19 Things to do in Bangkok
After years living in Bangkok I've got quite an extensive list of things to in Bangkok.
From the must see temples to the infamous ping pong shows, you'll never be out of places to visit and activities in Bangkok.
So wether you're here for holidays or you've been living here for a while, here are a list of things to in Bangkok that will keep you busy for a while.
- 1 Best Places to Visit in Bangkok
- 2 Must do in Bangkok
- 3 Shopping in Bangkok
- 4 Party in Bangkok
- 5 Fun things to do in Bangkok
- 6 More things to do in Bangkok
Best Places to Visit in Bangkok
You can't say you've been to Bangkok if you haven't visited this places.
From the impressive Grand Palace to the busy Chinatown area, here are the places you must visit in Bangkok :
Visit The Grand Palace
That should be number one on your list if it's your first time in Bangkok.
The Grand Palace is one of the most iconic building in Thailand and have an incredible architecture and treasures including the Emerald Buddha.
As for other monuments and temples in Thailand, remember to wear clothes that cover your shoulder and your legs.
🐵Mojo Tip : Try to go early in the morning to avoid the big crowd and the heat.
Visit Wat Pho and the reclining Buddha
Right next to the Grand Temple, only 5 minutes walk from it, you've got the famous Wat Pho Temple with its huge reclining Buddha.
Wat Pho is also known for having the best Thai Massages in the world and the most renown massage school in the country.
Cross the river to visit Wat Arun
When you get out of Wat Pho, walk straight and take a taxi boat to cross the river and visit Wat Arun.
The Temple of Dawn was recently renovated and its unique design is more than ever worth the visit.
Go to Chinatown
It has been over sold by many tour guides and still, Chinatown is one of the most interesting area in Bangkok.
The food, the market, the atmosphere, the energy, the bars, the hidden temples... there's countless reasons to visit Chinatown.
It's also the perfect place to finish the day after visiting the temples above.
Chill at Lumpini Park
Lumpini Park is the perfect place to relax in Bangkok and get away from the traffic and the heat for a moment.
There's also plenty of things to do, stretching with old ladies, workout with the oldest gym equipment in Bangkok or cruise on paddle boats.
Must do in Bangkok
Traveling is the opportunity to get out of your confort zone and to try new things.
If you live in Bangkok, all the things below are probably part of your routine here.
But if you're visiting Bangkok every once in a while, make sure you take some time to try those :
Try Street Food
Because there's nothing like it in the whole world.
It's tasteful, cheap, everywhere and delicious.
Of course some are better than other but most places that are busy are always a safe bet.
Just be careful with the amount of chili they put.
Get a Thai Massage
And don't expect it to be like massages in the west.
Thai Massages focus on nerves. They will put pressure where it hurts, but you'll feel a lot better afterward.
A few tips though :
- Let go. Don't fight back, it's gonna hurt even more
- Choose a good place. There's both good and terrible Thai massages in Bangkok. Check reviews on google maps or go to well known spa chains like Let's Relax or one of my favorite in Sukhumvit, Refresh @ 24.
Take a Tuk Tuk
What mode of transportation is more iconic than a Tuk Tuk ?
You'll find them almost everywhere in the city center and you can easily fit 5 to 6 people in them.
Always negotiate the price in advance, ask if you can connect your music and have some fun.
Shopping in Bangkok
Eating and shopping is one of the most important part of life in Bangkok.
And even if you usually hate shopping, Malls and Markets in Bangkok offer a whole different experience.
Get lost in Bangkok Malls
I don't know how are malls where you're from but in France they're nothing like that.
Any mall here is like the biggest you can find in Paris on steroid.
There's tons of shops of course, with both international and local brands.
Tons of options for food, including high end restaurants and usually a huge food court.
Just to name a few :
- Siam Paragon / Siam Discovery
- Terminal 21
- Icon Siam
Go to a Night Market
Night markets are all across the city and have tons of food, drinks and of course clothes, souvenirs... you name it.
The most famous one is by far Chatuchak Market and is arguably one of the biggest in the city.
If you have more time, go see the so called Vintage Market.
There's one in Ratchada that is accessible by MRT and one in Srinakarin, about 30 minutes in taxi from the city center.
The latest is most impressive, with old building and cars and is twice as big as the one in Ratchada.
And if you want more, here's a list of Night Markets in Bangkok :
- Ratchada Night Mark.et
- Neon Talad
- Srinakarin Vintage Market
- Patpong Night Market
Party in Bangkok
You're never gonna get bored in Bangkok. You can find parties every days of the week, all year round.
With so many different bars, clubs, events, festivals... you can party hard every day.
Go to a Rooftop Bar
Grab a drink and have a sense of how crazy Bangkok is.
It's also the perfect spot for a sunset, a good cocktail, and a few cool pictures.
The most famous rooftop bars in Bangkok are :
- Octave at Marriott 57
- Sky Bar at Lebua Hotel
- Moon Bar at Banyan Tree
More about Bangkok rooftop bars here :
Drink Buckets at Khaosan Road
Because we're not the kind to say no to a cheap hangover.
Khaosan Road is known to be the backpacker and budget traveler hub in Bangkok.
It's also a good place to get cheap drinks, including the famous buckets of booze that were made popular by the Full Moon Party in Koh Phangan.
Prices are around 500฿ for 3 buckets, hangover included.
Go to a club in RCA or Thonglor
Get away from the clubs full of expats and tourists and get a taste of what local Bangkok nightlife is like.
RCA and Thonglor are two of the popular neighborhoods where young thais love to party.
Route 66 and Onyx in RCA, and Demo and Barbarbar in Thonglor are good clubs to visit, any night of the week.
Go to a Pool Party in Bangkok
If you're in Bangkok during Hot Season from December to May, you've got no excuse, you must go to a pool party in Bangkok.
There's usually one every Saturday, with sometime two to three the same week.
Check my guide below to see which pool parties I recommend and where to find when the next one is.
Visit one of Bangkok Red Light Districts
Whenever you tell people you've been to Thailand, that's the first thing that come to their mind.
So while you're in Bangkok, go see by yourself what it's really like.
Soi Cowboy is the most famous Red Light District right now and probably the most " family friendly ".
But take some time to also check Nana Plaza and Patpong.
They both have their pros and cons.
Fun things to do in Bangkok
I've told you I'll give you a list of things to in Bangkok that is different from all the other lists out there.
Here are more ideas to keep you busy during your stay in Bangkok, outside of what the tourist guides will recommend.
Watch a Ping Pong Show
Of course, you're not gonna find this one on the Lonely Planet.
I'm pretty sure Ping Pong Shows are something you can only see in Thailand.
So why not give it a try ?
Honestly, I've done it and it's not that bad. Don't get me wrong, it's not that great either.
It's just something to take off your bucket list and wether you like it or not, that's probably gonna blow your mind.
Because there's more than Ping Pong balls to it. But it won't say more.
The " cleanest " is in Suzy Wong in Soi Cowboy.
And you can also find a few places, like one called Super Pussy (you can't make that up) in Patpong.
Go Axe Throwing
What does this have to do with Bangkok ? Not much.
For those rainy days or when you're bored, here's a fun thing to do with your friends and a few beers.
After all, beers and axes, what could go wrong ?
You can find them at Artbox Night Market on Sukhumvit 10.
Get a tattoo
Don't want to get elephant pants and buddha statues as a souvenir ? Me neither.
A tattoo on the other side is unique and something you're gonna keep with you forever.
Bangkok also have some incredible tattoo artists that can do any kind of styles, from traditional Thai bamboo Tattoo to Neo Traditional and Japanese pieces.
Check my story about getting a tattoo in Bangkok to see a list of Tattoo studios I recommend.
Visit Iron Balls Distillery
Not into museums ? Good.
There's a really cool bar in Bangkok that make its own Gin, Iron Balls Gin.
Designed by one of the most talented architect in Bangkok, the place is amazing and the cocktails are worth a visit.
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More things to do in Bangkok
I'm not done with this list and I'll add some more as I try new things in the city.
And if you know things I should try in Bangkok, let me know in the comments or drop me a message.
Of course there's an infinite number of things to do in Bangkok and I couldn't include them all.
But let me know in the comments what you've tried and what I should add to this list !