Things to do in Bangkok
Like a choose-your-own adventure book, Bangkok has many paths to explore. Some are well-paved routes while others are barely touched by tourists. Most travellers to Bangkok will find themselves pumping the pavement to the city's most famous attractions; the temples, the palaces, the shopping malls.
For all the Thai capital's numerous temples, it's Wat Arun and Wat Suthat that attract the most visitors, and their spectacular architecture is ideal for a snapshot ofa more traditional side of Bangkok. Then there is the futuristic side, one where buildings scrape the sky and shopping malls are closer to climate-controlled, manmade worlds such as the popular Central World or MBK Centre - both perfect retreats when the city's humidity and chaotic streets get too much to handle.
While its impressive architectural marvels are worthy of their well-beaten path, it's Bangkok's day-to-day life that will provide you with the authentic flavours of Thailand's capital. Walk along the canals to experience the 'Venice of the East'. Take your Bahts and test your barter skills at the Chatuchak Weekend Market. Tuck into a bowl of Bangkok's finest in colourful Chinatown. Whatever path you take, don't forget to flash a smile. You're in the 'Land of Smiles' now after all.
To make planning your Bangkok holiday easier, here are some of the city's must dos.
The most famous temple in Bangkok is also known as the Temple of Dawn and its striking silhouette of multiple towers is seen to best effect on a sunset cruise along the Chao Phraya river.
To truly experience Bangkok, the Grand Palace is a must. As the official residence of the Kings of Siam (later known as Thailand) since 1782, the palace is a fantastic example of traditional architecture and craftsmanship.
As one of the shopping capitals of the world, leave plenty of room in your suitcase on your return flight from Bangkok. Mahboonkrong, better known as MBK will divulge you of Baht with over 1,000 stalls selling everything from gold to electronics.
Keen to dive headfirst into the colour and chaos of Bangkok? Then you best make your way to Chinatown, Bangkok's most congested district with a bustling one-kilometre strip along Thanon Charoen Krung and Thanon Yaowarat.
With over 8,000 stalls in a sprawling labyrinthine marketplace, Bangkok's Chatuchak Weekend Market attracts around 250,000 people every weekend and a must-do experience for foodies, shoppers and all your souvenir needs.
For a different market experience, Damnoen Saduak Floating Market south of Bangkok sees local vendors plying their trade along the canals with Thai-style canoes laden with fresh produce, snacks, sweets and even meals cooked on the boats.