Aerial Views of Old Bangkok

I like looking at old photos of Bangkok. It is interesting to see how some things have changed. While others things are much the same. These are some interesting aerial photos of Bangkok from Life magazine taken by Dmitri Kessel in 1950. The first one is the Marble Temple.

The next one is looking down towards the Democracy Monument. Khao San Road is off to the left. Notice a lack of traffic which is very strange.

This next photo of Bangkok from the air looks very much like Wong Wian Yai on the Thonburi side. This is a very busy roundabout. Strange again to see it so quiet.

I am not sure about these last two photos. It is obviously a major canal. This one above has a lot of boat traffic. Please post a comment if you can help identify these pictures. Over at, I recently posted some old pictures of a Traffic Jam in 1950’s Bangkok.

8 responses to “Aerial Views of Old Bangkok

  1. Many thanks again kha, for your excellent blog with very interested of old photos of Bangkok.

  2. I just bumped into these pics the other day when looking for something else – also worth checking out

    more links here, under the history heading:

    I find them absolutely fascinating 🙂

  3. My guess for the last picture:
    looking southeast along Khlong Phadung Krung Kasem. The bridge in the middle could be Saphan Makhawan Rangsun, Thanon Ratchadamnoen Nok crossing the khlong. Today there would be the UN-building in the middle of the right edge of the photo. To the top you just can make out Wat Sommanat Wihan.

  4. After viewing the original of the penultimate photo, I can say, that it also shows Khlong Phadung Krung Kasem. You can see Saphan Makhawan Rangsun (Ratchadamnoen Nok Boulevard) just at the very top of the photo. Wat Sommanat Wihan upper left, the bridge in the middle is Thanon Nakhon Sawan.

  5. Its me again.
    I doubt, that this roundabout-photo shows Wong Wian Yai, as the number of merging roads doesn’t match. Its rather “Wong Wian 22 July” near Hualamphong railway station, just north of Thanon Charoen Krung.

  6. Stephen Cleary

    Rather strange. There is more transportation on Khao Sarn Road than Ratchdamnoern Avenue!

  7. The last photo is Khlong Phadung Krung Kasem and Saphan Makhawan Rangsun on Ratchadamnoen Nok rd.,100.510408&spn=0.005961,0.012231&t=k&z=17

    The second last, it’s still Khlong Phadung Krung Kasem just south of Saphan Makhawan Rangsun. You can still see it on the topmost.,100.514731&spn=0.005961,0.012231&t=k&z=17

    The roundabout was this one, “Wong Wian 22 July” near Hua Lamphong Grand Station.,100.513551&spn=0.002981,0.006115&t=k&z=18

    Thanks for these great photos

  8. The Photo’s are great, for those wanting to retire there I have an e-book available from amazon and smashwords. link for amazon is: -