Bangkok, Thailand quickly became one of my favorite cities in the world. We were lucky enough to have a few days on each end of our trip in Thailand to enjoy some of the sightseeing Bangkok has to offer. This post highlights what we were able to easily see over three days in Bangkok, but we also had a couple extra to be able to slow down a little and enjoy it more (i.e. get massages and eat more street food). There are so many things to do in Bangkok, this is just a few highlights…
The very first day, we decided to get a few big attractions out of the way. We jumped on the river taxi and headed to Wat Pho and The Grand Palace. Tip: take the orange river taxi, not the blue one, for 15baht per person per trip. The blue one is used only by tourists and is more expensive.
As soon as we got off the river taxi, we were approached by tuk-tuk drivers telling us (very kindly and in very good english) that the Grand Palace was closed. It was even a little more believable since we were in Bangkok during the protests. No matter how nice they seem, no matter how believable, trust me, just keep walking. It’s a well known scam where they take you on an entire day’s worth of a ride to tourism, jewelry and tailor shops where you are expected to buy something. It’s not that expensive, it just wastes a very precious day of your time.
After we got through the barrage of persistent tuk-tuk drivers, the Grand Palace was waiting just across the street. It is stunning with its perfectly manicured lawns and ornate decorations full of shimmering gold and bright colors. While the King doesn’t actually live here anymore, it hosts several royal events each year.
We wandered around, snapping photos…
When we’d had our fill, we decided to walk the short distance to Wat Pho, home of the famous massive reclining Buddha. It was very crowded, but we stayed for a while reveling in this enormous gold Buddha. OK, maybe I was just waiting to get a shot without loads of people.
On the way back to our room, I snapped a few photos of Wat Arun as our crowded boat sputtered down the Chao Phraya River. Closeups, along with a proper visit, will have to wait until next time.
On our second day in Bangkok we headed over the Chatuchak Weekend Market. It’s located outside of the city, so we had to take a bus to the train station, and then the BTS Skytrain, which drops you off right outside of the market. The trip took about 45 minutes. We had no plan, and no map and that was a big mistake. I vastly underestimated the size of this market. I knew it was 27 acres, I knew there were over 15,000 booths… but its hard to really visualize that until you’re actually there.
We left overwhelmed and exhausted, with only a few goodies (knock-off Birkenstock sandals and some sarongs). And a few awful pics from my iPhone.
Our guesthouse, W Home Bangkok (which I HIGHLY recommend) was right down the road from Asiatique, a new night market. So after the weekend market we decided to walk down, grab dinner and check it out.
It’s an open air style venue, with restaurants, bars and shops. We found most of both to be overpriced (there’s not really any bargaining here). However, I did get a leather passport holder and luggage tag from a shop that I am in LOVE with. He will personalize any item for no extra charge.
On our third day in Bangkok we decided to check out Khao San Road, the famous backpacker hangout, to see what all the fuss is about. It was definitely more touristy than any of the other sections we visited.
Worth a short visit, maybe, but I was glad we didn’t stay in this area. It seems great if you want to stay for REALLY cheap and chat with other westerners over a few beers. The shops sold the same stuff we found at any other market. We rounded off our day with massages and an amazing pad thai street food dinner.
There were definitely some things that we missed in Bangkok: Chinatown, most of the Chatuchak Weekend Market, the floating market, the Jim Thompson House, more street food, drinks on a rooftop bar, several wats and much much more. It is such a vibrant and hectic city, there is no way to see everything in one trip (and still maintain your sanity). We were happy with what we were able to see in our three days in Bangkok considering the small amount of time, and the rest will have to wait. Until next time, Bangkok!
Looking for accommodations in Bangkok?
There are over 1500 options on Agoda alone. I’ve done the hard work for you and selected a few of my favorites to meet all budgets.
Fantastic small, family run B&B located just a few blocks away from the Chao Praya, you can use the river taxi to get around. Being tucked away in a residential area means you’ll get a taste for local life. Highly recommend!
Price Range: $35-45/night
This guesthouse was made from a small Thai home on a small quiet soi (street), but is very close to the hip Sukhumvit Road. Street food heaven, I might have to stay here next time.
Price Range: $160-250/night
If you’re looking for luxury with a great location, this is it. Situated right on the Chao Praya, with it’s own dedicated river taxi, this gorgeous hotel has a great location. With a price tag to match.
Price Range: $360-430/night
Great location right on the Chao Praya, but the best part here is THE VIEW. Many of the rooms look right onto the river with a view of Wat Arun.
Price Range: $90-100/night
What would recommend for things to do in Bangkok? Looking for everything else we did in Thailand? Check out our Thailand Roundup!
Disclaimer: This post contains affiliate links. If you click on one and make a purchase, I may make a few dollars at no extra cost to you. As always, these opinions are my own and I have found these products/services useful and only recommend them because I think they will benefit you too. You can read more here.