The sights, sounds and smells of Chinatown are an assault to the senses so visitors should be prepared. But for anyone with a sense of adventure, a day lost among the many market alleys and street food vendors can be the most memorable of any spent in Bangkok. Due to the mix of Chinese and Thai cultures, this area is unique and fascinating, especially for photographers who'll find stunning temples, exotic street food and everyday street scenes just begging to be captured.
It can be daunting to enter Chinatown without a plan so check out our pick of the best attractions in Chinatown so you can make the most of your day. Just be sure to wear your comfiest shoes and be prepared for the heat!
- Damnoen Saduak Floating Market Tour
- Banyan Tree's Apsara Dinner Cruise
- Vertigo & Moon Bar Rooftop Dining
- Ayutthaya Ancient Capital Tour with River Cruise
- Shangri-La Hotel's Buffet Dinner Cruise
- Bridge on the River Kwai & Historic Railway Tour
- Siam Niramit Dinner Show
- Calypso Bangkok Cabaret Show
- Chao Phraya River Dinner Cruise
- Grand Palace & Emerald Buddha Half-Day Tour
Interested in this tour? Book it here.
Tourists flock into Wat Traimit to see the largest gold Buddha in the world. The revered statue, seated on an altar and surrounded by traditional Thai golden arches, is breathtaking and is a regular pilgrimage for Buddhists and inquisitive tourists.
Located close to Hua Lampong MRT Station, the temple is a great stop on your way to or from the subway station. The view from the top of Wat Traimit offers a sight of the ornate Chinatown Gate nearby and receives a refreshing breeze, which blows through the open doors of the temple meaning visitors can enjoy marvelling at the dimensions of the Buddha statue without perspiring from the heat. Read More...
- Opening Hours: Daily from 8am to 5pm
- Location: 661 Charoen Krung Rd, Talat Noi, Samphanthawong, Bangkok 10100, Thailand
- Tel: +66 (0)89 002 2700
Sampeng Lane is a long, narrow street intersecting Chinatown, where you'll find a jumble of goods for sale. Much like the rest of the area, Sampeng Lane is cluttered, chaotic and a lot of fun. The dimensions of this street are so limited, in certain parts, that you could stretch out across the alley and grab a pair of flip-flops in one hand and a Christmas tree in the other. Yet unbelievably, this was the original high street of Chinatown when the Chinese community first moved here! Read More...
- Opening Hours: Daily from 8am to 6pm (hours vary)
- Location: Soi Wanit 1, Yaowarat, Samphanthawong, Bangkok 10100, Thailand
An ornate ceremonial gate is a familiar sight in Chinese enclaves throughout the world, and considering Bangkok is home to the world’s largest Chinatown, the China Gate at the western entrance to the area is suitably impressive. Built in 1999, the huge gate is actually called the King’s Birthday Celebration Arch, signifying the loyalty of the Chinese community to King Bhumibol of Thailand. It was opened in time to celebrate the king’s 60th year on the throne. The China Gate in Bangkok sits in the middle of a large traffic island from which Yaowarat Road, the main body of Chinatown, runs parallel with the river. It makes a great background image to a photo.
- Location: 322 Tri Mit Rd, Talat Noi, Samphanthawong, Bangkok 10100, Thailand
At night, Yaowarat Road – the high street of Bangkok’s Chinatown – transforms into one of the greatest street food locations in the world. Locals and visitors can be seen all along the main thoroughfare sampling their way through all that there is to offer, turning dinner into an evening of exploration. It can be confusing at first but, with a sense of adventure, it can be a lot of fun. Popular offerings include dim sum, oyster omelettes, flat noodles in a pepper broth, and lots of fresh seafood. There are also many exotic fruits on offer, as well as homemade ice cream (we love coconut, but for something truly Thai, go for durian). Traffic is very bad in this area so we recommend taking the MRT Underground to Hua Lamphong Station, and then either a 15-minute walk or a short tuk tuk ride. Read More...
- Location: Yaowarat Rd, Samphanthawong, Bangkok, Thailand
Sky View 360 at Grand China Hotel
Get a surprising panoramic view of Chinatown and beyond, all the way to the Chao Phraya River with a not-too-expensive drink or meal. It takes about 2 hours for the Sky View 360˙restaurant to complete a full round and you barely notice any movement.
The restaurant serves Thai, European, Japanese and Chinese food with old fashioned waiters and waitresses and live piano background music. This viewpoint is not very well known and is a great place to take an air-conditioned break any time past 5pm after a tiring exploration of busy Chinatown.
- Opening Hours: Daily from 7am to 12am
- Location: Grand China Hotel Bangkok, 215 Yaowarat Rd, Samphanthawong, Bangkok 10100, Thailand
- Tel: +66 (0)2 224 9977
Wat Mangkol Kamalawat
Nestled in the heart of Chinatown, Bangkok's most important and largest Chinese-Buddhist temple is a hub of activities during festivals like Chinese New Year. It contains spectacular Buddhist, Taoist and Confucian shrines and dates back to 1872. It was called Wat Leng Nui Yee until King Rama V but later changed to Wat Mangkon Kamalawat (which means Dragon Lotus Temple).
- Location: 423 Charoen Krung Rd, Pom Prap, Pom Prap Sattru Phai, Bangkok 10100, Thailand
- Tel: +66 (0)2 222 3975
Romaneenart Park is located on the eastern edge of Chinatown and offers respite from the dizzying traffic of Yaowarat Road. Here you can see people jogging, working out and practising Chinese fan dancing (called lam pat in Thai). There's a large expanse of grass and many squirrels jumping from tree to tree.
Built on the site of the old city jail, Romaneenart Park retains one wall and some of the old guard towers as part of the park's architectural features, in addition to the neo-classical buildings in the style of the King Rama V period. A large number of fountains help keep the park cool in the middle of the big city.
- Opening Hours: Daily from 5am to 9pm
- Location: 649-665 Maha Chai Rd, Samran Rat, Phra Nakhon, Bangkok 10200, Thailand
Trying to experience all Bangkok has to offer in a short period of time is a near-impossible task. The sheer size and variety of this friendly city reveals new wonders to even long-time residents, so what is the best way to make the most of short break in Bangkok? Cars are too far removed from the experience and walking is too slow in such a big place. The answer is to hop on a bicycle and use peddle-power.
A bicycle tour of Chinatown and Thonburi (on the opposite side of the river) is a half-day trip that introduces you to hectic market scenes, centuries-old temples and narrow alleyways where life carries on much as it has for generations. The knowledgeable guide complements the sights with facts and stories in a fun and engaging way that helps add context to the experience. Read More...
Wat Chakawat Ratchawat (The Crocodile Temple)
A very unusual sight for those who thought they’d seen everything. Inside the temple complex at Wat Chakrawat, behind the beautiful curved stupa, there's a murky pond housing 3 giant crocodiles who lie, half-submerged in the water, waiting for their next meal. Legend has it that the crocodiles kept eating young monks so they were trapped and housed here.
- Opening Hours: Daily from 8am to 6pm
- Location: Chakkrawat, Samphanthawong, Bangkok 10100, Thailand
Built in 1933 under Royal Patronage, Sala Chalermkrung is a charming theatre that's immaculately maintained with period fittings that whisk you back in time 80 years. These include a mass of brass fittings, red velvet cushions and sepia photographs. Everything looks as fresh as it did when Chalerm Krung opened its doors as the first cinema with audio and air-conditioning in Thailand. Nowadays, the theatre is home to Khon, a Thai masked dance that's tasked with maintaining Thailand’s traditional performance art and dance. The show is a mixture of exquisite costume, traditional dance and a historical epic about a double-crossing demon. Read More...
- Opening Hours: Thursdays and Fridays from 7.30pm
- Location: 66 Chalermkrung Road, Wang Burapha Phirom, Phra Nakhon, Bangkok 10200, Thailand
- Tel: +66 (0)2 222 0434