Bangkok’s Chinatown has everything for everybody. Whether you are interested to explore the renowned street-side cuisine or discover untold shopping bargains on the vibrant back streets of the city’s oldest community, Chinatown is a destination that should not be missed.
Regardless of the time of day or night Chinatown is bustling with shoppers, sellers, diners and tourists. Every small road in Chinatown is packed with market stalls, sidewalk restaurants and gold shops. Chinatown has a frenzied vibe of commerce that draws visitors in with its promise of something new and undiscovered around every corner.
Customer feedback – “You can buy everything in Chinatown but we would have never found the little hidden away places in the amount of time we had if it wasn’t for our private tour guide.”
The main road in the Chinatown district is Yaowarat Road, known as the richest road in Thailand because of the number of gold shops along its length. At night, Yaowarat Road transforms into one of the greatest street food locations in the world, for locals and visitors alike.
Many visitors make it a point to visit Yaowarat Road as well as the Chinese ceremonial gate that marks the entrance to Chinatown. Chinese ceremonial gates are a familiar sight in Chinese communities around the world, and considering Bangkok is home to the world’s largest Chinatown, the China Gate at the western entrance to the area is suitably impressive.
Chinatown is best explored on foot and although it would be impossible to see everything in Chinatown in one day our private tour guide is more than able to point out the highlights of the area and ensure that you find that special something just for you.
Customer feedback – “Cluttered, chaotic, and a lot of fun. Our tour guide Natt did an amazing job explaining Chinese tea and encouraging us to try many of the Chinese and Thai desserts from the street vendors. So delicious!”
Just a few of the highlights in Chinatown are:
- China ceremonial gate – Referred to as the ‘head’ of Chinatown’s dragon.
- Street food – Dumplings, noodles, dim sum, oyster omelets, fresh seafood, seasonal fruits, homemade ice cream.
- Wat Traimit – Temple of the Golden Buddha.
- Yawarot Road – Richest road in Thailand and referred to as the ‘body’ of Chinatown’s dragon.
- Homemade Thai desserts.
- Sampaeng Market – Largest wholesaler market in Thailand.
- Chinese tea – Hundreds of varieties.
- Pahurat (Little India) – Fabric market.
- Sala Chalermkrung (Khon) Theater.
- Balanna Plaza – Shoe market.
- Wat Mongkol Kamalawat – Temple that is referred to as the ‘heart’ of Chinatown’s dragon.
- Talat Kao – The central market in Chinatown for over a century.
Chinatown can be visited any day of the week. The best time for visiting the markets is all day, from early morning until 4pm. After 4pm many of the sidewalk restaurants begin to set up and by 6pm many roads in Chinatown (especially Yaowarat Road) become massive open air restaurants.
For a truly unique experience plan your visit during major festivals, like Chinese New Year, and you will see Chinatown at its best.
Things you should be aware of when visiting Chinatown:
- Respectful attire is required if you plan to visit any of the temples in the Chinatown area.
- Photography is one of the main reasons people visit Chinatown. Some shops may ask that you do not photograph certain items inside their businesses but taking photographs in the markets and on the streets is allowed and encouraged.
- Comfortable walking shoes are recommended.