3. Lonely Planet Experiences: Bangkok Chinatown Food Tour
Experience the best travel stories for yourself! Join a local expert and uncover hidden gems on this Lonely Planet Experience. This is a small-grouped tour of no more than 12 people, and led by an expert guide.
This Bangkok tour of will take you through Bangkok’s iconic Chinatown, a neighborhood so rich in sights, sounds, and smells that it could only really be described as an assault on the senses (in a good way!). Taking a stroll through this neighborhood is one of the best things to do in Bangkok, and with a local to guide you along, you’ll never miss a beat.
Begin this tour at Ratchawong Pier, where you’ll step back in to the old markets in Yaowarat, right in the heart of Chinatown. It doesn’t get any more old-school Bangkok than this – these Chinese locals were traders living in the villages of Bangkok before it became the capital. Your local guide will tell you all about the history of this area, and why it’s such an important part of Chinatown.
From the pier, your Bangkok tour will continue to Song Wat Road, which is bordered by old business buildings and warehouses that are still operating today, and also head towards the plastic and leather products quarter on Yaowa Phanit Road. This part of the tour is a journey through the bustling businesses of Chinatown, where you’ll be able to see the locals go about their daily duties and get a feel of what it would be like to live here.
From industry to ancient history, the next stop on your tour will lead you to Wat Traimit Temple, an incredible sight to behold and one of the things in Bangkok you can't miss. This stunning temple enshrines the world’s largest solid gold seated Buddha from the Sukhothai Era, measuring nearly five meters high and weighing five and a half tonnes. Here your guide will let you in on the local secrets and history behind the Buddha, and the legendary tales that surround the original Buddha that sat there. This temple also houses the Chinese Museum, where you’ll learn all about the history of the Chinese people in Thailand and the fascinating relationship between these two countries.
Next, get into everything you’ve been waiting for – bring on the food! With your local guide, head to a 100-year old coffee shop on Phat Sai Road, where you’ll be treated to a coffee, snack, and the opportunity to sit back and soak up the atmosphere. Fully rejuvenated, head to a market specializing in Chinese religious products and fresh food. At night, this area is filled with street stalls and becomes one giant and extremely tasty food bazaar. Pick and choose from street grills or the finest Chinese restaurants; this will be your opportunity to go wild and try all those dishes you’ve never even heard of, but after this experience you’ll never forget them!
With a belly full of Bangkok treats, continue on this Bangkok food tour towards Talat Pak Khlong, the largest wholesale flower and vegetable market in Bangkok, an area rich in color and vitality, and the perfect spot to take some bright Bangkok photos. The tour will finish in this area, which you're free to continue exploring, or your local guide will be happy to assist you in finding a taxi for you back to your accommodation.
This tour is not only an opportunity to sample all the yummy delights that Chinatown has to offer, although it is a serious pro! It’s all that food, plus history, culture, and local life. You couldn’t pack any more into this tour if you tried!