First time in Bangkok, where to stay?

Where to stay in Bangkok

As a popular tourist destination, Bangkok has plenty of hotels and places to stay at all budgets. It can, however, be a bit overwhelming choosing where to stay in Bangkok, as there are so many accommodation options available.

With a population of more than 8 million people, covering 1600 square kilometers, Bangkok is one of the biggest and most vibrant cities in Southeast Asia. It is the favorite city for lots of tourists in the world, and many tourists regard it as “home away from home”.


Cityscape of Bangkok downtown



Siam is shopping center in Bangkok and has the highest density of shopping malls in the city – MBK, Siam Paragon, Central World, Siam Discovery, Siam Center, and Central Chitlom are all here. You can easily walk in between these shopping malls and shop. Here you will find everything you need as well as plenty of things you even did not know you needed!

Silom – Sathorn Area

Silom--Sathorn, along with the Riverside, is maybe the favorite neighborhood to stay in Bangkok. This area is regarded as Bangkok´s business district and is one of the best areas to stay in Bangkok. Here you find Bangkok’s largest and most beautiful green park – Lumphini Park, great shopping, as well as excellent restaurants with delicious and authentic Thai food. It is easy to get to/from this area as it has several Skytrain and Subway (MRT) stations, making it an excellent base from which to explore the city.

The perfect Bangkok afternoon for tourists is to go for a walk / run in Lumphini Park, find a bench to sit and watch the many people doing aerobics and Thai Chi. Followed by a delicious Thai meal at one of the favorite restaurants, and topped off with a Mojito drink at the open-air rooftop bar “Vertigo`s” on the roof of the Banyan Tree Hotel. The views of Bangkok are unbelievable. You feel like you are on top of the world!


Silom - Sathorn Area Bangkok


Pratunam Area 

People like this area because it`s close to great shopping and within walking distance to the Siam area but cheaper than Siam when it comes to hotel prices. It also has a more authentic Thai feel with its markets and street food.

The Pratunam area is chaotic, crowded, and vibrant, and packed with shopping opportunities. It has Thailand`s tallest building, the 88 floors high Baiyoke Sky Hotel, a Bangkok landmark, which can be seen from far away.

Markets and vendors line the streets in this area, and you can make some great bargains at low prices. Just remember to bargain. And it will a good choice for you to choose the area stay in Bangkok.


Pratunam Shopping Market Area Bangkok


Sukhumvit Area

Sukhumvit, one of Bangkok’s most modern and cosmopolitan neighborhoods, is located in the central part of Bangkok along Sukhumvit Road.

Many tourists have stayed here many times and love this area! It is a very convenient neighborhood to stay in Bangkok with public transport (Skytrain and MRT), great shopping, modern supermarkets, and lots of different and excellent dining options.

One of the coolest rooftop bars in Bangkok, the Octave on top of the Marriott Hotel. Sukhumvit is popular among ex-pats and westerners living in Bangkok, and you will find restaurants from all over the world here. We love that we can eat a great falafel at a Middle East restaurant one day, have some real Italian pizza, a tender Australian steak, or a juicy American hamburger the next day, and delicious Thai street food in between.

Sukhumvit is arguably the best area to stay in Bangkok for nightlife and has it all when it comes to dining and clubbing! Lots of the action centers around the street Soi 11, Bangkok’s famous party street, a favorite with both ex-pats and visitors with its extensive selections of restaurants, clubs, and bars.

As for accommodations in this area, there are plenty of excellent Sukhumvit hotels available at any price range. One of the main draws of this area is how well connected it is by public transportation since the Skytrain (BTS) runs along Sukhumvit Road, and the Subway (MRT) line crosses it.


Sukhumvit Area Bangkok



Staying in Chinatown used to the sole domain of budget travelers but the recent influx of more upscale yet affordable boutique hotels are bringing ever more visitors to this lively and colorful part of town. With two new metros (MRT) stations opening in the fall of 2019, making Chinatown much more accessible, this trend is definitively set to continue.

Chinatown is positively bursting with energy, sounds, smells, and colorful neon signs. Most of the action centers around Yaowarat Road, and this area comes alive in the evenings when thousands of locals come here to feast on world-class street food. Here you can find everything from mouth-watering fresh seafood to roasted duck, dim-sum, and traditional desserts. Many of the restaurants have been here for decades, serve only one dish, and have truly perfected it. Read our post on Bangkok Thai food for some tips on which restaurants and dishes to try.

Chinatown´s  buildings are old, and many are built in the traditional Chinese architecture style with small stores that still sell traditional Chinese goods like gold, tea, herbs, and spices, as well as street-side noodles cafes and bustling markets. This area is great fun!


Chinatown Bangkok


Chao Phraya Riverside

Bangkok’s riverside is beautiful and very scenic, especially after dark, with its glittering temples, shrines, and the Royal Palace. In this area, you can explore Bangkok’s historic roots.

Here along the Chao Phraya River, Chinese immigrants founded the first settlements of what would become the capital of Thailand. If you are looking for top-end accommodation, this is also where you find most of the top 5-star hotels in Bangkok. There are also a few small unique boutique hotels here where the old traditional houses lining the river have been transformed into charming guesthouses.

Also, many love taking the ferries up and down the river, jumping off along the way to see the many iconic landmarks that Bangkok is famous for such as the Grand Palace, the former royal residence, and the iconic temples Wat Pho, and Wat Arun.


Chao Phraya Riverside


The Old City

Rattanakosin Island, which sits on the eastern banks for the river in the Phra Nakhon District, is often referred to as Bangkok’s Old Town. It’s home to some of the city’s most impressive and must-see attractions, including The Grand Palace (Royal Palace), Wat Pho (Temple of the Reclining Buddha), and Wat Arun (Temple of the Dawn). While its proximity to these attractions makes it a popular spot to stay for some travellers, it’s worth noting most of the accommodation in this area is on the budget end of the scale, with luxury properties being few and far between.

This area is also home to the famous backpacker haven of Khao San Road, a several-block stretch of road filled with budget accommodation, boozy drinks served in buckets, backpacker cafés, and ultra-cheap shopping. While you’re not going to find the ‘real Thailand’ on Khao San road, you will find plenty of cheap bars, cheap rooms, cheap food, and budget travellers to swap your travel stories with. Khao San Road is certainly not for everyone, and if you value your sleep, we suggest you consider staying on the adjacent road of Soi Rambuttri. There you’ll find a slightly more chilled-out vibe where you can sit out, relax and take it all in, which still being within a short walk from Khao San Road.

There’s no BTS or MRT (metro) at Khao San Road, and many travellers find they don’t leave the immediate area for the duration of their stay. It is very straightforward, however, to get into the city by taking the Chao Phraya Express boat to Sathorn Pier, where you can connect to the BTS at Saphan Taksin. The boat pier is located on Phra Arhtit Road, a five-minute walk from Khao San.


Rattanakosin Bangkok


Above all, if it’s your first time in Bangkok, we will recommend the Siam or Sukhumvit areas, which get the best combination of shopping, food, and easy transportation.