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Top Thailand Attractions

The first time you visit Thailand, or any new destination, the question asked isn’t usually what attractions should be scene but what attraction to see first, what to expect, how to get there, and how much time is needed. We’ve provided tips, advice, and other information about the top tourist attractions in Thailand to help with your itinerary planning.

The Royal Grand Palace The Royal Grand Palace
Reclining Buddha Reclining Buddha
Jim Thompson's House Jim Thompson's House
Naithonburi Beach Resort Naithonburi Beach Resort

The Royal Grand Palace

 Address Na Phralan Road, Phra Nakhon District
 Location Bangkok

1 3 6 9 15 19 25 30 32 33 39 43 44 47 53 59 60 64 65 70 80 82 91 123 201 203 AC1 AC6 AC7 AC8 AC12 AC25 AC38 AC39 AC44 mAC8

Chao Phraya Express: Tha Chang Pier

 Admission Included with fee to Wat Phra Kaeo
 Hours Daily 8am-4pm
 Phone 224 3328, 226 0255

A trip to Thailand is not complete without a visit to the Royal Grand Palace. This architectural wonder is worth every effort. Taking up almost an entire city block, the palace is an ornate compound with three sections:

  • The Outer Palace (Phra Ratchathan Chan Nok) on the north
  • The Middle Palace (Phra Ratchathan Chan Klang) at the east
  • The Inner Palace (Phra Ratchathan Chan Nai) to the west

The grand palace was build when King Rama I decided to move the capital city from the west bank of the Chao Phraya River to the Eastern side of the river. He also decided the palace to be built as not only his residence, but also to house his offices and various ministries.

Within just three years, this grand marvel was built, including a temple located within the compound. It is nearly identical to the palace in the former capital. This palace has an area of 218,400 sq. meters and is surrounded by walls built in 1782. The length of the four walls is 1,900 meters. Within these walls are government offices and the Chapel Royal of the Emerald Buddha in addition to the royal residences.

When traveling to the Grand Palace, be sure to pay respect to the Buddhist culture. Proper dress is required. Men cannot wear shorts or slippers. Women cannot wear undershirts, singlets, shorts and sandals. Taking photos inside the building is also not allowed. If you travel on a Sunday, you will also see many worshippers and Buddhist monks roaming around the grounds.


Temple of the Reclining Buddha

 Address 2 Sanamchai Road, Phra Nakhon Districy
 Location Bangkok
 Transportation BUS
48 53 60 82 91 123 AC6 AC7 AC8 AC9 AC12 AC25 AC44 AC91

Chao Phraya Express:
Rajini Pier, Tha Chang Pier, Tha Tien Pier

 Admission Foreigner -- 20 Bht
Thai -- Free
 Hours 8am-5pm
 Phone 222 5910, 226 2942

One major tourist destination in the capital city is sure to delight any Westerner. Wat Pho is the oldest and largest wat in Bangkok, built all the way back in the 16th century during the Ayuthaya period. It features the very popular reclining Buddha and the largest collection of Buddha images in Thailand. Wat Pho became known as a “university” when King Rama III had texts inscribed on stone slabs around the temple for the Thai people to read.

However, the main attraction for tourists is simply the infamous Reclining Buddha. Ask any cab driver to take you there. The Buddha is 153 feet long and 50 feet high. The statue was made to represent the Lord Buddha trying to overwhelm one of the powerful demons and convince him that his power is not supreme. It is made out of plaster around a brick core. You will also find mother-of-pearl in his eyes, and feet displaying 108 different characteristics of Buddha. It is an awesome sight and you will want to bring your camera.


Jim Thompson's House

 Address 6 Kasemsan2 Lane, Rama I Road, Pathumwan
 Location Bangkok
 Transportation BTS
National Stadium Station
15, 47, 48, 73, 204, AC8
Free inside the compound
 Admission Under 25 -- 50 Bht
Adult -- 100 Bht
 Hours Daily 9am-4:30pm
 Phone 662 216 7368

You wouldn’t expect a tourist destination to have such an American-sounding name, but Jim Thompson has an interesting story. He was born in Delaware and became an architect before World War II. Volunteering for service in the US Army, he came to Asia as part of a force planning to free Thailand. However, the war ended before this occurred. He still came to Bangkok and fell in love with the city and Thai culture. Upon leaving the service, he decided to live in Thailand permanently.

He devoted himself to the craft of weaving silk and to the silk industry. He was a gifted designer and received worldwide recognition.

Due to his background in architecture, during his stay in Thailand, he combined six teak buildings, which represented the best of traditional Thai architecture.

He wanted to make everything as authentic as possible, so he used the traditional customs of constructing the teak houses. He built them above ground as precaution to flooding and painted the walls red. He added beautiful chandeliers, traditional furniture and vibrant color from his silks.

Today Jim Thompson’s house remains open to the public and is considered part of the rich cultural heritage of the Thai people. All proceeds from viewings are donated to Thai charities.


Naithonburi Beach Resort

 Address 9 Moo 4, Tambon Sakhu, Amphur Thalang
 Location Phuket
 Phone 66 76 318700

Phuket is a jewel among Thailand’s islands. It has a serene quality about it, perfect for the traveler wishing a nice, tropical vacation.

For a very low price, you can make your stay in Phuket feel like the lap of luxury by staying at the Naithonburi Beach Resort. It only has 79 rooms, so you will not feel crowded with the large franchise chains. Instead, enjoy a tranquil ambiance and a beautiful view of either a courtyard or the gorgeous ocean. If you don’t feel like leaving the comfort of a hotel, you can enjoy a traditional Thai massage (very famous) right on the grounds of the resort. Additional facilities include the Jasmine Rice Restaurant, a large pool and Jacuzzi complete with a pool bar, a fitness center, activities center and a tropical garden.


Thailand Travel Guides
 Frommer's Thailand
 Lonely Planet Thailand
 Let's Go Thailand
 Fodors Thailand