All you need to know when arriving in Bangkok, Thailand's capital city also know to Thai's as Krung Thep - City of Angels. Bangkok is one of Asia's most exciting cities. It holds the essence of Thai spirit and is very much the heart of the country. Without a doubt, this fast-growing metropolis of over 10 million people has something to offer everyone. Its lively nightlife, markets, shops, restaurants, magnificent temples, palaces, parks and museums mean there's never a shortage of activities.
To properly explore the city after arriving in Bangkok would take months if not years. The major points of interests are:
1) The Grand Palace and Wat Phra Kaew known as the Temple of the Emerald Buddha
2) Wat Pho the Temple of the Reclining Buddha and also renowned as a centre of traditional medicine and massage.
3) Wat Arun also known as the Temple of Dawn
7) Wat Traimit the Temple of the Golden Buddha
8) Wat Benchamabophit the Marble Temple
9) Chao Phraya River also known as Thon Klongs
11) The Rose Garden
The city's most popular nightlife areas are around Silom Road, Siam Square and Sukhumvit Road. In all three locations, there's a wide variety of restaurants, street stalls and entertainment venues. Silom Road is best known for its Patpong Night Market while Siam Square offers the best late night shopping and Sukhumvit Road has some of the city's best eateries and entertainment nights spots.
Also, many of the larger hotels have adjoining discotheques and karaoke bars. Cinemas showing western, Thai or Chinese movies can also be found throughout the city and in major shopping malls. To get information on concert and theatre shows we recommend consulting one of the local English language newspapers such as the Bangkok Post or The Nation.
Bangkok deserves its reputation as one of the world's great culinary destinations. Almost every major cuisine of the world has representation here. Several complimentary English language tourist magazines available at hotel reception desks and English newspapers are excellent sources of information for good dining experiences.
There are many options for getting around Bangkok. There are numerous Taxis. Registered metered taxis with yellow and black license plates can be found everywhere and are pretty reliable. It's essential to make sure the driver uses the metre as fares charged without metre are almost always overpriced.
Avoid those taxi drivers who are hanging around your hotel entrance as well as prime tourist spots as they will likely overcharge you or take you on a detour to some of their commission-based shops and restaurants. Always try to have the exact amount in local currency for your fare as some taxi drivers pretend not to have any change. Taxi fares should become rounded off to the nearest 5 or 10 Baht.
Another great way to get around Bangkok is by Tuk Tuk, also known as motorised three-wheelers or Samlors. They are small utility vehicles powered by notoriously noisy two-stroke engines. They are worth using for short rides but can be a tad uncomfortable and unstable in heavy traffic or during heavy rainy days. It's advisable to negotiate taxi fares before departure.
One of the easiest ways to travel around Bangkok's congested streets is by BTS Skytrain or the MRTA Subway. They both provide a reliable service around central Bangkok and used together, provide a fast and cheap way to see many of the places of interest around the city. The Skytrain operates daily from 6.00 am to midnight while the subway runs daily from 5.00 am to midnight.
You can also try the Chao Phraya River Express who operates boats which follow a regular route up and down the Chao Phraya River within the city. Fares are pretty cheap and can start from around 10 Baht.
If you need to call the tourist police, phone 1155, and should you need a hospital, there are two great ones in the city. You'll find the Bumrungrad Hospital at 33 Sukhumvit Soi 3 Nana Nua, Wattana Bangkokn10110. Telephone 0-2667 1000 or telephone 0-2667 2999 for an emergency. You'll find the BNH Hospital at 9/1 Convent Road off Silom Road Bangkok 10500. Telephone numbers are 0-2632 0550 or 0-2632 0560.
Hello / Goodbye - Sa-wat-dee
How are you - Koon-sa-bai-dee-mai
I'm fine - Sa-bai-dee
Thank you - Kop-koon
No, thank you - Mai-ao-kop-koon
Yes - Chai / Krup or Ka
No - Mai / Mai-chai
Sorry / Excuse me - Kho-tot
Never mind - Mai-pen-rai
How much - Tao-rai
Expensive - Perng
Could you lower the price - Rot-ra-ka-dai-mai
Can you speak English? - Koon-poot-pa-sa-ungrit-dai-mai
I Understand - Khao-jai
I don't understand - Mai-khao-jai
I don't know - Mai-sap / Mai-roo
Where is / are - Yoo-tee-nai
How do I get to - Pai-yung-ngai
Here / There - Tee-nee / Tee-nun
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