Thursday, March 06, 2008

Bangkok in Photos: Khlong Saen Saeb

Khlong Saen Saeb: The last remnants of the canal transportation system in a city once dubbed "The Venice of the East". Most canals have been filled in and converted to roads, but this one has survived. A putrid odor emanates from the dead, oxygen deprived water, particularly in the hot season when the water levels are low, but if you can put up with the smell and the possibility of splash, this is one of the fastest, cheapest ways to penetrate the heart of Bangkok.

50 years ago, life along the canals must have been lovely with frogs, flowers and birds in abundance. Not much lives in that water now aside from bacteria, but I have heard of a certain breed of walking amphibious fish that populates the canal and the lands nearby.
Money is collected by boat staff who trot dexterously around the outer ledge of the boat.
Here, a boat pulls into the central pier at Pratunam.


PJ said...

I hope no children live in that second story apartment - the balcony railing looks rather unsafe!

The photos show an appropriate mixture of modern skyscrapers and poverty that can be readily found in Bangkok. I wish I had ridden on a canal bus while I was there.

GQ said...

To PJ, maybe someone should take more pictures like this (of modern skyscraper AND poverty) in the Western world. I'm sure one can find lots of it