Spent a long weekend here recently, starting on Wednesday for Clapton concert, already posted. Area is easily reached via new outer road #9, toll road, basically exiting at the Impact Arena / Thunderdome / Impact Exhibition center complex which is getting larger as we speak. A new addition this month is a Novotel, making concert going easy, a short walk or if extremely lazy, they will supply golf cart service. Good and bad, the Exhibition center had a home and jewelry show going on, very dangerous turf to be, but we needed a few items for the house, so turned out very well. Picked up a couple things we wanted, and almost needed. Luckily for me, Ree is not a jewelry person. But a nice browse in there, with a return on next to last day to buy some items for the house, which we thought were well made and fairly priced, considering not available in Udon. To be made and delivered next month as home completion gets closer.
Stayed at Novotel for the date of the show only, and then moved to something more in my CC price range, though can’t fault the Novotel and thought it a bargain for the level of service, especially opening just 2 weeks prior. Pool not finished yet, but we weren’t swimming. Surely to be a truly 4 star hotel when completed. Plenty of food options around as having food court and restaurants in entertainment centers open daily, so its own little self-contained neighborhood, if wanting to pass on restaurant offerings at Novotel, which we did.
Stayed the rest of the days at The Mansion, a stretch of the term, but safe and clean and easy access to main road and transportation. Having no desire to return day after the concert and a holiday weekend, so stayed in the area till Sunday, leaving when everyone else is returning.
Across the river is one of the attractions of the area, Ko Kret, pottery village and small island off to the side of the river, access by ferry, all of 2 baht per person. Picked up some small household things, pottery of course, and various candle things, again, pottery themed. Some very nice items at very nice prices. Weekday visit is recommended, as fairly empty, unless enjoy fighting the huge weekend crowd, which we thankfully avoided.
River boats between Pak Kret pier and Nonthaburi pier do not operate on holidays and weekends, Thai logic, as we wanted to take river taxi to Nonthaburi pier, as a rather nice park, again on other side of river, all of 2 baht again for ferry. This park is very nice, not visited, underutilized by locals, and a pleasant afternoon out. Meter taxi from Pak Kret was a mere 100 baht, as about 10 kms away and easily known and found as opposed to the blank stares when in BKK asking for a taxi ride somewhere. If needing to be in the BKK metro area, and not wanting to stay downtown the whole time, this is a nice alternative. A couple options to access the area, if having plenty of time and want the scenic route, river taxi available, to Nonthaburi pier by 2 boats, then further up by one of the others, know your flag colors. 40 min downstream ride, one hour upstream to Nonthaburi. Other option is BTS / Skytrain to mo chit station, then a free shuttle to Novotel or 30 baht shuttle, depending if staying at Novotel or not.
The park name across from Nonthaburi pier and a 2+ km walk or taxi ride is called Wat Chalerm Park, also a couple threads on TeakDoor for more information. Park has jogging track, excersise stations, play areas for kids, and plenty of place to relax and chill out.