Wondering what to do in Bangkok, Thailand? Ah, the possibilities! Bangkok offers so much. Check out the 41 best things to do in Bangkok according to travel bloggers.
Bangkok is such an exciting city to spend a few days! Bangkok is one of the main ports of entry in Southeast Asia together with Singapore, and you’re likely to end up here at some point while traveling through Asia.
You definitely won’t get bored here: with its colorful markets, stunning temples to visit, foodie experiences of all kinds and an exciting nightlife, Bangkok attractions something for everyone, no matter your interests, age or budget. I’ve visited the city a few times and I feel there’s still so much to see and do.
But with so many possibilities, what are the top things to do in Bangkok, Thailand? I’ve asked my fellow bloggers what are their favorite places to visit in Bangkok and we came up with this epic list of 41 things to add to your Bangkok itinerary!
Here they are, divided by the same sections you’ll find in this post; you can use this map to create your own itinerary.
The Best Temples in Bangkok
Go Wow When Visiting Wat Arun
Photo and Text by Cat, Walk My World
No trip to Bangkok is complete without visiting Wat Arun, one of Bangkok top attractions. The iconic “Temple of Dawn” stands tall along the Chao Phraya River and is one of the most famous temples in the country. Wat Arun is a huge white stupa that is decorated with ornate mosaics and statues from the base all the way to the top. You can climb halfway up the stupa and get some stunning views across the river and to the Grand Palace and city beyond.
Wat Arun is at its quietest in the early morning on a weekday. We’d recommend avoiding the middle of the day as the crowds will be pretty unbearable and it gets incredibly hot (there’s little to no shade). The temple opens from 8am until 5pm and entry costs 50 baht. Make sure you dress appropriately (covering shoulders and legs) or you will be denied entry.
Even if you’re feeling temple fatigue, you will be glad you visited Wat Arun, which is different to any other temple we’ve visited in Bangkok.
Wat Arun Opening Hours: 8.30am to 5.30pm
Wat Arun Entrance Fee: 100 baht (approximatey $3)
⇒ If you’d rather visit the main temples of Bangkok with a guide, BOOK HERE the Walking Temple Tour, that include Wat Pho, Wat Arun, The Grand Palace and more.
Check Out the Reclining Buddha at Wat Pho
Photo and Text by Kevin, The Outcast Journey
Wat Phra Chetuphon Wimon Mangkhalaram Ratchaworamahawihan in Bangkok is also known as Wat Pho (luckily!).
Covering about 8 hectares, this temple complex is lined with collections of Buddha, murals, and a courtyard. Wat Pho is mostly famous for its 46 meter long Reclining Buddha, coated with gold, which you can’t miss when visiting this temple.
Make your way here- Wat Pho is just opposite the Grand Palace and pay an entrance fee of 200 Baht (free for children under 120 cm). Pay attention to the signs since attire is strictly observed here. Remember that it’s a religious place that you’re visiting, so sleeveless and shorts/skirts above the knee are not allowed.
Here you can also experience a traditional Thai massage. The Thai massage school here at Wat Pho is renowned all around Thailand, and apparently they give wonderful massages.
Wat Pho Opening Hours: 8am to 5pm daily
Wat Pho Entrance Fee: 200 Baht
⇒ You can also visit the Grand Palace together with Wat Pho and Wat Arun accompanied by a guide in a half-day private temple tour. BOOK IT HERE
Visit the Grand Palace and Wat Phra Kaew
Photo and Text by Slavi, Global Castaway
The Royal Palace is the biggest must-see sight in Bangkok. Visiting the capital of Thailand and skipping the Grand Palace is like visiting Rome and skipping on the Colosseum.
Built in 1782, the palace was the actual home of the King until the turn of the twentieth century.
Nowadays, the palace complex is used for ceremonial purposes and also home to the most sacred temple in the country – Wat Phra Kaew – The Temple of the Emerald Buddha.
According to the prophecy, the Emerald Buddha statue was created in India, where a famous prophet foresaw it would bring “prosperity and pre-eminence to each country in which it resides”. No one is allowed near the Buddha beside His Majesty the King of Thailand who is responsible for the change of the seasonal cloak of the statue. There are three different robes – one for summer, one for winter and one for the Rainy season, and the ritual of changing them is very important for the Kingdom
Being as famous as it is, the Grand Palace has one of the highest entry fees in all Thailand – 500 Baht. Also, when you go for a visit, make sure your knees and shoulders are covered otherwise you’d forced to rent extra clothing.
Last but not least, the Palace is a top-rated tourist attraction during all seasons so go there as early as possible to avoid the crowds.
Grand Palace Opening Hours: 8.30am to 3.30pm
Grand Palace Entrance Fee: 500 Baht
⇒ If you’d like to understand more about the place, CHECK OUT the Bangkok Grand Palace and Wat Phra Kaew Morning Join In Tour.
Check Out the Less Known Marble Temple
The Marble Temple (its actual name is Wat Benchamabophit) is all made with Italian Carrara white marble and gold carvings and surprise surprise!
It’s not as known as the other temples on this list and off the path of most travelers, so you could very easily avoid the crowds and have it all for yourself! That was the case when I visited and trust me, after joining hundreds of people at Wat Pho, it was quite a relief! The sense of peace of this place… you really need to add it to your itinerary.
Wat Benchamabophit Opening Hours: 8am to 5.30pm daily
Wat Benchamabophit Entrance Fee: 50 Baht (approximately $1.50)
Climb Up to the Golden Mount Temple
Ok, I promise this is the last Buddhist temple on this list, then it’s time for you to check out other attractions. The problem is, there are so many beautiful temples in Bangkok that choosing only 1 or 2 is very hard!
Wat Saket is definitely worth adding to your list. After climbing up 300 steps (bring water with you and maybe try and avoid going at midday!), you’ll reach the famous Golden Mount stupa that sits on top of the temple, which is built on a 80-meter high man-made hill. The views from the tops are nice, and also sometimes you’ll find monks chanting at the top!
Wat Saket (Golden Mount) Opening Hours: 9am to 5pm daily
Wat Saket (Golden Mount) Entrance Fee: 50 baht
⇒ What about joining a half-day tour to the Temple of the Golden Mount + the Pad Klong Talad Flower Market and Chinatown? ⇒ BOOK HERE the Chinatown, Flower Market and Golden Mount Walking Tour.
Pay a Visit To the Hindu Erawan Shrine
Photo and Text by Gábor, Surfing the Planet
Visiting some of the beautiful religious sights in Bangkok is one of the main highlights of any trip to Thailand. Actually, one of the main charms of Bangkok is the mixture of modernity and ancient Asian spirituality, and there’s hard to find a place where you can experience this better than in the Erawan Hindu Shrine. This holy place is found in the most modern part of the city center, just below the sky train rails.
It’s such a peculiar place visited every day by local people who come to pray and ask for their wishes to get fulfilled. If the wish gets accomplished, they usually return with gifts to celebrate joyfully in front of the golden statue of Phra Phrom, which a Thai representation of Brahma, one of the major Hindu gods.
Erawan Shrine is close to the Chit Lom metro station.
Erawan Shrine Opening Hours: 6 am to 12 am every day.
The Best Markets in Bangkok
Explore the Gigantic Chatuchak Market
Text by Priyanko, Constant Traveller
A Bangkok must see, the best market in Bangkok is also the biggest market in all of Asia. The Chatuchak weekend market has more than 15,000 stalls selling just about anything that you’d like to buy – from daily essentials to live animals and everything in between. It is virtually impossible to leave the place without buying something.
The market is divided into lanes called Soi that are numbered so you can mark your trail without going around in circles. There is a sort of map to help visitors but it’s quite useless because you never know what you might find at which store. Clothing, handicrafts, ceramics and pets accessories saw the most crowds on my visit to the market. Do make time to marvel at the arts and crafts and antiques section too.
At the end of so much walking, talking and haggling, even a hardy traveler like me had to succumb to the allure of a foot spa. The market is open only on weekends and the average footfall easily crosses a couple of million shoppers – both local and foreign. Local tourists, in fact, bring large suitcases and backpacks to stuff their shopping so that by the end of the day, you are treated to the weird spectacle of locals toting around large bags looking like tourists!
Although it’s located outside the main Bangkok city centre, there is no dearth of transport options to take you back and fro from the market. The best option is to arrive and depart by the MRT underground station at Chatuchak Park or just take the bus if you have too many bags. To be included in your Bangkok sightseeing bucket list.
Chatuchak Market Opening Hours: Saturdays and Sundays, 9am to 6pm, and Fridays 6pm to 12am.
Chatuchak Market Entrance Fee: it’s free.
Check Out the Yodpiman Flower Market, Bangkok
Photo and Text by Soumya, Stories by Soumya
Yodpiman Flower Market located near the Yodpiman pier on the Chao Phraya river is a must-do on every Bangkok-goer’s list. Here, you can see flowers of all kinds, ranging from the very mundane to the most exotic. Tropical beauties such as marigolds, jasmines, plumerias, and amaranths are seen in plenty.
Apart from being the trading point for the freshest of flowers from all over Thailand, Yodpiman is also the ideal place to immerse yourself in the local culture and watch flower vendors go about their daily lives. You will see customers poring over flowers, vendors crying out to get their attention, and porters scurrying around to get their deliveries done.
The flower market is open throughout the day and entry into the market is free. However, the best time to visit is after midnight and before 4am. That is when flowers from all over the country come in and the hustle and bustle at the market goes to a very different level. Early morning is also a good time because that is when most retail customers come in to make their purchases.
⇒ You can join a tour that will let you explore a Flower Market, Chinatown, and an incredible sunset view from Wat Saket. BOOK HERE the Chinatown and Flower Market at Sunset Group Tour.
Be Fascinated by the Amulet Market
The Amulet Market is one of the most fascinating markets in Bangkok. This is where people in search of protection come to look for secret trinkets and magic amulets that will (allegedly) bring them luck or health, with prices ranging anywhere from 5 to thousands of bahts.
If you are looking for something different, this is definitely an unusual one! The Amulet Market is located by Tha Phra Chan Pier.
Amulet Market Opening Hours: 7 am to 5 pm daily.
Wander around Rot Fai Ratchada Night Market (Train Night Market)
Photo and Text by Safia, Nomad Junkies
Bangkok can be defined by two things which makes it so dazzling to outsiders: the street food culture and the abundance of night markets. In this respect, every traveler should include in their itinerary a visit to the vibrant Rot Fai Ratchada Night Market where food, entertainment and shopping come together in one buzzing place.
The Ratchada location of the Train Market can be reached easily by MRT (Thailand Cultural Center Station), making it much more accessible than its sister market in Srinakarin.
A favorite among locals especially on Friday and Saturday nights, the Rot Fai Night Market exudes a trendy hipster vibe where you’ll find various vintage stores, barbershops and even tattoo parlors. Before you leave, get your hands on some street food and grab a drink on the rooftop of one of the bars that line the periphery of the market to see the hundreds of colorful stalls from above.
Rot Fai Night Market Opening Hours: open daily from 5pm to 1am.
Foodie Experiences in Bangkok
Eat all the street food in Bangkok
Photo and Text by Veronika, Travel Geekery
When in Bangkok, you cannot deprive yourself of one of the most rewarding foodie experiences: eating on the street! And still eating VERY well.
See, street food in Thailand, and Bangkok especially, is something locals naturally have as part of their lives. When they don’t cook at home, they eat out on the street. Rarely in brick-and-mortar restaurants and more so in makeshift food stalls.
The quality is great overall. However, still exercise caution and don’t eat at a stand that locals avoid. It is said that if a street food vendor reduces the quality of the food sold, he’ll lose clients and will go out of business soon. There’s plenty to choose from and locals are picky.
For the main foodie area head to the Yaowarat Road in Chinatown. Sukhumvit Road (esp. Soi 23 to 39) is also popular.
But it’s also Bangkok’s numerous markets such as the Floating markets, Flower market, Weekend market, Train Night market, Pratunam Market… everywhere where there’s a market there’s plenty of delicious street food.
To be honest, though, street food is everywhere. Even in business districts, tucked away among skyscrapers. Local workers need to have lunch too and where else to eat quickly and well than on the street. 🙂
⇒ Check out this list of the best food tours in Bangkok!
⇒ If you’re looking for a Bangkok street food tour (they are my favorites!), check out this Old Town Bangkok Food Tour or the Chef-Designed Bangkok Food Tour For 8 Exclusive Guests.
⇒ Otherwise, head to Chinatown for your food tour. The Chinatown 3-Hour Evening Hidden Gems and Food Tour will stop at vendors on the Michelin Guide + you’ll try all kinds of street dishes, desserts and drinks. BOOK IT HERE
Eat Bugs in Bangkok
Video and Text by Gemma, Two Scots Abroad
There’s one delicacy that everyone backpacking in Bangkok should try and I don’t mean a delicious plate of pad Thai!
Bugs are a snack sold by street vendors around the Khao San Road area. Initially, you might assume that scorpions on sticks are just gimmicks served up for tourists alongside laughing gas but eating bugs is a legit local snack too.
Food vendors serve the likes of grasshoppers, crickets and ant queens – all fried and put on display for purchase. Once you have bought your insect of choice, the server will pop them in a small bag for you to take away.
We went for some simple fly-like creature which tasted salty. The worst part of the process was when the wings came away from the body, in my mouth! A local walked past and asked what we were up to. We offered him the leftovers and he munched them like a packet of potato chips/crisps!
Learn to Cook Thai Food at Amita Cooking Class
Photo and Text by Susan Portnoy, The Insatiable Traveler
Located on a narrow canal off the Chaya Prao River in Old Bangkok, is the Amita Cooking Class, the setting for one of the most delicious mornings you’ll spend in the city. Owner Tam Piyawadi Jantrupon, a demure figure with a big personality and a background in law, politics, music, and fashion, teaches travelers how to cook authentic Thai dishes in the third-generation family home in which she grew up.
Your morning begins with a hotel pick up and a scenic boat ride past Wat Arun, known as the Temple of Dawn, and the Grand Palace. Upon arrival, you’ll discover Tam’s hidden urban oasis, replete with a lush herb and flower garden and picturesque gazebo.
First, she’ll take you on a tour as she picks the ingredients you’ll use in the four-course meal you’re going to make. Then, in her charming open-air kitchen, she’ll show from scratch how each dish is made. Next, it’s your turn. Step by step she’ll walk you through the process until a meal fit for a king sits before you, followed by a leisurely lunch where you’ll dine on your own creation.
When it’s time to go, you’ll be driven back to your hotel, sated, recipe cards in hand, and any leftovers that remain.
Amita Cooking Class Opening Hours: every day except for Wednesdays (max 10 guests). Check the website for menu options.
Amita Cooking Class Fee: the price is 3,000 Baht per person (approx. $95.00) and payment is in cash at the school after class.
Join a Night Food Tour by Tuk Tuk
One of the best things to do in Bangkok at night is going for a night tuk tuk tour of Bangkok where you’ll both get to see some of the most famous places in Bangkok by night + you’ll try all the local delicacies.
You’ll get to try the best Pad Thai in town before checking out secret bar with incredible views of Bangkok, then you’ll head to the Flower Market by night. I personally went on this tour, and it was a lot of fun (and a lot of food!). ⇒ BOOK HERE the Midnight Food Tour by Tuk Tuk
⇒ Another good option is the Bangkok By Night Tuk Tuk Tour: Markets, Temples & Food. BOOK IT HERE
Eat the Best Pad Thai in Bangkok
If you’re a foodie, then you need to try Pad Thai in the spot where it was first invented. Pad Thai is the famous Thai dish, a mix of noodles, eggs, peanuts and prawns or chicken. Pad Thai was invented during World War II by the owner of Thipsamai Pad Thai restaurant [313 315 Maha Chai Rd], so it makes sense to come here to try the best pad thai in Bangkok!
The restaurant is extremely popular, so expect long queues before the restaurant opens.
Thipsamai Pad Thai Opening Hours: 5 pm to 2 am daily.
Museums in Bangkok You Can’t Miss
Check Out the Jim Thompson House Museum
Photo and Text by Maire, Temples and Treehouses
The Jim Thompson House Museum is a beautiful wooden house filled with Thai art and treasures, as well as pieces from elsewhere in Asia. It was built in the 1950s by the American silk tycoon and antiques collector Jim Thompson. The house is small, but has a peaceful vibe and it’s an interesting way to spend a couple of hours.
The entrance fee includes a guided tour, which is actually really interesting, focusing not just on the beautiful house but also on the figure of Jim Thompson, who reportedly once served as a spy, and later mysteriously disappeared in the Cameron Highlands of Malaysia.
Jim Thompson House Museum Opening Hours: 9 am to 6 pm daily
Jim Thompson House Museum Entrance Fee: 200 baht for adults over 22 and 100 baht for younger visitors (free for children under 10)
⇒ BOOK HERE a half-day tour that includes a visit to Jim Thompson House + Suan Pakkad Palace, the former residence of Princess Chambon of Nakhon Sawan.
Visit The Erawan Museum
Photo and Text by Sharon, What The Saints Did Next
Walking inside the belly of a giant three headed elephant is an unusual experience and definitely one of the best places to see in Bangkok! This massive elephant is 29 meters tall, weighs 250 tonnes and is made of copper and steel.
The structure is actually the Erawan Museum just on the outskirts of Bangkok a few kilometers from the end of the BTS Skytrain line at Bearing. The museum was privately built to house a personal collection of ancient artifacts and with the intention of preserving Thai art and culture.
There are three levels inside which is modeled on the Hindu depiction of the universe. The first floor is the ‘Underworld,’ second is ‘Earth’ and the top, ‘Heaven.’ It is also a temple of sorts and you are required to remove shoes before entering. The interior is absolutely stunning, bright and colorful with a stained glass roof, intricate mosaics and beautiful stucco. The detail and craftsmanship given to the decor is exquisite. Outside, the gardens are just as lovely full of water features, sculptures and shady trees, a wonderful place to relax before heading back into the city.
Erawan Museum Opening Hours: open every day from 8am to 5pm
Erawan Museum Entrance Fee: 400 baht
⇒ BUY HERE your entrance to The Erawan Museum with audio commentary.
Take Tons of Photos at Art in Paradise
Looking for something different and to have a couple of hours of fun?
Located on the 4th floor of Esplanada Mall, this fun museum is full of 3D paintings where you and your friends become part of the scene. So many Instagram opportunities here!
You can fly like Aladdin on a carpet, or find yourself in the middle of Egyptian pyramids. There’s plenty of scenes, so you can really spend a few hours here and not get bored. A great idea for a rainy day.
⇒ BUY HERE your entrance for Art in Paradise Bangkok
Art in Paradise Opening Hours: 10 am to 10 pm daily.
Art in Paradise Entrance Fee: 300 baht for adults, 200 baht for children.
The Infamous Bangkok Nightlife
Join the Madness of Khao San Road
You won’t be able to escape Bangkok without checking out Khao San Road, the infamous party street of Bangkok. At some point you’ll end up here, guaranteed. In the same way that you’ll end up in Bangla Road when you visit Phuket!
Khao San Road is best visited at night time, when all the vendors come out and the street fills in with people. The famous book (then made into a movie) The Beach, described it as “the center of the backpacking universe”, and it couldn’t be more true. Here you find cheap eats, vendors selling elephant pants for $2, and bars selling the famous buckets of cocktails.
You can have a drink, go dance at one of the clubs, or relax and see the world going by at one of the many foot massage parlors right on the street. One of the most fun things to do in Bangkok at night.
Have Cocktails at Moon Bar at Banyan Tree Bangkok
Photo and Text by Cristina, The Lazy Trotter
Wondering what do in Bangkok? How about feeling like touching the sky while sipping some amazing cocktails from the very famous sky bar located on the 61st floor of the Banyan Tree Hotel [21 100 S Sathorn Rd]?
Let’s be honest, it’s a must do in Bangkok that can’t be missed.
Enjoy the view of the whole city at your feet while holding a delicious cocktail – breaking news: mocktails are OK too – while repeating in your head these simple words “One day Simba, all of this will be yours”.
Although it WILL NOT be all yours (sorry, Simba!), what’s the matter in adding a touch of glamour to your travels to Thailand?
Last but not least, besides offering a breathtaking view of Bangkok, this sky bar is just one of the perfect locations for the best Instagram shots. EVER!
So, now that I have your attention, here come some useful info: the Moon Bar in Bangkok is located at the Bayan Tree Hotel. Entrance is free but expect to spend around 15$ for a cocktail. With such a great view, it is totally worth it!
Moon Bar Opening Hours: 5 pm to 1 am daily
Average price of a cocktail: $15-20
A Late Night Bit of Lovin’
Text by Jean, Traveling Honeybird
If there is one must thing to do in Bangkok it is getting yourself a massage. There’s something so simply wonderful about sitting in that chair, relaxing with a tea, and having a lovely individual rub away all your worries. Playing tourist in the city can wreck havoc on your feet, and if you’re not used to the heat of South East Asia you may find yourself with burning hot foot.
A Thai foot massage, or if you have the time a full body massage, is an amazing way to experience Thai culture. The extra benefit being that the massage parlors are generally open until midnight and seemingly are on just about every main street in Bangkok. So you’ll have no issues finding your happy ending.
TIP TIME: If you’re also visiting Chiang Mai, check out my post on where to find the best massage in Chiang Mai!
Enjoy the Sunset from Sky Bar at Lebua
Like we said above, your Bangkok visit wouldn’t be complete without checking out one of the many rooftop bars. Then, why not make it two?
Sky Bar at Lebua [1055 Si Lom, Khwaeng Silom]on the 63rd floor is The highest open-air bar in the world, and one of the most famous in the world thanks to the Hangover II movie.
Expect to find here an elegant ambiance (keep in mind that there’s a smart casual dress code in place) and quality cocktails,. You might not able to see some light show like from the rooftop at Marina Bay Sands in Singapore, but you’ll still have some stunning views over the city of Bangkok. Come here in the late afternoon, so you can enjoy the view during the day, at sunset, and at night.
Cocktails aren’t cheap, but the views make it worth it.
Sky Bar at Lebua opening hours: 6pm to 1am daily.
Average price of a cocktail: $15-20
Wondering what to wear in Thailand?
READ ALSO: The Ultimate Thailand Packing List
Unusual Things to Do in Bangkok Off The Beaten Path
Visit Bangkok’s Plane Graveyard
Photo and Text by Ben, Horizon Unknown
There isn’t much left to be discovered around Bangkok’s busy and humid streets. But there are still lesser traveled attractions that are well worth the effort to visit.
Bangkok’s Plane Graveyard is a short taxi or ferry-boat ride from the centre of the city. It’s not marked on any map and isn’t a tourist hot spot – visiting it is one of the most unique things to do in Bangkok.
Lying in this graveyard are three giants who have been picked clean of anything valuable and left to decay. You can climb through these massive shells and explore without hordes of tourists getting in your way.
There are a small group of families that rely on tourist admission fees to survive and the fee can be anywhere from 100 to 800 Baht, apparently depending on the day. All up, if you’re looking for lesser known and memorable Bangkok tourist attractions, head to the Plane Graveyard!
Go On a Boat Tour on the Bangkok Canals
Photo and Text by Jurga, Full Suitcase
One of the most special things we did in Bangkok was taking a long-tail boat trip on the canals. Hidden away from the hustle of the city, a boat trip through the historic Thonburi area offers a unique opportunity to see a very different part of Bangkok.
Lined by trees, wooden stilt houses, and colorful temples, Bangkok canals are a great place to get a glimpse of how locals live. You can see children feeding fish and then jumping into the water to swim with them. We bought bread from the Buddhist monks to feed it to the fish as well (but no, we didn’t jump in for a swim)…
This area is also full with vendors, selling everything from food to souvenirs directly off their little wooden boats… There are several floating markets in this neighborhood, so depending on the day when you visit, this area can be a great place to discover this side of Thailand’s culture as well.
If you are looking for more off-beat experience in Bangkok, I cannot recommend the boat tour on the canals highly enough. Here you can find more information about exploring Bangkok canals.
⇒ BOOK HERE the Best of Bangkok: Temples & Longtail Boat Tour with Lunch, which includes the main temples in Bangkok + a longtail boat in Thonburi.
Discover the Green Lung of Bangkok: Bang Kachao
Text by Winnie MD, Million Dollar Winnie
Bangkok isn’t the first place you think of for having a green oasis, but surprisingly there’s one right in the heart of the city and many travellers aren’t even aware of it. Bang Kachao or the “Green lung” as many locals like to call it, is an island located at the bend of Chao Phraya river.
The place is great for cycling and a romantic hotspot for couples to escape the hustle and bustle of Bangkok. You can only get to Bang Kachao by boat. Make your way to Klong Toei Pier and you can catch a boat to Bang Kachao. It’s only a quick 5 minute ride.
Once you get there the easiest way to get around the island is by bike. When you get off the boat you will find bike rental shops. Renting one for the whole day is just 100 Baht!
People on the island mostly get around by motorcycle but there are a few cars here and there. Cycle along the road and and you’ll see small elevated bike paths that lead into the untouched jungle along the side.
These bike paths are where the adventure starts, bike through the untamed scenery of trees and wildlife. The elevated bike paths don’t have railings on the side, but they’re wide enough for most people to be comfortable biking on. If you’re not confident about the bike paths then simply stick with the road and you’ll get to see the local life and temples in Bang Kachao.
People like visiting on the weekend for the floating market, but if you don’t go on the weekend then a popular place for expats is the Bangkok Tree House, a restaurant with great scenery.
Get a Sak Yant Tattoo in Bangkok
Photo and Text by Alice, Teacake Travels
Are you interested in receiving a tattoo unlike no other? You must consider the magical art of a Sak Yant! It is mystical form of a tattoo created by a bamboo stick, given to you by a monk. Depending on what you need in your life, it is a very powerful piece of protection which will serve you on your path ahead in life.
Where Sidewalks End are experts in Sak Yant tattoos and were able to recommend a clean and reputable place in Chiang Mai for me (but they can also help you in Bangkok too!).
On the day of the tattoo, one of their staff came with me and was my trusty and incredibly caring translator who helped me tell the monk what I needed in my life. As a result, the monk opened the pages of his book and struck his finger on what I should accept. The design was not only beautiful but immediately struck a chord with me. ‘Yes’ I said. ‘That’s it!’
This was definitely one of the highlights of my trip to Thailand and I still love my tattoo so much. If you are in Bangkok and want to do something a little different and meaningful, go and get yourself a Sak Yant tattoo! Find out more, including prices and possible times to visit by checking out my Sak Yant tattoo article.
Sak Yant Tattoo Cost with Where Sidewalks End: $250
⇒ Check out the Original Ink Experience that includes a private driver/guide/translator, a translated consultation before the ceremony to decide what tattoo designs suits you best, the Sak Yant ceremony and a meal afterwards. BOOK IT HERE
Best Cafes in Bangkok
Have a Rainbow Coffee at Unicorn Cafe
Photo and Text by Tsareena, Manc Girl Missing
Bangkok is an incredible city, full of amazing sights and sounds and can be overwhelming! If you’re looking for a little piece of calm and something completely different then the Unicorn Café is for you!
Hidden on a little side street it’s not likely to be something you’ll just find accidentally. But if you search for it you wont be disappointed…
The Unicorn Café [[44/1 Soi Sathon 8, Khwaeng Silom, Khet Bang Rak] is themed extensively! Every surface is joyfully decorated to make you feel like you’re somewhere magical. They serve an array of magically themed food and drinks and you’ll feel like a child again. I had waffles and ice cream and although it’s very pricey compared to regular street food it was worth every penny.
This place is definitely one for your Instagram account!
Unicorn Cafe opening hours: 12-20 pm Tuesday to Sunday; closed on Mondays.
Treat Yourself to Afternoon High Tea
Photo and Text by Anna, Anna Sherchand
One of the most fun activities in Bangkok is Afternoon high tea at The House on Sathorn [106 N Sathon Rd, Khwaeng Silom , Khet Bang Rak].
The menu offers two options. Heritage afternoon tea set (1350 THB) and Hotel Royal afternoon tea set (4000 THB) comes with a bottle of Louis Roederer Champagne also (375 ml).
I recommend visiting with a +1 as the food is more than enough for two people. Both sets start with the refreshing sorbet ( I am not a fan of sorbet but this one changed me!) and two bellinis. You can choose the type of tea you fancy and rest is taken care of. Shortly after comes the good-looking platters that will lift your mood and fill your belly. The traditional scones, Scottish smoked salmon croissants, Mascarpone, Blueberry cheesecake and more.
The quality and quantity are well thought of. I had to remind myself I am in Bangkok and not in Sydney or having tea in London! Plus, the location is convenient, loads of parking space available, the decor and ambience of the place is welcoming and relaxing.
The House on Sathorn Opening Hours: open everyday from 12 pm to 12 am
Try Out All the Hipster Cafes of Bangkok
If you like good coffee and design eateries and hipster cafes, then you’re in the right place. In Bangkok there are incredible cafes, some of them themed and super colorful, and other that are design-oriented and minimalist. I would have to write a full post about them cause there are so many, so instead you can check out this post for recommendations.
If I need to choose one, I suggest stopping at Elefin Coffee [394 / 1 – 2 Maharaj Road], which is across the street from Wat Pho. This cafe features coffee sustainably sourced in Chiang Rai, in Northern Thailand, and supports hill tribe farmers with their operations. Also, their lattes look so good!
I just find the coffee culture in Thailand to be great. Visiting hipster cafes is something I always recommend to anyone visiting Chiang Mai as well!
READ ALSO: 3 Days in Chiang Mai – The Perfect Itinerary
Other Fun Things To Do in Bangkok
Watch Muay Thai in Bangkok
Photo and Text by Jub, Tiki Touring Kiwi
If you’re looking for a free activity in Bangkok on Sunday, you can watch an afternoon of Muay Thai at the Channel 7 Area (it is also on the third Wednesday of each month).
The matches aren’t fake as it is a televised schedule each week, and you’ll see fighters looking to make a name for themselves. The arena will be jam-packed, but the ever courtesy locals set one grandstand up for foreigners, where there is slightly more personal space (barely).
There are usually six fights, with the fourth fight the main event so make sure to get there from the start. After the main event, the majority of the crowd leaves with just two minor fights left. I’ll never forget seeing the locals exchange handfuls of money after each fight!
Get Overwhelmed By Bangkok’s Chinatown
Entering Bangkok’s Chinatown is like entering a dazzling world of loud sounds, intense smell, and strange-looking food all around.
One of the largest in the world, Chinatown in Bangkok is filled with market stalls, restaurants, and shops, and it needs to be included on your list of places to visit in Bangkok. You’ll have to try some of its street food, and not knowing what it is that you’re eating is part of the fun!
Come visit during the day, or come after sunset when its historic streets are even more colorful and busy.
⇒ Experience Bangkok’s Chinese heritage by joining a small-group tour through the markets and best eats in Chinatown. BOOK IT HERE
Take a Walk at Lumphini Park
Photo and Text by Claire, Claire’s Footsteps
Every city needs a green lung – and for somewhere as busy as Bangkok, you’ll be very grateful for a walk in Lumphini Park to get in touch with some nature! The park was named after Lord Buddha’s Nepalese birthplace and was created to be an exhibition centre for flower displays.
It never became so, but it is now a popular recreational park, with many people using it to jog, practice tai chi, walk around or go boating on its lake. The park is a stark contrast to the concrete jungle that surrounds it, making for some great photo spots.
Lumphini Park Opening Hours: the park is open during daylight hours and into the evening (4:30 am – 9 pm) seven days a week.
Lumphini Park Entrance Fee: it is free to explore, although activities like taking a paddle boat out will cost extra.
Explore the Trendy Neighborhood of Thonglor
Photo and Text by Sabrina, Moon & Honey Travel
After exploring Bangkok’s most iconic sites, why not head to one of the city’s trendiest neighborhoods. Thonglor (also spelled Thong Lo) is a hip neighborhood known for its vibrant food scene and upscale nightlife. Because of this neighborhood’s large Japanese population, delicious Japanese eateries abound. For Ramen lovers, head to NaNaSe Ramen.
Next, explore the trendy communal space called the Commons. Here, you’ll find a multi-floor food complex featuring bakeries and eateries. When you’re ready to grab a drink, head to speakeasy-style Rabbit Hole or Iron Fairies for a cocktail.
The easiest way to reach Thonglor is by taking the BTS Skytrain to Thong Lo station.
Cruise the Chao Phraya River
Photo and Text by Jorge and Claudia, Travel Drafts
One of the most special things to do in Bangkok is to cruise the Chao Phraya river in Bangkok. Besides being a memorable experience it is an easy and cheap way to travel through the city. Actually, it is the best way to reach several points of interest in Bangkok, like the Wang Lang Market and the temple Wat Arun. Cruising the river is also a great way to appreciate the view of the city and its skyline.
Regarding which is the best boat to cruise, you have several options, several touristy boats, private tours and the local express boat. Our preference goes to the express boat as it is the easiest and cheapest way to travel through the river. The best route is the orange express boat, for only 15 Bath it takes you to all the places you need. But there are a few other different routes – the green, yellow and local line. One piece of advice is to avoid the rush hour, as all the locals return home and it’s quite chaotic.
Cruising the river Chao Phraya will be one of the most unforgettable things to do in Thailand.
⇒ BOOK HERE an affordable 2-hour cruise in the Chao Phraya River with a live band and buffet.
Visit the Butterfly & Insectarium Garden
Text by Gloria, Nomadic Chica
If you are looking for something different to do in Bangkok, other than shopping and seeing temples, a visit to the Butterfly and Insectarium Garden may be a great option for you.
The best would be to combine it with your visit to Chatuchak Market, as the Roftai Park where is located is right next to the huge and busy weekend market. The Butterfly Garden is a bit tricky to find as there are no signals leading to it, but you can find it while you walk in between the beautiful Queen Sirikit Gardens and the Rotfai Gardens.
The entry free Garden is hosting about 500 butterflies inside a beautiful and simple dome, including other insects plants and flowers that gives the best home for the species you find. Inside you can also find more information about the life of the butterflies as well as rooms with butterflies at different growth stages.
To get there, just go until the Mo Chit Station, and take the exit number 3. Then, walk across the Chatuchak Market, get some snacks and keep going until the Rofti Park where you will find the Butterfly Garden and Insectarium.
Butterfly & Insectarium Garden Opening Hours: 8.30 am to 4.30 pm every day except Monday when it’s closed.
Butterly & Insectarium Garden Entrance Fee: Free to visit.
Get Pampered with a Thai Massage
You really can’t visit Bangkok without going for a Thai massage. Thailand is famous around the world for the traditional art of Thai massage, and you’ll find thousands of massage places in Bangkok for all budgets. Prepare to pay as little as $5 dollars for a traditional Thai massage or a foot massage, or hundreds of dollars for fancy packages at the luxury spas.
When I lived in Chiang Mai, in Northern Thailand, I was almost getting a massage every week cause they are so affordable.
You won’t have problems finding a massage parlor (there’s one at every corner… literally), or you can book in advance a massage at the Sukhumvit 31 branch of the Let’s Relax Spa chain. And if Thai Massages are too harsh for you, you can also choose an aromatherapy oil massage or a hot stone massage. ⇒ BOOK IT HERE
Find Peace on the Bangkok Riverside
Photo and Text by Bradley – Dream Big, Travel Far
I honestly believe that Bangkok is a city like no others. It is so busy and alive and filled with people up and awake at all hours of the day. We stayed there for 4 nights during our 3 week Thailand trip two years ago, so had plenty of time to explore the sites. But with so much time spent discovering the temples and monuments, we wanted something a bit different.
We wanted some peace and quiet and a way to get away from the hustle and bustle for a few hours. So this is when we discovered the Bangkok riverside. Here, you will find a number of new restaurants and bars that have been built in order to cope with the rising number of tourists in the city. It’s perfect for those of you who want to relax in the evenings and enjoy the sunset.
It feels like a world away from Khao San Road, despite being situated slap bang in the middle of the city! If you are out and about exploring the temples, then you can easily get to the riverside restaurant by either taxi or, better yet, taking a riverboat back upstream once you’re done for the day.
The Best Day Trips from Bangkok
Explore the Ancient Ruins of Ayutthaya
Photo and Text by Chris, Chris Travel Blog
Just 80 kilometers north of Bangkok you find the old capital of the Ayutthaya Kingdom. A trip by taxi costs approximate 1400 Thai Baht (or 3000 for a full day) but cheaper options are available by bus (60 Thai Baht) or train. If you make an Ayutthaya day trip from Bangkok it’s most easy to go by car as you can use it also in Ayutthaya itself.
Go early morning at 7AM to arrive around opening time of most temples at 9AM. Most close around 7PM. Many smaller remains are free to visit but major temples and palaces charge approximate 50 Thai Baht to enter.
The Ayutthaya Historical Park is a huge complex, but many core sights are close to each other within walking distance. They include Wat Phra Ram, Wat Phra Sri Sanphet, Wat Phra Mahathat, Wat Lokayasutharam and Wat Chai Watthanaram (visit last by car). If you’re by car you can reach Wat Phukhao Thong in the north in 15 minutes. You’ll have to limit your time at each site to 45-60 minutes so that you can see everything in a day.
Within the park itself you can either walk, use the car, or rent a bike for approximate 50-100 Thai Baht. All structures date from the 14th to 18th century and are magnificent. You’ll get a good understanding of the old Thai Ayutthaya Kingdom while exploring the site. An Ayutthaya day trip is a must do from Bangkok.
⇒ If you’d rather join a tour to Ayutthaya, check out the Ayutthaya Day Tour by Bus & Boat that includes transportation by bus on the way there and a cruise on the Chao Phraya river on the way back.
BOOK IT HERE
⇒ If you prefer to go with a private driver, check out the Ayutthaya Day Trip with Private Driver from Bangkok. BOOK IT HERE
READ ALSO: 20+ Incredible Places To Visit in Thailand
Be Amazed by the Maeklong Railway Market
Photo and Text by Audrey, Gumnuts Abroad
One of the most fun things to do in Bangkok is visit the famous Maeklong Railway Market. We checked it out during our stay in Soi Rambuttri and it’s one of the most bizarre markets we’ve ever visited. Visiting it is one of the best things to do near Bangkok.
At first glance this market looks the same as other Thai markets with the same bustling atmosphere, and the sights, sounds and smells we’ve come to love. But there’s one difference. It has a train running through the middle of it! Crazy, right?
The train passes by without a foot to spare and it’s so close you can reach out and touch it.
Vendors pull baskets of goods away from the tracks, fold overhead awnings back and jump to the side just in time as the train trundles past. As soon as it’s gone everything is returned to its original place, and shoppers and stall holders go about their day as though nothing remarkable ever took place.
We visited the market on a private tour but it’s also possible to visit independently.
⇒ Check out available tours to the Maeklong Railway Market under the next paragraph.
Drift Down the Canals at Damnoen Saduak Floating Market
Photo and Text by Patti Morrow, Luggage and Lipstick
There are several floating markets in Bangkok, but the most popular (and most crowded) one is the Damnoen Saduak Floating Market, one of the most interesting places to visit near Bangkok. It’s a cacophony of color, sounds and smells. While it can be crammed with tourists, especially during the midday, it’s still a lot of fun and should not be missed.
The best way to see the market is early in the morning, on a long-tail boat. You’ll drift down the canals and have the opportunity to see vendors and purchase fresh fruit, hot street food, and souvenirs right from the narrow wooden boats, which you could not do if you were visiting the market on foot. The activity translates amazingly well for photography, making the floating market one of the most Instagrammable places in Bangkok!
⇒ BOOK HERE the Damnoen Saduak Floating Market & Maeklong Train Market Tour or if you have limited time and want to maximise it with a private driver/guide, BOOK HERE the Damnoen Saduak and Train Market Private Tour (two of the most popular things to do around Bangkok).
Visit the Less-Known Taling Chan Floating Market
Photo and Text by Jennifer and Tim, Luxe Adventure Traveler
Bangkok is built on an extensive network of canals and the floating markets are one of the top things visitors to Bangkok want to experience. While there are many floating markets, what many travelers don’t realize is that they are often outside of Bangkok itself. Some have become incredibly touristy, while others have managed to maintain their authenticity.
We love the Taling Chan Floating Market. It’s more difficult to reach from Bangkok and a bit smaller than some of the other well-known floating markets, but you’ll find many locals eating, laughing and enjoying the day out at the market.
The blue crabs in a chili-lime-garlic sauce are a specialty at the Taling Chan market. Messy, but delicious. Also try the fried Thai basil, Thai barbecued pork skewers and the Thai crispy pancakes. But no matter what you eat while at the Taling Chan market, you definitely won’t leave hungry!
⇒ You can also visit the market with a tour that includes a visit to Taling Chan and to Khlong Lat Mayom, another very local, non-touristy floating market. BOOK HERE the Khlong Lat Mayom & Taling Chan Local Floating Markets Tour
Where to stay in Bangkok | Best Bangkok Hotels
You arrived till here? Congrats! I hope this post has helped you decide what to see in Bangkok. If you are also looking for a place to stay in Bangkok, check out my selection of the best hotels in Bangkok for all budgets.
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• And you brave soul are the hero of your own story • • Two weeks ago in Bangkok I had the pleasure to stay at Amari Watergate, which I truly loved. Complimentary cocktails in the executive lounge, a great breakfast selection and more important, the attention of the hotel to sustainability and eco-friendliness. Plus, THIS POOL! • Where was your favorite hotel’s pool? • @amariwatergatebangkok #amariwatergate #discoveramari
Check out prices and availability for Siam Kempinski Hotel Bangkok.
Check out prices and availability for Shangri-La Hotel Bangkok.
Boutique Hotels & Luxury for Less: $100 or less
Amari Watergate Bangkok: Sustainable 5-star hotel with an incredible pool and the best breakfast I’ve ever had + the executive lounge buffet is #goals. Read my full review HERE.
Check out prices and availability for Amari Watergate.
Chillax Heritage: New 4-start hotel just 5 minutes walking from Khao San Road. Stunning pool with a view on the 7th floor rooftop, modern fitness center. The rooms come with hot tubs.
Check out prices and availability for Chillax Heritage.
Check out prices and availability for Innspire Bangkok.
Siam Plug In Boutique Hostel: Modern, boutique hostel with excellent reviews. The rooftop has great views over the city and you can stay in either a shared room or a private (they’re all design).
Check out prices and availability for Siam Plug In Boutique Hostel.
How to get around Bangkok
Bangkok is a huge city, and walking will only bring you so far. These are the best ways to get around Bangkok:
• The Skytrain (BTS) and the Subway (MRT) are very useful to move quickly around town, especially at peak times when the city is congested. The Skytrain is an elevated train while the MRT goes undergorund and together they cover the most important districts of the city (for some areas though, you’ll still have to go by Grab or taxi). You can change from BTS to MRT and the other way around at Silom and Asoke station.
If you’re going to use the BTS a lot, I recommending buying in advance a discounted day pass.
• Although I usually recommend public transportation, in Bangkok many times I find Grab (the local version of Uber) to be much faster and much less of an hassle, so if you have limited time in the city you should consider using Grab, which is cheaper than normal taxis.
Uber isn’t available in Thailand, so make sure you download beforehand the Grab app for IOS or the Grab app for Android. Sign up with my referral code GRABEVERYSTEPH and get free rides and discounts!
• Tuk Tuks are definitely for tourists, and their prices are crazy inflated! Sometimes they’ll ask for triple what Grab asks! If you still want to take it for a ride though, make sure you agree on a price beforehand not to incur in bad surprises.
• Taxis – there are many different taxi companies, and not all of them are good ones. I definitely suggest taking a Grab instead, but if you want to take a taxi it’s best to have your hotel calling for one rather than hailing one in the street. Make sure the meter is on when you start the ride.
• If you’re coming from Suvarnabhumi Airport, you can taxi a taxi, a bus or the Airport Rail Link to downtown Bangkok.
Prefer not to deal with taxis or public transport after a long flight? Book here an affordable private transfer to your hotel. If you are coming from Don Mueang Airport instead, book here.
How To Get To Your Next Destination
I’m pretty sure you’ll head to some other beautiful destinations after Bangkok! I usually use the Bookaway website to book my transportation in Southeast Asia. It saves me time, and this way I’m sure I’ll find a seat. Buses and ferries can get full, especially if you’re traveling during the high season!
Here are a few options for travel from/to Bangkok:
➤ Heading to Chiang Mai: BOOK HERE the bus or train ticket to Chiang Mai
➤ Heading to Pattaya: BOOK HERE the bus or minivan ticket to Pattaya
➤ Heading to Hua Hin: BOOK HERE the bus or minivan ticket to Hua Hin
➤ Heading to Koh Samui: BOOK HERE the bus+ferry ticket to Koh Samui
➤ Heading to Siem Reap (Cambodia): BOOK HERE the bus ticket to Siem Reap
You can also search what’s the best way to get to your next destination down here:
Have you been to Bangkok and you have other suggestions for things to do? Please leave them in the comments!
This posts contains affiliate links, meaning that if you book through my links, I will receive a small commission, at no extra cost for you whatsoever.