I want to thank Chin for going above and beyond on our day trip to the Amphawa Floating markets. She met us at our hotel at 8:30 am and escorted our group of three to her car for what turned out to be a private tour of the floating markets. She had bottles of water available for us and also fans and umbrellas to help keep us cool and protected from the sun on our day of fun.
Right from the outset we could tell we were in for a fun day. She took us to 3 different markets - the first was a small floating market that altough starting to become touristy still feels authentic. We were paddled through the waters on a long boat and ate at so many food stalls I lost count (pad thai, papaya salad, sticky rice with banana, fresh coconut juice, dumplings and more). Here we had the opportunity to see coconut sugar being made and a local hotel owner showed us proudly around his property.
The second was the train market - although we missed the spectacle of the train going through it, it was still fascinating to see the wet stalls and fruits that were unfamiliar. Chin purchased things that caught our eye and we felt safe eating whatever she recommended/suggested.
The third market was the 'famous' Amphawa floating market and I have to say I much preferred the atmosphere of the small one we had visited first. Amphawa was full of tourists, tacky souvenir filled shops and polluted waterways. We still managed to eat more, drink more and find room for icecream again.
Somehow time got away from us but on our way back to Bangkok we still made time to stop off at a temple to see a golden reclining buddha and have our 'fortunes' told. Chin happily took photos of us throughout the day and promptly emailed them to us on conclusion of our day trip together. The trip back to the hotel was somewhat stressful as we had to pick up our bags and get to the airport in time for our international flights home, and traffic was moving at a snail's pace but Chin got us back and even offered to drive us to the airport (although we had too much luggage to fit in her car, the gesture was greatly appreciated).
I think this is the best day trip I have done in a long time - having a guide / business owner who is so passionate about what they do is really inspiring. I wish Chin and her partner all the best with their business - with the effort they put in they certainly deserve to succeed. I only wish we had had more time in Bangkok so that we could have participated in more than one of the tours they have on offer.
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