Stride climate

Bangkok - Best Tours & Trips 2019

313 trips to Bangkok tours from 64 tour companies. 414 reviews. 4.8/5 avg rating.
Bangkok is awash with exotic wats (temples), crisscrossed by busy klongs (canals), the site of the amazingly intricate architecture of the Thai Royal Palace, and center of one of the world’s most beloved cuisines. In sum, it’s never dull, and, from its ancient splendor to its red light districts.
All Bangkok tours, river cruises, expedition cruises, and adventure trips. Find the best guided trips and expert planned vacation and holiday packages.
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Travel Style Travel Style Relaxed A lot of free time, with very few inclusions. Ideal for independent and/or low-key travelers and cruisers.
Full on For those looking to maximize their sight seeing time. You thrive on a packed day’s schedule from 8 am to 6pm, with some (but limited) free time. Most activities and meals included.
Mixed You will have solid amounts of both free time and structured time with some activities and meals included.

Trip Type Trip Type Group Tour Groups are between 25-60 people, typically ~30-40. Usually there will be many opportunities to split off and enjoy meals and excursions in smaller groups. This is the most economical way to travel, saving up to 40% versus booking the same itinerary yourself.
Small Group Tour Small groups are usually defined as between 10 and 24 travelers, often less. If you're the kind of person who enjoys more intimate experiences and personal service this is a good choice. All else being equal you will pay a premium for this style vs a larger group tour.
River Cruise These vessels are smaller than most ocean cruisers, limiting which amenties are available. Passenger counts can vary. One of the biggest advantages of a river cruise is the ability to dock at smaller ports and local villages.
Small Ship Cruise Small ship cruises usually have a max passenger count of 500. The primary purpose of these trips is to spend time off the vessel in local ports (e.g. Mediterranean) or experiencing nature (e.g Galapagos or Antarctica). Cabins can vary from budget to luxury.
Private Guided Private tours give you the undivided attention of a guide, and often involve special access to sites and unique experiences not available to larger groups. This is a great option for families, couples, and small friend groups. Expect to pay a bit more for the extra service.
Self Guided / Independent Tour A travel company plans your itinerary and arranges all the logistics including lodging, local activities, and transportantion. You have the flexibility of a solo trip while still getting the convience and time savings of expert planning. Get 90% of the benefits of a tour, without a guide.
Vacation / Holiday Package Similar to a self guided tour, this usually involves a home base, such as a hotel or resort, with packaged activities and day tours as a part of the stay.
Large Ship Cruise This is the "floating city" experience, with multiple ways to enjoy your vacation aboard the ship as much as on land. Ships are multiple floors, provide several activities, culinary, and shopping options. They often make fewer stops and have less time available for shore excursions.

Itinerary Focus

Lodging Level Lodging Level Camping Typically involves most nights sleeping in tents (sometimes permanent tented sites) or in rustic cabins and lodges.
Basic - 2 star You'll stay in no-frills, but clean and comfortable, hotels or guesthouses. A 'Basic' trip might also involve a few nights of camping.
Value - 3 star Mid-range budget with accommodations ranging from comfortable lodges, guesthouses, and homestays to three star hotels.
Premium - 4 star 3 to 4 star western hotel equivalents. While not all lodging will be 'luxury' they will be quite comfortable by western standards.
Luxury - 5 star The highest level of comfort and service. All accomodations are in four or five star hotels, boutique lodges or high-end homestays.

Price From*

$ 0 $ 10,000+

Price Per Day

Trip Length

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Physical Level Physical Level Very Easy Minimal walking - motor vehicles available for all major parts of trip.
Easy Normal generally flat walking in urban or suburban environments.
Moderate Walking or physical activity half to most of day - no carrying equipment.
Strenuous All or most of day hiking or biking, hills included.
Extreme Very challenging all day hiking and backpacking carrying significant equipment.

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Rivers & Seas

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Solo Friendly Solo Friendly Good for Singles Trips that specifically cater to travelers looking to meet other singles.
No Single Supplement Trips where single supplement is usually not required for solo travelers.

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Continents & Regions

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Amazing Thailand

SmarTours
Premier
Has very high quality customer experiences and demonstrated commitment to responsible travel practices. read more
14 days
$ 136 / day
$ 1,899
From : $ 4,877
The strike-through price reflects either the high season trip price or the average price a traveler pays for a similar itinerary when the components are booked separately.
Travel Style : You will have solid amounts of both free time and structured time with some activities and meals included. Mixed
Physical Level : Some walking over short or flat distances. Some trips may include cycling options. Some are wheelchair friendly (check for individual trips). Some cruises. Easy
Lodging Level : Mid-range budget with accommodations ranging from comfortable lodges, guesthouses, and homestays to three star hotels. Value - 3 star
Highlights
  • Buddhist Temples (Bangkok)
  • Floating Market (Bangkok)
  • Grand Palace (Bangkok)
  • Wat Mongkol Borpith Statue (Ayutthaya)
  • Elephant Camp (Chiang Mai)
  • Wat Doi Suthep (Chiang Mai)
Visits:
Bangkok, Chiang Mai, Chiang Rai, Thailand
View Trip

Best of the Orient: Bangkok, Singapore, Bali & ...

SmarTours
Premier
Has very high quality customer experiences and demonstrated commitment to responsible travel practices. read more
15 days
$ 200 / day
$ 2,999
From : $ 4,049
The strike-through price reflects either the high season trip price or the average price a traveler pays for a similar itinerary when the components are booked separately.
Travel Style : You will have solid amounts of both free time and structured time with some activities and meals included. Mixed
Physical Level : Some walking over short or flat distances. Some trips may include cycling options. Some are wheelchair friendly (check for individual trips). Some cruises. Easy
Lodging Level : Mid-range budget with accommodations ranging from comfortable lodges, guesthouses, and homestays to three star hotels. Value - 3 star
Highlights
  • Visit Wat Trimitr & Wat Po Buddhist Temples (Bangkok)
  • Join an optional excursion to the colorful Damnoen Saduak floating market
  • See exotic orchids and rare flowers in Singapore's Botanical Gardens
  • Visit the Elephant Cave (Bali)
  • Enjoy the spectacular city view from Victoria Peak (Hong Kong)
  • Visit Aberdeen Floating Fishing Village (Hong Kong)
Visits:
Bali, Bangkok, Hong Kong, Victoria Peak, China, Indonesia, Singapore, Thailand
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Around the World

SmarTours
Premier
Has very high quality customer experiences and demonstrated commitment to responsible travel practices. read more
21 days
$ 314 / day
$ 6,599
From : $ 7,409
The strike-through price reflects either the high season trip price or the average price a traveler pays for a similar itinerary when the components are booked separately.
Travel Style : You will have solid amounts of both free time and structured time with some activities and meals included. Mixed
Physical Level : Some walking over short or flat distances. Some trips may include cycling options. Some are wheelchair friendly (check for individual trips). Some cruises. Easy
Lodging Level : The highest level of comfort and service. All accomodations are in four or five star hotels, boutique lodges or high-end homestays. Luxury - 5 star
Highlights
  • Panoramic London City Tour
  • Windsor Castle (London)
  • Great Pyramids & Sphinx of Giza
  • Egyptian Museum
  • Buddhist Temples (Bangkok)
  • Optional Floating Market (Bangkok)
  • Tanah Lot (Bali)
  • Bali Herbal & Nature Walk
  • Sydney Harbor Lunch Cruise
  • Featherdale Wildlife Park
  • Explore Fiji
  • Garden of Sleeping Giant (Fiji)
Visits:
Bali, Bangkok, Cairo, Sphinx, Sydney, Ubud, Egypt, Fiji, Indonesia, Thailand
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Amazing Thailand & Phuket Island

SmarTours
Premier
Has very high quality customer experiences and demonstrated commitment to responsible travel practices. read more
17 days
$ 153 / day
$ 2,599
From : $ 6,297
The strike-through price reflects either the high season trip price or the average price a traveler pays for a similar itinerary when the components are booked separately.
Travel Style : You will have solid amounts of both free time and structured time with some activities and meals included. Mixed
Physical Level : Some walking over short or flat distances. Some trips may include cycling options. Some are wheelchair friendly (check for individual trips). Some cruises. Easy
Lodging Level : 3 to 4 star western hotel equivalents. While not all lodging will be 'luxury' they will be quite comfortable by western standards. Premium - 4 star
Highlights
  • Explore fascinating Buddhist Temples (Bangkok)
  • Colorful tour to Floating Market (Bangkok)
  • Grand Palace (Bangkok)
  • See the gaint Wat Mongkol Borpith Statue (Ayutthaya)
  • Visit the Elephant Camp (Chiang Mai)
  • Visit fascinating Wat Doi Suthep (Chiang Mai)
  • Beautiful Phuket Island
  • “James Bond Island”
Visits:
Ayutthaya, Bangkok, Chiang Mai, Chiang Rai, Phuket, Thailand
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Thailand to Myanmar – Bangkok to Mae Sot to the ...

Myths and Mountains
Preferred
Has very high quality customer experiences and demonstrated commitment to responsible travel practices. read more
16 days
$ 320 / day
$ 5,125
From : $ 6,919
The strike-through price reflects either the high season trip price or the average price a traveler pays for a similar itinerary when the components are booked separately.
Travel Style : A lot of free time, with very few inclusions. Ideal for independent and/or low-key travelers and cruisers. Relaxed
Physical Level : Some walking over short or flat distances. Some trips may include cycling options. Some are wheelchair friendly (check for individual trips). Some cruises. Easy
Lodging Level : Mid-range budget with accommodations ranging from comfortable lodges, guesthouses, and homestays to three star hotels. Value - 3 star
Highlights
  • Discover Ayutthaya
  • Visit caves in Hpa An
  • Explore Sukhothai and Mae Sot
  • Visit Shampoo Island and Mudon
  • Explore Yangon and Bago
Visits:
Ayutthaya, Bangkok, Shwedagon Pagoda, Yangon, Burma (Myanmar), Thailand
View Trip

Hill Tribes of Northern Thailand

Myths and Mountains
Preferred
Has very high quality customer experiences and demonstrated commitment to responsible travel practices. read more
12 days
$ 333 / day
$ 3,995
From : $ 4,028
The strike-through price reflects either the high season trip price or the average price a traveler pays for a similar itinerary when the components are booked separately.
Travel Style : A lot of free time, with very few inclusions. Ideal for independent and/or low-key travelers and cruisers. Relaxed
Physical Level : Full day hiking or trekking over medium to long distances. Moderate expectation of physical fitness. Strenuous
Lodging Level : The highest level of comfort and service. All accomodations are in four or five star hotels, boutique lodges or high-end homestays. Luxury - 5 star
Highlights
  • Explore Bangkok.
  • Visit Karen and Lahu villages and Wat Thaton
  • Discover Grand Palace, Klongs, Wat Po and Wat Arun.Evening visit to China Town
  • Visit the Floating Market, River Kwai and museum.
  • Explore Vachiratharn Waterfall
  • Visit Mae Yen Buddhist Temple
Visits:
Bangkok, Chiang Mai, Chiang Rai, Phuket, Thailand
View Trip

Thailand: The Untraveled Northeast – People, Na ...

Myths and Mountains
Preferred
Has very high quality customer experiences and demonstrated commitment to responsible travel practices. read more
11 days
$ 309 / day
$ 3,395
From : $ 4,090
The strike-through price reflects either the high season trip price or the average price a traveler pays for a similar itinerary when the components are booked separately.
Travel Style : A lot of free time, with very few inclusions. Ideal for independent and/or low-key travelers and cruisers. Relaxed
Physical Level : Regular walking or cycling over moderately long, hilly, or bumpy distances. Some public transport or utility vehicles such as safari jeeps. Moderate
Lodging Level : 3 to 4 star western hotel equivalents. While not all lodging will be 'luxury' they will be quite comfortable by western standards. Premium - 4 star
Highlights
  • Explore Bangkok
  • Visit the Grand Palace
  • Enjoy Grand Pearl Cruise boat on Chao Phra River to the Summer Palace
  • Visit Khao Yai National Park and Mahawirawong National Museum
  • Visit Sukhothai Historical Park
Visits:
Ayutthaya, Bangkok, Vientiane, Thailand
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18-Day Colorful Thailand, Cambodia & Vietnam

18 days
Check price
Travel Style : For those looking to maximize their sight seeing time. You thrive on a packed day’s schedule from 8 am to 6pm, with some (but limited) free time. Most activities and meals included. Full on
Physical Level : Some walking over short or flat distances. Some trips may include cycling options. Some are wheelchair friendly (check for individual trips). Some cruises. Easy
Lodging Level : 3 to 4 star western hotel equivalents. While not all lodging will be 'luxury' they will be quite comfortable by western standards. Premium - 4 star
Highlights
  • Discover Colorful Thailand, Combodia and Thailand
  • Explore Hanoi to the World Heritage site
  • Visit Ho Chi Minh's House on Stilts and the nearby One Pillar Pagoda
  • Visit the ancient Japanese Bridge, Chinese temple, and the Vietnamese former merchants' house
  • Explore the incredible underground Cu Chi Tunnels network
  • Visit the War Remnants and Reunification Palace
  • Unforgettable Halong Bay cruise
Visits:
Angkor Wat, Ayutthaya, Bangkok, Cu Chi Tunnels, Ho Chi Minh, Mekong Delta, Mekong River , Saigon, Siem Reap, Tonle Sap Lake, Cambodia, Thailand, Vietnam
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Classic Indochina Vacation

20 days
$ 125 / day
$ 2,490
Travel Style : A lot of free time, with very few inclusions. Ideal for independent and/or low-key travelers and cruisers. Relaxed
Physical Level : Regular walking or cycling over moderately long, hilly, or bumpy distances. Some public transport or utility vehicles such as safari jeeps. Moderate
Lodging Level : Mid-range budget with accommodations ranging from comfortable lodges, guesthouses, and homestays to three star hotels. Value - 3 star
Highlights
  • City tours in main destinations, such as Hanoi, Saigon, Bangkok;
  • Wonderful cruise in scenic Halong Bay
  • Free leisure in the cultural old town-HoiAn
  • 2 days' immersion at famous Angkor Temples;
  • Lazy beach hours on Kho Samui
Visits:
Bangkok, Cu Chi Tunnels, Da Nang, Hanoi, Ho Chi Minh, Hoi An , Notre Dame Cathedral, Siem Reap, Cambodia, Laos, Thailand, Vietnam
View Trip

Thailand

10 days
$ 800 / day
$ 7,995
Travel Style : A lot of free time, with very few inclusions. Ideal for independent and/or low-key travelers and cruisers. Relaxed
Physical Level : Regular walking or cycling over moderately long, hilly, or bumpy distances. Some public transport or utility vehicles such as safari jeeps. Moderate
Lodging Level : The highest level of comfort and service. All accomodations are in four or five star hotels, boutique lodges or high-end homestays. Luxury - 5 star
Highlights
  • Make your trip meaningful by helping care for elephants, or teaching English to children
  • Gorgeous beaches and islands to visit
  • Spectacular diving and snorkeling
  • Thai cooking class with an expert chef
  • Guided tours of Bangkok and Chiang Mai, tailored for you
  • Luxury train journeys
  • Boat river cruise to the ancient capital Ayuthaya
  • Rockclimbing
  • Water festival fun
  • Soft trekking and biking
Visits:
Bangkok, Chiang Mai, Thailand
View Trip

Southeast Asia at A Glance

7 days
$ 171 / day
$ 1,199
Travel Style : A lot of free time, with very few inclusions. Ideal for independent and/or low-key travelers and cruisers. Relaxed
Physical Level : Some walking over short or flat distances. Some trips may include cycling options. Some are wheelchair friendly (check for individual trips). Some cruises. Easy
Lodging Level : Mid-range budget with accommodations ranging from comfortable lodges, guesthouses, and homestays to three star hotels. Value - 3 star
Highlights
  • Singapore city tour with shopping experience;
  • Close to nature-Kuala Lumpur Bird Park;
  • One full day non-stop fun and entertainment at Sunway Lagoon water park;
  • Visit Grand Palace and Wat Phra Keio in Bangkok
Visits:
Bangkok, Kuala Lumpur, Malaysia, Singapore, Thailand
View Trip

Best Of Bangkok, Hong Kong And Dubai

Indus Travels
Premier
Has very high quality customer experiences and demonstrated commitment to responsible travel practices. read more
10 days
$ 200 / day
$ 1,999
From : $ 2,699
The strike-through price reflects either the high season trip price or the average price a traveler pays for a similar itinerary when the components are booked separately.
Travel Style : You will have solid amounts of both free time and structured time with some activities and meals included. Mixed
Physical Level : Some walking over short or flat distances. Some trips may include cycling options. Some are wheelchair friendly (check for individual trips). Some cruises. Easy
Lodging Level : Mid-range budget with accommodations ranging from comfortable lodges, guesthouses, and homestays to three star hotels. Value - 3 star
Highlights
  • Travel to the incredible city of Bangkok, the bustling capital of Thailand
  • Ride to the top of Victoria Peak on the famous tram and enjoy unrivalled views of Hong Kong
  • Pick up some bargains in bustling Stanley Market in Hong Kong
  • Discover Dubai’s intriguing culture and remarkable sky scrappers
Visits:
Bangkok, Dubai, Hong Kong, China, Thailand, United Arab Emirates
View Trip

Sightseeing Tour: Best of Vietnam and Thailand

9 days
$ 146 / day
$ 1,310
Travel Style : A lot of free time, with very few inclusions. Ideal for independent and/or low-key travelers and cruisers. Relaxed
Physical Level : Some walking over short or flat distances. Some trips may include cycling options. Some are wheelchair friendly (check for individual trips). Some cruises. Easy
Lodging Level : Mid-range budget with accommodations ranging from comfortable lodges, guesthouses, and homestays to three star hotels. Value - 3 star
Highlights
  • City tour of main cities, such as Saigon, Bangkok;
  • Happy boat trip on Mekong River
  • Visit ancient cities of Thailand;
  • Unique train ride at Dealth Railway
Visits:
Bangkok, Cu Chi Tunnels, Ho Chi Minh, Mekong River , Notre Dame Cathedral, Thailand, Vietnam
View Trip

Thailand and Malaysia Happy Vacation

14 days
$ 120 / day
$ 1,680
Travel Style : A lot of free time, with very few inclusions. Ideal for independent and/or low-key travelers and cruisers. Relaxed
Physical Level : Regular walking or cycling over moderately long, hilly, or bumpy distances. Some public transport or utility vehicles such as safari jeeps. Moderate
Lodging Level : Mid-range budget with accommodations ranging from comfortable lodges, guesthouses, and homestays to three star hotels. Value - 3 star
Highlights
  • Enjoy Thailand overland tour to popular cities, such as: Uthai Thani,Lopburi, Nakhon;
  • Close to nature- Khao Yai National Park;
  • Free leisure at the cutural old town- Penang;
  • Enjoy relaxing beach time at Langkawi;
  • Highlight city tour of Kuala Lumpur
Visits:
Bangkok, Malaysia, Thailand
View Trip

Essential Vietnam, Cambodia and Thailand

Indus Travels
Premier
Has very high quality customer experiences and demonstrated commitment to responsible travel practices. read more
14 days
$ 179 / day
$ 2,199
From : $ 3,576
The strike-through price reflects either the high season trip price or the average price a traveler pays for a similar itinerary when the components are booked separately.
Travel Style : You will have solid amounts of both free time and structured time with some activities and meals included. Mixed
Physical Level : Some walking over short or flat distances. Some trips may include cycling options. Some are wheelchair friendly (check for individual trips). Some cruises. Easy
Lodging Level : Mid-range budget with accommodations ranging from comfortable lodges, guesthouses, and homestays to three star hotels. Value - 3 star
Highlights
  • Enjoy the colonial splendor and experience the lively atmosphere of dynamic Hanoi
  • Admire the scenery and dramatic rock formations as you sail on a traditional boat in Halong Bay
  • Visit the temple complex of Angkor Wat, the largest religious monument in the world
  • Explore the Wat Trimitr is home to a gigantic gold-plated reclining Buddha, in Bangkok’s Chinatown
  • Take in the atmosphere at the largest island in Thailand, Phuket
Visits:
Bangkok, Hanoi, Phuket, Siem Reap, Cambodia, Thailand, Vietnam
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Top Bangkok Experiences and Attractions

Top Bangkok Experiences

Wandering through Bangkok’s many markets, including the famous floating markets, where vendors balance their goods on tiny boats.

Experiencing Bangkok’s infamous nightlife, and if you’re bold enough to go there, watching the red light district come alive at night.

Having a delicious meal while cruising up the Apsara River and marveling at Bangkok’s incredible skyline.

Touring the Jim Thompson House museum, to see the “Thai Silk King’s” incredible art collection and home.

Going on a Thai culinary tour and learning more about one of the world’s favorite foods, trying everything from authentic specialties to  and enjoying the vibrant and crowded market scene.

Cycling through the surrounding rainforest, breathing in the clean warm air while you explore the city outskirts and watch the rural Thai life.


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Bangkok Trip Reviews

414 Bangkok Tour Reviews - Summary 100% Recommend

4.8 out of 5
Excellent 325
Great 84
Average 4
Disappointing 0
Terrible 1
Value
4.8
Guide
4.8
Activities
4.8
Lodging
4.8
Transportation
4.8
Meals
4.8

Tour Reviews Write a Review

Guide in Cambodia was very informative

5.0
  • Value 5.0
  • Guide 5.0
  • Activities 5.0
  • Lodging 5.0
  • Transportation 5.0
  • Meals 5.0

Excellent balance of things to see/do and free time afterwards. Guide in Cambodia was very informative..

Read more
Operator Ritz Tours

India Tour

5.0
  • Value 5.0
  • Guide 5.0
  • Activities 5.0
  • Lodging 5.0
  • Transportation 5.0
  • Meals 5.0

The whole experience of our visit to India and Shimla was amazing highly organized, saw lots, experience incredible -don’t go expecting a relaxed holiday it’s busy but then what you see and experience is out of this world.rebecca our tour guide was so informative and helpful - my first time with Riveria and it won’t be my last the sighting of the tigers was the icing on the cake.

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Operator Riviera Travel

Every guide was extremely knowledgeable

5.0
  • Value 5.0
  • Guide 5.0
  • Activities 5.0
  • Lodging 5.0
  • Transportation 5.0
  • Meals 5.0

I had never been to southeast Asia, so I searched for a reliable travel agent to help me. I found Odynovo through a google search, and was hesitant to work through my travel plans via email. But after checking some excellent online reviews, I decided to contact them for more information. Odynovo responded quickly, providing me with an extensive and detailed itinerary. The entire itinerary was well thought out, and executed with out a problem! We booked a private tour, and an English speaking guide was there to greet us at every stop. Every guide was extremely knowledgeable of the area and the history, and the expert drivers knew how to navigate the areas. Thank you, Nikki (Odynovo) for a wonderful vacation!

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Operator Indochina Odyssey Tours

Thailand

5.0
  • Value 5.0
  • Guide 2.0
  • Activities 5.0
  • Lodging 5.0
  • Transportation 5.0
  • Meals 4.0

My boyfriend & I used Gate1 for our trip to Bangkok, Thailand and it was the smartest thing we could have done. We did not choice a tour guide or tours with the company, but we did realize on our next trip we will. But even though we did everything on our own, it was so extremely easy knowing they had all of our travels and hotel accommodations taken care of- after all those are the top two things everyone worries about when traveling.
We planning on using gate1 again, actually he wants to do a whole trip through Europe with the help of GATE1 travel.

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Operator Gate 1

My son and I had a wonderful experience with Hands Up Holidays

5.0
  • Value 5.0
  • Guide 5.0
  • Activities 5.0
  • Lodging 5.0
  • Transportation 5.0
  • Meals 5.0

My son and I had a wonderful experience with Hands Up Holidays. We volunteered at the Elephant Nature Park in Chiang Mai, Thailand, something we've dreamed of doing for a long time. Thanks to the hard work and dedication of Chris Hill, our dream was able to be realized. There were other parts of Thailand we wanted to explore as well, and Hands Up Holidays made all the arrangements, providing transportation and friendly, knowledgeable and experienced guides who promptly met us at the various airports we flew into. The hotels Chris booked for us far exceeded our expectations. Chris is so pleasant and worked with us every step of the way, quickly answering every question and concern and making sure every detail was taken care of. We were provided with all the information and phone numbers we needed to contact our local guides and everything went extremely smoothly from beginning to end. Chris even personally checked up on us at one point when my son was not feeling well. I would without hesitation recommend Chris and Hands Up Holidays for a volunteer experience of a lifetime!

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Operator Hands Up Holidays

Treasures of Thailand

5.0
  • Value 5.0
  • Guide 5.0
  • Activities 5.0
  • Lodging 5.0
  • Transportation 5.0
  • Meals 5.0

Loved the variety of activities! Learning to cook local dishes was great but a bit too long. The Thai massage was a different experience. The Palace and Wat Phra Kaew were amazing but I would recommend going earlier in the day to avoid Bangkok's heat. Loved the ruins of Ayutthaya and Sukhothai. We would gladly have traded Hellfire Pass for more time in either of those places.

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Operator Trafalgar

Bangkok Tours and Travel Guide

Bangkok Attractions & Landmarks Guide

Travelers tend to either adore or revile Bangkok. Awash with exotic wats (temples), crisscrossed by busy klongs (canals), site of the amazingly intricate architecture of the Thai Royal Palace, and center of one of the world’s most beloved cuisines, Bangkok is also choked with traffic, beset with political protests, and home to one of the world’s most wide-open red light districts. In sum, it’s never dull, and, in the end, you have to experience it for yourself – a must-see on any Thailand tour.

The Thai name for Bangkok is a mouthful to say the least. But it’s something every local learns in elementary school: "Krung Thep Mahanakhon amon Rattanakosin mahintara ayuthaya mahadilok phoP noppharat Ratchathani Burirom udomratchaniwet mahasathan amon piman awatan Sathit sakkathattiya witsanukam Prast." Thankfully there is a short version: Krung Thep Maha Nakhon (or Krungthep on some maps), which means means "City of Angels" in English.

Bangkok is Thailand’s capital, located in the southern part of the country, on the Gulf of Thailand. It’s gained a reputation for being one of the world’s busiest most vibrant cities, full of character - known especially for the nightlife and food scene. There’s a reason it remained as Travel and Leisure’s “World’s Best City” for 4 consecutive years.

In every part of the city, something different is happening, from a street full of Middle Eastern restaurants to upscale shopping. Crowded walking streets, among market stalls, street food, and various knick knacks for sale as motorcycles whizz by you, adding to the heartbeat of the city.

There is plenty to see and do in Bangkok even if you’re not interested in the bar scene. Hidden markets and shops down entrancing allies, food choices like you wouldn't believe, and tons of historical and cultural sights. Head to Rattanakosin Island in Phra Nakhon District to escape the crowds, or explore the Grand Palace as well as multiple other historical landmarks, including several Buddhist temples.

Bangkok Food Tours

Although Thai food is among the most popular foods in the world, travelers only usually know the staple thai dishes of green & red curry, pad thai, and thai fried rice. What travelers don’t know is that Thai food is very regional and highly varied. Going on a guided culinary tour will ensure that you get out of your comfort zone and learn more about Thai delicacies and traditional foods.

You will be connected with actual local people and restaurants out of the tourist loop, learning more not just about food and its origins, but the culture of the people who make and consume it.

Some tours also teach you how to cook the food you eat, which is a great way to really connect with the food, and interact with Thai people. It also means you will pick up new skills you can keep after returning home. Other trips might involve staying in a Bangkok homestay, or actually require you to hit the markets (floating or regular!) in order to get your ingredients.

No matter the shape of your Bangkok food tour, it is a great way to interact with your host city and experience Thai culture in an entirely new way.

Top Activities in Bangkok

Bangkok provides a great introduction to Thai culture. Regional art museums, theater, history, and a local food scene make this the perfect start on a tour of Thailand. And once you’ve had your fill of culture, you can enjoy a meal of street food before taking in the city's infamous nightlife.

1. Grand Palace - The Grand Palace of Bangkok has its beginnings in the late 1700s, when construction began. It served as a home for Thai kings for over 100 years, and today is a museum and historical landmark - still used for ceremonies and gatherings of the countries government officials.

It’s name certainly describes it well, as the palace is indeed quite grand, both in scope and decoration. There is a fascinating blend of international architectural styles, reflecting the many uses and important periods of Thai history the building has touched.

2. Wat Arun - Known as the “Temple of Dawn” this beautiful location has attracted visitors for centuries. Situated along the banks of the Chao Phraya River, Wat Arun is made up of colorful spires and designed as a representation of Mount Meru - a significant Buddhist symbol. Many river cruises along Chao Phraya stop here for tours of the temples.

3. Floating Market - Thailand is known for its many markets, in particular the alluring floating market. Today, this is a bit of a tourist trap, and much less of a local market experience, however it’s still worth doing for the novelty. It’s great for travel photography enthusiasts as well. Every nook and cranny reveals something new, and many bright colors swirl around, reflected in the water.

4. Chatuchak Weekend Market - Perhaps the second most well known market in Thailand is Chatuchak Weekend Market. Especially notable for its size, the market attracts over 200,000 people a day, and has over 15,000 booths selling everything from food to crafts.

Give yourself ample time to explore - part of the allure to the Chatuchak market is getting lost among the stalls and appreciating the incredible diversity and craftmanship in products, as well as sample the many delicious food items.

5. Jim Thompson House - Commonly referred to as one of America’s first major entrepreneurs, Jim Thompson was a silk trader and art collector in the early twentieth century. He lived in Bangkok for a time before mysteriously disappearing in 1967 while on vacation in Malaysia. His home is set up a bit like a time capsule, with original furnishings and the large collection of art pieces he owned.

6. National Museum - Set in what was an ancient palace, the National Museum in Bangkok is generally regarded to be the largest museum in Southeast Asia. An impressive amount of artifacts fill the rooms, and the many exhibits are best experienced with a guide who can provide more extensive historical context.

7. Wat Pho - The “Temple of the Reclining Buddha”. This is a classic Bangkok attraction, situated right behind the Temple of the Emerald Buddha. It features a 150 foot long statue of Buddha in a reclining position, covered in gold leaf. Truly a sight to behold.

The Bangkok “Backpacker District”

Bangkok, and to that end the entirety of Southeast Asia, has gained a reputation over recent years as a popular destination where travelers, particularly western travelers, come to live the backpacker lifestyle.

Many a life long traveler has stated that their love of travel began in this magical corner of the world, where cultures collide, friendly locals present a welcoming vibe, food and drink is cheap, and you meet countless other young and old travelers seeking all that Southeast Asia has to offer.

Bangkok is a bit of a capital in this realm. For a taste of the backpacker spirit, which is still very much alive and well in the wake of surging tourism to Thailand, head to Khao San Road. A concentrated area of hostels, bars, restaurants, and shops. This is a great place to come to meet other international travelers and learn some hidden secrets in Bangkok and Southeast Asia.

Photography Tips for Bangkok

There are three main areas you’ll want to focus in for Bangkok photography: Temples, Markets, and Nighttime.

Temple Photography in Bangkok

Temples often present challenging lighting situations as they can be dark inside, or heavy with shadows. Practice shooting with your flash or different settings in order to get the best possible shots.

You’ll want to have the best lighting possible to capture the many intricacies and details throughout the temple. Also know that many temples in Bangkok utilize large amounts of gold. When hit with sunlight, gold is extremely reflective - practice shooting in these conditions so you don’t get overly bright flares.  

Market Photography in Bangkok

Markets are catnip for travel photographers. They reveal wonderful nuances, delightful “day-in-the-life” moments in time as locals buy their groceries or meet with friends. They are also full of bright colors, patterns, and craftsmanship.

Then you have the quintessential street food shot, the steam rising up from various pots serving delicious Thai delights, adding to the incredible ambiance. A photograph couldn’t capture the noise and the aromas, but it can present the look and feel.  

To get the best photography in Bangkok’s markets, you first need to know which market you’ll be attending. Among the most popular market destinations is the Floating Market.

This incredibly unique space has been attracting tourists to Bangkok for years. Today the Floating Market is not really populated by locals doing their shopping, but if you give in to the touristy nature, you’ll get some spectacular photographs.

Be careful with bringing a lot of heavy or bulky equipment as your tour the canals and stalls. You’ll be on the water most of the time, in a very open boat, in close proximity to a lot of hands. The fewer items you need to keep an eye on the better. Natural lighting will give you the best photos - when shooting with a telephoto, optimize for the darker areas to get the many details.

Night Photography in Bangkok

Bangkok is one of the best cities for night photography. The city come alive with activity, mystery and intrigue are everywhere. The many vibrant and busy streets of bars and restaurants and other establishments fill the streets with a unique population of travelers and local business owners.

Night photography is notoriously difficult, especially when the lighting is unpredictable. In Bangkok you’ll also have to contend with a lot of people, which can block the light you might get from doorways. Consider using a tripod and external flash with filtering so the photograph still picks up the details in the streets, visible to the naked eye, but not to the camera.

Top Bangkok Travel Companies

Things to Know Before You Go

Bangkok Weather & Best Time to Visit

Between November and February is typically stated as the best time to visit Bangkok. This is because this is the driest season of the year, and you won’t have to worry about getting caught in a monsoon, or overpowering humidity.

If you are looking to save money (not a futile objective in Thailand, where affordable travel is very possible!), consider traveling between April and October. This is the hottest and rainiest time of the year, with temperatures reaching the mid-90’s Fahrenheit on average.

Traveling at this time means you also miss the tourist crowds, and when temperatures are 90 on average the rest of the year, the change in temperature isn’t that dramatic. Just pack a raincoat and some waterproof shoes!

There are also several festivals and key events during each of these times that you may want to plan your travel around. If this is something that interests you, consider a Thailand festival tour

Between the “off-season” of April to October, some of the key events include:

  • Visakha Bucha: this is a day in April that is the most important Buddhist holiday in Thailand. It celebrates the three main events of Buddha’s life by processing to the temple with flowers, incense sticks, and listening to recitations of the Dhamma teaching.
  • Songkran: This is the Thai water festival, where people flood the streets and shoot each other with water guns and celebrate together and wash away bad luck. Outside of the city center, more traditional celebrations with floating images of the Buddha take place.
  • International Festival of Dance and Music: as the name suggests, this is a massive cultural exposition of Thai dance and music, as well as art forms from other parts of the world.
  • Moon Festival: This is time of year when Thai families gather to say thank you to their ancestors as well as celebrate the harvest season. They gift and indulge in mooncakes made of lotus, red bean, sesame, salted egg, and durian.

And between the prime traveler season of November to February, several of Bangkok’s main events are:

  • Makha Bucha: This is one of the four most important Buddhist festivals, and celebrates the month when Buddha delivered his core teachings. Besides giving food to monks, people meditate en masse in white robes, and process to certain significant sites (In Bangkok, these places include the Golden Mountain and Marble Temple).
  • Chinese New Year: Also known as the Spring Festival in Thailand, this holiday celebrates the New Year. To celebrate this, a Lantern Festival occurs for two weeks, and on the main three days of the festival, there are exciting parades led by fire breathing characters and dragons, and people drink, eat, celebrate, and light off firecrackers to scare away evil spirits.
  • Loy Krathong: This Siamese festival takes place on the final full moon in the last month of the year, and means “to float”. This comes from the practice of floating both floral bouquets, bits of Thai food, and candles down the river. The festival originates from paying homage to the water spirits, but is now practiced in the spirit of tradition, and is now sometimes accompanied by fireworks and a beauty contest.
  • Golden Mount Temple Fair: This fair encircles the famous Golden Mount of Bangkok, and begins when a red cloth is used to cover the temple. People gather at the site to enjoy cultural shows, traditional music and games, market food, as well as martial arts performances.

Bangkok Safety

Bangkok is known to be a safe city, though of course you should always be on alert when you are in an unfamiliar place. Your biggest threat in Bangkok will be petty theft, the risk of which increases if you choose to enjoy the city’s rambunctious nightlife. Here are a few things to be mindful of:

Minor scams: Getting overcharged by taxis and tuktuks occasionally happens, but be easily avoided if you ask the driver to turn his meter on, or agree to a price beforehand. If you are particularly worried about getting overcharged, hold a map so you can ensure your driver takes the shortest possible route. If you ask for a taxi service recommended by your hotel, however, you will likely be able to completely avoid this issue

Pickpocketing: at the main tourist attractions, there is always a chance someone may try to pick your pockets. Never carry all of your belongings, remain aware of yourself, and keep things in interior pockets. If you are a woman, consider ditching the purse, which makes it easier for bag snatching to occur.

Fakes: If you are buying brand-name items or jewels off the street, know that these are almost guaranteed to be fakes. This may seem obvious, but some tourists end up getting persuaded by a particularly clever dealer!

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