Bangkok Tuk Tuk and Long-tail Boat Experiences
In Bangkok and other parts of Thailand, you will see these strange looking vehicles called “Tuk Tuk” on the street of Bangkok and long-tail boat along the Chao Phraya River. The Tuk Tuk is a 3 wheels opened-air vehicle that are fund to ride. Its local names is “Sam Lor”. The definition of Tuk Tuk is “a three-wheeled motorized vehicle used as taxis” in Thailand. Thai Tuk Tuks have been associated with the society and culture for a long time. Another eye caching vehicle along the Chao Phraya River in Bankgok is long-tail boat. The design of the boat as its name suggest, has a long shape design like Banana with a long propeller. The purpose of the design is to be able to go on shallow water. The vehicles automatically became the way of life of the people living in Bangkok, and other parts of Thailand as their way of transportation.
There are many different designs of Tuk Tuk vary by the region. The typical design for Bangkok Tuk Tuk looks like the picture below.
Bangkok Tuk Tuk
For Tuk Tuk in other regions of Thailand, they could look like the pictures below.
Tuk Tuk in other regions of Thailand
A yet iconic boat first created around 1932-1933 by a civil servant. The boat in the past comparing to the modern day vehicle, is like public bus. When I was young, long-tail boat was used as public boats transporting people around town. Every time I got to take the boat, I was so excited because it was fun to take the boat viewing scenery of both sides of canal and rivers that I cruised along.
Long-tail boat in each region of the country looks different. This is because they have been modified to suite the local situation. For instance, the long-tail boat in the southern region looks like the one in the picture below.
Bangkok long-tail boats
Long-tail boat in the southern region of Thailand
Best time to take Tuk Tuk in Bangkok
For people with first time experience, this might not matter. First time experience is always excited for everyone right? I guess so. It was like me doing it for the first time when I was a kid going out with mommy taking a Tuk Tuk. For me, my favorite time to take Tuk Tuk would be in the morning and evening. In the morning, the weather is not yet hot. So taking the Tuk Tuk which is an open-air vehicle, will not be hot comparing to afternoon period.
Doing Tuk Tuk in the evening after sun down would be my best time roaming the street at night on Tuk Tuk in Bangkok. Everything is perfect. No heat. No traffic. Bangkok traffic is horrible during rush hour. If you are struck in the traffics on Tuk Tuk, you can not avoid those pollution from the car. You need to inhale it while in your Tuk Tuk. I do not think this is not the experience you would like to have. I have been in this situation before and know it was not a pleasant experience to have.
You will also experience the beauty of Bangkok at night when the city is light up.
You can ride the boat any time of the day. Staring from sunrise to sundown. These long tail boats will take you along old canals of Bangkok which was once called the Chao Phraya River before the short cut was made. There are no traffic in the river and canals so you do not have to worry about congestion. All you need to do is enjoy the other side of Bangkok that can only be seen by taking the long tail boat only.
If I have to choose my favorite time to do this long tail boat ride, I would do it in the late afternoon. Late afternoon cruise is my favorite because along those canals I cruise, I will see people hang out near the canal and river. Some are having dinner. Some are just siting, chatting or fishing. It’s a scenery of real local life that I really enjoy it. However, other time of the day is also nice to cruise the canals and river. I also like it but the late evening would be my top choice.
Bangkok Tuk Tuk Sunset Long-tailed Night Light
If you are looking for a Bangkok Tuk Tuk tour that has combined these two experiences into one, you might need to check out “Bangkok Tuk Tuk Sunset Long-tailed Night Light.” The tour offers you a mix experience of sunset, Tuk Tuk, long-tail boat, temples, food and market.
In short, I hope this blog about my Tuk Tuk and long-tail boat experience would be helpful for other travelers who plan to visit my hometown, Bangkok in the future. Sawasdee kub.