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3 Days in Bangkok – Thailand Travel Guide

Hi Everyone! Emma here.. Back in January, my best friend and I traveled through Thailand for 3 weeks and had the most amazing time. So many of you have been asking for me to share a little more of our experience so I’ve decided to write a multi-part series based on the different places we went to. Today’s post is all about Bangkok and our short 3 days there.

To prepare for our extensive trip we planned as much as we could ahead of time. We spent almost a year saving and researching on what to do and where to go. Were we a little nervous because we were two girls traveling alone? Yes, however both of us have always wanted to do this and we felt prepared and more comfortable once we scheduled our trip and began planning. It was my friend’s first time traveling abroad, besides a quick trip to Mexico.. and it was my first time traveling abroad without family. Even though Thailand is half way across the world and we were a little nervous, we had heard so many amazing things about the country and the people from others that we were excited. I’m always up for challenges and trying new things and this had been on my bucket list for quite some time. I have to say, Thailand did not disappoint. While there, we encountered some of the kindest and most generous people and made so many connections. Neither of us had ever laughed so hard nor had so much fun. In fact on the day we were to leave, we both cried. Now I know why Thailand is known as the “land of smiles!” . It’s a happy place.

Because Thailand was new and unfamiliar to us we researched a ton prior to our trip to figure out the basics on communication, money and customs. Here are a few very basic things that we learned that helped us daily:

  • Currency is called Thai Baht – 30 baht = $1 US.
  • Language – We learned how to say hello (sawadeekah) and thank you (khab kuhn kah). It’s important to be polite wherever you go.
  • Sun safety – bring sunscreen with you – The sunscreen in Thailand is extremely expensive and usually contains a whitening solution. Who knew?
  • Getting Around – When taking a taxi anywhere – insist on the meter. This tip ended up saving us while we were in the city… many drivers try to see if you’ll pay a higher rate by bartering beforehand. Many times we used the uber-like app “GRAB” which gave us a firm price ahead of time.
  • Respect local customs regarding shoes – Pay attention to what those around you are doing, such as removing your shoes before going temples and other places.

First Night:

When we first landed in Bangkok we were SO excited! We instantly headed for the taxi line area at the airport. We had already downloaded the “GRAB” app which is an uber like service. Unfortunately we were unable to find the Grab pick-up area, so we opted to take a standard taxi. This wasn’t a great experience for us… Not only did we encounter a 25 minute line, the taxi driver didn’t want to turn the meter on. They love to over charge you.. We kept insisting he turn on the meter which he finally did after 10 minutes or so. Always have the taxi use the meter!

My advice: If you don’t want to deal with any hassle, just pre-book a shuttle from the airport to your hotel. They pick you up with a personalized sign which allows you to bypass the chaos after a long flight.

Hotels & Accommodation

We began our trip at the Hilton Millenium Bangkok, which was absolutely beautiful. We booked a gorgeous suite for around $125 a night. Unheard of in the U.S! In Thailand, hotel accommodations are much lower in price.

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This hotel had the most gorgeous pool on a high floor that overlooked the river. We loved using it every day.

3 Days in Bangkok | Thailand Travel Guide - Best sites, hotels, places to eat and spas in Bangkok Thailand

photo via Hilton

While we enjoyed staying here, we were a disappointed to find it was a little far from all the action…

Other Hotels closer to main sites:

Click here to earn $25 towards your stay if you book.. then click on the links below after!

  • Travelodge Sukhumvit 11 – Price is unbeatable, with a rooftop pool, in the heart of Bangkok (Chinatown), highly rated. Click here.
  • Methavalai Residence – Amazing location in the heart of old town, the price is incredible, renovated & updated, high reviews. Click here.
  • Chillax Heritage – great reviews, awesome location near all the sites, inexpensive, and breakfast included! Click here.
  • Hotel Clover Asoke – Adorable hotel next to Lumpini park which you have to visit while you’re in Bangkok, high reviews and inexpensive prices. Click here.

Also make sure to check out the local AirBnB’s.. they have fabulous and inexpensive options in Bangkok.
Earn $40 off your first stay by signing up with my link: here.

  • Beautiful Modern Loft – $40 per night, pretty design, great location next to skytrain, full kitchen & amenities. Click here.
  • Pool Light Loft – Another beautiful and renovated loft with amenities such as a washer/dryer, a pool, gym, and more. $55 per night. Click here.
  • Boutique Designed Condo – Gorgeous space with a pool, amazing price, your own front door & amenities. $87 per night. Click here.

The Hilton is directly on the Chao Praya River – which was a beautiful backdrop for our 3 night stay.

3 Days in Bangkok | Thailand Travel Guide - Best sites, hotels, places to eat and spas in Bangkok Thailand

photo via oyster.com

Day 1

Upon waking our first morning, we headed downstairs and grabbed a pastry at The Lantern coffee shop. This was super convenient as it’s located in our hotel. It sits directly on the water and it was the perfect way to begin our trip… beautiful and relaxing.

3 Days in Bangkok | Thailand Travel Guide - Best sites, hotels, places to eat and spas in Bangkok Thailand
Me and Maddy..
Cruising on the water –
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After breakfast we hopped on the river boat provided by the hotel to get to the cruise terminal. From there we took the long boat river boat taxi (which was around $2 for a one-way ride) to where they dropped us off near the Wat Pho and the Grand Palace. The ride was very exciting as the long tail boats are fast and bounce along the waves.. Such a fun and crazy adventure! We then walked from the drop-off point to the temples. We were dying to explore this beautiful city.

Wat Pho

3 Days in Bangkok | Thailand Travel Guide - Best sites, hotels, places to eat and spas in Bangkok Thailand
3 Days in Bangkok | Thailand Travel Guide - Best sites, hotels, places to eat and spas in Bangkok Thailand

The Wat Pho Buddhist temple is one of the most famous in all of Thailand and it’s home to the gold Reclining Buddha statue. The temple was built in the 16th century and it’s absolutely gorgeous. The day we went the temple was crowded but it wasn’t too bad. It was an amazing place to see firsthand and my friend and I absolutely loved every minute exploring all the different temples and areas.
The rate for entrance was around 200 baht. ($6)

Fun fact: The Wat Pho Temple houses the largest collection of Buddha statues in Thailand!

3 Days in Bangkok | Thailand Travel Guide - Best sites, hotels, places to eat and spas in Bangkok Thailand
3 Days in Bangkok | Thailand Travel Guide - Best sites, hotels, places to eat and spas in Bangkok Thailand
3 Days in Bangkok | Thailand Travel Guide - Best sites, hotels, places to eat and spas in Bangkok Thailand

At the temple there is even an area where you can get massages! Who knew? We didn’t get one but many do.

Grand Palace

3 Days in Bangkok | Thailand Travel Guide - Best sites, hotels, places to eat and spas in Bangkok Thailand
3 Days in Bangkok | Thailand Travel Guide - Best sites, hotels, places to eat and spas in Bangkok Thailand

We then headed to the Grand Palace. It’s one of the most famous and beautiful sites in Thailand to visit. Like Wat Pho, every temple is designed to the nines and decorated with jewels, marble and gorgeous stones. Everywhere we turned we were inspired by the colors and details.

As gorgeous and memorable as the temple was to visit, this place was very crowded! The entrance fee alone was 500 baht. (around $20!) We found this to be pretty expensive however it’s an extremely famous and important site to see in Thailand. A must see! (just keep in mind the crowds)
I love the history behind places like this, so make sure to read up on it before visiting by clicking here.

3 Days in Bangkok | Thailand Travel Guide - Best sites, hotels, places to eat and spas in Bangkok Thailand
3 Days in Bangkok | Thailand Travel Guide - Best sites, hotels, places to eat and spas in Bangkok Thailand

TIP: A common scam that many tourists encounter is people coming up to them outside the Grand Palace telling them that it’s closed for a holiday. (The Grand Palace is enormous and has many entrances that make it look closed!) These people will tell you that they’ll take you to different temples on a tuk-tuk tour, but instead will trick you into visiting miscellaneous gem and tailor shops to scam you out of money.
Avoid this by going directly to the front entrance.

MBK Center

After we left the Grand Palace, we snagged a cab and headed to the MBK Center. It’s one of the most famous malls/markets in all of Bangkok and it’s filled with floors upon floors of goods – from clothing, electronics, souvenirs, and even furniture! Definitely come here if you’d like to shop and barter for inexpensive clothing and other goods.
Remember to bring cash and don’t forget to barter on prices. It was too crowded to take any pictures but it was amazing!

We shopped til we dropped… Maddy picked up a few pairs of elephant pants & I purchased some clothing and purses! We also stopped by the food court and had a fantastic lunch for a pretty good deal.

3 Days in Bangkok | Thailand Travel Guide - Best sites, hotels, places to eat and spas in Bangkok Thailand

photo via technicalbiomed.com

Spas in Bangkok

3 Days in Bangkok | Thailand Travel Guide - Best sites, hotels, places to eat and spas in Bangkok Thailand

photo via Lek Foot Massage

After our fun outing in MBK we decided to try one of Thailand’s famous massages. Massages in Thailand are SO inexpensive – I’m talking $6 for a 1 hour long massage at many of the massage places. After googling places with good reviews we found, Lek Foot Massage. Click here to see their tripadvisor review. It was around 300 Baht ($9) for 1 hour foot massage and we loved every minute of it. The store was nice, the people were nice and we couldn’t believe how fabulous a $9 massage felt on our aching feet after a full day of walking! We ended getting massages way too often after this.. ;)

Khao San Road

That night we planned to meet one of Maddy’s friends who happened to be visiting Bangkok the same time as us! We all met at the popular Khao San Road for dinner and drinks after our massage and marketplace haul.

3 Days in Bangkok | Thailand Travel Guide - Best sites, hotels, places to eat and spas in Bangkok Thailand

Khao San Road is the famous “backpacker” street in Thailand. Full of street vendors selling scorpions on sticks, street food, laughing gas, alcohol, and fun rowdy bars – this place is a must-see at least once. Many of the ‘party’ hostels are located near this road and many backpackers find themselves coming night after night after they get ‘sucked in’ to this road. Everyone you meet becomes a friend.

There is a street adjacent to the ‘famous backpacker haven’ which is more low-key, has tons of restaurants and shops and mini spas where we met our friends. We had a casual dinner at a place that wasn’t amazing but we talked into the evening not minding. Thailand is fun like this. You meet new people and end up talking for hours.. even days. We ended up following our friends up to Chiang Mai where they invited us to check out temples and elephants and fun outings with them. (Such a blast!)

Street adjacent to Khao San Road where we ate dinner. So cute!
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The first night we ended up having a great time. We tried several local beers at a bar on Khao San Road and met people from all over the world. What a great first day in Bangkok!

Small taste of what the Khao San Road is like after hours.. my fired is so fun to travel with!
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Day 2

Day 2 began with breakfast in bed at our hotel room and watching our amazing view of the river from our suite.

3 Days in Bangkok | Thailand Travel Guide - Best sites, hotels, places to eat and spas in Bangkok Thailand

Delicious breakfast! :)

‘High-end Spas’

On our 2nd day we decided to make an appointment at an ‘upscale’ spa that we found on TripAdvisor. These are much nicer than the $6-9 options. ;) We made an appointment last minute on that day and we were each able to get a 60 minute massage at the Infinity BKK Spa for around 1100 baht. ($35) It was ultra luxurious.

3 Days in Bangkok | Thailand Travel Guide - Best sites, hotels, places to eat and spas in Bangkok Thailand

The cutest little turquoise spa

3 Days in Bangkok | Thailand Travel Guide - Best sites, hotels, places to eat and spas in Bangkok Thailand

Everything they served us was delicious

The spa was absolutely adorable with the cutest staff and best service. We were served a gorgeous spread that included a delicious-smelling hand towel, snack and a tea drink to start off. Before beginning our massage we selected the ‘aroma’ we would like for the spa service… so nice. After our amazing 60 minute massage – we were SO relaxed. Before leaving they also gave us l drink and mini mango sticky rice dessert! All in all the best way to begin our 2nd day. :)

I fully recommend theInfinity BKK Spa.. it was incredible. Click here if you want to see their menu or to make an appointment.

ThipSamai Pad Thai

3 Days in Bangkok | Thailand Travel Guide - Best sites, hotels, places to eat and spas in Bangkok Thailand

photo via nerdnomads.com

After our massage we had planned to meet up with my Aunt Kathy who happened to be visiting Thailand as well! So excited! I loved seeing her and it was such a great reunion. After our visit we met our friends at one of the most popular dinner spots in Bangkok: Thipsamai Pad Thai.

Upon arrival, there was a line down the street when we arrived – we knew this pad thai was going to be good. And it did NOT disappoint. We only had to wait in line for 30 minutes before the 5 of us were seated at a table upstairs.

3 Days in Bangkok | Thailand Travel Guide - Best sites, hotels, places to eat and spas in Bangkok Thailand

photo via nerdnomads.com

For those unfamiliar, Pad Thai was created in World War II due to a food shortage in Thailand. Because of the high cost of rice production during this time, the prime minister encouraged the people to eat noodles instead of rice to create more of a domestic demand and to use the raw ingredients produced in Thailand. Over time Pad Thai grew in popularity and became known as the Thai dish we all love today! One of my favorite dishes.

Thipsamai Pad Thai has been around since the 1940’s and owned by generations of proud Thai people who love creating delicious simple food that people can enjoy. And enjoy we did.

3 Days in Bangkok | Thailand Travel Guide - Best sites, hotels, places to eat and spas in Bangkok Thailand

What did we order? Pad Thai of course! Mine was ABSOLUTELY DELICIOUS. Hands down the best Pad Thai I’ve ever had. We also had orange juice as this restaurant doesn’t sell alcohol. A must-visit restaurant in Bangkok.

3 Days in Bangkok | Thailand Travel Guide - Best sites, hotels, places to eat and spas in Bangkok Thailand

photo via nerdnomads.com

TIP: Make sure to use the restroom before coming here unless you want to use an asian-style squatty potty! I don’t mind using these but I’d rather use a western-style toilet before visiting if I can. :)

Day 3

This morning we headed next door to the recently opened ICONSIAM. ICONSIAM is technically a mall, but we never visited any of the shops. What we fell in love with was the very popular ‘Sook Siam Food Court’ and main food area of the center.

3 Days in Bangkok | Thailand Travel Guide - Best sites, hotels, places to eat and spas in Bangkok Thailand

This place was created to honor all Thai dishes throughout Thailand and they served ‘street food’ from all parts of the Thai lands and cultures throughout the extensive space. They even had vendors in a mini lake in the middle of the mall where they serve dishes from a boat. (Like they used to in Bangkok and other parts of Thailand!) The prices weren’t overly expensive and all of the food we tried was delicious!

Making the Thai Tea.. so good!
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Maddy and I each had a Thai Tea, a Thai Pancake and even a delicious chicken on a stick. All the food was SO good.. we wished we could eat more at the ICONSIAM & Sook Siam.
Definitely make time to visit this place – it was incredible.

Chatuchak Weekend Market

3 Days in Bangkok | Thailand Travel Guide - Best sites, hotels, places to eat and spas in Bangkok Thailand

How the main area of Chatuchak Market looks
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The market was something we were so excited to be able to squeeze in on our trip. If you are visiting Bangkok over the weekend, definitely check out the Chatuchak weekend market. As one of the largest markets in the world, it’s spread out over 35 acres and holds more than 10,000 shops and stalls offering every type of good you can imagine: Thai crafts, clothing, art, accessories, souvenirs, gifts, plants, and more.

The market is around 30 minutes outside of Bangkok central so Maddy and I decided to take the BTS for the first time. It’s the main sky train of Bangkok and it was very easy to navigate as we bought one way tickets from a ticket attendant at the station near our hotel. So happy we had purchased out tickets beforehand.
The stop to get off at for the market is: Mo Chit.

We met up with friends and explored all the marketplaces. So many wonderful things! We all went home with something – I took home 2 adorable straw bags for less than $10 each and a couple of cute kimonos. Loved the clothing options and accessories!

We ended up eating at the market in a small food stall – delicious!

3 Days in Bangkok | Thailand Travel Guide - Best sites, hotels, places to eat and spas in Bangkok Thailand

Our street lunch – really yummy curries!


Maddy enjoying her Young Coconut

Lumpini Park

3 Days in Bangkok | Thailand Travel Guide - Best sites, hotels, places to eat and spas in Bangkok Thailand

After we finished shopping we all decided to head to the famous Lumpini park back in main Bangkok. It is essentially their Central Park where everyone is out enjoying the day – running, taking part in workout classes, playing with their kids, going on walks with friends.. definitely a central hub.

The reason tourists visit this park is for #1. Getting some much-needed fresh air after being in main Bangkok with all of the millions of motorbikes, tuk-tuks and taxis everywhere, but mainly for reason #2: because there are hundreds of huge monitor lizards everywhere in the park!

Tons of animals and wildlife can be seen in this park but it’s really known for the lizards. We couldn’t wait to see them. Of course the day we walked through, we didn’t see one! What are the odds?!

We still loved visiting the beautiful park and definitely recommend it if you are in the city for a few days.

Tealicious Cafe Bangkok

3 Days in Bangkok | Thailand Travel Guide - Best sites, hotels, places to eat and spas in Bangkok Thailand

For our last meal, Maddy found the popular restaurant, Tealicious Cafe. We made an appointment and came with an appetite. We had the BEST curry, yummy drinks and some of the best mango sticky rice I have ever had.

Even though the food was incredible, the best part of the restaurant had to be meeting the people who owned and ran the place. The owners, a British man and his Thai wife were so sweet they took the time to sit with us and talk all about Thailand. It was so helpful because they gave us tons of tips on our next destination: Chiang Mai. It was truly incredible the kindness they showed us.

Remember.. Tealicious Cafe is a restaurant that’s a MUST – it is extremely popular and wins awards for it’s food! Click here to see their tripadvisor.

Summary

We loved our 3 days in Bangkok so much that we definitely plan on returning. Many people tend to skip out on exploring this large city… eager to head North or down to the islands, but I’m so glad we took the time to visit the temples, markets and local hangouts.

Where to go:

  • Temples – Wat Pho & Grand Palace
  • Lumpini Park – Monitor Lizards
  • Chatuchak Weekend Market – Amazing deals and clothes
  • Khao San Road – Nightlife & people watching
  • MBK Center – Shopping for goods (and fakes!)

Where to eat:

Where to relax

I hope this little 3 day guide helps you plan a future trip to Thailand’s main city, Bangkok! It was a blast reliving this part of my trip.. WE met so many amazing people and had so much fun.

Next Thailand Travel Guide coming soon.. It’s all about our visit to the North region. Another amazing few days!

Tour Suggestions:

 

Save this post for later – save this pin:

3 Days in Bangkok | Thailand Travel Guide - Best sites, hotels, places to eat and spas in Bangkok Thailand

xo,

Emma

Click here for more travel posts.

Thank you to my best friend, Maddy Fairchild for sending me many of the photos above from our trip! She’s really talented at taking the best pics so I enlisted her help. Love you!

Thoughts?

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10 thoughts on “3 Days in Bangkok – Thailand Travel Guide

  1. Wow you experienced so much in just 3 days ! I love that you explored all over the city. Great guide for MY visit- it’s on my ever growing list of places to TRAVEL to. Wonderful and exciting information .

  2. Thanks Emma great info, brings back memories . I loved Thailand. You must take notes i don’t know how you remember all the details.? Looking forwatd to more posts. Love it?❤️

  3. 3 days in BKK was so nicely & accurately put together by Emma – everything that she had shared was spot on. I live in Kuala Lumpur and have visted BKK numerous times and what Emma had shared would be an amazing guide for any first timer to BKK. Great job Emma. Looking forward to more postings from you.

    Love, Sook (yups, that’s my name :-) )

    1. Thanks for the approval Sook! I’m SO glad that you like my guide :) We had so much fun during the 3 days and it was definitely worth it. xx, Emma

  4. Excellent post, Emma! I cannot wait to see the next stretch of your trip!!
    Do you suggest staying longer in Bangkok or is 3 days sufficient?

    1. Hi Sarah!
      Thank you so much! I think 3 days is very sufficient – depending on how long your trip is. If you have less time on your trip, I would recommend 2 days being enough as well and just fit more in. xx, Emma

  5. Thank you for sharing all these amazing details!! Such beautiful places. Blogging sure serves as an awesome travel diary, doesn’t it?! I used to be a traveling nurse and being married to an Italian, I was fortunate enough to go to several places in Italy, Paris, and London! But that was before digital cameras and blogging! If only I could remember half the details you did! You’ll have this to always cherish! Thank you for sharing! Looking forward to reading about the Northern leg of your vacation! Where are you planning on going for your next vacation?

    1. Hi Tracy – I’m so sorry I just saw this comment. :) I just got back from Barcelona. My next trip is to Portland in May! Very excited to see Oregon for the first time. xx

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