Bangkok, the Venice of Asia, beckons with its vibrant culture, dazzling entertainment scene and world-class cuisine. As one of the busiest cities in the world, it is a hit with tourists – from its humble but delicious street snacks to exotic cabarets.
As one of the world’s oldest international airports and the oldest in Asia, Don Mueang International Airport originally served as a Royal Thai Air Force base. Together with Suvarnabhumi International Airport, it serves various international airlines and is the main hub for budget and domestic flights, including Nok Air and AirAsia. That’s why Don Mueang still serves plenty of air traffic, despite being the secondary airport in Bangkok.
What to see & do in Bangkok
A taxi or bus ride to the closest BTS or metro stop – Mo Chit station – is the fastest way to get from the airport to town. Local train and bus services are also available across the road from the airport. These will take you to the central railway station and other key landmarks like the Victory Monument.
Getting around Bangkok is easily done via minivans called tuk-tuks, sedan-style cabs and random vehicles serving unofficial taxis. Tuk-tuks have no meter and hard bargaining is usually required. Metered cabs are safer, comfortable and usually cheaper. Speedy motorbike taxis are another way to travel short distances. Car or motorcycle rentals are also available, but the roads are often chaotic and accident-prone; most people still prefer the BTS for an efficient mode of travel.
The Victory Monument is a must-see for any visitor to Bangkok. Pause for a history lesson at this monument, built to commemorate Thai soldiers who sacrificed their lives in battle. Another noteworthy landmark is the crowded Ratchaprasong Intersection next to Siam BTS station. Every day, people flock over to worship the Four Faced Buddha of Erawan Brahma Shrine in front of the Grand Hyatt Erawan Hotel with offerings of food, flowers and even dance.
What better way to learn about Thai culture than visits to Bangkok’s places of worship and museums? Visit Wat Pho, an old and sacred temple of Thailand, known for its giant statues and pagodas. The Temple of the Emerald Buddha and the Grand Palace are another two spectacular architectural structures that you won’t want to miss. The National Museum Bangkok and the National Art Gallery will allow you to discover more about Thailand’s heritage in paintings, archaeology and fine arts.
Proceed on to Yaowarat or Chinatown, an area for sightseeing, shopping and delicious Chinese food. The historical Trimit Wittayaram Temple stands out amongst this area’s attractions. It houses an ancient gigantic Buddha statue on the fourth storey. At the back of Trimit temple lies an entire stretch of street food stalls and restaurants. Prepare for a delightful explosion of flavours on your palate, from snacks like soybean pudding and assorted grains in syrup, to various types of noodles and delicacies like whole roasted suckling pig, roasted duck and shark fin soup.
Bangkok is truly a shopper’s paradise. The famous Chatuchak market greets you at Mo Chit station. Brave the heat at this outdoor market fair and your inner bargain hunter will be rewarded at the 8,000 over stalls selling food, clothes, plants, home decoration items, antiques, handicrafts, pottery and even pets. Head down to Siam Square, Maboonkrong Center (MBK), and Platinum Mall for affordable wholesale-priced fashion, CDs, furniture and household items. You also can’t miss Central World Plaza, the biggest department store in Thailand and sixth largest in the world.
After a long day of sightseeing, wind down with some relaxation at Soi Thonglor, an area renowned for spa, fine dining and high-end nightclubs, which open till early morning. Prepare for great pampering and service that’s worth every cent you pay along this upmarket stretch.
Did you know…?
• The Golden Buddha at Trimit Wittayaram Temple is crafted in Sukhothai style and dating back to Sukhothai era. The Guinness World’s Records have recognised it as the biggest golden Buddha statue in the world.
• Central World comes alive with magnificent decorations during the Christmas and year-end period – the Central World Countdown is one of the most popular New Year parties in Thailand.
How to get to Bangkok
A world-class tourist destination situated along major air and sea routes, Bangkok is an accessible hub for both business and pleasure. Find the cheapest flights and hotels with Skyscanner and start exploring Bangkok now!
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