Aaaah Bangkok, Thailand’s bustling capital! This city is known for being the street food capital of the world. (NETFLIX will definitely agree with this—but let’s save that for another blog). Having said so, Bangkok is not only about street food, there are so many things to do around the country’s capital and also places close to it.
For my recent trip, I partnered with KKday (www.kkday.com) to explore Bangkok and other notable destinations close to it. These can be done in 4 days. Of course, you can adjust these suggested trips depending on the days that you will be spending in the city.
On my part, these were done on 4 consecutive days from Thursday till the weekend.
Here we go!
First things first, before exploring things to do outside Bangkok, let us focus on what to do in the capital.
Being a dominantly Buddhist nation, you can find a lot of grand Buddhist temples around the city and many of those has been part of Bangkok’s history. One of the most visited temple complexes is the Grand Palace.
Once home to the Thai Royalties, this massive compound is a dazzling display of Thailand’s extravagant architecture. You will need to spend hours to stroll inside the palace ground.
One of the main attractions inside is the Temple of the Emerald Buddha. It is regarded as the country’s most sacred temple. You will see not only foreign travelers visiting this place but also a lot of locals praying in the temple.
Because this tour is around 4hrs in duration, you will still have a lot of time to explore other temples nearby, including Wat Pho which is located just south of the Grand Palace and the location of the famous golden Reclining Buddha. Another suggestion to visit is the Wat Arun (Temple of Dawn), which you can visit by hopping on a ferry just across Wat Pho.
As I mentioned earlier, BANGKOK = FOOD (haha). Although street food is very popular in Bangkok, there are also a lot of hearty dishes that you can enjoy around the city. Pad Thai, Tom Yum, Green Curry are just some of the famous dishes that you should try. Because I’ve been to Bangkok several times, I thought why not this time, I’ll learn a few tricks on how to cook some of these Thai cuisines. Hence why I chose to join a traditional cooking class.
Baipai Thai Cooking School offers half-day cooking class (4 hrs). We were tasked to prepare 4 dishes with the help of their seasoned and experienced local chef. Aside from that, we were able to learn some traditional technics on different cooking methods and the use of local spices (some are very similar to the Philippines).
And of course, by the end of every session, we got to taste our creation! (don’t worry you will be your own judge haha).
Time to get out of the city. I was browsing things to do around Bangkok and visiting Authaya City always pops up. Technically, this isn’t Bangkok anymore, so don’t get confused, but it is close by and can easily be done on a day trip (especially when you book one of KKDAY’s Ayuthaya City tours).
Ayuthaya is a city around an hour and a half drive from Bangkok (80 kilometers north of the capital). It was the capital of the Kingdom of Siam from 1350 until it was seized by the Burmese in 1767.
You will see several ruins scattered around a big historical complex. I can only imagine how grand this place looked like during its glory days.
We spent the whole day touring around the old historical city (thanks to our guide who patiently told us historical facts about the places we visited). We capped our tour with a visit to one of the largest local markets in Bangkok.
The next day, we head to another full day trip. This time around we booked a tour to Bangkok’s famous Floating Market and the Railway Market. Again, although very much associated with one of the things to do in Bangkok, the Damnoen Saduak Floating Market is located outside the city, it is around 2-hrs drive away from the capital.
When visiting Damnoen Saduak Floating Market always expect a large crowd even on a weekday. This place is made for tourists. As a tip, just enjoy the experience of cruising along the canal but don’t buy anything from the market as these stalls are catered for the tourists (so expect the prices to be ridiculous). If you want something to eat, get some boat noodles along the canal after your cruise.
We visited 2-floating markets during this trip and I highly recommend getting your purchases at the Amphawa Floating Market which is part of your afternoon itinerary. It is a bigger floating market that caters both tourists and locals and I can say you’ll get a good value for your money here.
In between visiting these floating market is one of the most interesting destinations we had during this guided tour. The Maeklong Railway Market is such a trippy experience. It felt weird but at the same time an interesting experience. It is a literal wet and dry market along the railway. The main attraction of the market is the moment the train arrives, you will see all the stalls along the railway retract to give way to the train. Weird and satisfying at the same time.
You will never run out of things to do in Bangkok. (check out my “not the usual things to do in Bankok Blog). This city is indeed a backpacker’s dream, food, culture, and history in one city. I have been here 4 times and I can still see myself going back for another trip.
Although you can visit these places on your own, it added the convenience of not thinking of your transport, getting a guide and also things to do when you book a guided tour with KKday. It is worth it? Definitely.