Discover Hidden Gems: 9 Unusual Things To Do in Bangkok & Travel Guide

Come and explore the dynamic city of Bangkok, Thailand’s bustling capital renowned for its lively markets, intricate temples, and vibrant street scenes. Yet, amidst the popular attractions lies a realm of hidden gems waiting to be discovered. If you’re a traveler seeking authentic and offbeat experiences, join us on an extraordinary journey through the unusual things to do in Bangkok.

Best time of year to visit Bangkok

The best time to visit Bangkok, Thailand is indeed from November to March. During these months, the weather is generally pleasant with cooler temperatures and lower humidity compared to the rest of the year. It is the dry season in Bangkok, offering comfortable conditions for exploring the city’s vibrant attractions.

One fact is that if you travel to Bangkok in November, you can enjoy pleasant temperatures and occasional light showers.

How to get there and get around?

Getting to Bangkok

To get to Bangkok, the most convenient and popular option is to fly. Bangkok has two airports: Suvarnabhumi Airport (BKK), which handles most international flights, and Don Mueang Airport (DMK), primarily used by low-cost airlines.

Getting around

Taxi: Taxis are widely available in Bangkok and are a convenient way to get around the city. Make sure the meter is used or negotiate a fare before starting your journey.

Motorcycle Taxis: Motorcycle taxis are popular for short distances or navigating through traffic-congested areas. They can be recognized by riders wearing vests or brightly colored shirts.

Tuk-tuk: This is a three-wheeled vehicle that is synonymous with Bangkok’s bustling streets. Negotiate the fare before getting in, as they often do not use meters.

Bus: Bangkok has an extensive bus network covering various routes. However, it can be challenging for tourists to navigate, as signs and announcements are mostly in Thai. Consider using Google Maps or other navigation apps for bus routes.

Walking: Exploring certain areas on foot is a great way to experience Bangkok’s vibrant street life, especially in the city center.

BTS Skytrain: The BTS Skytrain is an elevated train system that covers many popular areas in Bangkok. It’s efficient, air-conditioned, and helpful for avoiding traffic.

MRT Metro: The MRT Metro is an underground train system that intersects with the BTS Skytrain at certain points and provides additional coverage in different parts of the city.

Chao Phraya River Ferry/Boat/Express Boat: The Chao Phraya River runs through Bangkok, and taking a ferry or express boat along the river is a scenic and affordable way to explore various attractions and neighborhoods.

Unusual things to do in Bangkok

Take the private charter boat on the Chao Phraya River to explore the canals

If you’re looking to enjoy the cultural and historical essence of Bangkok, away from the busy city streets, then it’s a must to add a private charter boat ride on the Chao Phraya River to your bucket list. You can start your journey from the ferry stations of Wat Arun or Wat Pho.

Glide through the canals, known as the Klongs, and discover the hidden gems of Thonburi, which is only area of the fast-growing Bangkok that hasn’t been developing with time. You will witness the juxtaposition of old and new as modern skyscrapers mingle with traditional wooden houses and the authentic local life along the riverbanks. It delves into the charm of the city’s hidden waterways, revealing a side of Bangkok often missed by tourists.

Private charter boat on the Chao Phraya River
Private charter boat on the Chao Phraya River

With a private charter boat, you can set your own pace, linger at places that pique your interest and capture the perfect photographs. Your knowledgeable guide will share fascinating stories and insights, unveiling the rich history and cultural significance of the places you visit.

Once jump into this journey, you can explore local life, traditional houses, and vibrant markets along the canals, offering an authentic and immersive cultural encounter that offbeat enthusiasts will adore.

Local life along Klong
Local life along the Klong Canal

Take the tuk-tuk around the town, but not during rush hours

One of the must-do activities that captures the essence of the city is taking a tuk-tuk ride (Bangkok’s iconic three-wheeler) around town during non-rush hours offers an authentic, exhilarating, and immersive experience. It allows you to explore the city from a unique perspective, engage with locals, and create lasting memories of your time in this vibrant metropolis.

You’ll have the opportunity to see the city up close, taking in its vibrant sights, sounds, and scents. As you whiz past colorful markets, ornate temples, and bustling street vendors, you’ll feel fully immersed in the dynamic atmosphere of Bangkok.

Bangkok’s vibrant streets and iconic landmarks provide ample opportunities for capturing stunning photographs. From the bustling Chinatown to the majestic Grand Palace, a tuk-tuk ride gives you the chance to capture the essence of the city through your lens.

Tuk-tuk around Bangkok
Take the tuk-tuk around the town

Not at all, tuk-tuks offer a flexible mode of transportation, allowing you to stop and explore places of interest along the way. Unlike fixed-route public transportation, you have the freedom to choose your own itinerary and make spontaneous detours.

Go to Talat Rot Fai Srinakharin night market

As you step into the Talat Rot Fai Srinakharin night market, you can find this bustling market is a treasure trove of unique experiences, where vintage clothes, kitschy antiques, food trucks, van-based bars, land-bound pubs, and even hipster barber shops come together.

For antique lovers and collectors, Talat Rot Fai Srinakharin is a paradise. Explore stalls filled with quirky knick-knacks, old vinyl records, vintage cameras, and other fascinating artifacts. You never know what hidden gem you might come across, making this market a haven for antique enthusiasts and those who appreciate the charm of bygone eras.

Talat Rot Fai Srinakharin night market
Go to Talat Rot Fai Srinakharin night market

As you stroll through the market, tantalizing aromas will guide you to the food trucks and stalls offering a mouthwatering selection of Thai street food and international cuisines. From local favorites like pad Thai and mango sticky rice to fusion dishes and gourmet treats, the diverse culinary offerings will satisfy any craving. Grab a seat at one of the communal dining areas and indulge in a feast of flavors.

Visit Artist’s House – the old wooden house

Visiting Artist’s House offers you a unique and enriching experience that combines art, culture, history, and relaxation. Artist’s House is an unusual place in Bangkok that provides a wonderful opportunity to delve into Thai culture and gain a deeper understanding of the country’s artistic heritage. The house itself is a restored wooden structure, showcasing traditional Thai architecture and design.

Artist’s House in Bangkok
Visit Artist’s House – the old wooden house

One of the highlights of visiting Artist’s House is the free traditional Thai puppet show, which is scheduled at 2 pm. This captivating performance brings to life the age-old art of Thai puppetry, known as “Nang Talung” or “Nang Yai.” You’ll be enchanted by the intricate puppets, skillful puppeteers, and the storytelling that accompanies this traditional art form.

Located on Khlong Bang Luang so you can immerse in an old-world canalside ambiance. The surrounding area, known as Thonburi, was once the capital of Thailand and is steeped in history. As you stroll along the canal, you’ll be away from the bustling modernity of central Bangkok. The peaceful atmosphere, traditional wooden houses, and scenic waterways create a charming setting that invites relaxation and contemplation.

Artist’s House at Khlong Bang Luang
Beautiful ambiance along Khlong Bang Luang

To complete your visit, don’t miss the chance to savor traditional Thai snacks and refreshments at the riverside café within Artist’s House. The riverside setting adds to the charm of the experience, allowing you to relax and soak up the atmosphere while enjoying delicious local cuisine.

Travel around the city by motorbike taxis to the alleys

If you’re seeking an exhilarating and immersive adventure in Bangkok, look no further than traveling around the city by motorbike taxis. This unique mode of transportation offers an authentic local experience that allows you to explore the hidden alleys and indulge in the mouthwatering street food that defines the city’s culinary scene.

As you hop on the back of a motorbike taxi, you’ll feel the rush of excitement as you navigate through the bustling streets of Bangkok. These skilled drivers possess an intimate knowledge of the city’s intricate network of alleys, taking you on a thrilling journey that reveals the true essence of local life.

motorbike taxis to the alleys to Bangkok
Traveling around Bangkok by motorbike taxis

No exploration of Bangkok would be complete without savoring its world-renowned street food. With each stop along your motorbike taxi ride, you’ll have the opportunity to indulge in a tantalizing array of culinary delights. From sizzling skewers of grilled meat to aromatic bowls of noodles, the streets of Bangkok are a haven for food enthusiasts.

Visit Haroon Mosque – Bangkok’s oldest mosque

Uncover the hidden treasures of Bangkok’s cultural diversity by visiting Haroon Mosque, a timeless gem nestled in the charming riverside neighborhood of Haroon Village. This historic mosque, the oldest in Bangkok, stands as a testament to the city’s rich tapestry of Islamic heritage.

Visit Haroon Mosque - Bangkok's oldest mosque
Haroon Mosque

Located away from the bustling city center, Haroon Village offers a tranquil escape from the urban hustle and bustle. As you wander through its streets, you’ll be greeted by the sight of picturesque gingerbread wooden houses that exude an old-world charm. The neighborhood’s serene atmosphere is further enhanced by the presence of contently sleeping cats and the joyful laughter of playing children, creating a sense of warmth and community.

As you approach Haroon Mosque, you’ll be captivated by its graceful architecture and intricate details. The mosque’s design is a beautiful blend of Indonesian and Thai influences, reflecting the cultural heritage of the community that established it in the early 19th century. The mosque stands as a symbol of faith, unity, and the enduring legacy of the Indonesian immigrants who have made Bangkok their home.

Maeklong Railway Market

Maeklong Railway Market is an interesting spot in Thailand that you have to go! It really is a unique experience to be so close to a train while shopping in a market. There is an extensive market that goes right up to the rails of an active railway line. A few times a day a train comes through and the market traders move their produce away from the track, the train goes through and the traders mover their produce back and continue as if nothing happened.

Maeklong Railway Market
Impressive Maeklong Railway Market

I would advise visiting with a tour guide who can recommend where best to watch the spectacle.
You need be sure to time your visit for when a train is passing through. There is a good cafe alongside the track and, of course, many market stalls. Sure it’s touristy but also you see locals shook g for fish, veg etc.

Local life Maeklong Railway Market
Local life at Maeklong Railway Market

Talad Noi

Talad Noi is a great place to experience the blend of historical Bangkok and see how it’s evolving with modern times. So, take a step off the beaten path, wander through the alleys, and let the enchantment of Talad Noi transport you through time and culture.

As you stroll along the alleys, prepare to be enchanted by the harmonious coexistence of Buddhist temples, Christian churches, old shophouses, small shrines, ancient holy trees, vibrant street art, and a lively local community.

Talad Noi temple
A temple in Talad Noi

Talad Noi is also home to a myriad of small shrines, tucked away in unexpected corners. These sacred spaces, adorned with colorful ornaments and burning incense, provide a respite for contemplation and reflection. Pause for a moment to pay your respects and soak in the tranquil atmosphere that surrounds these hidden gems.

Talad Noi riverside seating
Talad Noi riverside seating

One cannot miss the ancient holy trees that line the alleys of Talad Noi. These majestic giants, with their sprawling branches and gnarled trunks, have stood witness to the passage of time. Revered by locals for their spiritual significance, these trees serve as reminders of the deep-rooted traditions that continue to shape the neighborhood.

Drive to Ayutthaya Ancient City

Driving to Ayutthaya Ancient City from Bangkok offers a captivating escape into Thailand’s past. Its ruins will really take you back in time, to a significant moment in the history of Myanmar-Thai kings in the 18th century.

As the ancient and still the longest-lasting capital city of Siam, there are so many temples scattered across the city, I’d say any crossroad shows ancient ruins of what was supposed to be a golden capital.

Ayutthaya Ancient City
Explore Ayutthaya Ancient City

When you visit Ayutthaya, you will encounter numerous remains from its illustrious past as a flourishing city established in the 14th century. The city thrived until it was devastated by the Burmese during the 18th century. As you explore, you’ll have the opportunity to witness a multitude of remarkable structures, including stupas, prangs, and more. It comes as no surprise that Ayutthaya was designated as a UNESCO World Heritage Site in 1991.

Helpful tip: Keep in mind that a visit to Ayutthaya may require hours of walking, so be prepared and consider wearing protective clothing to shield yourself from the intense summer sun.

Where and what to eat in Bangkok?

When it comes to dining in Bangkok, you’ll be spoiled for choice with a wide array of culinary delights. Here are some notable recommendations for where and what to eat in the city:

Blue Elephant: For an upscale dining experience, head to Blue Elephant. This renowned restaurant offers fine-dining Thai cuisine in an elegant setting. Keep in mind that the dress code is smart-casual, so avoid wearing shorts or flip-flops.

Chinatown Street Food: Bangkok’s Chinatown is a haven for street food lovers. Explore the bustling streets and sample an array of dishes from various food stalls. You’ll find a diverse range of culinary treasures to satisfy your taste buds.

Mango sticky rice: Don’t miss out on this popular Thai dessert. Mango sticky rice combines sweet, juicy mango slices with sticky rice soaked in coconut milk. It’s a delightful blend of flavors and textures that’s sure to please your palate.

Som Tam/ Som Tum (Papaya Salad): Som Tam is a classic Thai salad made with shredded green papaya, tomatoes, chili, garlic, lime, and fish sauce. It offers a perfect balance of sweet, sour, and spicy flavors. Be sure to give it a try for a refreshing and zesty culinary experience.

Tom Yam Koong: Tom Yam Koong features a combination of fragrant herbs, spicy chili, tangy lime, and succulent shrimp. It’s a flavorful and aromatic dish that exemplifies the vibrant Thai.

Kai Foo Boo (crab omelet): Indulge in this delicious Thai-style omelet filled with crab meat. The omelet is skillfully cooked to perfection, creating a fluffy and flavorful dish that pairs well with steamed rice.

Highly recommend coffee shops and bars

If you’re looking for exceptional coffee shops and bars in Bangkok, here are some highly recommended options:

  • Moon Bar Rooftop on the 63th floor (Banyan Tree hotel)
  • Hong Sieng Kong Cafe (riverside coffee shop)
  • Nam 1608 Restaurant
  • The sixth (authentic and boutique style for lunch)

Where to go next after visiting that destination?

After exploring the unique attractions of Bangkok, there are several enticing destinations you can consider for your next adventure.

If you’re interested in experiencing Thailand’s natural beauty and getting up close with elephants, Chiang Mai and Chiang Rai are excellent choices. These northern cities offer a range of ethical elephant campsites where you can learn about and interact with these majestic creatures responsibly and sustainably.

>>> Read more: How to travel from Bangkok to Chiang Mai?

For a relaxing beach getaway, head to Ko Samui, one of Thailand’s most popular tropical islands. With its pristine beaches, crystal-clear waters, and luxurious resorts, Ko Samui offers a perfect blend of tranquility and indulgence.

If you’re a younger traveler seeking a mix of adventure and lively nightlife, Ko Pha-Ngan is renowned for its hedonistic full-moon beach parties.

Extra travel tips you should know

Things need to be attention to when coming there

Dress code: When visiting the temple or mosques, you should wear formal, pants or long dresses for religious reasons. Short skirt or shorts are not allowed.

Spiciness of Food: Thai cuisine is known for its bold and spicy flavors. If you have a low tolerance for spicy food or prefer milder options, it’s essential to ask about the spiciness level before ordering

Suggestions for guests

If you’re looking for a more gentle and relaxing massage experience, you may want to consider trying a Swedish massage with oil. While Thai massages are known for their therapeutic techniques and stretching, they can indeed be intense and involve more pressure. In contrast, Swedish massages typically use long, flowing strokes and gentle pressure to promote relaxation and improve circulation. Ultimately, it depends on your personal preferences and what you’re looking to gain from the massage experience.

Recommend itinerary

Classic Thailand 7 Days: This trip is an excellent introduction to the Kingdom of Thailand. Steamy but exciting Bangkok, the historic River Kwai, the colorful floating market, ancient Ayutthaya, tranquil Chiang Mai and the hill tribes in the highlands are all that you will experience.

Bangkok To Chiang Mai 4 Days: From bustling Bangkok, you will take your trip slowly by local train to North Thailand, passing by historical sites of Sukhothai & Lampang and learn more about the Thai culture as well as local lives. This route will enable your travel from Bangkok to Chiang Mai be more interesting than ever.

Amazing Highlights Of Cambodia & Thailand 14 Days: Thinking of an authentic visit to Thailand and a visit to Angkor Wat – a Seven Wonder? This tour will be a good pick. In two weeks, you can capture Angkor Wat’s beauty, the spirits of Thailand before ending the tour in Thailand’s sleepy beach. It will be an enjoyable and memorable trip for every traveler.

Start Planning Your City Getaway in Bangkok!

Those itineraries above are our suggested tour, you can take it as a reference. If you’re looking for a trip that is tailored to your needs in Thailand or beyond with full of experiences, then get in touch with us now or send us an inquiry through our email at [email protected] to get a personalized itinerary. We are very excited to be a part of your journey to explore Bangkok, Thailand.

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