Sure, you’ve read the must do things in Thailand which is indulging in Asian food, bathing elephants, and having fresh fruit all day. But this epic list of unique things to do in Bangkok will have you booking your trip right away!
I got in touch with travel experts who’ve been to Bangkok and tried some of these adventurous things to do in Bangkok and they’ve shared them with you now.
Also, after a successful response to my previous post about Bangkok, I felt like something out of the ordinary had to be written about Bangkok as opposed to what’s already on the internet.
These are places/activities to do in Bangkok you CANNOT miss and must cover at least a few if your stay is short to ensure that you have a memorable vacation.
Unique Things to do in Bangkok:
Airplane Graveyard – Annemarie from Travel on the Brain
Bangkok is so full of amazingly photogenic places. However, if you appreciate super unpolished and eery places, try urban exploring. One of the coolest spots for that is the airplane graveyard in Bangkok.
It’s not entirely unknown but not touristy either, which is why it’s not guaranteed that you get in. The land is private and you can only enter after talking to the local family living among the abandoned planes.
Your best bet to see them is in the morning. Make sure you have cash on you (at least 200 baht) because they will need some entrance money. The prices aren’t set and depending on how many people there are and how you rock up, you might have to pay four times that, I have heard.
When you are in, you are free to walk around and even enter the planes. However, do take extra care as there are no safety precautions in place, everything is falling apart and rusty parts are sticking out everywhere.
I visited during the rainy season and this meant that the entire area was totally overgrown and very muddy and slippery. Hence, closed shoes are a necessity.
What can you actually see at the graveyard? There are three airplanes, two mostly intact, the others in parts, strewn all over the lot. It’s not entirely clear how they ended up here and what will happen with the lot in the future.
To get to the airplane location, you can ride the local ferry boat from Pratunam near Siam station to Wat Sriboonreung for 30 minutes. The ferry ride costs approx 19 baht (60 cents)
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Shop at Platinum Mall – Alexx from Finding Alexx
Desperate to update your wardrobe (or backpack) with some new threads, or need some funky gifts for friends and fam? Head down to Platinum Mall in Bangkok’s Pratunam suburb for a six storey mega mall packed with wholesale retailers and bargains galore.
Platinum is my go-to for a clothing refresh every time I stop over in Thailand’s capital, and I’m yet to find better deals on summery dresses, elephant pants and party shirts, and everything in between.
Prepare for a slightly overwhelming shopping experience, this isn’t for the faint-hearted (or the men who need reclining chairs for a shopping break every half an hour). The stalls are tiny, there’s clothes stacked floor to ceiling, you can’t try anything on, and customer service is essentially non-existent. BUT when you’re getting gorgeous pieces for a tenth of the price you’d see in popular places in Bangkok, it’s absolutely worth it.
The mall is cash only and you can haggle when you buy multiple items!
Note that Platinum is very much targeted at local retailers rather than tourists, and as such the sizing can be tough for Westerners. I’m generally a women’s medium and was fine in most shops, but my 6 foot tall, average build ex-boyfriend was promptly told “no size for you, big boy!” when he wandered into one stall. No beating around the bush here in Bangkok!
When you’ve shopped ’til you’ve dropped, head on up to the top floor for a huge food court with endless local and other Asian dishes. I rate the Indian in the back corner, the best masala curry I’ve had in years. Happy shopping! Follow her here.
Eat at the fast-food chains serving different dishes
Fast-food chains like McDonald’s and KFC have different dishes depending on country preferences and it’s one of the fun things to do in BKK. For example, look at this fried chicken from McDonald’s that isn’t available in my side of the world *drooling*
Night Tuk Tuk Tour – Caroline from CK Travels
One of the most unique things to do in Bangkok is to take a ride in a Thai tuk tuk. It’s a really fun way to explore the city, especially at night when the awful daytime traffic jams are over and you can whizz around the empty streets!
Rather than using a tuk tuk as a taxi, we recommend riding in one as part of a guided group tour where you get your own private tuk tuk and driver for the evening. There are several companies in Bangkok that run these types of experience but we would recommend booking with Get Your Guide – who are always highly rated and offer a variety of different tuk tuk tours to suit your itinerary.
There are also food focused tours (more on this below!) that involve stops to enjoy local Thai street food dishes, snacks, and drinks, making this one of the best things to do in Bangkok at night.
Some of the tours focus more on the city’s midnights markets, so you’ll get to visit places that are at their busiest late at night. Other tours focus more on visiting famous (and not so famous) temples, which are peaceful after the daytime crowds have gone.
If you are looking for a fun way to spend your evening in Bangkok then a tuk tuk tour should definitely be on your high on your list! Follow her here.
Food Tour in Chinatown – My Adventures Across the World
There is a good reason why Bangkok is the most visited city in the world. The capital of Thailand is simply a fun place to visit, with lots of things to do and places to go in Bangkok – from the classic temples to the floating markets; from historic homes to the incredible and endless shopping opportunities.
If there is one thing you shouldn’t miss when wondering where to go in Bangkok, it’s a guided street food tour of Chinatown. This is an excellent way to discover what the city has to offer and to appreciate the local way of life, as well as the history and culture of the city.
Most food tours of Chinatown start in the late afternoon, in time for dinner, and have the meeting point just outside Chinatown. From there you will enjoy a tuk tuk ride that will take you to the heart of Chinatown. There, you will visit the 24 hours Flower Market; a few small temples, and finally go to a bunch of street food places to enjoy the best local specialties. You will likely try noodles – pad thai is probably the most common noodle dish; then seafood dishes such as grilled squid and scallops; and have a Thai style ravioli dish.
The final stop of the tour is at a fruit stall, where you can pick your dessert. You can opt for a small pineapple on stick (it’s refreshingly juicy) or the very local mango and sticky rice (trust me, this is definitely in the list of top things to do in Bangkok, Thailand!). Follow her here.
Must do in Bangkok? Try the smelliest fruit in the world
Surely not for the faint-hearted! Don’t forget to try Durian, known as the smelliest fruit in the world but also the tastiest! The stink is so bad that it’s prohibited to carry Durian to the airport or closed public places. The taste and smell resemble jackfruit in my opinion which is also quite stinky. But try it to find out yourself.
Don’t worry, the smell doesn’t get to everyone. Upon asking our tour guide in Singapore during our tour of Chinatown there, he mentioned that he doesn’t find the smell revolting at all. Guess it has something to do with culture and getting used to!
If you aren’t that adventurous, you can get durian chips which are a dehydrated version minus some smell.
Visiting China Town or Khao San Road will expose you to some crazy street side food, some of which are almost alive when eaten!
Visit the Ancient City – Nicola from See Nic Wander
One of the coolest things I did during my 6-week stay in Bangkok was visiting the Ancient City. When my friends first suggested visiting the Ancient City, I assumed they were talking about Ayutthaya, the historical site that used to be the capital of Siam.
It wasn’t until we piled into the car and drove about half an hour outside of the city center that I realized we were heading to a totally different Ancient City.
The Muang Boran Ancient City is a sprawling outdoor park filled with recreations of famous monuments around Thailand. Part museum, part immersive history experience, visiting the Muang Boran Ancient City allowed me to walk through thousands of years of Thai history all in one beautiful place.
The Muang Boran Ancient City is located about 40 minutes outside of downtown Bangkok by car. If you don’t have a car, you can take the BTS to Kheha and take a taxi the rest of the way. At the time I visited, adult tickets were 700 THB ($22.34) and child tickets were 350 THB ($11.17)
Given the size of the park, I’d recommend also renting a golf cart or a bike to get around. You should also rent an audio tour guide to explain the history behind each monument since sometimes the informational placards were hard to find.
It will take you most of the day to explore the Muang Boran Ancient City, but luckily there are places to eat, buy snacks, and use the restroom throughout the park. Looking back now, the day I spent in the Ancient City was one of the most memorable and educational days from the best places to visit in Bangkok.
Almsgiving at Wat Benchamabophit – The Nomadic Vegan
In the early morning, a common sight in Thailand and other Southeast Asian countries is to see Buddhist monks in orange robes walking the streets carrying their alms bowls, politely asking for offerings. Since monks devote their lives to study and meditation, they are not part of the market economy and have no way of earning money. They are therefore dependent on donations for their basic necessities, like food and toiletries.
Lay people earn merit by giving offerings to the monks, so it’s a mutually beneficial exchange. Some local people will wait every day on the street or at their front door for the monks to pass by, eager to give them something to eat.
Foreigners are welcome to join in on this custom, but there are a few things to keep in mind. Any food that you give to the monks should be plant-based, because Thai monks eat a vegetarian and mostly vegan diet. It should also be cooked and ready to eat because monks are not supposed to prepare food for themselves.
Most monks wander the streets in search of handouts, so it’s impossible to know exactly where to find them. However, there is one temple, Wat Benchamabophit, where the resident monks line up outside the temple and wait for alms givers to come to them.
To participate in the almsgiving ceremony, you will need to get up very early, as people generally start arriving at the temple around 6 am. If you’re thinking of what to do in Bangkok that isn’t written on most guides of the best things to do in Bangkok, then this is it!
So now you must be thinking, what to see in Bangkok that’s not been talked about before? Presenting to you a building that could be well within the most photogenic places in Bangkok! The Robot Building.
With a structure like a robot complete with half-closed eyes, you would be shocked to know that this is the headquarters of a bank! Yes, that’s United Overseas Bank in Bangkok.
I wouldn’t really call it an instagrammable place in Bangkok due to it being located in a busy street and amidst other skyscrapers, but this picture surely looks amazing!
You can reach there by taking a BTS to Chong Nonsi, the nearest station to the building after which it’s a short walk.
I’m not done with buildings just yet because an Elephant Tower exists in Bangkok! If you thought you’ve read everything about the places to see in Bangkok, here comes another one 😀
This tower comprises of offices and a residential area with a shopping complex, post office, and bank. Everything that’s required for a person to live is available inside the tower.
Since elephants are an important part of the Thai culture, this makes sense why they would have a building dedicated to it. The tower is located in the Chatuchak area.
Visit Chatuchak Weekend Market in Bangkok
Bangkok is famous for its markets, where you can haggle and get cheap deals on food and clothes. The popular one among them is the Chatuchak Market. Only on the weekends and showcasing around 8,000 stalls, even a 4-5 hour walk won’t let you complete the place.
I booked our 4 days in Bangkok trip especially keeping in mind the weekend so I visit the market and I have to say, no regrets at all.
Buy unusual pillows and souvenirs
Do you love buying gifts for your family and friends? Especially if they are travelers too, how about travel gifts for them? One of the fun things to do in Bangkok is to buy cheap and unique souvenirs that are great as gifts or to scare them…you decide 😉
This online store sells THE most interesting things which are a must buy in Bangkok if you like to raise some eyebrows.
Hello, creepy lizard pillow! Check the page, all their customers seem to be obsessed with it!
Looking for the best place to stay in Bangkok? Enter your dates to find hotels for every budget that will make where to stay in Bangkok a dream for you
Whether you want to explore famous places in Bangkok or off the beaten track things to see in Bangkok, I hope this guide helped you.
What’s your favorite thing to do in Bangkok? Do let me know!
Until then, happy traveling! xx
P.S. If you want to save and read later, here are some pinnable versions 🙂
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