Central Thailand
Culture & History

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Our most recommended Central Thailand Culture & History

Bangkok: Damnoen Saduak Market and Maeklong Railway Market

1. Bangkok: Damnoen Saduak Market and Maeklong Railway Market

Choose from either a shared group or private guided experience to see 2 iconic markets on a day trip from Bangkok. See a market located on the railway tracks, the Maeklong Railway Market, and a market that floats on the canals at the Damnoen Saduak Market. After pickup, arrive at the Maeklong Railway Market, also known as Talad Rom Hup (“Umbrella Pulldown Market”). Maeklong is one of the largest fresh seafood markets in Thailand and hugs the track of the Maeklong Railway. Gain fascinating insights into how the market is run and what products are sold here from your local guide. Marvel at how market stalls and awnings are pulled back from the tracks every time a train approaches to let the train pass through. Next, head to the Damnoen Saduak Floating Market, one of the most famous floating markets in Thailand. To reach the market, take a short ride in a paddleboat. Enjoy plenty of time to meander around the colorful market, where friendly vendors sell directly from their boats. Take in the sights and sounds, and try local specialties like mango sticky rice. Your guide will give you advice on what not to miss. Return to Bangkok in time for the early afternoon.

From Bangkok: Ayutthaya Temples Small Group Tour with Lunch

2. From Bangkok: Ayutthaya Temples Small Group Tour with Lunch

Enjoy a small-group tour of the magnificent temple ruins of Ayutthaya, the capital during the golden age of Siam. All entrance fees, an expert guide, and lunch at a local restaurant are included. Travel from Bangkok in a comfortable, air-conditioned vehicle or choose to join the tour at your first stop in Ayutthaya, Wat Lokayasutha. This temple is known for its giant reclining Buddha image, one of the few structures remaining intact here. Your next stop is Wat Phra Sri Sanphet, being part of the royal palace complex this is where royalty performed rituals. It is considered the most important temple of Ayutthaya. Then, visit Wat Mahathat Ayutthaya. One of the oldest and most significant temples in the history of Ayutthaya, it once housed the Buddha's holy relic. Admire the famous Buddha head entwined within the roots of a Bodhi tree. After, tuck into a hearty lunch at a local Thai restaurant, where your guide will be available to advise on local culinary specialties. Last but not least, finish your trip at the grand, riverside Wat Chaiwattanaram. Marvel at its compelling architectural style, influenced by the Angkor Wat complex in Cambodia, as you wander around the monumental grounds.

Bangkok: City Highlights Temple and Market Walking Tour

3. Bangkok: City Highlights Temple and Market Walking Tour

Meet the group at River City Bangkok by 9:00 AM and head to the Emerald Buddha Temple by local transport. Along the way, pass by the amulet market, one of the most famous, historical community markets of Rattanakosin Island. Discover the first stop of Wat Phra Kaew which is commonly known in English as the Temple of the Emerald Buddha and officially as Wat Phra Si Rattana Satsadaram. It is regarded as the most sacred Buddhist temple in Thailand.  Explore the Grand Palace which was the official residence of the Kings of Thailand. Nowadays, the Grand Palace is still used for official events. Several royal ceremonies and state functions are held within the walls of the palace every year.  After the Grand Palace, continue to visit Wat Pho, if you've selected this option. On the way, pass Tha Thien Market, a cultural food market that sells dried, salted seafood and wholesale products. Visit the Temple of the Reclining Buddha, Wat Pho. It is on the list of six temples in Thailand classed as the highest grade of first-class royal temples. Learn about King Rama I who rebuilt the temple complex on an earlier temple site and how it became his main temple where some of his ashes are enshrined. The temple is considered the earliest center for medical public education surrounded by the marble illustrations and inscriptions placed in the temple for public instructions. It has been recognized by UNESCO in its Memory of the World Programme. Most importantly, it is the birthplace of traditional Thai massage which is still taught and practiced at the temple today. Complete the list of must-visit temples in Bangkok by continuing your journey to Wat Arun (the Temple of Dawn), one of Bangkok’s most famous landmarks. The temple is known for its giant 70-meter tower next to the Chao Phraya River and is decorated with tiny pieces of colored glass surrounded by Chinese porcelain.

Bangkok: 2-Hour Wonderful Pearl Candle Light Dinner Cruise

4. Bangkok: 2-Hour Wonderful Pearl Candle Light Dinner Cruise

At 6:30 PM begin your journey by checking in at the river city pier number one. Board on the cruise at 7:20 PM and enjoy the Thai classical dancers perform from the dockside. The cruise can accommodate up to 1,200 people, is suitable for those with disabilities, and contains important amenities like escalators, automatic doors, a 360-degree deck, a stage, and more.  As the cruise takes off, enjoy a luxury buffet dinner with dishes from Thai, European, Japanese, and other international cuisines. During your meal, spot remarkable sites along the Chao Phraya River including the Temple of Dawn, Kanlayanamitr Temple, the Grand Palace, and the Temple of the Emerald Buddha. There will be 2 performances onboard, a classical Thai masked performance of Khon followed by live music on the 360-degree panoramic open-air deck. You will be transferred back to the River City around 9:30 PM. Alternatively, get the festive season in full swing by choosing to take your cruise on New Year's Eve or during Loy Krathong, the Thai festival of light. Bring in the New Year with a 5-hour cruise that includes lucky draws, an international buffet, wine, live jazz, and pop music. Or, in November, receive your own banana leaf lantern to float on the river during Loy Krathong and enjoy traditional dancing and live music as well as a souvenir photo with frame as part of the special Festival of Lights cruise.

Bangkok: Luxury Buffet Dinner Cruise With Live Music

5. Bangkok: Luxury Buffet Dinner Cruise With Live Music

Take a river cruise along the Chao Phraya River and see Bangkok light up at night. Listen to live music, see iconic sights, and eat a delicious seafood buffet dinner with both Thai and international foods available. This is a night you won't want to miss. Embark on a luxury dinner cruise from ICONSIAM Shopping Center right by the Chao Phraya River. Sit back, relax, and admire breathtaking views of the Grand Place, Wat Arun Temple, and other famous buildings alongside the river. Enjoy a candlelit dinner with live singers as you savor dishes like sashimi, papaya salad, tom yum goong, pad thai, chicken with cashew nuts, fried fish in sweet and sour sauce, curries, pasta, and a variety of western and Thai desserts. Watch traditional Thai dance performances as your luxury dinner cruise comes to an end and you head back to the meeting point.

SEA LIFE Bangkok Ocean World & Madame Tussauds Combo Ticket

6. SEA LIFE Bangkok Ocean World & Madame Tussauds Combo Ticket

Enjoy a day full of fun inside Bangkok's massive Siam Paragon shopping mall with this special combo ticket to 2 of its top attractions. Visit one of Southeast Asia’s largest aquariums that showcases over 30,000 aquatic creatures in its massive tanks, in 7 different segments. Explore the Open Ocean segment that features a 270-degree glass tunnel underneath the tank. Take a stroll along the Shark Walk where only a sheet of acrylic separates you from the sharks beneath. Head to Madame Tussauds and see over 90 wax figures in 10 zones. Get a photo alongside your favorite movie star, musician, or sportsperson. Try your hand at tennis on the Wii near Serena Williams, or shoot a couple of hoops alongside Yao Ming.

From Bangkok: Ayutthaya Historical Park Small-Group Day Trip

7. From Bangkok: Ayutthaya Historical Park Small-Group Day Trip

Visit sites that date back to 1350 at the Ayutthaya Historical Park. Learn about Buddhist history, architecture, and religion as you explore countless temples with your experienced tour guide. In the 18th century, much of Ayutthaya was destroyed by Burmese invaders; witness the structures in their various states of disrepair. Tree roots growing around scattered Buddha heads only adds to the historical charm of this unique destination. After departing from Bangkok bright and early, see Bang Pa-In Royal Palace en route to Ayutthaya. Used as a summer residence for ancient Thai kings, the golden pagodas and serene pools make for a great introduction to the region’s glorious past. After arriving in Ayutthaya, take several hours to explore fascinating ancient religious sites including Wat Mahathat, where a decapitated Buddha head sits nestled between ancient tree roots. Continue to Wat Mongkol Borpit, known for its enormous seated Buddha statue. Discover Wat Phra Sri Sanphet, the most holy and important complex of the ancient Thai capital. Finally, explore Wat Chaiwatthanaram, known for its towering stone chedis. This site is one of the main reasons Ayutthaya was awarded UNESCO status in 1991.

Bangkok: 2-Hour Dinner & Shows on White Orchid River Cruise

8. Bangkok: 2-Hour Dinner & Shows on White Orchid River Cruise

Explore the lights of Bangkok from the Choa Phraya river on a night river cruise. Savor authentic Thai and delicious international cuisine with a buffet dinner. Sip on a welcome drink, tea, and coffee as you pass the Grand Palace and Wat Pho. Listen to live music and watch an thrilling cabaret show.  Start your Bangkok river cruise by checking in at the meeting point at the River City Complex. Board the White Orchid Cruise Ship and have a welcome drink while you enjoy a classical Thai dance as the cruise starts along the Chao Phraya River. Along the journey, have a chance to observe Bangkok's remarkable sights light up in the dark, including the Grand Palace, Wat Pho (Temple of Reclining Buddha), Wat Arun (Temple of Dawn), and many more. Enjoy a buffet dinner with a great variety of delightful dishes ranging from traditional Thai to Western cuisines, followed by desserts. While enjoying your food, be entertained with a live music performance and a Cabaret show on board. After dinner, you can take the opportunity to observe the sights flowing by on the river banks by relaxing on the open-air deck to marvel at a 360-degree view of Bangkok from the Choa Phraya river by night. Arrive back at the River City pier to enjoy the rest of your evening in Bangkok.

From Bangkok: Ayutthaya Full-Day Trip with Driver

9. From Bangkok: Ayutthaya Full-Day Trip with Driver

Explore the former capital of Siam on a full-day tour of the UNESCO World Heritage Site. See the Bang Pa-In Summer Palace, Wat Mahathat, and the Viharn Pra Mongkolborpit on this day trip. At 07:00 AM you’ll be met by a private driver and head off to Ayutthaya province. Stop at Bang Pa-in Palace, a complex of royal residences first built in around the 17th century. Continue to Wat Mahathat, thought to have been built before the Ayutthaya Period, in the 14th century. See the face of Buddha on a tree, and visit Wat Phrasrisanphet, the former royal monastery. The last stop is Viharn Pra Mongkolborpit, where a stunning bronze Buddha image is located. Entrance fees for attractions on this trip are at your own expense. Around 4:00 PM you’ll make the return trip to Bangkok.

Bangkok: Hop-On Hop-Off Bus with 24, 48 or 72-Hour Validity

10. Bangkok: Hop-On Hop-Off Bus with 24, 48 or 72-Hour Validity

Discover Bangkok's gorgeous attractions at your own pace with a hop-on hop-off bus pass. Choose between passes valid for unlimited use for 24, 48, or 72 hours, and create your own flexible itinerary to see what you want to see. With the option of indoor or open-air seating on the double-decker bus, you can soak up views of the city how you please. As you go, listen to an informative audio guide available in 7 languages as you use the unlimited pass to ride the bus towards your next destination. The route is designed to both be awe-inspiring and time-effective. It combines prominent, must-see historical, religious, and cultural sights with modern lifestyle stops in Bangkok that you just can't miss. Buses depart every 60 minutes from the first bus stop from 9 AM until 3.00 PM, and the route from the first stop to the last stop takes around 3–3.5 hours. BUS STOPS • Siam Paragon • MBK Center • Samyan Mitrtown/Wat Hualumpong • Golden Buddha Temple/ Wat Trai Mit • China Town • Grand China Hotel/Dragon Temple Kammalawat • Loha Prasat/Pra Tu Phee • Khao San Road • Giant Swing • Wat Pho • Sanamluang/Royal Grand Palace • Wat Rakhangkhositaram • Wat Arun Rajvararam • ICONSIAM • Mahanakorn Skywalk • Patpong Night Market

Frequently asked questions about Central Thailand Culture & History

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What people are saying about Central Thailand

Overall rating

4.7 / 5

based on 128 reviews

Auntie Nancy was a really lively and energetic person, able to bring up the atmosphere and giving detailed explanation of the history of the place, will definitely recommend anyone else to join this tour, you will enjoy it!

Mina was an excellent guide. We covered major sight seeing places in Bangkok. And she made it fun with her humour. There was ample time at each of the attractions to hear the stories and take pictures.

Nancy was amazing, very informative. Booked last second and she messaged first thing in the morning which made it easy to meet her.

Brilliant tour by Nancy. Nancy was super nice and gave a wonderful tour of the grand palace. Amazing place to see

Great tour! Noon was super friendly and helpful :)