For those who are lucky enough to enjoy an overnight port stay to explore Bangkok, the “Venice of the East”, with Azamara Club Cruises®, there’s so much to see, do and eat it can be hard to know where to begin!
Which is why we’ve created this 48 hour guide of the must-see places, how to get there and what to eat along the way for the richest experience.
All of our must-see places are based on recommendations from fellow travelers. But you can find even more information through the Azamara Cruise Global Connect Local onshore program, which is dedicated to providing you true immersive cultural experiences.
Any architectural enthusiast will delight in Bangkok, and there’s no better place to take in the city’s architectural beauty than the Grand Palace. Featuring 218,000 sq. meters, the Palace is home to an assortment of government offices.
Sitting beside the Grand Palace is the Chapel of the Emerald Buddha, built in 1785 the chapel is home to a 26 inch Buddha carved of green jade. But that alone is just one reason to stop here, the exterior is covered in ornate gilt dragons, tiles and bronze bells which tinkle in the wind.
Of course the Grand Palace is but one of the estimated 40,000 beautiful chapels and temples around the city. Each has its own special story and beauty, but here are some of the favorites to help guide you.
With over 40,000 temples, your head will be on a swivel to catch them all.
Home to James H.W. Thompson, a successful entrepreneur who founded the Jim Thompson Thai Silk Company. His achievements while living there for over 25 years earned him the title of “Legendary American of Thailand” and he’s become quite a legend for his achievements.
An avid outdoor enthusiast, he and four friends disappeared during an exploration of the jungle in Malaysia. The house has been left almost exactly as it was since Thompson disappeared in 1967. You’ll find six traditional Thai-style house made of teak and surrounded by beautiful tropical gardens.
With more overnights and late night stays, Azamara allows you to experience the night scene! For those interested in dancing the night away and sipping on Thai Whiskey, the Levels Club and Lounge is where the most popular DJ’s and performers can often be found. Anything goes in this night club, and visitors are sure to find whatever nightlight you seek. R&B hits can be enjoyed in the main room; funky beats take place out on the terrace.
When traveling short distances, especially in the heart of Bangkok, try a tuk tuk.
When you cruise to Thailand, this means other types of transportation will be needed to travel around around Bangkok. For those looking to travel quickly to and from a restaurant or attraction, the BTS Skytrain system is easy to spot since it’s above ground and has 32 stations. It operates much like the NYC Subway or Chicago El, you’ll buy a ticket then hop on board.
Another efficient way to travel around Bangkok is underground on the Bangkok MRT, which features trains at each of the 18 stations every five minutes.
When traveling short distances, especially in the heart of Bangkok, there are three main forms of transportation: taxis, walking and taking a ride on a Tuk Tuk. While the Tuk Tuk is fun, it’s really more about the experience than a quick mode of transport due to traffic.
You won’t have to look far for a tasty dining in Bangkok, local eateries are open all hours and provide the perfect opportunity to taste some authentic dishes.
If you’re looking for fine dining, three of the more noteworthy restaurants include Savelberg is a Michelen restaurant featuring unique French inspired dishes, while Nahm creates out of this world Thai inspired dishes by another world renowned chef.
Another great way to get immersed in the culture is by participating in a cooking class with Azamara’s Cruise Global Taste Local excursion. Even though not in Bangkok, during this voyage you can Shop Hoi An market for fresh ingredients to use in your cooking class lead by a local chef. Create traditional Vietnamese dishes, and then set out on a tour of this World Cultural Heritage site.
Of course, the backpackers’ district, a jam packed street market located in the heart of the city, is where you’ll find some of the most authentic traditional eats. If you’re looking for something a bit more upscale and laid back, hop a few streets over to Phra Arthit Road.
Of course this is just a snippet of what you could see, do and eat while in Bangkok, but it’s a great place to start planning your itinerary.