The Best Things to See and Do in Bangkok, Thailand in 48 Hours
Welcome to the city where old meets new.
(SPOT.ph) With its well-preserved grand temples and red-light districts, Bangkok—Thailand’s capital—is where old meets new. In the morning, you can catch a tuk-tuk in the bustling Chinatown; and at night, you can party until dawn in the numerous bars that line the streets. Thanks to the city's very efficient train system, the capital is easy to explore so you can see plenty of sights even if you're just there for a couple of days.
WHERE TO GO
Chong Nonsi Station
Silom, Bang Rak
Make a stop at the popular Chong Nonsi Station of the Bangkok Mass Transit System set at the far end of the city’s Central Business District. It's within walking distance from a number of critically acclaimed restaurants such as Le Du, Namsaah, and Ku De Ta; and because it overlooks one of the most picturesque skylines of the city, it's a popular venue for IG-worthy photos.
The Jim Thompson House Museum
6 Soi Kasemsan 2, Rama 1 Road
Fee: 150 THB
Open daily from 9 a.m. to 6 p.m.
One of the most interesting attractions in the city is the historic Jim Thompson House. Previously owned by architect and businessman Jim Thompson, the museum houses his art collections and antiques such as a Phra Bot painting from the 17th Century and a set of blue and white porcelain from the 16th Century. He advocated the production of Thai silk in the country.
Bangkok Art and Culture Center
939 Rama 1 Road, Wangmai, Pathumwan
Open from Tuesday to Sunday, 10 a.m. to 9 p.m.
Bangkok Art and Culture Center has been a venue for showcasing contemporary arts by young and budding local artists since it opened in 2005. The architecture alone is a sight to behold with its flexible spaces of varying shapes and sizes designed to reflect the characteristic of Thai modern art. The art space also houses a café and some shops.
Asiatique The Riverfront
2194 Charoen Krung Road, Khwaeng Wat Phraya Krai, Khet Bang Kho Laem, Krung Thep Maha Nakhon
Open daily from 5 p.m. to 12 a.m.
Take a 10-minute boat ride going to Bangkok’s Asiatique The Riverfront, a large open-air mall housing over 1,500 boutiques and 40 restaurants. Shop til you drop, then catch a classic Thai puppet performance at night. The easiest and fastest way to get there is by ferry.
Temple of the Golden Buddha
Open daily from 9 a.m. to 5 p.m.
Of course, your visit to Thailand wouldn’t be complete without a visit to a Buddhist temple. The most popular is the Wat Traimit, which houses the world’s largest golden Buddha at five meters in height and five and a half tons in weight. You can go there through the Hualampong Railway Station.
Khao San Road
Banglamphu, Phra Nakhon District
The one-kilometer long strip is known as the center of the backpacking universe because of countless budget hotels, travel agents, and market stalls that line the road. Khao San Road is most popular for its many bars, making the area party central 24/7.
Thanon Patpong 1, Khet Bang Rak
Patpong is the most well-known red-light district in Bangkok. Found between Silom and Surawongse Roads, its two parallel side-streets is lined with neon-lit strip bars that offer for-adults-only entertainment. If the go-go culture is not your thing, you can also check out the French bistros, Thai eateries, and high-end late-night dance bars.
WHERE TO EAT
Hong Kong Plaza
Khwaeng Thung Maha Mek, Khet Sathon, Krung Thep Maha Nakhon
Open daily from 5 a.m. to 3:30 p.m.
Go on a side-trip from Chong Nonsi and enjoy the street-food options at Hong Kong Plaza. Choose from the pad see eiw, a stir-fried noodle dish; kluay tod, which is deep fried bananas; and sai oua, which is a northern Thai sausauge. Partner them with iced coffee, especially on a hot day.
Samphanthawong District (Chinatown)
After your visit to Wat Traimit, head to the nearby Chinatown for more food choices. The endless row of gold shops is also a perfect spot if you're looking for jewelry to bring home.
WHERE TO SHOP
MBK Shopping Center
Phayathai Road, Pathum Wan, Khet Pathum Wan, Krung Thep Maha Nakhon
Open daily from 10 a.m. to 10 p.m.
You've most likely heard that one of the best things about Thailand is that it's easy on the budget. MBK Shopping Center, a.k.a. Mahboonkrong, is an eight-storey shopping mall with over 2,000 retail shops. The mall’s open ground is also a good spot for some OOTDs.
Chatuchak Weekend Market
Kamphaeng Phet 2 Road, Chatuchak
Open on Saturday and Sunday, from 9 a.m. to 6 p.m.
Chatuchak becomes a busy district on weekends because of its huge marketplace. It is perfect for shopaholics who want to score cool finds, from stylish clothes to signature handbags.
WHERE TO STAY
57 Charoenrat, Yannawa Sathorn
Rates start at THB 300
Bridge Hostel offers air-conditioned dormitory rooms with bunk beds and personal lockers. A convenient jumpoff point to your Bangkok adventure, it is just a six-minute walk to Surasak BTS Station which connects to other hotspots in the city. It is also near a local bar called Jam so you don’t have to go far when you feel like partying.
The Siam Hotel
Thanon Khao, Vachirapayabal, Dusit
Rates start at THB 18,900
Checking in at this luxurious resort amid three acres of lush gardens by the Chao Phraya River would make you think twice about returning to your busy Manila life. It features spacious suites equipped with an oversized bed, a tub big enough for two, and decors fit for a king. You can even book your own villa which has a private pool and an Art Deco-inspired bedroom. The resort's Opium Spa has everything you need for an afternoon of relaxtion—from spa treatments to yoga sessions.