Little can prepare you for the frenetic pace and sensory overload of Thailand’s largest city. Markets are crowded, the traffic erratic and the hawkers relentless in their offers of cut-price clothes and watches. All this activity mixes with the pungent aroma from the hundreds of food carts frying pad thai and other tasty dishes.

Spend a little time in Bangkok, however, and you’ll find spots of serenity among the bustle. This is a city where religion is deeply rooted in daily life. The smell of incense often signifies a nearby shrine where you’ll see people from all walks of life stop to make an offering before they go about their business.

Known to locals as Krung Thep (City of Angels), Bangkok is home to almost 10 million people. It covers more than 570 square miles (1,500 square kilometers) and encompasses two former capitals: Thonburi and Rattanakosin. The latter is Bangkok’s historic center and where you’ll find most of the main attractions. These include the National Museum and the Temple of the Emerald Buddha, on the grounds of the showy Grand Palace. Nearby, see the huge reclining Buddha at the Wat Pho temple. Remember to dress modestly when visiting any temple.

In the Banglamphu district, prepare for an onslaught of sights and sounds at the notoriously busy Khao San Road. Haggle for counterfeit clothes and accessories, or simply perch on a stool in one of the many bars and watch the colorful characters pass by.

For some relaxation, join a free, outdoor yoga or tai chi class at Lumphini Park, or indulge with a spa treatment, available at most hotels. A short boat ride north of Bangkok you’ll discover the community of the Mon people. They have made the tiny, artificial river island of Ko Kret a haven for their culture.

While tuk-tuk rides are all part of the Bangkok experience, the city is well connected for those times you feel like traveling in comfort. The excellent Skytrain (BTS) and underground (MRT) rail systems run between all the major shopping and entertainment districts of the city. For a different view of Bangkok, take a trip on the Express boats that constantly churn the waters of the Chao Phraya River.

Known for

shopping, temple and culture

Explore map

Where to stay in Bangkok

Sukhumvit
Image for Sukhumvit

Sukhumvit

Shopping, Bars, Dining

Sukhumvit is a metropolitan neighbourhood that’s popular for its bars, restaurants and coffee shops. The neighbourhood’s skyline and rich culture are just a couple of its charming qualities. You can satisfy your cultural palate with shopping and temples.

Bangkok City Centre
Image for Bangkok City Centre

Bangkok City Centre

Temples, Shopping, Monuments

A metropolitan neighbourhood, Bangkok City Centre offers a variety of options for restaurants. The neighbourhood’s China town and rich culture are just a couple of its charming qualities. Other highlights include the local temples and shopping, as well as the natural splendour of the riverfront.

Pratunam
Image for Pratunam
Trover photo by Tan Tan Tan

Pratunam

Shopping, Castles, Monuments

A scenic neighbourhood, Pratunam offers a variety of options for restaurants. The neighbourhood’s friendly people and skyline are just a couple of its charming qualities. You can satisfy your cultural palate with shopping and monuments.

Silom
Image for Silom

Silom

Temples, Shopping, LGBT-friendly

Silom is a metropolitan, romantic neighbourhood with convenient options for bars and restaurants. The neighbourhood’s charm comes through in its rich culture. You can satisfy your cultural palate with temples and shopping.

Siam
Image for Siam

Siam

Urban, Temples, Shopping

Siam is a welcoming, upmarket neighbourhood. The neighbourhood has many appealing features, among them its friendly people and rich culture. You can satisfy your cultural palate with temples and shopping.

Don Muang
Image for Don Muang
Trover photo by Charles DO

Don Muang

Dining, Shopping, Friendly People

A welcoming neighbourhood, Don Muang is known for being walkable and upmarket, while offering convenient options for restaurants and bars. Broaden your horizons with some local shopping.

Top hotels in Bangkok

Estimated price for 1 night / 2 adults
Image for lebua at State Tower (The World's First Vertical Destination)
lebua at State Tower (The World's First Vertical Destination)
5 out of 5
State Tower 1055/111 Silom Road, Bangkok
RM420/night
25 Jul-26 Jul
4.5/5Wonderful! (7,690 reviews)

"The staff mainly are nice and helpful. They have a kitchen in our room with dining area but don't have utensils and dishes provided. The surrounding area is very old and is next to the hospital. If you don't mind, you may consider this hotel in Bangkok."…"

Reviewed on 16 Jul,2019

lebua at State Tower (The World's First Vertical Destination)
Image for Rembrandt Hotel Suites and Towers
Rembrandt Hotel Suites and Towers
4.5 out of 5
19 Sukhumvit Soi 18, Klong Toei, Bangkok
RM250/night
28 Jul-29 Jul
4.2/5Very Good! (2,615 reviews)

"Aaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaa"…"

Reviewed on 17 Jul,2019

Rembrandt Hotel Suites and Towers
Image for Shangri-la Bangkok
Shangri-la Bangkok
5 out of 5
89 Soi Wat Suan Plu, New Road, Bangkok
RM533/night
15 Aug-16 Aug
4.6/5Wonderful! (2,831 reviews)

"Fabulous location, easy access to trains, boats. Staff exceptionally friendly and helpful. Great stay."…"

Reviewed on 22 Jul,2019

Shangri-la Bangkok

Popular things to do in Bangkok

Grand Palace
Image for Grand Palace

Grand Palace

The majestic European/Asian-style complex was once the home of the kings of Siam and is now both a place of worship and a must-see Bangkok landmark.

Wat Pho
Image for Wat Pho

Wat Pho

The “Temple of the Reclining Buddha” is the largest temple in the country and has more Buddha statues than any other Thai temple.

Temple of the Emerald Buddha
Image for Temple of the Emerald Buddha

Temple of the Emerald Buddha

A small but extremely important Thai religious icon sits on a golden pedestal within the ornate Wat Phra Kaew structure on the grounds of the Grand Palace.

Khaosan Road
Image for Khaosan Road

Khaosan Road

This “anything goes” street is a hot spot for budget travelers who want to buy cheap clothes and souvenirs, people-watch or party all night.

Lumphini Park
Image for Lumphini Park

Lumphini Park

Known by locals as the “Lung of Bangkok,” this green breathing space provides a quiet haven for rest, sport and recreation to residents and visitors alike.

Jim Thompson House
Image for Jim Thompson House

Jim Thompson House

Admire the house and art collection of an American expat who became one of Thailand’s most renowned “farangs” before he mysteriously disappeared in the 1960s.

Top activities in Bangkok

Bang Kra Jao & Jungle Cycling Adventure Tour
Image for Bang Kra Jao & Jungle Cycling Adventure Tour

Bang Kra Jao & Jungle Cycling Adventure Tour

RM200

Take an adventure into the wilderness of Bangkok on a visit to the inner city of the oasis of Bang Kra Jao. Best reached by boat, this island is often referred to as the “green lung” of Bangkok and incredibly, has been left untouched by city developers.

Jim Thomson's House & Suan Pakkard Palace Tour
Image for Jim Thomson's House & Suan Pakkard Palace Tour

Jim Thomson's House & Suan Pakkard Palace Tour

RM147

Visit the house of Jim Thomson—founder of the Thai Silk Company—and pay a visit to the magnificent Suan Pakkard Palace. See the Thompson house, which has been transformed into a splendid museum full of Southeast Asian art, and tour Suan Pakkard Palace, the former home of Prince Paripatra.

Ayutthaya Ancient Capital with River Cruise, Lunch & Palace
Image for Ayutthaya Ancient Capital with River Cruise, Lunch & Palace

Ayutthaya Ancient Capital with River Cruise, Lunch & Palace

RM181

Discover the rich history, fascinating architecture, and iconic buildings of Ayutthaya, an ancient royal capital. Visit the former royal residence at Bang Pa-In Palace, marvel at the Wat Mahathat and Wat Na Phra Men temples, and cruise the waters of Chao Phraya River while enjoying a delicious lunch.

Private Evening Thai Boxing
Image for Private Evening Thai Boxing

Private Evening Thai Boxing

RM570

Step into Bangkok's exciting nightlife and witness Thai boxing, the biggest and loudest entertainment among Thai locals. Feel your adrenaline pumping as you watch this exhilarating traditional event from a VIP ringside seat.

Ancient Temples of Ayutthaya & River Cruise
Image for Ancient Temples of Ayutthaya & River Cruise

Ancient Temples of Ayutthaya & River Cruise

RM213

Being ancient Siam's capital many years ago, Ayutthaya has a rich history. And much of the fascinating architecture and iconic buildings in the ancient royal capital still exists today (mostly as incredibly interesting ruins).

Bangkok City Sites by Foot, Tuk-Tuk & Riverboat
Image for Bangkok City Sites by Foot, Tuk-Tuk & Riverboat

Bangkok City Sites by Foot, Tuk-Tuk & Riverboat

RM266

With a small group of 10 people, spend a day exploring Chinatown, stop at the massive Sampeng Market, and take a boat along the Chayo Praya River. As you ride in a tuk-tuk, pass Little India and see Wat Tien Fa, one of the oldest Chinese temples in Bangkok.

Read travel guides and advice on visiting Bangkok

Flying high in Loei
Image for Flying high in Loei

Flying high in Loei

Exploring off-the-beaten-path Thailand

Mystical tattoos in Thailand
Image for Mystical tattoos in Thailand

Mystical tattoos in Thailand

Getting Sak Yants in Thailand

Responsible animal tourism in Thailand
Image for Responsible animal tourism in Thailand

Responsible animal tourism in Thailand

Practicing responsible animal tourism at Elephant Nature Park in Chiang Mai

Other places like Bangkok

Phuket
Image for Phuket
Phuket
Pattaya
Image for Pattaya
Pattaya
Kuala Lumpur
Image for Kuala Lumpur
Kuala Lumpur
Manila
Image for Manila
Manila