Bangkok Top Attractions

I have to admit, Bangkok isn’t my favorite city in Thailand. The chaos, dirtiness and unforgiving heat and humidity makes for a less than pleasant experience while exploring this town. Regardless, below is my list of top attractions to checkout in Bangkok.

 

Grand Palace & Wat Phra Kaew

The Grand Palace is easily Bangkok's most famous landmark. Built in 1782, and for 150 years home to the Thai King, it's a dazzling complex of buildings. Its intricate designs and architecture are simply stunning. 

Located on the Palace grounds is Wat Phra Kaew, which is regarded as one of the most important temples in Thailand. Housed inside this temple is the statue of the Emerald Buddha. This Buddha, which dates back to 15th century, is actually carved from a single block jade. 

Wat Arun

Wat Arun is my favorite temple in Bangkok, probably because it looks so different from all the other temples. Perched on the river bank of Chao Phraya, its majestic spires tower of the surrounding landscape. At night, with lights shining on it, Wat Arun is even more beautiful.

The Floating Market

Bangkok has several floating markets, including: Taling Chan Market, Bang Ku Wiang Market, Tha Kha, and Damnoen Saduak. As you'd expect, the vendor's boats are jammed into the waterways. Piled high with tropical fruits and vegetables, this is a great place to practice your haggling skills.

ChinaTown

Bangkok’s Chinatown is a bustling neighborhood and popular tourist attraction. Always busy, its filled with market stalls, restaurants and what feels like an endless of supply of gold shops. If you can, try to time your visit with the annual Chinese New Year festivities. You'll see Chinatown at its best. 

Wat Pho

Wat Pho is located behind the Temple of the Emerald Buddha (Wat Phra Kaew). This temple contains the Reclining Buddha, which is one of the most impressive Buddha statues in the world. The giant statue measures 46 meters long and is covered in gold leaf.

Interestingly enough, this is also a great place to get a massage. While it's fairly commercialized, it's amazing the wonders a quick 30 minute massage has the body. It will keep you energized and limber as you continue your tour of the city 🙂

Wat Traimit

Honestly, the main reason you should visit Wat Traimit is to see the Golden Buddha. This a truly amazing statue that's made of 5.5 tons of pure GOLD! Its estimated worth is $250 million (that’s a quarter of billion dollars).

It’s origins are a mystery but it’s design is similar to Sukhothai Dynasty (13th – 14th century). At some point it was plastered over out of fear that it might be stolen and was forgotten until 1955 when trying to move the statue some of the plaster come off uncovering the gold beneath.

This is a must visit if only to say that you where in the same room as this much gold.

Chatuchak Market

This is a popular market that houses more than 8,000 market stalls. On a typical weekend it attracts about 200,000 visitors. Most of the products are mass produced and you won't get the best prices here, but it's still worth a short visit. 

Jim Thompson House

The Jim Thompson House is a popular attraction and memorial to its owner Jim Thompson (who mysteriously disappeared in the Malaysian jungle in the 1960's). An American who settled in Thailand 1946, Jim dedicated over half his life to reviving the Thai silk industry.  His Thai home, open to the public through its tours, is filled with wonderful collections of art and antiques. 

Soi Cowboy

Bangkok, for better or worse, is known for being a very liberal city when it comes to sex. During the day, Soi Cowboy is barely noticeable. At night it becomes the throbbing heart of the city. Neon light blasts the area with a harsh light. There are about 20 clubs on the strip. With loud music blaring, scantily clad girls standing outside trying very hard to lure in the tourists.

Most of their clients are middle aged men.  Welcome to Bangkok!