A visit to Bangkok will leave an indelible impression on every tourist. This city is an explosive mix of traditional Asian culture and global cosmopolitanism, the abject poverty of the slum dwellers along the Chao Phraya River and the indecent luxury of business districts.
Many foreigners consider Bangkok to be the quintessence of the spirit of a true Asian metropolis: noisy, mind-numbingly hot, fast-paced, liberated, and sometimes obscenely exotic. On the one hand, the magnificent architecture of the majestic Buddhist temples, on the other hand, the bacchanal of Khaosan Road, and on the third, a real gastronomic feast.
The Thai capital is worth seeing at least once to try to understand the mysterious people who inhabit the once mighty Siam. It is not for nothing that this state has never been under colonial oppression.
What to see and where to go in Bangkok?
The most interesting and beautiful places for walking. Photos and a short description.
Royal Palace in Bangkok
The main attractions of the Thai capital, which previously served as the residence of kings. The complex was built at the end of the 18th century under Rama I, when the capital was moved to Bangkok. The plan of the Royal Palace was modeled after the residence in the ancient capital of Siam - Ayutthaya. Fanciful temples, galleries decorated with heroes of the Thai epic, and administrative buildings are located on a large territory of the palace complex.
Built entirely of pinkish teak wood (no nails were used), it is said to be the largest wooden structure in the world. The palace was built for King Rama I. Translated from Thai, "Vimanmek" means "heavenly palace." The architecture is close to the English Victorian style. Initially, the palace was located on the island of Sichagn, but was moved to Bangkok.
Renaissance and neoclassical mansion built in 1915 by Italian architects. Previously, Ananta Samahom served as the royal throne room, now it houses a museum dedicated to Thai arts and crafts. The facade of the building looks elegant and simple at the same time; many marble elements were used in the decoration of the walls, which gives it a resemblance to European palaces.
Temple of the Emerald Buddha (Wat Phra Kaew)
The main Buddhist temple in Thailand, located in the heart of Bangkok next to the Royal Palace. The complex was erected in the period 1782-1785. The main shrine of the temple and at the same time a popular tourist attraction is the jade Buddha statue, which is associated with many legends. According to one version, the statue was created in heaven and lowered to earth with the help of the heavenly king.
Sunrise Temple (Wat Arun)
Temple of the middle of the XIX century, erected during the reign of Chessadabodindra. The 79-meter pagoda of the temple rises above the Chao Phraya River, the walls are decorated with ceramic tiles and porcelain trim (shards of dishes). Steps lead to the top of the pagoda, symbolizing the difficulty of the righteous path of knowledge. The sun's rays are reflected from the porcelain surface of the walls and from afar it seems that Wat Arun sparkles with "divine light".
Temple of the Golden Buddha (Wat Traimit)
A traditional Buddhist temple, which houses the world's largest statue of Buddha, made of gold (according to the Thais themselves). The sculpture weighs five tons and reaches a height of three meters. Researchers claim that the age of the Golden Buddha is almost 700 years. There are many interesting stories associated with the statue. During the Burmese attack on Thailand, it was hidden under a layer of plaster, and then lost. Only thanks to an accidentally broken piece of alabaster, the Golden Buddha returned to its place.
Temple of the Reclining Buddha (Wat Pho)
One of the oldest temples in Thailand. From the 12th to the 18th centuries This place was a Buddhist monastery. Under King Rama I, it was significantly rebuilt and expanded; also, by the will of His Majesty, a 41-meter-high stupa was erected. To date, there are 95 stupas on the territory of the temple. The statue of the reclining Buddha is the largest statue of this god in the world. In length, it reaches 95 meters in height - 15 meters.
Wat Ratchanadda Temple
The building of the temple is built of metal, which is why it is often called the “iron temple”. The structure was erected in the 20th century in honor of the princess Vadhanavadi (the granddaughter of the then ruling king). Wat Ratchanadda is built in the classical Ceylon architectural style. The temple pagoda contains 37 sharp spiers, representing the virtues - steps on the path to the highest Buddhist enlightenment.
Wat Suthat Temple
The temple was erected at the beginning of the 19th century. It is located in the historical part of Bangkok on the island of Rattanakosin. The interior painting of the building reflects typical Buddhist ideas about the structure of the universe. There are 156 Buddha statues along the walls of the temple, inside there is an 8-meter bronze statue of a god. Near the temple there is a giant teak swing, on which during the ceremony in honor of the harvest, people swayed in the hope of getting a bag of coins. Due to the risk of injury, this ritual was canceled in 1932.
Golden Mountain (Wat Saket)
The temple building rises 70 meters above the city, so from here you can see the picturesque panorama of the Thai capital. The Wat Saket temple complex is located on a fairly large area, the buildings are surrounded by a green park. Multicolored statues are scattered along the road for visitors. Especially for people who are tired of the tiring climb to the temple, there are benches and cozy platforms at different levels of the stairs.
Marble Temple (Wat Benchamabophit)
As the name implies, the temple is built entirely of marble, which is quite rare in Thailand. Other material was specially imported from Italy. The building was erected at the end of the 19th century under the ruler Rama V, and his ashes are buried here. Around the building there is a park with a river and a pond, where you can enjoy the silence and peaceful landscapes of the surroundings.
Bangkok National Museum
The museum is located near the Royal Palace complex in central Bangkok. The building was erected at the end of the 18th century. On the territory of the museum there is a royal chapel and a religious statue of Buddha Sihing. Having studied the collection, you can get acquainted with the history of Siam, the complex and exotic cultural traditions of the Thai nation, comprehend the worldview foundations of the traditional peoples of Southeast Asia.
Jim Thompson House Museum
The museum, created on the basis of the collection of Southeast Asian art connoisseur D. Thompson. Here exhibits from Burma, Cambodia, Laos, China and Thailand are collected. Thompson collected his collection in the 50s and 60s. XX century. The building itself is an example of traditional Siamese architecture. For unknown reasons, the collector disappeared during one of his travels, and his home was given over to the museum.
Museum of Royal Barges
The museum collection consists of 8 traditional Thai boats, completely carved from a teak trunk. Each ship is richly decorated with intricate carvings, lavish decor, and expensive decorative elements. Boats are rarely used for special ceremonies involving royalty. They can anchor for months and wait in the wings. The largest barge, Suppanahong, is 46 meters long.
The building of the museum is a figure of a huge elephant with three heads. Erawan was founded in 1967 with the aim of preserving the cultural heritage of the Thais. The main goals pursued by the founder L. Veriapan are: to acquaint the general public with the values of local culture, to include the museum collection in the world heritage fund of mankind, to engage in educational work among the younger generation.
Bangkok Art and Cultural Center
Museum of Modern Art, opened in 2008. The main goal of the cultural center is the development of current trends in art, the support of progressive masters, and the provision of a constructive dialogue between traditional and modern culture. For the organization of permanent exhibitions, the works of both Thai and foreign masters are used. The museum was founded with the participation of the Bangkok city government.
Perhaps the most famous and crowded street of the capital of Thailand. Here, 24 hours a day, a motley crowd of tourists from all over the world makes noise, trying street food, choosing souvenirs or visiting massage parlors. Khaosan Road is popular with backpackers, as you can rent very inexpensive accommodation here. The street rose to prominence in 1982 after the celebration of the 200th anniversary of Bangkok.
One of the most "evil" areas of Bangkok with numerous restaurants, Chinese shops, shops, alternative medicine rooms and other establishments. Tourists come here in search of adventure and exotic. The real extravaganza begins here on the days of traditional Chinese holidays - the whole quarter is decorated with garlands, and festive processions pass through the streets.
The main market of Bangkok with a huge range of various exotic goods at very affordable prices. On some days, the number of buyers, sellers and ordinary onlookers in the market reaches 200 thousand people. Here you can buy rare ivory and silk products, any gadgets, clothes, jewelry, food, souvenirs and almost any household goods.
Baiyoke Tower 2
Skyscraper 302 meters high with an observation deck and a restaurant. From a height of 84 floors, a panoramic view of the entire city opens up, in clear weather you can even see the distant Gulf of Thailand. The building was erected in 1997. The first 12 floors are occupied by parking, the hotel is located above. The easiest and most inexpensive way to get to the top is to pay for a visit to the observation deck.
A skyscraper in Bangkok's business district, built in 2001 by architect Rangsan Torsuwan. It reaches a height of 247 meters and consists of 68 floors. The building is decorated with architectural delights in the form of neoclassical balconies and a gilded dome. Inside there are apartments, a hotel, offices and commercial premises. There is an outdoor restaurant on the 64th floor.
Central World Plaza
An imposing eight-story mall, a real paradise for shoppers. The total area of retail premises is 550 thousand m². On the territory of the shopping center there are more than 300 shops with a wide variety of goods. The upper floors housed an entertainment center with Asian restaurants, fast food stalls, a 4D cinema and an ice palace.
Siam Paragon is considered the largest shopping and entertainment center in Southeast Asia. In addition to a myriad of shops, there is a huge gastronomic market, a cinema with 15 halls, its own aquarium, art gallery, concert hall, karaoke club and bowling club. The parking lot of the shopping center is designed for the simultaneous placement of 4 thousand cars.
A green array spread over an area of 56 hectares right in the middle of a noisy metropolis. It is perfect for sports, relaxing walks, family holidays, picnics. Residents and guests of Bangkok are happy to spend their free time in the park and relax from the tiring heat and bustle of the capital. There are two ponds in the park, so if you wish, you can rent a boat and take a boat trip.
The city zoo occupies a small area of 18 hectares, it is located almost in the center of Bangkok. Turtles, large monitor lizards and schools of fish are found in the local reservoir. Dusit is the oldest zoo in Thailand. Some animals are housed in open enclosures, but most of the inhabitants are kept in cages. Sometimes it is difficult to see the animal through the thick bars.
Siam Ocean World Aquarium
The largest oceanarium in Southeast Asia, located in the shopping center Siam Paragon. The aquarium is divided into seven zones, in which various types of marine life are placed: fish, moray eels, mollusks, corals and other representatives of marine fauna. The main aquarium of Siam Ocean World reaches a height of 6 meters, inside it a tropical coral reef ecosystem has been created.
Muang Boran Park
Park and open-air museum, located 32 km. from Bangkok. On its territory there are more than 100 buildings belonging to different historical eras. A small part of the houses was delivered from remote regions of Thailand, the rest of the buildings are exact copies of historical buildings. There is also a group of buildings created by Thai architects and sculptors.
Safari World Theme Park
An amusement park for the whole family, where various animal performances take place. Here you can watch the performance of sea lions, dolphins, shows of trained monkeys and parrots. There are several performances throughout the day. You can also feed the giraffes in the park for a small fee. One of the popular rides is a boat ride through an impromptu wild jungle.
Dream World Amusement Park
Thai "Disneyland", where the characters from fairy tales and cartoons loved by children live. You need to come here with the whole family for the whole day in order to have time to see as much as possible. The park is divided into four thematic areas. The first contains miniatures of world sights, the second is a fairy garden, the third and fourth are numerous attractions.
Chao Phraya river
The main waterway of Bangkok, through which you can get to all the main attractions of the capital. The length of the main channel of the river is 372 km., It flows through several Thai cities, including the ancient capital of Ayutthaya. Chao Phraya is constantly running city ferries and pleasure boats for tourists. During the evening rush hour, for many Thais, the waterway remains the only available way to somehow get home.