Khao San Road ( Thanon Khao San - ถนนข้าวสาร ) is popularly described as a backpackers mecca, mainly because of the abundance of cheap accomodation in the area. Approximately 1km long Khao san is packed with cheap hotels, massage parlours, restaurants, bars, open markets, clubs and travel agents.The cheapest room we found when we investigated ( sept 2011 ) was 381 THB a night for a 2 bed fan or 458THB if you want the luxury of air conditioning. Wanna see ? CLICK HERE and it amazingly included free in room wi-fi !!
Khao San shops sell handcrafts, paintings, clothes, pirated CDs, DVDs, and second-hand books, plus many useful backpacker items. It also has many open air bars and restaurants as well as intenationals such as McDonalds, KFC and Burger King. The best value in hotel bookings tend to be in advance or even on the day through our online booking engines ( Agoda and R24 ). You normally find walk-in rates to be more expensive, but maybe able to negotiate during quiet times and low season.
It is a convenient hub also for many minibus ( van ) to popular destinations throughout the kingdom. Personally, if you are looking for travel Victory Monument offers cheaper options as the Khao San minibuses are normally connected to expensive tours sold by travel agents. If you already know where you want to be then how to get there is probably better services by the main Bus, train or Minibus stations around the capital. there are many touts on the streets around this area, either selling you tour packages ( they get their commission through the travel agents they take you to ) or worse still lining you up for the jewellery scam or worse. You need to have your wits with you when you speak to these people as scams are rife in tourist areas. there are many other places to visit near Khao San in particular, the Grand Palace and Wat Phra Kaew.
Khao San road also has the reputation for providing and printing fairly authentic fake documentation and there are many stalls set up along the street offering these services. If you are hoping to teach in Thailand and you try to use one of these Khao San degrees, beware, as schools and the ministry of education check the authenticity of documents provided these days. People who have used them in the past and been teaching english for years have found themselves on the wrong side of the law, imprisoned, and deported for this. As saleries are often calculated on experience and qualifications you could find yourself paying back all your income back to the school also !!!
If you find yourself in Bangkok during the Songran festival in April, Khao San road is an excellent place to celebrate this and experience and participate the fun involved in this festival.
Jim Thompson was an American who was born in Greenville, Delaware, in 1906. A practicing architect prior to World War II, he volunteered for service in the U.S. Army, campaigned in Europe, and came to Asia as part of the force that planned to liberate Thailand. However, the war ended before the operation. He arrived in Bangkok a short time later as a military intelligence officer attached to the O.S.S. After leaving the service, he decided to return and live in Thailand permanently.
The hand weaving of silk, a long-neglected cottage industry, captured Jim Thompson's attention, and he devoted himself to reviving the craft. Highly gifted as a designer and textile colourist, he contributed substantially to the industry's growth and to the worldwide recognition accorded to Thai silk.
He gained further renown through the construction of his house combining six teak buildings which represented the best of traditional Thai architecture. Most of the houses were at least two centuries old and were easily dismantled and brought to the present site, some from as far away as the old capital of Ayutthaya.
In his quest for authenticity, Jim Thompson adhered to the customs of the early builders in most respects. The houses were elevated a full story above the ground, a practical Thai precaution to avoid flooding during the rainy season, and the roof tiles were fired in Ayutthaya employing a design common centuries ago but rarely used today. The red paint on the outside walls is a preservative commonly found on many old Thai buildings. The chandeliers were electrified as a concession to modern convenience, but even they belong to a past era, having come from 18th and 19th century Bangkok palaces.
All the traditional religious procedures were followed during construction of the house, and on a date in the spring of 1959, decreed as being auspicious by astrologers, Jim Thompson moved in. The house and the art collection soon became such a point of interest that he decided to open it to the public with proceeds donated to Thai charities and to projects directed at the preservation of Thailand's rich cultural heritage.
On March 27th 1967, Jim Thompson disappeared while on a visit to the Cameron Highlands in Malaysia. Not a single valid clue has turned up in the ensuing years as to what might have happened to him. His famous Thai house, however, remains as a lasting reminder of his creative ability and his deep love of Thailand.
LOCATION: 6 Soi Kasemsan 2, Rama I Road, Bangkok. Tel: 216-7368, 215-0122
GETTING THERE: Jim Thompson's House is at the end of a small lane opposite the National Stadium. You can either get off the sky train at the stadium or nearby Siam Square.
OPENING HOURS: Open every day at 9 a.m. The last tour begins at 4.30 p.m.
ADMISSION: 100 baht
WARNING: Do not believe anyone you meet who might say to you that Jim Thompson's House is closed. This is a common trick to get you to go with them to another "tourist attraction" and then ending up in a gem store. It is a con, be careful.
Damnoen Saduak Floating Market is located at Damnoen Saduak District, Ratchaburi Province. It is a ‘must-see’ destination, and is one of the most popular day trips from Bangkok. In the past, Damnoenssaduak was the name of the canal. It was dug in the reign of King Rama IV (1866) by the military men and the people of Ratchaburi, Samutsakorn and Samutsongkram Provinces. The canalization was directed by Phayasrisuriyawong, the minister of Defence. In those days without rivers and canals, transportation was almost motionless; King Rama IV with his great concern over the country's future economic growth, he finally had the canal dug to connect the Tacheen River in Samutsakorn Province and Maklong River in Samutsongkram Province together.
People here live densely along both sides of the canal from one end of the canal to another. The majority of these people are agriculturists. They grow several different kinds of fruit and vegetable for examples oranges, grapes, papayas, cabbages, bean, onion and etc. The land in this area is naturally fertile. Damnoensaduak Canal provides not only transportation, but also agricultural purposes. Damnoensaduak Canal provides farmers with adequate water throughout the year. More than 200 small canals were dug by local peasants; they were connected to Damnoensaduak Canal in order to get water to splash their land. These small canals also become the modes of transport to deliver their agricultural products to the markets in neighbouring provinces and Bangkok.
In 1967, The Damnoen Saduak Floating Market was first introduced to the world as a tourist attraction. It is a very attractive place for tourists to see the old style and traditional way of selling and buying fruits, vegetables, etc., from small boats. Every morning, hundreds of boats crowd the market area. Most of them are paddled by women with picturesque straw hats. Visitors can find everything from vegetables and fruits to freshly-cooked noodle and souvenirs at this lively market. Day in and day out from about 8 a.m. to about 11 a.m. the Floating Market is routinely crowded with hundreds of vendors and purchasers floating in their small rowing boats selling and buying or exchanging their goods. What they purchase are particularly food, fruit and vegetable which mostly brought from their own orchards. They usually travel on their small rowing boats. Today the long-tailed boats pushing by engine become very popular. People tend to use them instead. Anyhow because of the shortage of fuel today long-tailed boats are quite unavailable compared to a few years ago. Visitors will also see traditional Thai houses, the way they live and travel by boats, and please try riding on a small boat to experience the floating market and to see more. This is a worthwhile trip.
How to get there
By Car: Damnoen Saduak Floating Market is 109 km south of Bangkok or approximately 2 hours drive. From Bangkok, take Highway No. 4 (Phetchakasem Rd.) and turn left at Km. 80 for another 25 km. along Bangpae-Damnoen Saduak Rd.
By Bus: There are public buses
both air and non air-conditioned leaving from the Southern Bus Terminal
in Pinklao-Nakhonchaisi Rd. for Damnoen Saduak every 40 minutes from
06.00 hrs. onwards.
Tel . 0-2435-5031, 0-2435-1199 for air-conditioned buses
Tel. 0-2434-5557-8 for non air-conditioned buses
The most suitable time to be at the market is from 08.00-10.00 hrs, aim to get there as early as possible. The bus travels via Nakhon Pathom. Tell the bus conductor to drop you at Thanarat Bridge in Damoen Saduak.
Arriving at Damnoen Saduak, then either walk down on the passage along the canal on the right hand side that leads to the market and follows the canal, or take a taxi boat at the pier nearby or minibus to Floating Market area. Those who want to see all the three of the Floating Markets, Ton Khem, Hia Kui, and Khun Phithak may hire a long-tailed boat at the price of Baht 300 per hour to explore the backwaters and roam around the markets. It is recommended that the fare should be settled before setting out. There is a tourist office here which can arrange tours and transport. Most tour agencies also visit the Floating Market.
The visit to this market, especially noted for its fresh fruits from surrounding orchards, can be combined with a tour of the great chedi in Nakhon Pathom or Rose Garden which is on the same route, the show time at the Thai Village in the Rose- Garden is at 15.00 hrs. and admission fee is Baht 190 per person. This trip can be arranged through a travel agency or tour counter in most of the hotels in Bangkok.
Grounds mimic the precise shape of Thailand, featuring replicas of the country's most historically significant structures, albeit usually down-scaled in size. Each of the over 116 monuments is in their proper geographic position, and include chedis, palaces, bell towers, pavilions, temples, halls, floating markets, Buddha images and shrines. Many buildings are reconstructions of sites that no longer exist, others originals rescued for their historical significance.
Highlights are hard to pick out. However, a garden of stupas reveals how deep rooted Buddhism is in Thai culture, with all the different styles they've appeared in since ancient times. A recreation of an ancient Ayutthaya-era theatre pavilion showcases the artistic grandeur of the time, with elaborately carved and gilded motifs.
The serene Garden of the Gods presents a lively three-dimensional tableau of Hindu deities Brahma, Vishnu and Shiva cast in bronze - a great place for physical refreshment and spiritual nourishment. These and many more embodiments of Thai culture, customs and architecture, make it a great place to see Thailand in a day.
There are so many nice places to look at but one of them is a scaled 'Floating Market' ( the original can be found in the North of Bangkok.)
Scaled-down and actual-size replicas of important historical sites of
various provinces, such as Prasat Hin Phanom Rung, Wat Mahathat
Sukhothai, Phraphuttabat Saraburi, Phrathat Mueang Nakhon, and Phrathat
• Rare traditional folk arts and cultures.
How to go :
By car: From Bangkok, take Samrong - Samut Prakan Road to Samut Prakan
T-junction and turn left along the old Sukhumvit road to Km. 33
• By bus: Take the A/C bus route 11 (Pinklao - Paknam) to the end of the route and take the local minibus route 36 to Ancient City.
296/1 Sukhumvit Road, Bangpoo Samut Prakan 10280 Thailand
Telephone:- 02-7091644 Fax:- 66-2-323925
Golf cart rental fee: 200 baht/hour
Accommodation rate: 50-250 baht/person
One of the major theme parks in Thailand is Dream World in Pathum Thani Province, just north of Bangkok.
Dream World is a fun place to go when you are in Bangkok. It can easily be reached and is perfect for a day trip as it is located just on the outskirts of Bangkok (towards the North). Dream World offers interesting features for the very young as well as the older ones among us.Dream World is grouped in four main sections:
Here you will find e.g. the Grand Canyon, Snow Town or the Super Splash. Those who dare should try the Sky Coaster.Fantasy Land Here you find the Giant’s House, Fairy Tales Land, Uncle Tom’s Farm and the Hurricane.
This area holds a big lake and is also the starting point for a train around the park, a boat ride or a cable car that gives you a great view over the park.
Dream World Plaza
This is the entrance area of the park with an information center and souvenir shops.
The park seems to be mostly visited by Thais. Foreigners you will find much less here. The condition of the park is really good. Whenever we came here it was clean, well maintained.
How to get there:
1. Expressways from Central Bangkok
From central Bangkok take the Vibhavadee - Rangsit Highway
from Din Daeng straight to the ‘Future Park’ junction at Rangsit, then turn off onto the Rangsit-Nakhornnayok Road.
Or get onto the Changwattana-Expressway heading North, take the Rangsit exit, head East to Future Park, then join the Rangsit-Nakhornnayok Road. Follow Rangsit-Nakhornnayok Road road for about 10 minutes – you will see Dream World on your right.
2. Eastern Ring Road
From Bangpa-In, Ram Indra, Sukhabhibal and Samut Prakan, get on the new Eastern Ring Road. Take the Rangsit exit, and carry straight on until you see Dream World on your left.
Catch either a Number 188 bus from the Northern Bus Terminal (Mor Chit), or a Number 538 from Victory Monument. Both bus services are air-conditioned.
The Bangkok National Museum is dedicated to
preserving the national cultural heritage through collections of art,
archaeological and cultural objects in the Palace of Wang Na compound
near the Grand Palace. The Gallery of Thai History is located in the
Sivamokhaphiman Hall, with the Prehistory Galley at the rear of the
building. The History of Art collection is displayed in the South and
North Wings and the Minor arts, Royal Cremation Chariots and Ceremonial
Objects are exhibited nearby in other buildings within the palace
The visit starts with a useful introduction to Thai history. Note the black-stone inscription form Sukhothai, the oldest-known record of the Thai alphabet. Two large modern buildings house the main collection of pre-Thailand Thai sculpture, as well as pieces from elsewhere in Asia. An important exhibit in the southern wing is one of the earliest images of the Buddha from Gandhara in India, clearly influenced by classical Greek sculpture. A garage in a nearby building houses the collection of magnificent royal funeral chariots. Vajayant Rajarot is still used even though it needs 300 men to pull it.
Free English-language tours of the museum are given by National Museum volunteers on Wednesdays (Buddhism) and Thursdays (Thai arts, religion and culture), starting from 9:30am. These guided tours are excellent and many people have written to recommend them.The tours are also conducted in German Thursdays, French and Japanese Wednesday.
National Museum Bangkok
Na Phra That Road
|+66 (0)2 224 13 70|
|+66 (0)2 224 99 11|
Klong Thom Center
Located next to Vorajak rd, it is 3 – storey building, downstairs divided into blocks, upstairs is car parking ( 30THB/hour)
Most of goods are new with cheaper price than other places such as car
accessories, car furnishing, mechanic tools, game players, toys, models,
leathers, VCD/DVD, electronic equipments, switches, chargers,
batteries, rechargeable dry cells, water equipments, mobile phones.
A mass of shops running East West and North South, that will take an hour or so to see everything, but luckily there are many air conditioners.
The coffee shop and food center is on 2nd floor and KFC is in front of the Center
Klong Thom Market Bangkok
Situated near China Town area and near to the wholesale markets of Som Peng, Klong Thom is a weekend only kerbside overnight market that can be likened to a car boot sale.
On Saturday evening after 5 p.m. is the start up of "Flashlight market" (Tarad Fai Chai) which will be opened until Sunday.
For people who don’t like to use flashlight or don’t like the crowd at night can go shopping on Sunday morning at Sunday Klongthom Market.
Sunday Klongthom Market located from Luang Rd, Worajak Road, Charuenkrung Rd, Suapa Road.
In those roads ( soi's ), many sellers will bring a lot of goods to sell, since it's a day off ( sunday ), companies in this area are closed, so they can set their stalls, in front of shops and on the kerbside.
There are a variety of goods such as mechanic tools, spare parts for car, office accessories, electronics products, leathers, VDO, VCD, DVD, clothes, new or second hand shoes, toys, collections, stamps, old bank notes, watches, kitchen utensils, sales goods, etc. many things both new and old at a reasonable price ( barter and negotiate ).
Old Records, tapes, CD can found here, as well as remotes for TV, stereo, air conditioners.
New and inovative ideas can also be found here, souvenirs from Thai Airways sold in cheaper price, new toys from department stores that already closed.
Pak Khlong market
This is a very large and busy wholesale market for fresh flowers and vegetables. Many flower vendors throughout the city buy their stock here at night and sell it on the following morning. It's best to go between 2.00am and 4.00am when boats on the Chao Phraya River and trucks from nearby provinces arrive with large quantities of flowers, vegetables, spices, and fruits. These all are piled high inside the market and along nearby streets, making the market very photogenic, though the smell given off by some off the produce can be quite overpowering.
The market takes place where Khlong Lawt meets the Chao Phraya river, next to the Memorial Bridge on the northeastern edge of Chinatown. To get here, either walk south on Maharat road from Wat Pho, take a river taxi to Tha Saphan Phut or ask a taxi to go to bpahk klong dta-laht (Pak Khlong Market) or sa-pahn put (Memorial Bridge). The wholesale market is mainly near the river, the cheap normal market in small streets nearby. The market is over by about 10.00am. Very close to here is the Memorial Bridge night market , a large all-purpose market night market with very cheap prices if you bargain.
Chatuchak Weekend Market
Though there are many markets throughout Bangkok, Chatuchak Weekend Market is still pretty much the undisputed king of them all. The scale of it is pretty unbelievable - it covers an area of 70 rai (35 acres), contains more than 15 000 shops and stalls, has over 200 000 visitors each day, and they spend an estimated total of 30 million baht (approx US$750 000). The range of products on sale is extensive, and includes household accessories, handicrafts, religious artefacts, art, antiques, live animals (which unfortunately are frequently caged in cruel conditions), books, music, clothes, food, plants and flowers etc...
Chatuchak is a particularly good place to buy all sorts of Thai handicrafts, as there's a huge range, the quality is high and the intense competition keeps the prices low. Be careful when buying antiques, the large majority are offered fake and telling the difference between the genuine and the copies can be extremely difficult. Genuine antiques require a permit to be taken out of the country, but you will also need a permit if a fake is good enough to fool the inspecting customs officer. Bargaining is expected, if not mandatory, at Chatuchak and the prices are generally substantially cheaper than the shopping centres and street stalls on Silom and Sukhumvit. Many shops in the more central areas of the city also have a branch here, selling the same goods for much lower prices.
The published opening hours for the market are from 9.00am to 6.00pm on Saturday and Sunday, though many of the stalls actually open sometime between 9.00am and 10.00am and close around sunset. Chatchak is also open on Friday as a market for wholesalers, but there is no problem doing normal shopping on this day either (same opening times). The Garden Plants section is also open on Wednesdays and Thursday from 7.00am to 6.00pm. Watch out for pickpockets, as even though they're not a particularly big problem the crowded conditions make it easy for them to operate successfully.
Chatuchak has in theory been segregated into areas depending on the types of goods sold, and there are maps available for the market which details the various sections. You're as well to just forget them and just wander wherever takes your fancy, as it is an extremely disorientating place of many narrow alleys and trying to follow a map around can prove very frustrating.
Chatuchak always gets very hot and humid during the day, and it's far from the most comfortable shopping experience but for most people the benefits outweigh the disadvantages. Going early in the day when it is a bit cooler is recommended.
The best way to get here is on the Skytrain, Mo Chit station is only about five minutes walk away from the market. Finding your way from the station is easy - just follow the large crowd of people that will also be heading to/from there (right). Alternatively, many buses go past here: Ordinary buses 3, 8, 26, 27, 28, 34, 38, 39, 44, 52, 59, 74, 77, 96, 97, 104, 108, 112, 134, 136, 138, 145 and air-con buses 2, 3, 9, 10, 12, 13, 29, 38, 39, 44, 136 and 138. To get a taxi ask for suan jatujak (Chatuchak park, where the market is held),