Ah, Bangkok. The sin city of the east, most people overlook it when it comes to going to Thailand. While most opt for heading out to the islands, it may be worth exploring Bangkok before you head to the islands or anywhere else in Thailand. This 2 days in Bangkok itinerary guide is perfect for those who want to experience the flavours of Bangkok and all it has to offer. I’ve decided to add in some more options if you’d like to switch out things or have more time. I’ve also listed some recommendations on places to stay.
2 days in Bangkok itinerary guide
Arrival in Bangkok – Visa formalities & more
Try to get an early morning flight into Bangkok so that you can skip the massive lines at immigration. Nationals from the EU & U.S. don’t have to worry about anything but a stamp in their passport and confirmed reservations & return tickets – Indian & Chinese citizens get a visa on arrival which involves filling up a form, pay 2,000 bahts for processing, carrying 10,000 bahts in cash as well as confirmed return tickets & bookings. I’d recommend you get the visa well enough in advance and avoid the painful queues at the airports in order not to waste your precious time. We lost 2-3 hours with this. For more information on visa formalities for your country, click here.
Where to stay
For the entire duration of this 2 days in Bangkok itinerary guide, I highly recommend you stay at this charming hotel or anything else in the closest proximity to the temple complexes at Wat Pho, Temple of the Emerald Buddha (Wat Phra Kaew) as well as the party centric Khao San Road. A good area is Phra Nakhon.
What to see
Start your day by checking in to the hotel and then heading to check out Wat Pho, or the Temple of the reclining Buddha. This temple complex would take you around 2-3 hours on your 2 days in Bangkok itinerary. Feel free to take your time wandering here by ogling at these interesting new Chinese guardians who were put there much later as you’ll find out.
After that, gaze in awe at the reclining Buddha
Ogle at the architecture.
So guess who went to #Bangkok and only visited one temple? 🙋🏻♀️🤦🏻♀️ Our trip to Thailand has been full of twists and turns and we missed on a lot to see. All we managed after 24 hours of flying was to see Wat Pho, visit the best restaurant in Asia, go to Khao San road and go shopping! I’ll just have to come back with a bang(kok).🤷🏽♀️ . . . . #Bangkok #Thailand #visitBangkok #visitThailand #travelwriter #ilovetravel #travelogue #traveladdict #travelphotography #travellife #travelpic #lonelyplanet #travelblog #travelblogger #traveldiary #travelbuddies #theglobewanderer #mytinyatlas #aroundtheworldpix #forahappymoment #natgeotravel #natgeotravelpic #bcctravel #travelersnotebook #travelbug #traveltips #travelwithme #traveljournal #WatPho
Besides this, do head on to the Temple of the Emerald Buddha & The Grand Palace. Then head down to the market by the Chao Phraya river.
Time taken : Minimum 6-8 hours
If you have some time and it’s a weekend, then head over to the Chatuchak market, which is about half an hour by car. It’s by far the most popular street market in Bangkok.
However, do note that to go back to Khao San Road, you would lose another half hour or so, so plan accordingly.
If you’re looking to have a spot of lunch, head on over to this amazing one star Michelin restaurant called Jay Fai. It’s the only street food restaurant in town prepared by one lady: Jay Fai. Wait times may be long (2-4 hours if you can spare it), but worth it. This is possibly the cheapest Michelin star restaurant money can buy. Opt for the crab omelette and drunken noodles. Don’t expect fancy service.
If you’re looking for a lovely fine dining option, you have to head to Gaggan. This restaurant currently ranks at no.1 on the world’s 50 best restaurants in Asia! Besides this, it also has 2 Michelin stars. Reservations at Gaggan need a month’s advance booking. They do occasionally cater to dietary preferences and intolerances depending on the menu; for instance I had a dairy free meal based on their emoji menu. However, I was informed the next menu would be 40% dairy and therefore impossible to make dairy free. My Gaggan experience came at a steep price of AED 750 per person (approx USD 205), but it was a memorable one. It was everything people said it would be. Gaggan’s ploy on things is ever so playful and full of personality without compromising on flavour. I can’t recommend this restaurant highly enough. You can reserve a table at Gaggan here. If you need another excuse to go – note this restaurant will close by 2020. Opt for a chef’s table experience on booking. Then, come back and thank me later.
In the late evening, head to Khao San Road and enjoy the crazy sights and sounds. This street is totally party central and is a must-do on your 2 days in Bangkok itinerary. Grab an insect and eat them for fun, drink the bucketloads of alcohol and indulge in all the street eats!
Shop till you drop
There’s nothing better than shopping in Bangkok. Here’s a list of five shopping malls with location maps that you can hit on your way there for your favourite local and international brands:
Visit a floating market & railway market
There are several floating markets around the area, the most popular being Damnoen Saduak Floating Market. This market is a place where you can buy a lot of fresh produce as well as some delicious coconut ice cream. It’s about an hour away from Bangkok, so you may choose to move it towards the beginning of your day so that you’re in the city later and have better connectivity to the airport. Do keep in mind that Bangkok traffic is by far the most painful I’ve ever seen in my life!
The railway market is called Maeklong Railway Market and it’s a market actually on the train tracks. It’s a bit crazy, but you should definitely check it out if you have time! This is also quite far from the city (about 2 hours away by car), so prioritise & plan accordingly!
I hope you’ve enjoyed this 2 days Bangkok itinerary! If you’re looking for onward travel options in Thailand, consider Chiang Mai, Koh Lipe or Phuket. Do let me know if you have any questions in the comments below.