Tourism Authority of Thailand
License Number: 11/2802
Thailand’s capital and one of the world’s largest and most vibrant cities, made up of distinctive areas rather than one city center. Located on the bank of Chao Phraya River, a few kilometers upstream from its outflow into the Gulf of Siam, Bangkok sprawl
Last Modified On: Thursday, 02/November/2006 00:43:31am
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Thailand’s capital and one of the world’s largest and most vibrant cities, made up of distinctive areas rather than one city center. Located on the bank of Chao Phraya River, a few kilometers upstream from its outflow into the Gulf of Siam, Bangkok sprawls across a flat alluvial plain. Even though Bangkok’s initial impressions are of a modern, dynamic metropolis bustling with today’s business, Bangkok has also retained its traditional charms. It is the mixture of East and West, the ancient and the modern.
Bangkok is one of Asia’s most cosmopolitan cities. Created as the Thai capital in 1782 by the first monarch of the present Chakri dynasty, Bangkok is a national treasure house and Thailand’s spiritual, cultural, political, commercial, educational and diplomatic centre.
Bangkok exceeds 1,500 square kilometres in area and is home to one-tenth of the country's population. Major tourist attractions include glittering Buddhist temples, palaces, timeless “Venice of the East” canal and river scenes, classical dance extravaganzas, and numerous shopping centres.
Commercial offices and banks are plentiful along Silom, Surawongse Road, while the city’s most Historic area is located near the river. Here you can experience the grandeur of the Royal Grand Palace, the brilliance of the Golden Buddha and the serenity of the Buddhist temples.
Siam and Rajdamri is the shopping district and entertainment area with large department stores, shopping arcades, restaurants and cinema theaters.Nightlife is best along Silom Road to Patpong and from Ploenchit Road along Sukhumvit Road. These areas are alive with street markets day and night.
Old Town: The old Bangkok town is the original area of Bangkok when it was established as capital over 200 years ago. Walls formerly surrounded the town. Now only a few sections are preserved as historic sites. Located in the old town are the Grand Palace, the Temple of Emerald Buddha, the Temple of Reclining Buddha and the Temple of Dawn on the opposite side of Chao Phraya River where one can take a boat ride to visit. Chinatown is located just to the southeast of the old town. Khaosan Road, the new world –renown haven for backpackers is just on the outskirts of the old town.
Sukhumvit, Siam, and Pratunam: : The biggest and busiest shopping district in Bangkok. There are large department stores, several shopping arcades, countless shops and sidewalk venders offering almost all kind of goods including souvenirs, garment products, leatherwear, silverware, handicrafts, antiques. There are also several cinema theatres and various kinds of restaurants serving just about every national cuisine where one can enjoy while staying in Bangkok.
Riverside: Today, even though Bangkok is a modern metropolis, the architecture and way of life along the Chao Phraya River and canals remain remarkably true to the city’s origins. Numerous scheduled boat trips can be taken, and boat can be hired on an individual basis for visitors to enjoy the scenic view. On both sides of the Chao Phraya River, visitors can see many magnificent temples interesting buildings and monuments. Branching of the river are small waterways known as “Klong” where the local way-of-life in small settlements can still be explored.
Silom/Surawongse: The most important business and financial center of Bangkok. The two streets are busy not only in the daytime, but also in the evening, when people come out to eat, to meet business friends or to seek enjoyment. Patpong, a well known area to foreign visitor for nightlife, is a small lane connecting Silom and Surawongse. It offers various kind of entertainment – bars, pubs and nightclubs, music and dancing.
Others: New Phetburi Road, Ratchadaphisek Road and Vipavadee Rangsit Road are included in the other area. New Phetburi Road is a quiet road in the daytime. It becomes lively in the evening. The street will be brightened with colorful neon signs and enlivened by people going out to enjoy themselves in the dozens of entertainment places scattered along the street. Ratchadaphisek Road is the new and busy commercial district where several big department stores, office buildings, hotels and a large number of restaurants located. The Thailand Cultural Center where shows and exhibitions are held from time to time is also situated in the area. Vipavadee Rangsit Road links downtown Bangkok with Bangkok International Airport. For those visitors who do not have much time in Bangkok, the hotels on this road is recommended. Many hotels have big shopping complex or shuttle bus to shopping complex. During the weekend visitors will have a chance to visit Sunday Flea Market (the Cha-tu-chak Market or widely known as the JJ) which is located next door to this road.