Bangkok is one of the world’s largest cities, with a population of over 9 million. Visitors are not instantly welcomed by the city’s heavy traffic, harsh heat, and raunchy nightlife.
Therefore, one should not rely on first impressions. Magnificent temples and palaces, wide canals, a lively nightlife, and fantastic shopping make it one of Asia’s most cosmopolitan towns.
Top 10 Places to Visit in Bangkok
Bangkok’s gridlock makes the Skytrain, the metro, and tuk tuks your best bets for getting around the city. Taking a boat ride around Bangkok’s canals is a fantastic way to get a feel for the city. Some of Bangkok’s most popular sights are listed here.
1. Grand Palace
When the Siamese capital was relocated from Thonburi to Bangkok in 1782, construction on the Great Palace also began at that time. Until King Ananda Mahidol’s tragic death in 1946, the palace was the official seat of the Monarchs of Thailand.
After his death, his brother King Bhumibol Adulyadej took up permanent residence in the Chitralada Palace. The palace has evolved into one of Bangkok’s top tourist destinations.
Wat Phra Kaew, the holiest temple in Thailand and home to the legendary Emerald Buddha, is located within the palace grounds and is considered a royal temple.
2. Temple of the Reclining Buddha (Wat Pho)
Wat Pho is well-known for housing the massive Reclining Buddha monument. Built approximately 200 years before Bangkok became the capital of Thailand, this massive temple is also one of the city’s oldest.
The largest reclining Buddha image and the most Buddha images in Thailand are both located at Wat Pho. The 46-meter-long, 15-meter-tall gold-plated Reclining Buddha statue honours the Buddha’s transition into Nirvana.
3. Wat Arun
Wat Arun (or “Temple of Dawn”), on the Thonburi side of the Chao Phraya River, is one of Bangkok’s oldest and most well-known landmarks. The temple was built to look like Buddhist cosmology’s Mount Meru, the axis mundi.
Wat Arun is best seen when the sun is sinking behind it, which is ironic given its name.
4. Temple of the Emerald Buddha (Wat Phra Kaew)
It is commonly referred to as Wat Phra Kaew, but its full name is the Temple of the Emerald Buddha (Wat Phra Kaew). It has been hypothesised that the Buddha was created in the 15th century.
Over the course of several centuries, it made its way to other temples across the country before landing in Bangkok in 1784. The sacred Buddha is kept in the most beautiful structure of the compound, and no one save the Thai king is permitted to touch him.
The architecture of the several structures that make up Wat Phra Kaew is just as impressive as the temple itself, with gold glimmering everywhere and wonderful Buddhist patterns etched among the statues of mythical creatures.
Eight stories tall and aimed at a more moderate clientele than its upscale rival Siam Paragon, CentralWorld opened in 1990.
On May 19th, 2010, anti-government protesters torched a number of buildings, including CentralWorld. The Zen retail store burned for two days before it finally gave way. The mall had been closed for months for repairs, but on September 28th, 80 percent of its stores opened for business.
6. Lumphini Park
Lumphini Park is more than just a green space in the middle of hectic Bangkok. It was originally built to showcase Thai arts and flowers, but now it serves as a tranquil park where visitors can take leisurely strolls, ride paddle boats, or simply sit back and watch others go about their day.
Water monitor lizards, which resemble crocodiles, are sometimes spotted by curious onlookers as they meander along the pond’s edges. Sunday afternoons feature free concerts in the park.
7. Dusit Palace
The European-style Dusit Palace was built between 1897 and 1901 as the royal home for King Rama V. The Vimanmek Mansion, crafted from golden teak wood, stands out as the most notable structure.
It has 31 display rooms, a throne chamber, baths, and bedrooms, making it the largest wooden residence in the world. Save your ticket from your last visit to the Grand Palace, since it will get you free admission to the palace on this occasion.
8. Wat Traimit
The Wat Traimit temple in the Chinatown area is best known for it’s more than 3 meter (10 foot) high golden Buddha image weighing more than five tons. Cast in the Sukhothai style, the image is about 900 years old and was covered in plaster to hide its value.
Only in 1957 it was discovered that the statue was pure gold, when the image was moved to a new building and slipped from a crane. The temple itself is said to date from the early 13th century.
9. Wat Saket
Wat Saket, a Buddhist temple from the Ayutthaya period, is a remarkable site because of the amazing murals depicting the Buddhist afterlife that can be found there. Inside the temple grounds is a steep hill that was created in part from a chedi that had collapsed;
The views of Bangkok from the top of what is now called the Golden Mountain are breathtaking. This once-religious site is now a major tourist destination in the nation’s capital.
10. Siam Paragon
Siam Paragon is one of the largest shopping malls in Thailand, and its vast interior offers a wide variety of attractions for visitors. There are countless places to eat and shop, as well as an aquarium, a gallery devoted to Thai art, and a concert theatre that hosts opera performances.
Siam Paragon is the ideal combination of culture, gastronomy, and entertainment, with karaoke, bowling, and 15 massive cinema screens.