Bangkok, Thailand, has a lot to offer tourists
and business people passing through. With some of the best hotels
in the world at the some of the best prices, there has never been
a better time to explore this amazing country.
As one of the only
countries in Asia to have never been colonised, and even with the
enormous kick into the 21st century that Bangkok has experienced
recently, the Thai people have still managed to retain a lot of
their beautiful culture and amazing hospitality.
There is a lot to do when you are in Bangkok,
especially if you have not been before. It is important to prioritise,
especially if you have to break away from the skytrain
or underground system and get a taxi or tuk tuk, and a little planning will help you to make the most
of your time there.
The section below will give you a few ideas of
what there is to do in Bangkok, scroll down and see what grabs
your interest. If you have any tips or questions do feel free to
Spas: Thailand has some of
the best spas in the world. Ever type of massage, and treatment is
available at some of the best prices you will find anywhere. As
this topic is so large we have devoted an entire page to the best
in Bangkok which list rates, treatments, pictures etc so that
you can make an educated choice of where best to indulge in a bit
Golf: For golf enthusiasts, Thailand can quite
easily be described as a golfers paradise, with so many golf
courses to choose from at some of the best rates in the world. As
with the spas, the topic of golf is too large to fit here so we
have devoted a special page to golf giving you details of the best
courses offered so you can enjoy
in Bangkok to the fullest.
Cinemas: Believe it or not,
Thailand has been internationally recognised as having some of the
best cinemas in the world. Not only are they extremely modern, but
most of the better cinemas have VIP or First Class cinemas. These
cinemas with cinemas, are similar to an Executive Floor in a
five-star hotel in that they often feature a lounge with
complimentary snacks and beverages, and only have seating for
around 20/40 people in a regular sized theatre. The seats are
similar to what you would find in Business or First Class on a
quality airline. They recline, often come complete with blanket
and pillow and even have waiter service available. Of course, they
do cost a lot more than the regular options (around THB 140) but
at around THB 600/750 are still exceptional value for money and
something not to miss!
While these VIP cinemas can be found around
Bangkok, we highly recommend the Nokia VIP cinema at Siam Paragon.
With different VIP theatres, this VIP section of a large cinema
complex plays the latest movies in such comfort, you won't mind
telling your friends you went to the cinema in Bangkok!
Feeding Fish in Bangkok: After recommending the cinema above,
it is only fair we be a little more creative with the next tip.
Feeding fish in Bangkok, can be a fun and memorable experience,
especially for children but equally so for people of all ages. We
have a video, and full review for you to check out on our page
Feeding Fish in Bangkok.
With some of the shopping facilities in Asia, shopping is
something you will not want to miss. Most of the shops, have some
amazing discounts, sometimes as much as 80 % off. High quality
goods can be had in the major shopping centres. Copy goods etc.
can be found in most of the street stalls on Sukhumvit, or the
Night Plaza in Patpong (not somewhere we recommend unless you like
red light districts). To read about shopping in Bangkok please
visit our page devoted to
Shopping in Bangkok.
Cycling in Bangkok:
Yes, despite the heat, holes in the road that can swallow you
whole, a general lack of respect - or is it lack of knowledge -
for the rules of the road, vicious dogs, motorbikes, taxis, mini
vans and taxis who all seem out to get you, yes, despite all that,
cycling in Bangkok is becoming more popular. Full review and tips
to come. For now see our
Review of Bike Shops in Bangkok.
Night Life: Bangkok is famous around the
world for its entertainment and night life. We have devoted a
whole page to reviewing the
Bars in Bangkok, please take a look.
Restaurants: Thailand is a culinary delight,
and as the food is now
becoming more and more popular around the world, many already have
an idea of what to expect. There are thousands of restaurants in Bangkok,
but knowing which are good and which mediocre is as difficult in a
foreign land as it is in your home town. We do have a page devoted to
Restaurants in Bangkok, but do not be afraid to try the street
food, that is where you will get a true taste of the real Thai
food. As anywhere, if it is full of locals then chances are it is
good, give it a try. Oh, and remember, Thailand may well be in
Asia but not everyone uses chopsticks. In Thailand, chopsticks are
used to eat noodles, especially those in soup, but for most dishes
just a spoon and fork is used.
Grand Palace: Is an absolute MUST, as
it is an outstanding architectural achievement, that also houses
the infamous Emerald Buddha, which is the most revered Buddha
image in Thailand. We suggest that you go early in the morning to
avoid the major crowds, it will still be busy but getting there
around 9 am or 10 am will give you a little more space. Do not
wear shorts when you visit, and if you are female we recommend
that you do not wear sandals, skirts and instead wear a
long sleeved blouse or something. You will need to keep half the
day if not more open to see everything and you will definitely
need your camera with a lot of film or memory available. To get there, you can
either take a boat, taxi, or the Sky train to National Stadium stop, and
then a taxi from there. On the way back we recommend that you take
one of the many taxi boats available from Saphan Taksin skytrain
station. In fact we recommend you to go there and back by water
taxi, it is great fun, beats the traffic and is cheap. The Grand Palace officially opens
am and closes 3.30pm. Admission fee costs 200 Baht and includes a
ticket to the Vimanmek Royal mansion. It may be advisable to rent
a Personal Audio Guide that will only cost 100 Baht for two hours,
and comes in English, French, German, Spanish, Russian, Japanese
Snake Farm: Officially called the Queen Saovabha
Memorial Institute, is definitely worth a visit. The snake farm
is one of the largest producers of anti-venom Serum in Asia, and
before going on to the show, they will explain to you how Serum is
made, the difference between snakes and some other useful tips,
such as what to do if you are faced by one! After the educational
period you are led outside, shown around the different snake pits
and then to a stand where they will show you a snake show which
includes feeding and other entertaining tricks. If you are a bit
queasy around snakes sit at the back of the small stand. The snake
farm can be found on Rama IV, opposite the Suriawongse Road, and
not far from the Pan Pacific Hotel. The closest Sky train stop is
SalaDaeng. The shows begin at 11am and 2.30 pm on weekdays and 11
am on holidays, admission is 70 Baht.
Crocodile Farm: Is 30 kilometres away from Bangkok, and you can pretty much devote a
whole day to it with transport etc included. It is very close to
the Rose Garden so you might as well do them both at the same
time. It is an enormous place with over 60,000 fresh and seawater
crocodiles to see. They have feeding where you can buy chicken to
throw to the crocs, and they also have a show every hour, where a
brave or perhaps crazy guy puts his head inside the crocs head
etc. If you do not have much time in Bangkok, missing this will not
be a serious mistake and something that you can always catch on
another visit, or the one after that, or.... Admission is 300 Baht for adults and 200 Baht for
children. The farm opens from 7 am to 6pm. The farm also houses
other creatures such as snakes, gibbons, lions, and trained
elephants. They even have a small dinosaur museum, where life
size dinosaurs and their skeletons are on display.
Market: The most famous floating
market is some 80 Kilometres outside of Bangkok. You can take an
organised tour, or take a bus from the Southern Bus Terminal.
Everyday, hundreds of vendors boats crowd the market area early
morning until around noon. You will be able to travel around in
boat and see a little of what Thai village life is like. Although
do remember that this is now a very famous excursion / tourist
attraction so it will
not be your normal Thai village. It is best to get there early.
Read our full
Review of the Floating Market.
National Museum: This museum which is within walking distance from
the Grand Palace is one of the largest in Southeast Asia. The
museum was once used as a palace and consists of several old yet
beautiful buildings of colour. The museum also houses many
artifacts found from all parts of the country ranging from
Neolithic times, Sukhothai, Ayutthaya to the modern Bangkok
period. Admission is 40 Baht per person, and the museum is open
everyday except Mondays, Tuesdays and annual holidays, from 9 am
to 4 pm.
National Gallery Museum: Opposite the National Museum
mentioned above, on Chao Fa Road, and exhibits traditional and
contemporary works of art created by Thai artists. Opening times
are the same as above, and the admission fee is 30 Baht.
Mahathat: This is an old temple which was built during the reign
of King Rama I. It is located on Na Phrathat Road near Thammasat
University. The temple houses the Mahachulalongkorn Buddhist
University, which is one of the two highest seats of Buddhist
learning in Thailand. Foreigners can take advantage of the
meditation classes that are offered. The temple opens from 9am to
5 pm daily.
Wat Pho: Neighbouring the Grand Palace the Wat Pho is
found along Thai Wang Road and houses the very impressive gigantic
gold plated reclining Buddha which is some 46 metres long and 15
metres high! Its soles are inlaid with mother of pole!
Admission is 20 Baht and is open from 9 am to 5 pm.
Temple of Dawn
(Wat Arun): Is on the other side of the Chao Phraya river. You can
take a boat from the Tha Tien Pier near Wat Pho or by Arun Amarin
Road. The temple is best known for its 79 metre high porcelain
encrusted Pagoda that sparkles magnificently in the sun.
Ratchanatdaram: This temple was built during the reign of King
Rama III, in 1846 and is found along Mahachai Road. Loha Prasat is
the temples main attraction, and stands 36 metres high with 37
surrounding spires, it is the only one of its kind in the world.
Next to the temple is a statue of King Rama III.
This temple is well known for its huge standing Buddha image
called Luang Pho To, which measures 32 metres tall and 10 metres
wide. It was built during the reign of King Rama IV, and is
located on Wisutkasat Road in Bang Khun Phrom area.
Niwet: This temple built in 1829 is the shrine-hall of Phra
Phutthachinnasi, a very beautiful Buddha image which was moulded
in around 1357. Wat Bowon Niwet is one of the most temples in
Bangkok, whose one time chief abbot was King Rama IV, before he
ascended to the throne. Other Chakri kings who resided here during
there monkhood, include King Rama IV, King Rama VII as well as His
Majesty King Bhumibol Adulyadej. The temple can be found on Phra
Sumen Road in the Bang Lamphu area.
Vimanmek Mansion Museum: Is
definitely a great day out. The mansion is the worlds largest
golden teak building. The 3 storey Royal mansion contains 81
rooms, halls and ante-chambers containing Royal memorabilia. The
compound located in the Dusit Palace on Ratchawithi Road, is open
daily from 9 am to 4 pm and admission is 50 Baht. The dancing
shows begin at 10.30 am and 2.30 pm. Proper attire is required. So
no shorts, sandals etc.
Wat Trai Mit: Is located on Yaowarat Road
in China Town, near the Hulamphong train Station. This temple
houses a very impressive solid gold Buddha which weighs 5 and a
half tonnes and is three metres in height! This seated Buddha
image was built in the Sukhothai period.
Erawan Shine: You will
most probably come across this shrine, on your shopping tours or
perhaps as you notice that your taxi driver is no longer holding
the wheel, instead is performing a quick 'wai' and not looking at
the road ahead of him! The shrine is located next to
the Grand Hyatt Hotel and is devoted to Phra Phrom, a
Hindu God, who is greatly revered by Thai people. Laced flowers (Malee)
and small wooden elephants as well as Thai dancing performances
are offered to this statue by grateful and hopeful
devotees. The closest sky train station is Chidlom.
Museum: If stamps are your thing you may be interested in the
stamp museum located on the 1st floor of the Metropolitan Postal
Bureau, behind the Sam Sen Nai Post office. Stamps and such are
for sale. It is open from Tuesday to Saturday from 9am to 4pm.
Ancient City: The largest outdoor museum in the world,
or so it claims,
consists of gigantic sized replicas of famous buildings, monuments
and temples that can be found all through Thailand. The area the
museum covers is some staggering 280 acres, and is built into a
shape that resembles the actual shape of Thailand. The Ancient
City is at 33.km on Sukhumvit Road and is open daily from 8 am to
5 pm with admission costing 50 Baht per person.
Thai Boxing (Muay
Thai): Thai Boxing or Muay Thai is becoming very well known around
the world, and is a popular stop off for people who enjoy it. The
two main stadiums are Ratchadamnoen Stadium on Ratchadamnoen Nok
Road and is open Monday and Wednesday at 6 pm Thursday at 5 pm and
9 pm, and Sundays at 4 pm and 8 pm. The other major stadium is
Lumpini Stadium on Rama IV Road, and fights are every Tuesday and
Friday at 6pm and Saturday at 5 pm. You may want to ask the hotel
where you are staying at for tips on the best seats and even to
get the tickets for you.
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