We took the river taxi up to Khao San Road which was filled with fried food, elephant pants and fake ID stalls (only in Bangkok!). From the website HappyCow I found a vegan cafe called Ethos at the top of the iconic street. Here the staff were super friendly, and the floor seating and low lighting created a super chilled out vibe. That said, the food itself was just mediocre and came in humongous portions!!!
We arrived at the Grand Palace at 3:30 to find it was just closing (tip: don't be silly like me and actually check the temples opening and closing times!!). We went to Wat Pho instead which was incredibly beautiful and intricately decorated.
Although we had booked for 2 nights, all the overnight trains up to Chiang Mai were fully booked up apart from that night, so we added a bit of spontaneity to our trip and booked a same-day train. Although the hostel didn't give us our money back for the night we lost, they helped us secure a tuk-tuk to take us, and our mountains of luggage, to the Hua Lamphong train station.
I realize I sound like such a bore, and maybe slightly snobby, but I promise you Bangkok is just so so overwhelming and over-rated. We're now in Chiang Mai which I am in love with!! I guess Bangkok was just a tad too chaotic for a girl who's most in her element in the countryside!