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5 things to do - Bangkok

Wat Arun, on the banks of the Mekong River
Touring the Klongs by long-tail boat
Thai cuisine
Bangkok at night

Eat Thailand is justifiably-renowned for its cuisine. The capital is naturally the best place to find all your favourite Thai dishes, but adventurous foodies should look beyond the usual green curry or pad Thai. Chinatown is one of the city’s best grazing areas, with culinary influences from across the region found in amongst the tantalising and never-ending street stalls. Special mention also goes to local markets such as Nang Leong and Or Tor Kor to sample produce and specialities from across the country.

Temple-touring While firmly on the tourist trail, Bangkok’s numerous temples among the most impressive in Asia.  Headline acts Wat Arun (the Temple of Dawn, found on the banks of the Chao Praya) and Wat Po (featuring a vast complex of stupas, an enormous reclining Buddha, and home of the leading school of Thai massage) never disappoint. Neither too does the Grand Palace and Wat Phra Keo – the most significant Buddhist temple in Thailand.

Muay Thai The national sport of Thailand is not for the faint-hearted, but remains an unforgettable experience. Fight Night at the MBK Stadium will feature a number of amateur bouts, while a pricier trip to Lumpini Stadium will give you a chance to see the leading stars of the national game in action. Both are worth a trip just to be a part of a raucous resident crowd; a cold beer and a flutter are readily available for those seeking a truly local experience.

Cruise the Klongs For a taste of how Bangkok may have looked just a couple of decades ago, we recommend taking a long-tail boat through Thonburi’s multitude of narrow, bustling waterways. Many of the city’s canals have been concreted over but here you will get a first-hand impression of more traditional way of life. In the same vein, we also recommend a trip down the Chao Praya River, or journey out of the city to Damnoen Saduak’s famous floating market.  

Relax Hard to imagine possible in such a dynamic and energetic metropolis, but Bangkok has limitless opportunities to blow off steam. If retail therapy appeals, there are a multitude of bustling markets and glistening shopping centres (such as Chatuchak Weekend Market, or MBK and Paragon Shopping Malls) to suit. Alternatively, indulge in traditional Thai massage, yoga, or meditation in sites across the city. 

Posted by Luke on 07 November 2013

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