32 Best Things to do in Bangkok, Thailand

Written By: Stella Saintis

We love Bangkok. It’s exciting and a bit hectic but filled with amazing history, food, and culture. The sprawling metropolis is huge. With so many things to do in Bangkok can be difficult to decide how best to spend your time. But don’t worry, we’re here to help. We have spent a ton of time in Bangkok with frequent visits over the past 20 years. You could say Bangkok is one of our favorite cities in Asia.

This comprehensive guide will give you all the tools you need to make the most of your time in the gateway to Southeast Asia. What sets this Bangkok guide apart from the others? We’ve enlisted the help of local Bangkok resident, Stella Saintis to offer local recommendations to complement our favorite Bangkok attractions. So, are you ready to explore the Venice of the East with us? Let’s go.

Things to do in Bangkok, Thailand

Things to do in Bangkok Map
Get your map of the best things to do in Bangkok including day trips HERE.

GetYourGuide has a good day tour of Bangkok that shows you all the most popular things to do in Bangkok with a private guide.

1. Wat Pho – Reclining Buddha

things to do in bangkok wat pho
Beautiful reclining Buddha of Wat Pho

One of the most famous wats, (the Thai word for temple) in Bangkok is Wat Pho located just behind the Grand Palace. This wat should definitely be at the top of your list to visit in Bangkok because it houses the famous reclining Buddha. This massive golden statue takes up the entire temple and is magnificent. It is probably the most famous reclining Buddha in the world. If there is one Buddha that is a must-see in Bangkok, this is it.

My advice is to go early as both of these attractions can become incredibly packed with people. Also, if you can plan your visit during the week you will avoid the throngs of tourists that flock there on the weekends. Locals from all around Thailand come to visit these temples throughout the year, especially during the Thai Holidays.

  • Costs: 200 baht per person ($6 USD)
  • Opening hours: 08:00 – 18:30

If you want to see most of the best Bangkok attractions, you can hire a private guide that you can personalize for yourself. You can choose from a day tour in Bangkok to explore Khao San Road, the reclining Buddha and more or you can choose to go to Ayutthaya, the Damnoen Saduak Floating Market. More details here.

2. Explore The Grand Palace

grand palace bangkok

Arguably one of the most popular things to do in Bangkok is the Grand Palace. For most people, it is also the first place you should visit in Bangkok. Built in 1782, the Grand Palace was once known by its original name, Phra Borom Maharatchawangit, it was once the royal residence and housed government administrative buildings. Today, it is open to the public and is a must-do in Bangkok. You can only visit some of the buildings but make sure not to miss the Grand Palace Hall. Learn about the history of the Grand Palace on this Flexi Walking Tour.

It took us several visits before we finally booked a tour guide to show us around the temple complex and it made a huge difference to help us understand what we were looking at. Book this half-day temple tour Bangkok’s Royal Grand Palace and two of its most famous temples: Wat Trimitr and Wat Pho.

3. Wat Phra Kaew – Temple of the Emerald Buddha

bangkok things to do temple of the emerald buddha

Inside the grounds of the Grand Palace sits the famous Wat Phra Kaew – Temple of the Emerald Buddha, where visitors can catch a glimpse of the emerald Buddha statue. Make sure to dress properly when visiting – covered shoulders and legs – since there are sacred temples inside the palace complex.

Local Tip: At the back of the grounds is a famous Thai massage school, which some Thai people claim is the best massage in Bangkok. You can visit both temples independently very easily. But having a tour guide will give you a better understanding.

  • Admission Costs: 500 baht per person ($15 USD)
  • Opening Hours: 08:00 – 17:00

Scam Alert: Many local touts and tuk-tuk drivers will tell you that the temples are closed and then offer to take you to other temples that are open. Ignore them and see for yourself. They are trying to get you in the tuk-tuk to take you to jewelry shops and markets where they receive commissions.

Travel Tips for Seeing the Wats in Thailand

Be sure to dress accordingly when visiting temples in Thailand: visitors are required to have their shoulders and legs covered, so having a light shirt to throw on and a lightweight long skirt/pants are best. They do provide a cover-up for visitors who are not dressed appropriately.

4. Wat Arun – Temple of the Dawn

wat arun chao praya river
Wat Arun overlooking the Chao Phraya River

A short ferry ride across the river from Wat Pho and the Grand Palace is Wat Arun, also known as The Temple of the Dawn. The temple’s central spire is famous in the skyline of Bangkok along the river and even if you have never heard of Wat Arun, you will be familiar with it. For just 4 baht, visitors can catch a ferry across the river from Wat Pho to Wat Arun (Temple of the Dawn) and wander the grounds of another stunningly beautiful Thai temple.

You should visit Wat Arun in the morning or at sunset to avoid the crowds. You can also walk up the first set of stairs on the main pyramid but the ones that go higher up were gated off as of this update. If you don’t want to ride the ferry, grab a drink at one of the restaurants with great views of the river with Wat Arun in the background.

  • Hours: 8:00 am – 5:30 pm
  • Admission Costs: 50 baht per person
  • Accessible via taxi, tuk-tuk, Grab Taxi (Thailand’s Uber) or ferry

Another way to explore the wats along the Chao Phraya River is to take a hop on hop off Tuk Tuk Tour. It’s a great way to combine several of the top things to do in Bangkok in one go. Travel hassle-free by Tuk Tub on a flexible hop-on, hop-off tour to favourite Bangkok attractions like Grand Palace, Wat Pho, Khaosan Road, China Town, and many more.

5. Wat Suthat

places to visit in Bangkok wat suthat
The giant swing (Sao Ching Cha) and Wat Suthat temple in Bangkok, Thailand

While you are in the Old Town area exploring the Temple of the Emerald Buddha, The Grand Palace, and Wat Pho, make a side trip to Wat Suthat Thepwararam. It is one of the oldest temples in Bangkok. The Giant Red Swing is 21.15 meters high and is a famous landmark in Bangkok and is well worth adding to your visit to Bangkok.

6. Wat Saket and the Golden Mount

golden mount places to visit in bangkok thailand

I know you are probably getting a little “wasted out”. I know that we spend time in Bangkok and Thailand, we tend to have a little temple fatigue, but just a little farther out (15 minute walk to be exact) is the only hill in Bangkok. 320 steps will take you to the top of the Golden Mount to see Wat Saket which is known for its Buddha images and the Sri Maha Bodhi tree. Plus, it is free!

7. Boat Tour of the Chao Phraya River

thailand what to do chao phraya river tour
One of the best things to do in Bangkok is to tour the Chao Phraya River

The Chao Phraya River is the heart of Bangkok and taking a boat tour along the river is an attraction unto itself. The Chao Phraya is what gives Bangkok its name, “The Venice of the East” and it is filled with water taxis, longtail boats, and public ferries ready to take you to anything you want to see for as little as 15 Baht (.45 cents) Many of the top places you’ll want to visit in Bangkok are located on the river with their own pier where you can hop on and hop off to explore as you wish.

Hire a Longtail Boat to see the Backwaters

We highly recommend a longtail boat tour that will take you into the backwaters to explore the different canals and waterways. There are so many sites to see along the Chao Phraya River that you could spend your entire visit in Bangkok on the water and feel that you had a good introduction to the city. We hired a private boat for 1000 baht $30. If you go with a group, it is much cheaper, but we liked having the boat all to ourselves.

How to Get to the Chao Phraya River

getting around chao phraya river bangkok

The Chao Phraya River is easily accessed from Bangkok’s main backpacker ghetto, Khao San Road. You can easily walk to it from Khoa San Road’s Phra Nakhon District. The Sky train goes directly to the river from Sukhumvit and other popular Bangkok neighborhoods and you can easily take a taxi, hail a tuk tuk or book a Grab Taxi to the river. See our tips for navigating the Chao Praya River in our video here.

The Chao Phraya River is one of our favorite places to stay in Bangkok as well. We recommend the Royal Orchid Sheraton. It is an upscale hotel with 3-star prices. Most hotels along the Chao Phraya have complimentary boats to the BTS Skytrain station where you can catch the subway to the city center too. See our full breakdown at Where to Stay in Bangkok – A Guide to the Best Neighborhoods

8. Khaosan Road (Khao San Road)

bangkok things to do kaosan road

Khao San Road is one of the most iconic places to visit in Bangkok for backpackers and budget travelers due to the large number of cheap hostels in the area. Plus, it is a great place to book tours, day trips, find cheap eats, and transportation to places like Chiang Rai and Chiang Mai in the north or south to Thailand’s dreamy islands.

There are many stores to shop for souvenirs, as well as massage parlors for those looking to relax with a foot or classic Thai massage. This is also my favorite place to sit down, grab a Chang beer and people watch. There are characters of all shapes and sizes that make their way to Khao San Road.

No trip to Bangkok would be complete without stopping to see this iconic street. Drinks at any of the bars are extremely affordable, and the nightclubs here are always packed. Those looking to party in Bangkok should look no further than Khao San Road.

9. Sampeng Lane Market in Chinatown 

what to do in bangkok china town

Chinatown is a popular place to visit in Bangkok for foodies, and if you are looking for a unique shopping experience, check out this tiny walking street in Chinatown. Shoppers can find just about anything here at wholesale prices, including fabrics, electronics, toys, beauty supplies, and much more.

The street is narrow and often congested, but the hectic vibe gives visitors fun and definitely a different shopping experience than they are used to. The maze of streets that make up this market means you may get lost at some point, so be sure to set aside an hour or two to really immerse yourself in this Chinatown staple.

Take this bicycle tour of Bangkok to discover Chinatown and the Chao Praya River. You’ll have the unique experience to cross the river by pedestrian ferry and to explore the historic neighborhood of Thonburi.

10. Visit the Flower Market

places to see in bangkok flower market

Located along the Chao Phraya River the Bangkok Flower Market is the largest in Thailand. After spending some time in Bangkok, you’ll notice that the city is filled with flower displays around the country and every hotel, eatery or shop will have some sort of flower arrangement. It is most likely that this is where those flowers come from.

The busy chaotic market is a good addition to a tour of China Town. It is also very easy to get to with its own stop on the Chao Phraya River and is open 24 hours a day.

11. Wat Traimit

things to do in bangkok wat traimit

In Chinatown, visitors can visit Wat Traimit in order to see the largest solid gold Buddha statue in the world! The Golden Buddha is located on the 4th floor of the temple. Underneath the 2nd and 3rd floors are the Chinese Cultural Center with a museum dedicated to the history of the Chinese in Bangkok as well as information on the discovery of the Golden Buddha. This is really something you have to see.

12. Thai Cooking School

must do things in bangkok cooking school

A cooking course in Thailand is something that Bangkok is famous for and something you have to try. We are always cooking Thai at home now that we know how to make it! Take a cooking course so you can recreate your Bangkok experiences at home. There’s a great list of classes to browse here. 

One of the best cooking schools in Bangkok is called Silom Thai Cooking School. They offer classes every day of the week and even include a market tour in order for guests to see the actual ingredients used in the dishes. At the end of the class, you get a cookbook with all of the recipes and many more to take home with you! Read more: Best Thai Food – Traditional Thai Dishes to Eat in Thailand or at Home

Thai food is some of the best in the world and one of the best ways to learn about it and understand what to order at street food stands or in the restaurant is to take a cooking class! You’ll never be confused again. Plus, doing a cooking class is a great way to get to know Thai food and to help understand its culture.

13. Take a Food Tour

street vendor in bangkok

After you have taken a cooking course, head out on a food tour to sample all the delicious Thai Cuisine. If you’ve been wary about checking out Bangkok’s famous street stalls and street food vendors this is the chance to do with an expert local guide. Popular tours take you around to enjoy the best street food in Bangkok.

Night Market and Temple Tours by Tuk Tuk – Going out in a new city at night can be intimidating, especially at night. But Bangkok is a place the thrives at night. So if you feel uncomfortable exploring on your own at first, book this tuk-tuk night tour to see the markets and temples at night.

14. Thai Street Food – Eat like a Local

Thai Street Food Chicken Satay

Speaking of street food, when you visit Bangkok, you must indulge in the delicious food that Thailand is famous for. Thai locals almost exclusively eat street food, since it is much cheaper than buying all of the many ingredients needed and cooking it for themselves.

Many tourists are nervous about eating street food, fearing they will get sick. But street food offers some of the best foodie experiences in Bangkok. It is always fresh and cooked well. I lived in Thailand for 2 years and only got sick one time, and I ate street food almost every day. Do not let stop you from enjoying what is some of the best food available in the country!

This food tour combines the best way to get around the city, (in a tuk-tuk) with a food and temple tour. Visit the famous Flower Market, enjoy street food and explore Wat Po.

15. Lumpini Park (Lumphini Park)

outdoor things to do in bangkok lumphini park

If you are looking for one of the quieter things to do in Bangkok, a visit to Lumpini Park is a great option. It offers a little break from the chaos of Bangkok. This refreshing green space is also the biggest park in Bangkok.

There are many things to do in Lumpini Park to fill the day and this park is popular with locals and tourists alike. Stroll the many walkways or rent a paddleboat to take out on the lake. Be sure to buy some food for the fish who live there and keep an eye out for the giant monitor lizards which roam freely.

If you are in the mood for an exercise class, you can join Thais of all ages and dance along to music in one of the aerobics classes in the evenings. You will often see older Thai practicing Thai Chi which is so relaxing even if you are just watching. For me, one of the best things to do in Bangkok is to hang out here early in the morning or at sunset and enjoy the peacefulness.

16. Get a Traditional Thai Massage

not to miss things to do in bangkok thai massage

One of the best things to do in Bangkok that make you feel rich but is very affordable is to have a traditional Thai Massage. Thai people love getting massages and see it as an essential part of staying healthy. In fact, they go to get massages multiple times a week. To experience this Thai tradition, check out any of the hundreds of massage shops throughout the city.

For more of a luxurious experience, go to one of the branches of Health Land. There you will get a private room and top-of-the-line treatment for an incredibly cheap price.

  • Cost: If you go to one of the fancier spas, you will pay about 1000 baht (this usually includes a welcome drink and a private room).
  • Many smaller local spots will charge around 250 baht.
  • Make sure to read our guide on Spa Etiquette!

17. Take a Tuk Tuk Ride

how to get around bangkok rows of tuk tuks

One of the coolest ways to get around Bangkok is to take a ride on a Tuk Tuk. If it’s your first time in Bangkok, don’t miss hiring a tuk tuk. Thailand is famous for these three wheeler odes of transportation that skip through traffic with ease. The exhaust can be heavy, so we do not recommend taking tuks tuks all the time, but once in a while, they are a lot of fun.

Scam Alert: Tuk Tuk drivers should cost about 100 baht for a reasonable length ride. If they charge too little, you can be sure they will take you on a ride to markets and shops were they get a commission. If the price seems to good to be true, it probably is. Read our post 17 Travel Scams Around the World and How You Can Avoid Them

18. Unicorn Cafe

where to eat in bangkok unicorn cafe

Bangkok is home to many cute cafes (including a Hello Kitty Cafe and a mermaid Cafe) but my favorite one is still the Unicorn Cafe. If you are also a fan of anything rainbow or unicorn themed, then this cafe is a must!

They serve up delicious sweet treats that are all very colorful, as well as food such as rainbow spaghetti. For those wanting to take a unique picture, grab one of the unicorn costumes they have for guests to pose in! Visiting the Unicorn Cafe is definitely one of the more unique things to see in Bangkok.

19. Jim Thompson House

historical paces in bangkok jim thompson house
Jim Thomspon House Museum

If traditional Thai architecture and art interest you, then the Jim Thompson House should be on your list of places to visit. Jim Thompson was an American businessman who came to Thailand and started a textile business to promote Thai silk. Because of him, the Thai Silk industry was born and is still thriving to this day.

His house has been turned into a museum to pay tribute to Jim Thompson. It is an excellent example of different Thai architectural styles. During the tour, the guide tells visitors all about his life… and mysterious death.

While the house is lovely, my favorite part was the lush vegetation located all around the grounds, making me feel like I was in a jungle in the middle of the bustling city.  Jim Tompson’s house has been one of the best things to do in Bangkok for decades. This highly rated private tour takes you through the six traditional Thai-style house and teak structures that were home to Jim Thompson followed by a visit to the Baan Krua silk village, where the legend of Jim Thompson begins. More details here.

20. Manhanakhon Skywalk

bangkok nightlife rootop bars

The tallest building in Thailand is the King Power Manhanakhon and it has the highest observation deck scene in the city. It offers the best views of Bangkok. Visitors can take in 360-degree views of the city from 314 meters up in the sky. The bravest can walk out on the glass floor to view the city from unprecedented heights.

After taking in the bird’s eye views of Bangkok, grab a drink at the rooftop bar and toast to the City of Angels. This attraction is not for the faint of heart!

Another popular tower to visit in Bangkok is Baiyoke Tower II. It has an open air revolving roof deck and a public observatory deck on the 77th floor.

21. Royal Bangkok Sports Club

unique things to do in bankgok royal bangkok sports club

For those visitors looking to try something off the traditional tourist trail in Bangkok, head to the Royal Bangkok Sports Club! Every other Sunday, the club opens its door to the public for horse racing and gambling.

This is the only location in Thailand where it is legal to gamble, so many of the locals come to try their luck. The racing may not be up to the high international standards, but it provides a fun activity. Food and drinks are available for purchase as well.

22. Chatuchak Weekend Market

markets in bangkok conical hats

The sheer size of the Chatuchak market is part of what makes it such a popular destination in Bangkok. Shoppers can find just about anything at Chatuchak Market, at crazy cheap prices. It is one of the largest markets in the world, and one of the best places in Thailand to pick up your souvenirs. The best time to visit is earlier in the day on the weekends, before the crowds and infamous Bangkok heat hit.

If you get hungry while shopping, there are small street stalls located in one section of the market. It’s another chance to try some Thai street food. Chatuchak market also has places to get a Thai massage if you need to relax (and enjoy some AC!)

23. Go the Shopping Mall at Siam Square

mbk center bangkok thailand

Bangkok is home to some of the largest shopping malls in Southeast Asia where you can shop for high-end brand names and cheap bargains. There are also good bargains to be had as well at the MBK Centre. This is where we pick up our Thai SIM Cards, and it’s great for electronics. Yes, we have even bought a camera at the MBK Center.

The MBK Centre, Siam Paragon, and Central World shopping mall will blow your mind. These malls make for a great escape from the heat and offer plenty of chances to people watch. You can walk around the entire area on walkways above the traffic and congestion. They are connected indoors as well where you can enjoy the air conditioning. The malls are easy to get to on public transportation as they are located directly on the Skytrain line.

24. Siam Paragon

We love going to Siam Paragon to watch a movie. Siam Paragon is also so much more than just the high-end, luxury shopping mall in Bangkok. It houses the Bangkok Ocean World Aquarium, indoor luxury car dealers, The Thai Art Gallery, and the opera house. Being one of the largest shopping malls in SEA, it is definitely one of the best places to go shopping in all of Thailand.

25. Bangkok Art and Culture Centre

The Bangkok Art and Cultural Centre is locaterd among the famous shopping malls of Bangkok in the heart of the city. It is a great place to meet up with friends, catch one of its revolving display of Thai Art, see live music or just go to the library to browse and have a coffee. It is located at the BTS Skytrain station and is close to attractions like National Stadium, Siam Paragon, MBK Centre and more. Cost: Free

26. Muay Thai Boxing Class

muai thai training thailand

A fun way to get to know Thai culture and get a workout at the same time is to take a Muay Thai boxing class! I took classes regularly at the Chakrit Muay Thai School, which had a great central location and was close to the BTS Skytrain. The teachers there were all very friendly and worked one-on-one with students in every class. I learned a lot about proper technique and always left super sweaty!

Dave and I saw a professional Muay Thai Match in Bangkok and Chiang Mai and this is another one of Bangkok’s must-see attractions. There are Muay Thai training centers all over Thailand and we highly recommend giving it a try. It’s a great way to immerse in the culture. Check out our Muay Thai Training in Phuket

27. Lebua Tower Sky Bar

best bangkok views

Fans of the movie The Hangover 2 will immediately recognize the golden dome at the top of this rooftop bar. Located at the top of the Leuba Hotel, the Sky Bar is a popular destination for those looking to see the city from above at night. It claims to be one of the highest rooftop bars in the world, and the view is definitely second to none.

2. Soi Cowboy

Another popular place in Bangkok at night is the late-night area is Soi Cowboy. Located just off the BTS, this street is a well known red-light district. The area got its name from T.G ‘Cowboy’ Edwards, an American airman who was famous for wearing a cowboy hat. He opened the first bar in the district

This area is most famous for its ‘ping pong’ shows but we do not recommend going to these as there is a real problem in Thailand with human trafficking. If a Go-Go bar is not up your alley, head down the street to Soi 11, another popular late-night hangout and fun of bars and clubs. 

Bangkok Day Trips

It is worth getting out of Bangkok to see the sites. Popular day trips from Bangkok are to the floating markets, the Train Market and Ayuthaya.

29. Visit a Floating Market

floating markets in bangkok

There are two floating markets located outside of Bangkok, and they make a wonderful day trip. Of the two (Damnoen Saduk Floating Market and Amphawa), I found the latter to be less touristy and more authentic.

To get to this floating market from Bangkok, simply take a van from the southern bus terminal that will drop you near the entrance. Be sure to enjoy some fresh seafood while strolling the many stalls. I also encourage you to take a boat tour to see more of the surrounding area. You can also hire a longtail boat to take you through the Klongs where you can see smaller markets without having to go a long way out of the city.

If you don’t want to haggle for prices, you can book this tour in advance where you’ll not only experience the famous Damnoen Saduak Floating Market, known for its maze of canals you’ll also stop at a traditional Thai House to see how coconut brown sugar is made, and take a longtail boat to fruit plantations and houses.

These are also some other reputable tours:

Scam Alert! The Floating Markets are extremely popular, and though the majority of Thai people are friendly and helpful be aware of the scammers. You should not pay more than 100 Baht per person and make sure to depart from one of the official docks around town.

30. Ayutthaya

ayutthaya bangkok day trips

Ayutthaya is the most popular of all the day trips from Bangkok but we suggest making a few days of it because there is a lot to explore. A UNESCO World Heritage Site, it is not to be missed with a temple complex sprawling throughout 289 hectares.

Ayutthaya was once the capital of Siam and there are plenty of temples to explore. Some of the not to miss temples include, Wat Phra Si Sanphet, Wat Yai Chai Mongkol and its 121-foot-long reclining Buddha statue, and Wat Mahathat which will remind you of Angkor wat with its tree roots growing into the wat.  

Book this Ayuthaya with Photo Tour Guide for a full-day tour that includes air-con transfers from Bangkok, a boat tour around Ayuthaya and a photography guide.

31. Kanchanaburi

I’ll never forget visiting the Bridge on the River Kwai. Being movie buffs, this was high on our list. Located 120 km from Bangkok, one of the more popular days trips from the city. But we suggest making it overnight.

Kanchanaburi is a 2-hour drive from Bangkok so you can easily book a day trip from the city. You can also catch the train or book a day trip. This Kanchanaburi tour not only takes you to the EATH Museum, and Bridge Over the River Kwai in Kanchanaburi, it also stops at Erawan National Park to enjoy Erawan Waterfall and its seven tiers with a set of limestone caves at its base

32. Maeklong Railway Market

Maeklong Railway Market

Check out this highly rated tour to the Maeklong Railway Market combined with Damnoen Saduak Market. Discover two of Bangkok’s most popular day trips combined into one. The Damnoen Saduak Floating Market by paddle boat and a stop at the Maeklong Railway Market to enjoy shopping, sampling street foods, and local specialties.

Bangkok Travel Tips

  • Thailand Currency – 1USD = 31.27 Thai Baht. Get the XP currency Converter App for currency calculations
  • ATMs can be found everywhere but take out large sums at a time as Thailand banks charge a 150 baht ($5 USD) fee above and beyond your bank’s service charges.
  • Pick up your Lonely Planet Travel Guide – This is our go-to city guide and country guide when traveling the world. We’ve used Lonely Planet since 2000.
  • Invest in a BTS Rabbit Card – an extremely versatile stored-value electronic card that can be used for most public transport as well as at many merchants around Bangkok.
  • SIM Cards are easy to buy at the MBK Centre in Bangkok for your unlocked smartphones. Data is cheap and fast.
  • You can also download the GRAB app which is Thailand’s answer to Uber.
  • Thailand power voltage is: 220 V; Plugs A & C
  • For electronics, we use the Eagle Creek Travel adapter in conjunction with the Belkin Mini Surge Protector. It’s all we need to charge 5 devices at once. Three plugs and two USB Chargers.

Where to Stay in Bangkok

where to stay in bangkok hotels

We have a complete breakdown of where to stay in Bangkok explaining neighborhoods and suggested accommodations for budget, mid-range, and luxury hotels.

You can go to that Bangkok guide directly here, or you can click below to see each area.

  • Banglamphu – Home to the Grand Palace and Khao San Road this is the best places to say in Bangkok for Backpackers.
  • Bangrak – For those on the hunt for amazing food, this is a great option.
  • Chinatown – One of the oldest areas of Bangkok.
  • Sukhumvit – A modern and cosmopolitan area in central Bangkok.
  • Siam – For those looking to shop ’til they drop mear Siam Paragon, BMK Centre and the Sky Train.
  • Chao Phraya River – We loved staying on the Chao Phraya being close to the Grand Palace, and Wats Arun and Pho. Easy access to the sky train and Khao San Road.

When is the best time to visit Bangkok?

Bangkok is hot year-round and it can be visited at any time of the year. While you can save during shoulder season and the offseason, Bangkok is a relatively affordable place to visit with many different types of accommodation for all budgets.

  • November – March: the high season for Bangkok tourism. This is the dry season in Bangkok and it is also the busiest time of year.  Prices are higher during the high season, but there is ample budget accommodation around the city. In our opinion, this is the best time to visit Bangkok
  • July and August – are low seasons and this is also the wettest time of the year. Expect heavy rains, but they don’t last for too long.
  • April – June is shoulder season and the rains are beginning. This is also the time of year when Bangkok is at it’s hottest. We have visited Bangkok in April and can attest it is hot and wet.
  • September – October –  We have visited during October and it was a very pleasant time to explore Bangkok. Because it is shoulder season and just starting to ramp up to the high season, deals can be had at more luxurious hotels. It isn’t quite as hot as November through March and rains happen in the afternoon.

Getting Around Bangkok

getting around bangkok
Starting on the Chao Praya River in Bangkok

In Bangkok, visitors have a range of options to choose from for getting around the city. The best way to get around Bangkok is to use public transit. It has an efficient public transportation system that is fast and affordable.

The BTS Skytrain has frequent stops with access to many of the most popular tourist destinations. The Sky train is relatively cheap, and train cards can be topped up in stations very easily. The BTS Skytrain has two lines, so at connecting stations, pay attention to the direction and line you are getting on.

The MRT is the underground system that operates in much the same way as the BTS sky train, though they do use separate cards.

Tuk Tuk – For a more traditional feel, try a tuk-tuk. These three-wheel taxis are a fun way to take in the sights and sounds as you cruise to your destination.  Always make sure to agree to a price BEFORE getting in a taxi or tuk-tuk.

Taxis  – When you take a taxi, sk the driver to turn on the meter. Negotiating is encouraged, as drivers will often inflate the price for visitors. I was often shocked by what tourists would pay for a taxi. Don’t get scammed!

Also, be aware that taxi drivers often refuse to take passengers; they may hear your destination and decide they don’t want to drive there. Other drivers will refuse to turn on the meter. Have no fear, as there are more than enough taxis to find one to take you where you need to go at the price that works for you.

Chao Phraya River – See our video below or click here to watch – how to navigate the Chao Phraya independently. There are tourist boats, public boats and boat taxis on the Chao Phraya ranging from 15 baht to 40 baht for Tourist boat. 

Uber is no longer in Bangkok, but they have the GRAB taxi app which is similar. 

How to Get to Bangkok

International planes fly into Suvarnabhumi Airport (BKK). Getting to Bangkok from the Suvarnabhumi Airport is affordable and easy. You can take a taxi from the terminal. There are taxi stands outside arrivals. The Airport Rail Link City Line Train will take you from the Airport to downtown Bangkok and you can also take the airport bus which will take you directly to Khao San road. Planes also fly into the Don Mueang international airport and this airport is more of a commuter and low cost airline hub.

Bangkok is a city where no one could ever get bored. From the food to the temples, museums, shopping, and with new attractions added every year, it is a place to visit more than once. It’s no wonder there is so much to see and do in Bangkok, it’s a city that needs to be visited again and again.

We’ve barely scratched the surface of all the things to do in Bangkok and we look forward to going back to tell you more! Have you been to Bangkok?

best things to do in Bangkok Thailand

Enjoy all of these things to do in Bangkok? Save it to Pinterest for Future Travel Planning.

What did we miss and what should we do on our next visit? Please let us know other ideas for what to do in Bangkok.

Read More Bangkok Travel Tips

Check out these Thailand Travel Guides

There are some affiliate links in the post above where theplanetd will earn a commission if you make a purchase but there is no extra cost to you!

Travel Planning Resources

Looking to book your next trip? Why not use these resources that are tried and tested by yours truly.

Flights: Start planning your trip by finding the best flight deals on Skyscanner

Book your Hotel: Find the best prices on hotels with these two providers. If you are located in Europe use Booking.com and if you are anywhere else use TripAdvisor

Find Apartment Rentals: You will find the cheapest prices on apartment rentals with VRBO

Travel Insurance: Don't leave home without it. Here is what we recommend:

  • World Nomads - Digital Nomads or Frequent Travelers.
  • Allianz - Occasional Travelers.
  • Medjet - Global air medical transport and travel security.

Need more help planning your trip? Make sure to check out our Resources Page where we highlight all the great companies that we trust when we are traveling.

About Stella Saintis

Stella is the author of Stella's Out. As a traveling teacher, she lived in South East Asia for 2 years including Thailand. She now lives in Honduras here she documents her adventures on a budget. Follow her to prove that you can still have a lot of fun and travel without a lot of money Follow Stella at StellasOut.com / Facebook / Instagram /

Leave a Comment

15 thoughts on “32 Best Things to do in Bangkok, Thailand”

  1. Love love love that you teamed up with a local to provide an insiders input on the list. This has given some unique ideas you wouldn’t really find elsewhere, giving you unique experiences which are always amazing!

    All the food looks amazing, and I miss it so much!
    Thanks for sharing this, ill have to add a few of the locals recommendations for my next trip there!

    Reply
  2. we have been to bangkok for 4 times and those are still new things to explore. its so amazing =)
    xoxo
    tina wimpernverlängerung ausbildung

    Reply
  3. Well I’ve been to Bangkok twice, still I got to know some of the places from this post . Jim Thompson House looks really interesting and so does the unicorn cafe. Thanks for Sharing!

    Reply
  4. You really have shared some amazing pictures of Bangkok. Bangkok is known for its food and temples. It is one of the most amazing places in the world.

    Reply
  5. You have recommended to set up 4 temples. Why not recommend all 9 temples? Thais have the tradition of visiting 9 temples to increase merit.
    i recommend more

    1. Temple of the Emerald Buddha (Wat Phra Kaew)
    2. Phra Chetuphon Vimolmangklararam Ratchaworamahaviharn Temple (Wat Pho)
    3. Wat Kanlayanamit Woramahaviharn
    4. Wat Arun Ratchawararam
    5. Rakhang Temple Kositaram Woramahaviharn
    6. Chana Songkhram Temple
    7. Bowonniwet Vihara, Ratchaworawihan
    8. Wat Suthasan Thep Wararam Ratchaworamahawihan
    9. Sra Ket Temple

    Reply
  6. This is everything one could need for their trip to Bangkok. The Unicorn Cafe is love! Thanks a ton for sharing the blog with us.

    Reply
  7. I think that walking around some less upscale neighbourhoods is fun, there’s always some bizzare shit going on there. Like to the north from Banglamphu Canal, or the area near the Royal Barge Museum. Less crowded than more touristy places, and pretty quiet, considering it’s Bangkok.

    Reply
  8. You have selected all the sparkling gems of Bangkok. It’s really difficult to choose which one to visit and what things to do, especially when one is for a limited time in this fabulous tourist destination. I will surely take out enough time to explore all the things you’ve mentioned in the post since your write-up has flared my desires.

    Reply
  9. Omg, there are still so many things I haven’t done/seen in Bangkok! E.g. all the special cafés. I always just eat on the street and that’s about it :))
    Also, my first time hearing the nickname Big Mango! :))

    Reply
  10. Wow. This looks like an exhaustive guide to Bangkok. I never knew so much about it before! I especially would love to go to Lumpini Park, Unicorn Cafe, and Manhanakhon Skywalk. Thanks for sharing.

    Reply