Day 8: 1st June, Bangkok
This was the last planned day of the tour. The only place to be visited in the itinerary was the Safari World. After the usual breakfast we headed to the venue in our van. The journey was more than half an hour long.
The place is interesting. There are two main parts – the safari and the animal shows. The main safari area surrounds other exhibits and the area where different animal shows are conducted. Unlike the Night Safari in Singapore we were allowed our own vehicles inside. The experience lasted 45 minutes and we got a chance to see many animals in their almost-natural habitat from up close. The giraffes rested in the shade while the hippos had a mud bath and the zebras played around. I enjoyed seeing a rhinoceros again after Singapore. There were quite a few varieties of deer – Sambar, Eld’s Deer, Fallow Deer, Black-buck and so on. The safari is the home to a number of birds like pelicans, peacocks and storks.
The best part of the safari was seeing the enclosure of the lions and tigers. This part was undoubtedly the best experience, as a family of lions came and sat within 3 metres of our vehicle. It was an absolutely amazing experience as I had never seen an entire family of lions from that close. They were practically posing for photos! The same enclosure also housed the tigers. We didn’t see much of them in action as they preferred to nap. We were not so fortunate to make it to the feeding program due to time constraints. The next enclosure was that of the Black Bears. I have to admit, they actually looked like a jumbo sized version of the Teddy Bears.
We moved on to the next part of the experience – the animal enclosures and shows. The first show on the list was the Orang-utan Show. On the way there we caught sight of a couple more attractions – the ponies and the crocodiles. The crocodiles stood so still that I actually doubted if they were even alive.
Again, we couldn’t manage to get the best seats in the house as we reached just in time for the show. The set for the Orang-utan Show was very interesting. The actual show was even more so, as I had least expected orang-utans to play music the drums and cello, leave alone 2 rounds of Boxing! The funniest part was to see an orang-utan imitating and slapping the host! The sound effects were really cool and the comic timing was spot on.
We took a detour to the enclosure housing a pair of white tigers before we proceeded to the Sea Lion show. The tigers were undoubtedly the most beautiful and majestic animals I had seen in the day.
We somehow managed to get decent seats even though we reached just before the show began. I knew that the show was going to be almost the same as the Fur Seals we saw in Singapore. Although most of the tricks were the same, the show in Bangkok was a tad better than that in Sentosa Island Singapore. The comic element in the Bangkok show was better. The seals imitated the caretakers, played fetch with rings and balanced balls on their snouts. They even raced each other and perfectly aimed balls inside nets. I was pleasantly amazed as I had never even thought of sea lions getting a massage or standing and shaking hands. Another act that really caught my eye was of the sea lion balancing on its nose a ball on a stick. It climbed steps balancing it perfectly. It was mindboggling.
This show was definitely a lot grander than what we saw in Singapore. It involved a greater number of seals and a lot more tricks. We then proceeded to the next item on our checklist – the Western Cowboy Stunt Show and passed by the enclosure of the striped deer en route.
The Western Cowboy Stunt Show was perhaps the only show where I managed to get the second row seats despite reaching just before it started (I didn’t notice the warning in the front saying that the people in the first couple of rows will get completely soaked). One of the actors came outside to welcome us. He acted so well that I actually thought he was completely drunk although he was pretty much sober. Although the show was pretty lengthy it had its moments. The fact I really appreciated about the actors was that although it was raining they didn’t let it get to them at all. Their stamina and determination really was commendable. Of course I emerged soaking wet after the show, but it didn’t seem to bother me much.
We proceeded to have lunch after this. The lunch was arranged at the venue by our tour operators and a large table had been booked especially for the 11 of us. The lunch was decent and was followed by the last attraction of the day – the Dolphin Show.
The Dolphin Show was really enjoyable. I again managed to get myself a decent seat (without getting soaked this time). The main tricks were more or less similar to the show we saw in Sentosa but overall, this show was a lot better than what we saw there. The number of dolphins were greater here and they were very much bigger than the pink dolphins.
The dolphins looked really charming as they swam a couple of laps with their neon “goggles” on. Other tricks included standing up and saluting, really high jumps, jumping through hoops, balancing big exercise balls on their snouts, playing with hoops and synchronised swimming with the trainers. The cutest part about the whole thing was seeing the dolphins sing. It was really a wonderful experience. For the grand finale, six dolphins charmed us as they jumped high together and bade goodbye.
Safari World was one of the best experiences I had in Bangkok. Here are a few tips if you intend to visit the Safari World
- Check out the feeding times of the lions and tigers in the safari and plan your trip accordingly. It is supposed to be a unique experience. Unfortunately we missed out on it due to time constraints
- Enquire about the timings of different shows and plan your day accordingly. We missed out on the Elephant Show.
- Regarding the attire, wear clothes that dry quickly. The weather is humid and it can rain anytime. It rained twice during our visit. (Also, if you are sitting in the front seats for the Cowboy Stunt Show, there is a high chance you will emerge soaking wet!)
- Our buffet lunch had been arranged through our tour operators DS Travels. There was a hall dedicated to vegetarian Indian food only. Jain variants were also available.
- Lastly, a comparison between Safari World Bangkok and the Dolphin Lagoon in Sentosa, Singapore. The Dolphin Show and the Sea Lion Show in Bangkok is a lot grander than the Dolphin Lagoon in Sentosa.