A 1-Way Ticket to Bangkok, Thailand
When I purchased my plane ticket for Bangkok, Thailand, I had absolutely no idea what I was doing. I only gave myself 10 days to completely move out of my rented house, pack, and sell a whole bunch of stuff I didn’t want anymore. On top of that, I had no idea where I was going to stay in Bangkok, where the nice areas were within the city, or where fellow travelers and expats like to hang out and party.
I was clueless.
Google is for Hostel Searching
Like any good human being, I went straight to Google Maps. First I typed in Bangkok, Thailand to center the map, and then I searched for hostel.
That’s a lot.
Phra Nakhon, Silom Road, Sukhumvit Road
Those are the three main areas of entertainment and nightlife in Bangkok (at least as far as I’m aware at this time).
Sukhumvit Road is loooooong and busy. Filled with malls, shops, clubs, and general busyness at all hours of the day. I likened this to downtown Manhattan or some other bustling city that never sleeps. Too big and busy for this guy.
Silom Road is the perfect mix of the two and conveniently located between them for taking mini-trips. It has all the food, shops, hostels, and red light districts I could ever want. <Hey! Buddy! You want ping-pong?!> — The answer is always no.
After narrowing my Google search down to Silom Road, I found HQ Hostel.
I thought, “They must be trusting and decent:
- They’re on a Google Map search
- They have a website (in English)
- They have good reviews on Google, Hostel World, and TripAdvisor”
HQ Hostel is also just steps away from a vibrant morning market and a popular night market (where the go-go’s and red light district is located).
I reached out via Facebook about staying there, and they were happy to host me.
My First Stay at a Hostel
Did I mention this is the first time I’ve ever stayed at a hostel? I know how they work, but can’t say I’ve ever stayed at one. All I knew of hostels is that if you stay at one in Eastern Europe with naked Euro-chicks, they’ll drug you and sell you to an underground murder-torture ring (Touristas).
That was not HQ Hostel.
I showed up at midnight after my 35 hour travel ‘day,’ and the guy at the front desk was still happy to welcome me. He, and the entire staff, speak English really well.
There were no travelers getting crazy drunk and being loud, and the common area was very clean.
I spent the first 3 nights in a mixed dorm with 3 bunk beds (6 beds total) and everyone was quiet and considerate of each other despite having different schedules.
The next 3 nights were spent in a private room that were even more relaxing. I suffer from insomnia at times in the U.S. but I have never slept better in my life since arriving in Bangkok.
Random aside: They have western toilets in the shared bathrooms as well as the private rooms. Just don’t flush your paper.
The Perfect First Stop
HQ Hostel is absolutely the best first stop you can make once you arrive in Bangkok unless maybe you’re a return visitor.
As I said, my plan was that I had no plan — no idea where I was going, what I was doing, or where any of it takes place. Having a quiet, low-pressure place to get used to the city, the culture, learn a few words, and my plan my next steps was absolutely fantastic. In a city that never sleeps and never slows down, HQ Hostel is a nice, affordable sanctuary to collect your thoughts and figure out just what the f*ck you’re doing if you’ve got no clue.
The proximity to the morning market made my daily routine INCREDIBLY enjoyable. Every. Single. Day.
Don’t Miss Your Chance
I was stuck in Corporate America for 9 years. I was miserable.
Then I took control.
You can too, and it starts right here.