Khao San Road
Chao Phraya River
Sri Mariamman Temple
Bangkok is full of contrasts and maybe even confusing to first time visitors. I really can't say I know Bangkok very well, even though it's the starting and ending point of every one of my many trips to Thailand.

The very first time, my buddy and I hopped on our very first tuk tuk near Khao San Road and got driven around to shop after shop so the driver could get gas rebate tickets, a very common scam.

At night, we got driven to a ping pong show by another driver where a ping pong ball from the performing artist's vajayjay shot into my buddy's beer, perhaps accidentally. Other "artists" had sex on stage, sprayed each other with body paint (while naked, of course), pulled razor blades out of their privates, and wrote "Welcome to Thailand" with a marker in their privates.

If you are not into that kind of nightlife, you can see a traditional dance show called Siam Niramit ( reviews ), very professional, impressive, and enjoyable.

Shopping could also be a way to spend an evening. Obviously, it's cheaper to buy things from street vendors in markets, but shopping in extravagant malls like Siam Paragon is quite an experience.

Other than going to temples and walking around China Town, I guess every tourist has to have a boat ride along Chao Phraya River and also use the very modern metro.

If you haven't been to a Hindu temple before, visit Sri Mariamman Temple, small yet quite fascinating. If you have time to get out of the city, check out the Damnoen Saduak Floating Market. People like to say it's too touristy now, but I think it's still a very interesting place to go.

Recommended Accommodation

For those only stopping over and needing an airport hotel including free shuttle service, Nest Boutique Resort is a good choice. Tune Hotel Asoke, in central Bangkok minutes away from Sukumvit MRT Station and Asok BTS Station, has small but spotless and modern rooms. JL Bangkok is a clean hotel but a bit far from tourist attractions.

Attraction Highlights

Grand Palace including ⇨

Wat Phra Kaew, where the Emerald Buddha is
Wat Arun Wat Arun, impressive Temple of Dawn
Wat Pho houses the Reclining Buddha

Chatuchak Weekend Market

Damnoen Saduak Floating Market