Situated on the Chao Phraya River, Bangkok is Thailand’s cultural, political, and financial center. It's also known as the Tiger capital and is one of the busiest and most connected hubs in Asia. As a travel writer for BBC put it, “Bangkok flows but never ebbs.” Bangkok is one of the most visited cities in the world. In 2019, 39 million people visited the Thai capital, with most travelers visiting between November and February. June to September is Thailand’s rainy season, so not as many tourists visit.
ShoppingBangkok’s shopping opportunities come in every size and shape, and the prices are half those you would find in New York, London, or Hong Kong. Small boutiques selling custom denim and vintage heels line the city’s orchid-strewn alleys, while designer brands such as Prada and Armani can be found at Siam Paragon. Many shopping districts in Bangkok feature multiple streets anchored by a broad avenue. Here are 5 must-see shopping streets in Bangkok: 1. Siam Square 2. Pahurat 3. Chak Phet Road 4. Ekkamai Soi 10 5. Khao San Road (considered one of the most famous streets in Southeast Asia)
NightlifeFor new travelers, a night in Bangkok can be overwhelming. Where do you go and what do you do? Motorcycle taxis and tuk-tuks vie for your attention, happy to bring you to ancient temples, food stalls, clubs, and trendy mixology bars, all while Golden Buddhas survey the chaos and the Skytrains zoom along like something out of Bladerunner. Thailand’s nightclubs are a surreal blend of theater and neon. Famed designer Ashley Suttton created many unusual hotspots around the city. Yes, there are live iguanas and girls on swings. Iron Fairies is a revamped iron workshop, while Maggie Choo’s is set in a bank vault that’s been reimagined as a Shanghai speakeasy. Still not ready for last call? Head to Thong Lor, which is universally described as Bangkok’s hippest and most happening neighborhood.
Street FoodWhile the city boasts several Michelin Star restaurants, street food is quite the Bangkok culinary experience. You'll find stalls selling steaming bowls of Pad Thai throughout the city and the Soi 38 night market offers something outside the box. The action at Soi 38 doesn’t get underway until midnight, which makes it the ideal place to stop after a night on the town.
A Moment of MeditationBangkok may flow and not ebb, but there are numerous places to reflect, meditate, and enjoy a quieter, more spiritual moment. The Temple of the Reclining Buddha (Wat Pho) is located off the Chao Praya River. Bangkok’s most famous Buddha, however, is the Emerald Buddha, which is carved from single piece of jade and located in the old town’s Wat Phra Kaew. Lumpini Park and Benjakitti Park also offer a peaceful escape.