When Dan and I visited Bangkok, it wasn’t our first time in Thailand. We’ve enjoyed Koh Samui, Koh Tao, Phangan, Phi Phi, Kraby and Puhket in the past, but we never really took the time to properly explore the city of smiles. This time we weren’t up for partying, instead, we wanted to fully enjoy Bangkok’s culture and its majestic temples.
Thailand’s capital features a clash between tradition and modernity; well known for its great food, amazing skyscrapers and vibrant street life it’ll be impossible to forget. For first timers it can be a lil’ bit overwhelming but not for long, as most Asian capitals it’ll steal your heart in no time!
Now buckle up for our top sights…
Wat Pra Kaew and Grand Palace Complex
Located on an artificial island by the Chao Praya River, includes Wat Phra Kaew – the Temple of the Emerald Buddha an The Grand Palace, built in 1782 and for 150 years was home of the Thai King, the Royal court and the government administrative seat.
Featuring a stunning 46 meter long reclining Buddha, Wat Po and also is the home of the largest collection of Buddha images in the country. This temple is considered the earliest centre for public education in Thailand; it houses a school of Thai medicine, and is also known as the birthplace of traditional Thai massage which is still taught and practiced at the temple.
The Wat is a royal temple categorized as Class III, which was built at the beginning of the Ayutthaya period. Its main architectural depiction is 32 meter high, 10 meter wide standing Buddha statue referred to as Luang Pho To. Devotees who visit the temple for worship offer mackerel, a boiled egg and a garland of flowers, which they place with reverence at the foot of the Buddha image.
This city in Thailand, about 80 kilometers north of Bangkok was capital of the Kingdom of Siam, and a prosperous international trading port. The ruins of the old city now form the Ayutthaya Historical Park, an archaeological site that contains palaces, Buddhist temples, monasteries and statues. An absolute must if in Bangkok! It will end up being your favourite temple by far as it has lots of similarities with the famous ruins of Angkor Wat.
Khao San Road, the backpacker’s dream
Popular for its budget accommodation, shops and inviting bars, this road has been the mecca for young tourism. Enjoy a beer, a massage or maybe just the noise of a road that has it all! It’s a great place to meet people especially if you’re a solo traveller; it’s cheap and let’s put it this way… If you visit Bangkok but you don’t explore Khao San Road, it’s like you’ve never really been to Bangkok.
Another reason why Bangkok is so cool: the rooftop bars located all over the city. The list is endless, in fact, you might have to do some research of your own but we decided to rock and roll in two of the most popular ones according to the traveller community.
Ranking number 3 on the top 10 sky bars list in the city, “The Dome, at Lebua State Tower”. Featured in the movie “The Hangover II”, this is one of the most famous sky bars, offering stunning views of the city from the 63rd floor. Look out over the river and the city as the sun sets over Bangkok!
The number one best sky bar in Bangkok is the “Vertigo and Moon Bar”. Set up on the 61st floor of the Banyan Tree Hotel this is one of the highest sky bars in the city, Vertigo restaurant is at one end of this open rooftop venue and the Moon Bar is at the other, connected together via a bridge.
Asiatique, Bangkok’s fusion night market
This place has conveniently put together two of the most popular shopping experiences in the city: a night bazar and an open-air mall. It is situated in the former docks of the East Asiatic Company, and faces the Chao Phraya River and Charoen Krung Road, Bangkok's oldest thoroughfare. Great shopping, yummy food and fun night shows, the mall in a nutshell, it’s hard to go wrong at Asiatique!
So there you go, our seven wonders of Bangkok from us to you!