Fujifilm X-T4 in Action: Street Photography in Bangkok
Street Photography Adventures Begins in Bangkok, Thailand
Finally, I was back in Thailand, experiencing Thailand’s attractions and taking street photography in Bangkok during my four-day, three-night vacation. Don’t be surprised if I say this is my first travel experience in Bangkok. Yes, it was my first flight to Bangkok, and I found this holiday trip truly amazing. I stayed for four days and three nights at the Asia Hotel at Phaya Thai Rd. It was quite a different experience for me compared to the Hua Hin and Phuket trips a few years ago because, in Bangkok, I got to communicate more with the Thai locals there.
Sawadee Krap and Kup Khun Krap are the most used words I used during the trip. For the four nights holidays in Bangkok, I found that I rarely stayed in the hotel and most of the time was out sightseeing at popular attractions around the city.
I was thrilled about this vacation, and after three years of the pandemic lockdown, I finally arrived in Thailand. This trip was pretty hardcore, from strolling around taking street photography in Bangkok. Tommy, my friend, and I were there for holidays over the four days. We made a list of tourist sites and places to see in Bangkok. However, I may have made a mistake during my trip! Keep an eye out for the article.
It’s my first time travelling abroad with my Contax G1 film camera and Fujifilm X-T4. I always wanted a nice camera backpack that could fit two camera bodies, but I could not find one. I packed two rolls of Kodak Vision3 500T film, Fujicolor X-Tra 400, Kodak Gold, and Fomapan 400 and brought along my ND filter, which was quite helpful when shooting in the harsh sunlight. Before this trip, I looked up information about film labs in Bangkok and planned to develop my film there, but I didn’t have time. So I had to get it developed at film labs in Malaysia instead.
Check out some photos taken while shooting with camera film in Bangkok with motion picture films. As for my Fujifilm X-T4, I was shooting some short travel videos during my Bangkok trip. It was pretty huge for me when shooting street with the Fujifilm X-T4, I thought of getting a smaller digital camera, but I still need it for some other portraits work. Most of the time, I’ve been shooting with my new Fujifilm video recipes and Nomadic Mood for some vintage vibe.
Staying at four stars Asia Hotel Bangkok
Traveling around the city while staying at Asia Hotel Bangkok is convenient as a BTS train station connects directly to the hotel on the first floor. Just a few minutes walk, and you get to Ratchathewi BTS Station. I booked the Superior room for about RM700+ for three nights which is quite affordable. I found the room quite spacious and the bathroom clean too.
I guess I won’t get lost in Bangkok if it’s planned carefully because different types of public transport to choose from in Bangkok the tuk-tuks, Grab cars, taxis, and the BTS train. While all the rooms are non-smoking, smokers can smoke at the designated smoking area near the hotel lobby entrance.
If you stayed at Asia Hotel, it was convenient because there are 7-Elevens just a few minutes away if you wanted some snacks. There are other shops, food vendors, and restaurants nearby.
Day 1 - Street Photography in Bangkok's Chinatown
The flight from Kuala Lumpur to Bangkok took roughly 2 hours and 30 minutes. We arrived at Suvarnabhumi Airport at 3 p.m. and headed to the Asia Hotel to check in. I was astonished by the traffic condition there. LOL. During peak hours, the road was congested with vehicles, buses, and tuk-tuks. I rested at the hotel room before heading to Chinatown.
I liked the nightlife vibe in Chinatown in Bangkok; it was different from Kuala Lumpur. The nightlife is alive! I get some lovely street photos, and the lighting there is speechless. Chinatown is the best place for street photography in Bangkok at night, capturing daily nightlife and people as there are a lot of activities going on.
Chinatown in Bangkok is known as the largest Chinatown in the world (I heard it somewhere on one of the travel websites found online); it was busy and packed with tourists and locals. I tried to look for the prevalent fried bugs and insects I saw on Youtube, but I could not find them. No, I’m not interested in eating those bugs and insects; I want to take pictures of them. No luck, though. This is one of my favorite photos from my photo walk in Bangkok.
After dinner, we began our street photography in Bangkok’s Chinatown. I was astounded by Chinatown, which was bustling with street food, tourists, automobiles, and tuk-tuks.
Getting a Haircut at Jodd Fairs Night Market, Sound Weird But True
We get on a tuk-tuk ride to our next destination, from Chinatown to Jodd Fairs night market, which cost us about 500 baht. Following our street photography session, we went to the Jodd Fairs night market, formerly known as the Ratchada Train Night Market. I had been dying to get a haircut in Thailand, and I eventually got one for 300 baht at the night market. It was clean-cut, and I loved it. If you chance to be at the night market and want a haircut, you may find the barbershop a few stalls away from the night market’s main entrance. Jodd Fairs night market is full of vendors selling Thai street food, clothes, accessories, live music, beverages and many more.
The most famous smoothie girl in Bangkok, who went viral on social media, can be seen at Jodd Fairs night market. Tourists from all over the world came to see the smoothie girl make dessert cocktails and fruit juices. If you’ve seen YouTube, you’ll recognize her at the Jodd Fairs night market.
If you’re in search of a vibrant night market that satisfies all your cravings for street food, drinks, and shopping, then Jodd Fairs should be on top of your list. This bustling market is a melting pot of locals and tourists from all corners of the globe. The market is also a haven for souvenir hunters and fashion enthusiasts, with a vast array of clothes, accessories, and trinkets for sale.
The market also features live bands playing while you can sit down at a designated area and chillax with your snacks, which is the perfect way to wrap up your night in the city. My friend was shopping while I was getting a haircut at a barber shop at the night market. Then we chill out at a stall serving beers, cocktails, and mocktails while listening to live Cuban music (if not mistaken). Relax and unwind. We took a tuk-tuk to explore a rooftop bar at the T-One Building but eventually, the queue was too long to wait and we decided to head back to the hotel.
Day 2 - Exploring More Bangkok's Attractions
Probably the second day is one of the busiest days with lots of activities going on for us as we are exploring some of the popular destinations in the city. Our photo walk and street photography in Bangkok started early in the morning from the hotel to the Erawan Shrine, as we were also hungry and looking for a breakfast place.
We visited a few popular tourist attractions, including the Chao Phraya River high-speed boat ride, checked out the night view at the highest observation deck in the town, and visited a few temples.
Street Photography at Hua Lamphong Train Station
My street photographer friends recommended that I go to Hua Lamphong Train Station, a railway station in Pathum Wan, for a street photography session since the lighting is excellent in the morning. So Tommy and I decided to make it our next stop on our Day 2 exploration of Bangkok’s attractions. We booked a Grab car, which cost around 100 baht.
If you prefer sightseeing, you may visit the Hua Lamphong Train Station to experience the old-fashioned railway trains. You can travel by train from Hua Lamphong to Hua Hin. I was there at Hua Hin train station during my last few years of Thailand trip, and the railway is connected. Feeling bizarre. There’s hardly much to do here besides taking photos if you’re into light and shadow photography.
Chao Phraya River High-Speed Boat Ride
We chose to visit the famed Wat Arun after our session at the railway station but were unsure how to get there; luckily, a tour information guide approached us and described in detail how to go to the temple. I always wanted to experience riding a long-tailed speed boat in the Chao Phraya River, and finally, I did it. Just like what I saw in the Thai TV series dating back to the Ayutthaya period, Love Destiny, and The Kinnaree Conspiracy, to mention a few. We took a long-tailed speed boat tour ride to the Bangkok Yai Canal.
There are wooden houses on both sides of the canal and access to a popular places of worship, such as the giant buddha statue in Wat Pak Nam Temple, the floating market, and many more. The boat ride along the canal is also great for sightseeing and taking lovely photos.
During the sightseeing tour at Bangkokyai Canal, I mostly photographed daily life and old houses along the canal, and the people were welcoming too. While shooting, I kept swapping my film and digital camera to get certain scenes.
It was already evening, so we returned to the hotel, washed up, and prepared to meet Tommy’s friend for dinner. We ate dinner at a restaurant near the King Power MahaNakhon skyscraper building. The next adventure in the city will undoubtedly be rewarding.
Amazing Night City View at MahaNakhon Skywalk
The King Power MahaNakhon skyscraper in Bangkok, Thailand, is one of the must-visit destinations. We paid roughly 800 baht for a ticket to the Mahanakhon Skywalk and took the high-speed elevator to the 78th floor. The view is spectacular, and we relaxed on the sofa while enjoying the complimentary drink, which is one of the things you must do when visiting. From here, you may get a panoramic night view of Bangkok.
Aside from the breathtaking views, the glass stray area is a must-see. We also attempt standing on the glass tray to take in the picture below, but we are too afraid to look down. It’s a once-in-a-lifetime opportunity, in my opinion. It is windy as we are located 310 meters above sea level.
Day 3 - Sightseeing in Ayutthaya Historical Park
We started our third-day exploration in Bangkok, went to the Chatuchak Market for window shopping, and bought a few T-shirts. We took the BTS train from Ratchathewi BTS Station (N1) to Mo Chit BTS Station (N8). Taking photos is not allowed here, so I only took some discretely with my film camera. We enjoyed a nice breakfast meal and decided where to go next.
We didn’t explore the main shopping malls, including CentralWorld, MBK Center, and Siam Paragon. I eventually went touring Ayutthaya Historical Park. While walking to some temples is impossible due to the hot weather, we took a tuk-tuk that toured us around the site.
It was a long journey to Ayutthaya Historical Park, which took us around an hour and a half to reach. It was intense, and we got scorched under the blazing sun. We visited several of the area’s historic temples and ancient ruins, such as Wat Phra Si Sanphet, Wat Lokaya Sutharam, Wat Phra Ram, and the famous Wat Mahathat, which has the head of a Buddha statue buried in the roots of a Banyan tree. Read the full coverage of Ayutthaya Historical Park and check out the amazing photos of temples and ruins.
Exploring Asiatique The Waterfront
The trip to Ayutthaya had already taken us one day, and we could not complete our city exploration. It was about 4 pm, and we got a minivan back to Mo Chit and then back to the hotel. It was our last day here, so we had one final exciting destination to go to for street photography. We’re back in the hotel to rest after a long day.
We took a Grab car to our next must-visit destination, headed to the largest outdoor shopping and dining complex along the Chao Phraya River, called Asiatique The Riverfront, for dinner with Tommy’s friend. Check out the night photography in Bangkok using the film camera.
I found a lot of intriguing areas for capturing street photography around Asiatique, especially with the lighting. There are a few attractions here, including a giant Ferris wheel, a carousel, and a horror ride. There are also many restaurants, shops, and bars & clubs. The white-lit Ferry wheel can be seen from afar from skyscraper buildings in Bangkok.
We planned to get an authentic Thai massage, but all were closed as it was already late, so we called it a night and headed back to the hotel. We are leaving Bangkok the next morning. Nothing much happened on Day 4 as we woke up early in the morning, around 6 am, to catch a Grab car to Suvarnabhumi Airport and back to where we belonged.
I’ve had a great time in Bangkok, Thailand, so far, and I’ll be back to check out the shopping malls I’ve missed. I have shot three rolls of film rolls during my stay in Bangkok including two rolls of Kodak Vision3 500T & one roll of Fujicolor Superia X-Tra 400. I wouldn’t say I like bringing a film camera to a place with hot sun because the camera tends to get hot even when it’s in the backpack. Imagine taking a few rolls of film with you when under the heat.
This was one of my most incredible experiences discovering Bangkok’s attractions, and I’m sure I’ll explore more things on my next adventure. Travelling abroad via an airline is also convenient and speedy; scan and go. I love this trip so much. Let’s check out some photos from my street photography in Bangkok, from daily life moments to sightseeing.
It is impossible to explore the entire city during the 4 days 3 nights vacation, and we still have a lot of places to go. Anyway, feel free to check the Bangkok travel silent vlog on Youtube.
This was my first flight out of the country after the pandemic lockdown, and it’s so excited to travel with my film camera. I can’t wait for the next adventure!
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