Sawasdee! Hello and welcome to the exciting and bustling city of Bangkok where culture, history, and modern times meet! Let me be your Bangkok travel guide while you plan Bangkok Backpacking, as I share with you my exciting two days in this exciting city.
Bangkok, the capital city of amazing Thailand, is a melting pot of cultures, traditions, and innovations. As you walk around the city, you’ll discover different pieces of Thai culture that represent their unique moment in its generation.
At your Bangkok travel, you’ll discover historical sites telling you the origins of the country’s way of life and beliefs. You’ll also get to see the modern buildings that tell you where the country is going in the future.
Bangkok experiences also include foodscapes that give a deeper dimension of the Thais’ personality that comes out in their choice of food.
In this Bangkok travel guide, I’ll be sharing my Bangkok travel tips around the city, my Bangkok experiences, and some of my Bangkok backpacking tips too among many others. So get ready and travel with me even if it’s just through a bit of reading. Let’s go!
Travel itinerary: The Best Time To Visit Bangkok
Being an avid traveler myself, I’ve seen seasons come and go and have realized that each one is beautiful on its own. So even Bangkok is good to visit anytime of the year.
But since we all have different tastes and preferences, you can decide what time is best for you by getting to know the city’s seasons.
The city of Bangkok, like most of the tropical cities around Southeast Asia, experiences hot, rainy, and cool seasons. The hot months for Bangkok are March to June. The rainy season comes in around July and lasts up to October while the cooler months are by November and cools the city up to February.
Best Time to visit Bangkok
|Hot Season||March – June|
|Rainy Season||July – October|
|Cool Season||November – February|
Bangkok Experiences: Food by the River and by the Streets
When my buddies and I traveled to Bangkok, we visited the city’s famous food hubs to get experience the famous Thai cuisine. Our Bangkok experiences were of spicy savory cuisine from floating markets, to markets on the streets, and even a dinner cruise by the river. And since then, those have flavors have been on repeat in our own kitchens!
Yes, Thai cuisine is that amazing. You simply don’t get over it.
So for our first Bangkok dinner, we booked a cruise along the Chao Praya River. Our dinner experience consisted of two international experiences: international gourmet and international fellow travelers.
The international cuisine served was nothing short of amazing! We also got to have dinner with fellow travelers from different countries such as the United States, Canada, Malaysia, China, and India.
On top of those, this booking not only had an awesome dinner but we also had an awesome experience being picked-up and dropped off by the van we booked. Make sure yours has the same inclusions as well.
To give you a bit more background, the Chao Phraya River is a place where you can book a cruise for dinner and at the same time, get to see awesome entertainment at night. Not to mention the awesome city sights you get to include in your Bangkok travel experience too!
One of the entertainments we experienced that night was a dance with a Lady Gaga. She’s a beautiful 6.2 foot woman who danced with the guests. Though she was too sweet to communicate, she still did her best by giving a fun and entertaining performance that communicated with everyone.
That was really fun! But let me take you back a few hours in the day and share with you how we spent the afternoon too.
Before we had dinner at the river, my buddies and I had a few cheers together to celebrate our successful arrival at Bangkok. We went to Nana Plaza and had some beer there while also checking out the place.
Overall, our first day of Thai food was really special because of the combination of flavors, atmosphere, and culture. Now you know why Thai recipes are now part of our personal kitchens!
I also recommend visiting the Jaduchak (JJ) Market which has a mind-blowing 27 different sections of food to choose from. Get your fill of Thailand’s famous banana roti, mango sticky rice, and coconut ice cream.
Bangkok Experiences: Bangkok’s Must-See Places
Exploring the city is enjoyable on foot, but since you’re in another country definitely out for a new experience, why not try exploring through biking? Let the bike be your Bangkok travel guide around Bangkok’s colorful and culture-rich streets.
My buddies and I rented a bike for a few hours to roam and get to know the place. It was a fun and efficient way for us to get around the city without getting stuck in foot traffic.
Oh, and one of my Bangkok travel tips for you is to take pictures of the bike’s condition before you ride. This is so you won’t be liable for any damage that’s already on it.
The second of my Bangkok travel tips is don’t ever give your passport to anyone, just give them a photocopy if it’s really necessary.
After riding around, we went for a relaxing Thai massage to revive our weary muscles. The massage was so good that we were revived from having biked around the city and the plane ride we just came from.
Our Thai massage was near EQ, a late-night club. We enjoyed a head massage and foot massage which cost 150 baht each for 1 hour. The rates may vary now though, so I advise you to research for its current prices as you plan for your Bangkok backpacking experience.
Lastly, the best places to visit we noticed were these hotels and restaurants that lit up the streets of Bangkok. They offer you a travel experience of culture and delight with their food and atmosphere.
- Charcoal, 38/8 Soi 11 Sukhumvit Road, Fraser Suites Hotel
- Supanniga Eating Room, 160/11 Soi 55 Sukhumvit Road
- Summit Windmill Golf Residence, Bangna Trad Rd
- Sindhorn Kempinski Hotel Bangkok, Soi Tonson, Lumphini, Pathumwan
Bangkok Backpacking: Guide For Accommodations
I’ll share with you our accommodation experiences from airport to hotel for the next Bangkok travel tips.
We booked a private cab to our hotel upon landing. The cab drove us for 500 baht to the Majestic Grande Sukhumvit Hotel, the place where we stayed. It’s a four-star hotel that really lived up to its name because of its world class facilities and relaxing bedrooms.
Everything we needed to enjoy our stay at Bangkok was provided, from comfortable beds to clean sheets, room clean ups, breakfast, and a great view from a luxurious point of view. We booked the hotel via Agoda platform, we booked Grand Superior room( deluxe room) costing us $150 for 2 days stay with complementary breakfast.
For our taxing booking, we needed to book using a machine that will display the taxi number once successfully booked. You can then board the taxi after matching it with the number you received.
Since taxi payments are via cash, we withdrew from the ATM to avoid unnecessary transaction charges from the currency exchange at the airport.
One of the Bangkok travel essentials I prepared for my Bangkok backpacking trip was to allow international transactions on my debit card. This was facilitated by my local bank’s head office, which for sure, your local bank can do for you too.
Additionally, here’s a list of other great places at Bangkok you can stay at for a Bangkok backpacking trip or for luxury.
Budget Hotels for Bangkok Backpacking
|Hotel||Features||Price (includes taxes: 7% VAT, 10% Property service charge)|
|THA City Loft Hotel Bangkok||Free wifi, Airport shuttle, Fitness center, Bar Restaurant||$80/room/day|
|The Posh Phayathai||Free wifi, Terrace, Family rooms and dorms are also available||$41/room/day|
|PlayHaus Thonglor Hotel||Free wifi, City view, 24-hour front desk, Bar||$30/room/day|
Luxury Hotels for A Bangkok Luxury Experience
|Hotel||Popular Features||Popular Facilities||Popular Activities||Price (includes taxes: 7% VAT, 10% Property service charge)|
|Siam Kempinski||Breakfast for only $33, Airport shuttle, Free parking, ATM & currency exchange||2 swimming pools, Bar, Complimentary drinks, 3 restaurants, Ironing facilities||Fitness center, Spa, Shopping at the accessible Siam Paragon||$254/room/night|
|Mandarin Oriental Bangkok||Free breakfast, Airport shuttle, Free parking, Rooms with Chao Phraya River view, Private butler service offered||1 swimming pool, 2 Michelin star restaurant||Fitness center: Thai boxing, Bar, Shopping at ICONSIAM, Shopping Mall, River City Shopping Complex through free boat shuttle, Spa, Thai cooking classes||$651/room/night|
|The Peninsula Bangkok||Breakfast for only $35, Airport shuttle, Currency exchange, Free parking, Free wifi||1 swimming pool, Bar||Spa, Sauna, Business center||$358/room/night|
Bangkok Backpacking Experiences: City Tour
Day 2! We went out now for some great sightseeing to maximize our two-day Bangkok backpacking trip. I’ll show you around the city through my stories.
Our first stop of the day was a morning at Sea Life Bangkok Ocean World. We enjoyed 1 to 2 hours watching exotic fishes we don’t see on a normal day. Penguins, sea horses, sharks, jellyfish were all up close to behold.
Then, we rode like a local and took a tuktuk to the Grand Palace, the king of Siam’s official residence from 1782 up to 1925. Now it’s mainly used for official state ceremonies.
It was unfortunately closed when we visited because the king also came by (maybe it was his birthday). So we went to two other places instead, the Wat Pao (reclining buddha) and Wat Arun for which we took boat ride from Pier 8 that cost 5 baht.
We were supposed to travel around the city via tuktuk but suddenly, all the tuktuk were stopped due to the king’s visit. So, we took a ferry instead whose information you can check out on this website .
We were headed to Sukhumvit but didn’t know the flag color that was necessary so we just got in to whatever came by since there was no other way and all ferries were becoming full already.
Good thing Thai people are so kind because one Thai gentle man told us the stop closest to Sukhumvit. Phew! We were then able to get off his suggested stop and traveled to Sukhumvit via a tuktuk which was fortunately now taking rides again.
The tuktuk was charging 300 baht, so we negotiated for 200 baht to save a little bit on transport since we had other things in mind to experience.
During the ride, the driver suggested we stop by at a nearby store which sold crocodile shoes, leather goods, and expensive clothes. We stopped as suggested and window-shopped but decided not to buy anything since we had other priorities lined up.
This happened because tuktuk drivers get a little commission from the tourists they’re able to drop by the shop’s place and make a purchase.
Finally we’re back at the hotel, so we went for a massage to relax us from the long day touring the city. We also purchased water for ourselves to relieve us from the heat outside. But since it was costly from the hotel, we purchase it for 1/3 of the price at a local store instead.
Those are another set of my Bangkok essential travel tips for you.
- Purchase small items at the local store for a more affordable price
- Try to skip the shopping suggestions while on a tuktuk ride so you can focus your pocket money on what you really want to buy instead.
As the day end, now comes the night! How many of you know that Bangkok travel experiences aren’t complete without the night life?
For our Bangkok experiences at night, we went to Octave (Rooftop bar) and had a really awesome experience. We splurged a bit more money here because this was one of the things we really wanted to experience in the city.
Also, one thing to take note of, a lot of night clubs and bars in Thailand don’t serve any sides or food with drinks. Their menu says unlimited drinks but don’t serve food along with it. Make sure you have extra on your budget if you want to compliment your drinks with some food.
Let me round up Bangkok’s must-see places from day to night so you can have the best experience just as I did.
|Museums||Historical Sites||Night Life||Markets & Food-Trips||Other Must-Visit Places|
|Jim Thomson Museum||Grand Palace (carry your passport here, tickets cost 400-500 baht and can be used at other temples)||Cloud 47 (a rooftop bar), Chang beer, Baileys, Sky Bar Libua, Zanzi Bar, Khao Sun Road (night life, shopping), Nana Plaza, Soi Cowboy||Wang lang market, Chatuvhak weekend market, Amphawa floating market, pratunam market ( clothing), Patpung night market (jewellery , crafts), Villa Market, Jaduchak (JJ) Market, Durian fruit, Yaowarat (China Town, for food mainly), Thip Samai (a good restaurant)||China town, Unicorn Cafe, Gold Mount Temple, Sleeping Buddha Temple, Temple of Golden Buddha, Wat Trimet, Wat Po Temple (reclining/sleeping buddha ), Wat Arun, Wat Saket (golden mountain with good views), Victory monument (get a mini-bus to get here), Go on a river trip, SEA LIFE Bangkok Ocean World Aquarium, Dusit Zoo (100 baht)|
Lastly, try out these fun and adventurous activities while you’re at Bangkok too
- Zipline at Gibbon Zipline Experience near Chonburi
- Learn Muay Thai at any of the gyms offering classes in the city
- Go surfing at Flow House, an indoor surfing house at Bangkok
- Try out rock climbing at Urban Playground
Travel Guidelines and experiences before you plan for trip to Bangkok
Travel in three ways around Bangkok:
- Airport Rail Link – this is a type of transportation which can take you from the airport to central Bangkok (Phaya Thai station)
- Bangkok Mass Transit System (BTS) – purchase a rabbit card to ride the train, just take note that it may be crowded so prepare yourself.
- Taxi – always go by the meter.
Scams are a common problem while traveling but it’s also commonly avoided. Avoid scams while in Bangkok with these essentials or tips:
- If you’re going to rent a bike or a scooter, take a picture of its condition upon receipt.
- Never give your passport to anyone. Give them a photocopy only if necessary.
Lastly, make room for a Thai massage on your itinerary! Don’t leave Thailand without experiencing it.
Thailand truly is amazing! There’s so much to see even just within the city. I hope this Bangkok travel guide will help you prepare well. ‘til next time! You can also visit here for more information on Bangkok Travel