When friends and family members are planning trips to Bangkok and Thailand, they always ask me what the highlights are for the City of Angels. Of course, everyone will have different opinions. But, I feel that at the very least, people should experience these attractions on my list. Then, depending on time, visit others too.
So, from my own experience of showing people around, here is a top 10 list of places to visit in Bangkok.
(1) The Grand Palace and the Temple of the Emerald Buddha at Wat Phra Kaew
(2) The Reclining Buddha at Wat Pho.
(3) Long-tailed boat trips along the canals in Thonburi (also take the River Express Ferry)
(4) The Temple of Dawn at Wat Arun. A different kind of temple along the river. Can be missed if you have already seen others and your time is limited. If you like temples then also visit Wat Traimit for the Golden Buddha and Wat Benchamabophit otherwise known as the Marble Temple.
(5) Visit Jim Thompson’s House for a fine example of Thai traditional houses. Suan Pakkard Palace is in some ways better but less visited by tourists.
(6) Vimanmek Teak Mansion is worth visiting not only because you get a free ticket after visiting the Grand Palace, but also because of its magnificence and examples of how Thai royalty lived in the past.
(7) The National Museum is a must for people who want to understand more about Thai culture and the history of the country. However, you can miss it if your time is limited and you are bored by museums!
(8) Chatuchak Weekend Market is always on the top of people’s list for shopping in Bangkok. But, if you are not in town at the weekend then try out the Suan Lum Night Bazaar. For air-conditioned comfort try the shopping malls at MBK and others along the Sky Train route.
(9) Thai boxing should be experienced by everyone even if you are not so interested in sports. The atmosphere in the stadium is almost electric as the fights have musical accompaniments and people in the stands are frantically shouting out bets.
(10) A visit to Bangkok wouldn’t be complete without at least one example of Thai traditional dancing. This is possible at various Dinner Theatres. However, you can also see some dancing for free at the Erawan Shrine.
At a later stage, I will do a list of “unseen” attractions.
For ideas for day trips and excursions from Bangkok, please visit our sister site at Bangkok-daytrips.com.