Bangkok - vibrant, cosmopolitan city
Bangkok always delights. This cosmopolitan city is a treasure house of temples and palaces, canal life, bustling markets, authentic street food and a nightlife with something for all tastes.
Best time to visit Bangkok, attractions and weather tips
Bangkok is a popular destination at all times of the year, but the monsoon season from June to November can be very wet. A lively calendar of festivals begins with Wan Trut Chin in February. This celebrates the start of the New Year in the Chinese calendar, with the actual day varying from year to year. Also worth catching from the 13-15 April is Songkran, celebrating the Thai new year. The public holiday of Loi Krathong, or the Festival of Light, takes place in November. The exact date varies according to the full moon.
What visitors need to know before arriving in Bangkok
British passport holders do not need a Thai visa for stays of up to 30 days. Passports, however, must be valid for at least six months from the date of entry. With sensible hygiene precautions, visitors should not encounter any health problems, but it is advisable to be vaccinated for Hepatitis A, Typhus, Tetanus, Diphtheria and Rabies. Anti-Malaria tablets may also be necessary. Travel advice can be obtained from GPs or the Thai embassy.
Tips about arrival, transport and accommodation in Bangkok
Getting from the airport to the city centre is easy with frequent airport rail links, accessed directly from the terminal. The direct train from BKK, operated by Airport Link Express, is quick and costs around 100THB. The Airport Link City Line is a stopping train so takes longer, but is slightly cheaper for budget-conscious visitors.
Once in the city public transport is frequent and cheap. The bus system can be confusing for newcomers, but getting around on the metro and with taxis is easy. Tuk-Tuks are a novel way of exploring Bangkok, but these tourist traps can be very expensive.
Accommodation is economical and starts from around 360THB. Popular hotels can be found in Chinatown, as well as the Khao-San and Sukhumvit Road areas.