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Breaking News: Central Bangkok not flooded

Well maybe it isn’t exactly breaking news, but there seems to be a lot of questions about the flooding in Thailand and especially in Bangkok.  And since I just arrived here yesterday from Chiang Mai in the north (buses running normally again), I figured that I’ll post photos of what it is actually like in central Bangkok right now.  These photos were taken yesterday 2nd of November and the situation is as described at least right now on the 3rd of November (that is today). This seriously has to be the most up-to-date post I’ve ever written.

Khao San Road yesterday, business as usual Khao San Road yesterday, business as usual

Lot of places have actually opted to build an actual wall to protect them Lot of places have actually opted to build an actual wall to protect them

Some have opted for an option that is slightly cheaper and easier to tear down Some have opted for an option that is slightly cheaper and easier to tear down

Some use both the wall and the sand bags Some use both the wall and the sand bags

The worst should be over from what we have understood here, but that is no guarantee that things don’t change. But to summarize, there is no flooding in central Bangkok and there hasn’t been any. It’s pretty much business as usual. There are still plenty of people in central Bangkok and I had to check a few guesthouses before I found a room. All the shopping malls are ridicilously busy as usually and the night life at Khao San Road is as crazy as it has always been.

While you might see very dramatic flood scenes on the TV and news, it does not reflect the situation here in central Bangkok. Most areas tourists visit are currently safe from flooding, so the impact on tourists is minimal. You will however see a lot of places prepared for flooding, as you can see in the photos, but there is no actual flooding right now.

Some government buildings are now more difficult to get into Some government buildings are now more difficult to get into

And they even have pumps inside to remove excess water And they even have pumps inside to remove excess water

There are a few impacts the flooding has had. Some of the stores are closed currently following the five day evacuation holiday last week, but majority are still open as normally. One store that seems to be very impacted is 7-eleven.  They are out of Coca-Cola and ham&cheese sandwiches! However these items can still be obtained in other places, so do not worry. Other impact is that the canal boats don’t seem to be running. The river express boats which most tourists use are however still running fine.

7-evelen is however impacted by the floods. There doesn't seem to be Coca-Cola or ham and cheese sandwhiches anymore 7-evelen is however impacted by the floods. There doesn't seem to be Coca-Cola or ham and cheese sandwhiches anymore

They have stockpiled on water thou, but it's only one kind They have stockpiled on water thou, but it's only one kind

Of course there is the whole political side to the floods. The king refused his palace to be protected from the flood, arguing that the water would just go around it, and it wouldn’t do any good to anybody else. No wonder they like the king here. But there is resentment in the outer provinces of Bangkok, about the suspicion that their neighbourhoods were sacrificed in order to save central Bangkok.

Shopping malls near Siam Square are also protected by the sand bags Shopping malls near Siam Square are also protected by the sand bags

But many of them have left entrances open for now But many of them have left entrances open for now

And when I visited the MBK and Siam Square shopping malls, they were still as busy as ever.

Of course central Bangkok is only a very small part of the whole metropolitan area of Bangkok, of which big parts actually are flooded badly. Lots of people have lost their homes and belongings; and it will be a long time before things are back to normal. So I am not trying to say that the flooding isn’t as bad as they say on the news; it is. I am simply trying to encourage tourists not to avoid Thailand because of the floods.

Even banks are protected Even banks are protected

Additional stairs have been build for the wall constructs Additional stairs have been build for the wall constructs

There are lot of places with piles of sand bags, waiting if they are needed There are lot of places with piles of sand bags, waiting if they are needed

Subway has opted to have the sandbags inside Subway has opted to have the sandbags inside

Tattoo shops are also prepared Tattoo shops are also prepared

And so are even some clubs at Khao San Road And so are even some clubs at Khao San Road

Thailand is heavily dependent on tourism, and there has been a big drop in number of tourists coming into the country following the floods. So if you are planning a trip to Thailand or you have already booked one, but have been worried about the flooding, stop worrying and come here. Thailand will need all the tourism it can get to rebuild the country!

Have you been impacted by the floods in Thailand?

7 Comments

  1. Good to see Bangkok almost back to normal. So what happened to the Kings Palace? Totally flooded?

    • Well to be honest, it isn’t quite back to normal. Lot of areas are currently flooded even near by to Khao San Road, but the main tourist areas are still fine. Don’t know what happened with the Kings Palace, haven’t heard anything now. I’ll let you know once I do :)

  2. Finally getting to read this. Damn you Jarmo!! I have many of the same photos!! I love the places with the sandbags on the inside — great lot of good that’s gonna do.

    The King’s Palace was flooded a couple of weeks ago, but I was there the other day and it’s open for business again.
    Raymond @ Man On The Lam recently posted..Surprise! This Cave is in TechnicolorMy Profile

    • Hehe :) Yeah, I don’t think they quite understood the point about sand bags, I suppose they just saw other places having them and decided they must also have them!

      I did take your advice to go check out the bridge and beyond! …Now those are some powerful photos!

  3. Haha, provoking title! This is a very interesting catch, I absolutely loved your photo theme.
    Anna recently posted..Why do we hear so little of root canal pain?My Profile

  4. Good news! I was wondering about it cause I’ve been seeing such shocking photos of the flood and Bangkok is one of my favorite places. I had conflicting news from friends who lived there. Glad to know some of my favorite places are still in tact and you didn’t need wade around in water to get places.

    The places affected, where they only near the river?
    Grrrl Traveler | Christine recently posted..Packing Tips: Should you pack a travel towel?My Profile

    • Lot of the areas are affected. This was just to show that not everything is covered in water, e.g. the main tourist areas (Khao San road, silom etc.). I did actually walk later over the bridge to the other side of the river, just 20 minutes walk from Khao San Road, and the scene there was very different; everything was flooded there!

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