Discover Bangkok

The bar enjoys a stunning panoramic view of Bangkok’s sprawling cityscape, and highlights its growing cosmopolitan nature.

Elements of modernity, antiquity, progression and devotion all peacefully coexist, in a fascinating puzzle of sights and sounds that lends the Thai capital an unrivalled energy.  

Local tradition and culture are highly revered and best explored through the city’s dazzling temples (wats).  More than 400 can be found, their roofs glittering, amid endless warrens of streets. Wat Pra Kaew, Wat Arun and Wat Pho are stand-outs and must be seen to be believed. 

Wat Phra Kaew (Temple of the Emerald Buddha) enshrines a highly-cherished image of Buddha carved from a single block of jade. Situated behind Wat Phra Kaew, Wat Pho (Temple of the Reclining Buddha) is home to a giant, 46-metre Buddha covered in gold leaf. Across the Chao Phraya River, Wat Arun (Temple of the Dawn) stands majestically, showing off visually stunning and colourfully decorated spires.

While temples tell a tale of Bangkok’s traditions and respected past, a plethora of modern buildings highlight the city’s focus on the future, and burgeoning reputation as a global pacesetter. Skyscrapers jostle for space within the dense skyline, boasting international business conglomerates, world-class hotels, five-star shopping facilities and legendary nightlife haunts. 

Made famous by The Hangover Part II, Sky Bar is one of the city’s most popular night-time hotspots. Suspended 63 floors up  atop the Lebua Hotel’s State Tower  the bar enjoys a stunning panoramic view of Bangkok’s sprawling cityscape, and highlights its growing cosmopolitan nature. The Banyan Tree hotel’s Vertigo and Moon Bar is another great example of the city’s new penchant for the sophisticated high life.   

The city’s contrasts can also be explored through its diverse shopping and dining opportunities. Bangkok is a shopper's and foodie's heaven, home to a myriad of traditional and contemporary settings.

Swarming with bargain-hunters and local vendors, markets  like the Chatuchak Weekend Market and Pratunam Market  cover whole city blocks and offer an authentic insight into centuries’-old Thai culture. Towering above street-level markets, department stores and malls  such as Mah Boon Krong (MBK) Centre Siam Square  embrace western-style shopping conventions and represent the Bangkok-of-the-future. 

Bangkok’s most authentic and traditional flavours are best experienced through local street food vendors, who serve up delicacies like pan-fried seasoned ants and grasshoppers, alongside national dishes such as tom yum koong and seafood yellow curry in food zones like Chakraphong Road, Banglamphu Market, Thonglor Night Market and Ratchaprasong.

On the flip side, Bangkok is quickly garnering a reputation as an international culinary hotspot, so much so that the city is rumoured to receive its own Michelin Guide, with restaurants like Nahm, Yamazato, Sra Bua, D’Sens and Issaya Siamese Club touted to be awarded Stars. 

Words by Alice Nash - Published 26 August 2013
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