Half a Day in Bangkok

Bangkok is a vibrant city that requires at least a few days to explore. But if you have just a few hours or half a day, then this post will provide you the perfect itinerary to explore Bangkok in that few hours.

While travelling to Perth from Bangalore, I had about 5 hours transit in Bangkok. Even though I have traveled to Thailand twice, I have never stepped out of Bangkok airport. So, I decided to utilise these hours to see this city.

I was advised by the Ministry of Tourism guys (at the airport) not to step out of the airport as I did not have sufficient time. But I wanted to go explore as according to my calculations, I have enough time to see at least two landmarks.

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Storage in Don Mueang (Bangkok airport)

Before I get into the details of the things to do, one needs to know where to store the luggage.

One of the biggest problems while travelling alone is managing suitcases. They are heavy and not very easy to manage. I had the same problem when I was in Bangkok at the Don Mueang International airport and was not sure where the storage in Don Mueang was.

After asking around and searching for quite some time, I found a place on level 2 where one can store the luggage for Thai Bhat 75 for 24 hours. It is an easy process. The place is called Left luggage and the guy scans the bag, places a tag and provides a receipt. The payment needs to be made while collecting the bag. Note: The payment needs to be in cash.

This was such a blessing for me as I wanted to explore the city a bit during my transit hours in Bangkok.

Half a Day in Bangkok
Left Baggage
Half a Day in Bangkok
Corridor that leads to the Left Baggage store
Half a Day in Bangkok
Level 2

5 Hours / Half a Day in Bangkok

I do understand that Bangkok has plenty of things to do, read 25 things to do in Bangkok for more information on places to visit and I do note that 5 hours is too less to explore this amazing city. But because I had only 5 hours, I tried to see as much as possible and this is the exact itinerary that I followed while I was in Bangkok.

If you have a lot of days in Bangkok, then here is the perfect 4 days itinerary in Bangkok.

9 AM – Out of airport

I hired a one way taxi from the airport to be dropped at the Grand Palace. The one way fare costed me Thai Bhat 350 + Thai Bhat 70 for toll 1 + Thai Bhat 50 for toll 2. The taxi ride from airport to the Palace is around 1 hour.

10 AM – The Grand Palace

The Grand Palace was established in the year 1782 and has been the official residence of Kings of Siam. It is one of the most famous landmarks in Bangkok. The temple complex is majestic and has many structures and interesting things to see.

  • The entrance fee to this Palace is Thai Bhat 500.
  • I spent about 1 hour exploring the complex.

Note: There is a dress code to enter the complex and be prepared for lots and lots of people. There was a huge queue to enter the complex when I visited.

The Grand Palace
One of the paintings at the Grand Palace

11:15 AM – Start from Grand Palace

I took a Tuk Tuk to Wat Arun Ratchavararam. The Tuk Tuk driver initially said that the fare was Thai Bhat 100, but when we arrived at the temple, he demanded Thai Bhat 300, which unfortunately I gave. The ride was around 15 to 20 minutes. But I must admit the Tuk Tuk ride was fun.

Make sure to haggle and decide the amount clearly before getting into the Tuk Tuk as some of the drivers do scam and demand more once you reach the destination.

11:30 AM – Wat Arun Ratchavararam

Wat Arun Ratchavararam is a Buddhist temple, on the bank of Chao Phraya River. It is said that the temple derives it’s name from the Hindu God Aruna. I loved visiting this temple and I think it was the highlight of all the places I visited in Bangkok.

  • The entrance fee to the temple is Thai Bhat 50.
  • I personally loved this temple and there were less people here.
  • I spent about 30 to 40 minutes at this temple.

Note: There is a dress code to enter the temple.

Wat Arun Ratchavararam

12:15 PM – Start to airport

I hired a metered taxi from the temple to the airport. It costed me around Thai Bhat 400 + Thai Bhat 50 for toll 1 + Thai Bhat 25 for toll 2. I was at the airport by 1:15 PM, well in time for my connecting flight.

Nightlife in Bangkok

By the way, Bangkok is absolutely amazing to experience nightlife. With lively and colourful bars and pubs, the nightlife of Bangkok is one of its kinds. If you have time in the city, then I highly recommend visiting one of the roof top bars in Bangkok to enjoy the night with great views of the city.

Shuttle between Bangkok airports

But unfortunately the taxi driver dropped me at the wrong airport and that was definitely a problem as I had to go to the other airport. However, I found out that there is a shuttle between the two airports that make it easy for visitors to commute between the two.

I was dropped at the Suvarnabhumi airport by my taxi driver and my flight was at Don Mueang airport. There were many taxi drivers who tried to mislead me in taking taxis. The taxis cost money, where as there are free shuttles between the airports. All one needs to do is show the ticket and the passport. If the ticket is valid then the transportation between the airports is free. The shuttle bus leaves at Door number 3 in Suvarnabhumi.

Total expenses for 5 hours in Bangkok

  • Taxi fare with tolls = Thai Bhat 945.
  • Tuk Tuk = Thai Bhat 300.
  • Entrance fees = Thai Bhat 550.
  • Coffee and breakfast = Thai Bhat 285.
  • Lunch = Thai Bhat 368.

Total = Thai Bhat 2548.

Extending your trip from Bangkok

If you have more time in Thailand and are already in Bangkok, then you can extend your trip to many beautiful places and islands such as Phuket, Krabi, Chiang Mai among others. One of Thailand’s beautiful and offbeat islands is called Koh Phangan. From Bangkok, it is around 10 hours bus ride to Surat Thani and then take a 2 hours ferry ride to Koh Phangan.

Closing Notes

I am aware that 5 hours was too less of a time to spend in Bangkok and I definitely want to go back and see more of what the city needs to offer. But this was the best I could make out of the 5 hours I had in Bangkok.

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