sweet and salty and full of coconut flavour. So good!!

There were scheduled shows at the park, and we ended up moving from one show to another.

Orang Utan Show

Sea Lion Show

Cowboy Show

The shows were an hour apart of each other. Well, it's not really something all of us wanted to watch because we were aware of the mistreatment the animals may be subjected to while training to perform all the antics. However, of course, none those showed as we watched the animals cleverly interact with their handlers ...  

I must admit that the first 2 shows - the orang utan and sea lion shows - were rather entertaining. The cowboy show, to me, was a waste of time - the sound system was bad, the acting was bad, the story was bad.

Lunch was included in our admission tickets .... and at the hall, food was served buffet style. Aside from the 2 lines of mains, there were counters serving chicken noodles,vegetarian dishes and even halal dishes. I enjoyed the chicken noodle soup and the ice-cream.

My lunch 

After lunch, there were a few more shows ... but by then we were quite bored with the performance format. The dolphin and bird shows were passable ... but there was one show called "Spy War", which liked the cowboy show was a confusing mess - due to again, the bad sound effects.

Dolphin Show

Bird show

Getting in and out of the performance venues too were tideous and dangerous too; I think there were only 2 entrances and exits at each venue ... and with hundreds of people cramming through them; I imagined if a stampede occurred, many would end up dead. 

Dinner was at Chocolate Ville - a restaurant seemingly very popular with locals and tourists. Well, again, this place is a replica (another one!) of a European Village, with quaint and colourful buildings, beautiful landscapes. It's a happy place, though I wasn't exactly excited to be in a mock European village. Gosh I was in Thailand after all. Why would I want to pretend to be in Europe ....



Anyway, we were seated down and thankfully, the food was good. We enjoyed everything served. We paid about THB3400 for our meal, which we thought was quite reasonable. We ordered an ecclectic mix of food from the menu ...




German Ham Hock










Both the food and ambience were good, so we did enjoy our meal.

Next was shopping at Big C. This was a place filled with many tourists too - many from Malaysia. We bought our Wacoal bras here. The saleslady was really warm and friendly. She spoke a bit of English and Mandarin and told me, "Made in Thailand and cheaper..."

We let her measure us and recommended us to the variety of bras on display ... we spent much time here trying them on. In the end, I decided to buy 1 piece. Mine cost THB1100, but the saleslady assured us that we could get back the sales tax later on at the airport if we spent more than THB5000 here.

We also bought many food items  here; they were sold in bulk and thus cheaper. Popular snacks- like Taokaenoi seaweed and Bento surimi and squid snacks and Pocky. These were sold by the bulk and were cheaper. Our shopping done, we went back to our hotel for the night.

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