So, for our honeymoon (or should I say “minimoon”?) back in December, Nicolas and I treated ourselves to a little trip to Thailand. We’d heard of this Burning Man-esque festival called Wonderfruit which was located in the fields of Pattaya, just outside of Bangkok (so pretty easy to get to). While the line-up wasn’t as great as the year before (they had Fat Freddy’s Drop!) and I was struck by a really nasty and relentless cough the whole weekend (further irritated by all the dry dirt and dust swirling around in the air), I have to say this is an event worth watching and keeping an eye on the next few years. It’s essentially an arts and music festival with eco-friendliness and sustainability at its heart. And it’s only going to get bigger!
Glamping in Pattaya
Hmm… where to start?
Well, there were loads of really charming, farm-to-table type set-ups.
Marching bands and loads of drums!
There was a “salon” where you could get your hair done all fancy… or whacky!
And a flea-market type area to get all your costumes and props.
It’s a very social event with people hanging out in clusters around magical installations.
Some people drive around in super decked-out golf carts.
Or hang out in the tent of DUDEISM.
Our tent from Rei.com was of course my favourite. Our first “home” together 😛 And boy was it big, and a relief to get into at the end of a long day! Another great thing about this festival is that it is not overly crowded. At times, you feel like you have awakened in this magical world and have it all to yourself! There is an abundance of decent and clean portaloos, outdoor shower cubicles and communal washing areas to brush your teeth, wash your face, clean your hands… While official “glamping” areas are available at a higher ticket price (they come with air-conditioned tents!), we found the regular camping areas were already the most spoiled we’ve ever had.
These Luci solar-panelled lanterns were great. We hung them inside our tents at night, and took one with us everywhere we went to pave the way.
Happy to say there was a decent selection of vegetarian options available for breakfast, lunch and dinner. And we love our breakfasts!
Always fun bumping into friends outside of your hometown. Hello Kay!
And trying out new skills 😛
This guy was also pretty cute…
Of course, there’s the music. And with a festival this small you’re bound to get up close and personal!
Wonderfruit… a taste of wonder 😉
While the breakfast buffet at the Shangri-La was as indulgent as you can imagine (especially for two people who love breakfast), we really loved the less corporate and grander feel of the Anantara hotel.
The staff were super friendly and we really felt pampered and spoiled after 3 days in the fields. Saying all that, here’s what REALLY rocked our boat…
Na Aroon – The Best Vegetarian Restaurant in Bangkok
Na Aroon was a vegetarian restaurant we found by doing a search online and my god, was it some of the best vegetarian food I have EVER had.
It’s located at Sukhumvit 1 Alley, Khlong Toei Nuea in the Watthana area of Bangkok. But pay attention as you have to walk all the way down this quiet road to what looks like a dead-end. The restaurant is located inside Ariyasom Villa Boutique Hotel.
We couldn’t decide what to eat so we just went for one of the set meals for two which had a little bit of everything. Again, the waiters and servers here were so friendly and accommodating. We even got to transfer to a romantic, candle-lit table outside, al-fresco.
Now the interesting thing about this place is that the whole “house” was actually owned by one of Thailand’s most renowned architects during the 1940’s, trying to integrate local Thai design with a bit of modern Western influence. You can actually book gorgeous rooms here as it’s a boutique hotel as well. And for sure, we plan on visiting again.
Ruan Nuad – affordable, clean and professional massage studio
For a nice, relaxing thai massage for not too pricey rates, check out the tranquil Ruan Nuad massage studio in the Silom area of Bangkok.
Minimalist, wooden bungalow design…
Clean rooms. And couples massage packages also available!
Look out for: The Sri Mariamman Temple in Silom
Look out for the Hindu-inspired Sri Mariamman Temple in the Silom area, on your way to the massage studio.
This is the main Tamil Hindu temple in Thailand, located at the corner of Pan Road and Silom Road (ถนนสีลม), a narrow, busy street with loads of street vendors selling flower garlands for temple worshippers along with other bric-a-bracs.
May Kaidee – veggie food for backpackers
For a more budget and quick-stop veggie place for lunch, there is May Kaidee.
This pales in comparison to Na Aroon, but apparently they hold cooking classes as well which could be worth checking out.
The food is pretty basic with simpler flavours. But hey, nothing tastes better than compassionate, meat-free meals!
Shopping at Khao San Road
Our final souvenir? These beautiful Thai cushions we bought at Khao San Road (after sharing a token bucket of fresh, ice-cold mojito! ;))
Exra bonus: they serve as great meditation pillows!