The megacity of Bangkok is a cocktail of contrasts. Designer skyscraper hotels with roof top infinity pools sit side by side ancient Buddhist temples. Modern, air conditioned shopping malls selling every designer label under the sun compete with colorful floating markets. And when it comes to food you can dine in top class restaurants or eat from food carts lining the streets.
Bangkok, or the City of Angels as it’s known, guarantees to hit all your senses. Begin your journey now and discover the best things to see and do in Bangkok.
1. Stay at Amara Bangkok Hotel
Bangkok is a huge city, so you have to pay special attention when picking your accommodation. If you are planning to follow our list of "things to do", a centrally located hotel offering easy access to transport links will save you plenty of time and money.
Amara Bangkok is a lovely property that we would definitely recommend staying. The hotel is located right in the heart of Bangkok, Bang Rak District, very close to BTS Skytrain and MRT Stations, giving you easy access to every part of the city. It's also at a walking distance from Patpong Night Market (one of the most vibrant markets in Bangkok), as well as world-class bars and gourmet restaurants.
The Club 10' Room is to die for and a reason to never leave the hotel. Its floor-to-ceiling windows offer mesmerizing views over the iconic Mahanakhon Building, which you can enjoy from your bedroom and bathroom. So, every morning the city will wake up before your eyes – truly inspiring experience.
Of course, the hotel’s staff will be more than happy to help you with your city exploration as well, so feel free to ask the entrance for directions – they will most probably give you a map as well.
2. Get to the heart of Bangkok’s temples with a visit to the Grand Palace
Taking centre stage, the impressive gold Reclining Buddha, the largest in Thailand has to be seen to be believed. Buddhist monks dressed in robes calmly move around the temple. Outside colorful stupa-filled halls, the sounds of chants and the intoxicating smell of incense instantly transport you to a world far away.
Constantly voted as the number 1 sight on TripAdvisor, the Grand Palace and Temple of Emerald Buddha is an experience you can’t afford to miss. The Palace is open daily from 8:30 to 15:30. The admission fee is 300 Baht (approximately 5 US Dollars).
3. Walk through the Chatuchak Weekend Market and the Rot Fai Market Ratchada
Chatuchak Weekend Market is the most popular market in Bangkok, distinguished for its 8,000 market stalls that spread through an area of 35-acre. It might seem impossible to discover it from the first visit; however, there is actually a way to do it with ease. A great way not to get lost in the market by putting reference points along your way like banks, or the numbered entrance gates. But, what can you find in Chatuchak? Well, everything. Every shop sells a great number of goods, from merchandise to exotic pets, like a python.
The Rot Fai Market is a new market on Ratchadaphisek Road, that is much easier to access via the MRT Underground Station. Since it’s located in the centre of Bangkok, it’s easier to drop by. Naturally, in most markets, you will have to polish your bargaining skills, since there is not a set price for anything. The prices are generally low except the rare and genuine antiques and vintage items which are a little more expensive.
4. Drink a cocktail on one of the rooftop bars of Bangkok
Bangkok is famous for its rooftop bars. You can’t visit the city without spending a night in one of them. Imagine sipping your favourite cocktail while listening to soft jazz music and watching the city transforming as the sunsets in the background. Aka Aza Bar is actually one of the best rooftop bars in Bangkok, so we highly recommend you visit it.
The bar is located on the Amara Bangkok Hotel, so it’s a double win situation if you decide to stay in this hotel. The Infinity Sky Pool also located on the rooftop is great to chill out during the day and cool yourself from the heat of the city. The bird’s eye view of Bangkok will definitely WOW you!
5. Eat and Shop in Chinatown
China Town is one of the very few districts that have not been “urbanized” yet in Bangkok. The Temple of the Golden Buddha (Wat Traimit) is the most popular attraction in the Chinatown, while you will need a map to discover the area. Chinatown is the ideal place for street food tasting, packed with small eateries selling delicious dishes at very low cost. The seafood dishes are to die for!
The shopping experience in China Town will travel you back in time. Bargaining is essential in Chinatown as well, since it’s a part of the Chinese culture. You will find all kinds of things to buy including plushies, clothes, various merchandise, etch.
6. Go Shopping at the Asiatique The Riverfront in Bangkok
Once the international trade port of Bangkok, Asiatique now hosts more than 1,500 boutiques and restaurants in a warehouse complex. It perfectly combines the shopping experience of night bazaar and a mall. Give yourself an evening to explore it. The market is split into four categories, while most of the shops can be found in the Chareonkrung District.
Asiatique is open from 5 p.m. until very late at night. There are plenty of entertainment shows as well like the Calypso ladyboy cabaret (a must-see) and the classic Thai puppets performance. Since you will be hungry after all that exploration, the 40 restaurants in the complex will give you plenty of dining options to ease your appetite.
7. Try International Cuisine through the eyes of An Asian
There are many restaurants in Bangkok branded to serve international cuisine, but most of them twist the recipes in a way that they match the local flavours. Element Restaurant is one of the restaurants that serve international dishes as close to the original recipes as possible. The restaurant serves dishes from Singapore, Thailand, China, Japan, as well as Western favourites.
Since we are talking about Amara Bangkok’s restaurant, this is the place where you will also take your buffet breakfast, and lunch – also served in a buffet style. We highly recommend you make a reservation and stay at the al fresco dining area if you are visiting in Summer.
8. Visit a Floating Market!
The floating markets of Bangkok are now considered a tourist trap for many, which is partly true. The most popular floating market, Damnoen Saduak, is probably the most famous in Thailand and the perfect tourist mess. Moreover, it’s 100km away of Bangkok, so it’s pretty time consuming to get there as well.
This is why we highly recommend the compact floating market just 17km away from the city center called Khlong Lat Mayom Floating Market. The market is not yet known so you will soon realise that it’s only visited by locals. It has many sections with fruits, vegetables and other snacks, separated by a few canals.
And the list goes on...
There are many more activities to do in Bangkok, restaurants to eat, bars to drink cocktails, which we will let you discover alone. Now that you have learnt a little bit of Bankok, you can start planning your trip right-away by booking the hotel. Click here and check prices for Amara Bangkok!