The city of Bangkok, also known as Krungthep (translated to City of Angels), is the capital of Thailand.
It's a popular tourist and internship destination, and for good reason. There's a lot to love in this big city!
Here are our top 5 reasons we love Bangkok:
1. Street Food and Sophisticated Cuisine, Side by Side
Thai food is a big favourite around the world so it’s no surprise that being able to eat the local cuisine is a big draw for many.
Food from every region of the country can be found in Bangkok.
Small, independent stores run by locals can range from specialty shops to ‘food by request’ (ahan tham sung) where you can order from a wide variety of Thai dishes.
However, Bangkok is not only a great place for Thai food, but cuisine from all around the world.
You can find it in the cosmopolitan city of Bangkok, whether they are global favourites like Italian and Japanese, or the increasingly popular Spanish and Korean food.
Another big factor is not just availability, but affordability. There are many cheap food options for people from street food to food courts.
Food courts are a dime a dozen and may also offer many international dishes for a cheaper price than normal as well.
For those with a big appetite, there are many all-you-can-eat buffet options available around the city.
This wide variety and availability makes food culture in Thailand different from the West. Eating out is a common pastime and cooking is more of a hobby than a necessary skill for many working adults.
Dishes are also often shared by everyone, so very rarely does the main course for a table come out at the same time.
Check out 10 Thai dishes that we think you must eat while in Bangkok!
2. Being Able to Beat the Traffic with Trains
Bangkok is infamous for its traffic, but they make up for that with their trains. The train system makes it very easy to travel around.
The investments put into the city’s infrastructure have paid off for both tourists and locals who seek to get around the sprawling metropolis.
The BTS Skytrain was introduced to help alleviate the traffic issues in Bangkok.
Following the BTS, the MRT and Airport Rail Link introduced even more trains, which have since become a staple of the city.
All the trains are looking to expand their services in Bangkok. The BTS has recently extended lines from On Nut to Bearing and Saphan Taksin to Bang Wa.
Further extensions for the Skytrain are currently under construction and to be open in 2018 and 2019.
The MRT recently connected the Blue and Purple lines and is looking to build more lines across Bangkok and the surrounding area.
Airport Link is also looking to connect to Don Muang Airport on top of Suvarnabhumi.
Last, but not least is the introduction of a single card system that will link all public transportation systems which currently all use different cards.
Use Google Maps to make the most out of the train system and see what each station has to offer nearby!
3. Markets, Markets and More Markets
If you love shopping in a marketplace that is bustling with life, Bangkok has many to offer. From delicious food, live music, to weird and wonderful wares, there’s a lot to love about markets.
The biggest outdoor market, Chatuchak Weekend Market, is the most well-known market in Bangkok.
Open on the weekends, this market probably has almost anything and everything for sale.
The only problem is you are spoilt for choice! Thankfully Chatuchak market is somewhat organized by sections.
Smaller, specialized markets have much to offer too.
Farmers markets are starting to grow in popularity thanks in part to organizers like Bangkok Farmers' Market.
Hipster markets are also popping up more frequently within Bangkok.
Many of these markets are themed, set up in the afternoon and go on until the evening. They also often feature a stage and live music.
A great example of a popular hipster market is ArtBox, a concept born from recycling shipping containers as stalls for a market.
Small markets (Talat Nat in Thai) established by local communities in an area are also prevalent. These are often only known by locals and sell little tourist merchandise.
These markets are usually setup only on specific days and in the morning, so they are very easy to miss. Ask a friendly local Thai you know to find one in your area!
4. Thriving and Vibrant Music Scene
Thai people can be incredibly passionate about music and musicians.
International touring artists definitely make Thailand a stop they try not to miss.
When Britney Spears came to Bangkok in June 2017, her show sold out so quickly that she added a second date.
Ariana Grande definitely noticed the enthusiasm of Thai fans when she performed there.
— Ariana Grande (@ArianaGrande) August 18, 2017
Chinese, Japanese and Korean pop music is also popular in Thailand.
However, that doesn’t mean that local artists are ignored. Local artists are popular as well in their own right.
Tight knit communities are also created for music, especially for niche genres that aren’t mainstream.
These groups are devoted, regardless of whether they listen to EDM, heavy metal or punk music.
Events are locally organized and small venues are often packed and sold out.
Appreciation for music here comes in all shapes and sizes, whether it's a small jazz band in bar or a large concert held by a popular artist.
5. The People of Bangkok
Thailand is well-known as the Land of Smiles for good reason!
People in Bangkok are by no means perfect, but most are certainly kind and friendly.
Even with a language barrier, they try to communicate with foreigners to the best of their ability.
It's heartwarming to see small acts of kindness such as offers to a seat on public transportation and cashiers running after customers who forget their change.
One of our favourite inspirational stories is one of a bus conductor who returned 1.1 million baht to a man to left his money behind in a bag.
Another great one is about how a policeman deescalates a potential situation with an armed man by talking him down and using a hug.
When you are working in Bangkok, you may initially find your Thai co-workers to be shy, but welcoming.
Learn a few Thai words and you'll definitely make some fast friends!
Even if you botch the pronunciation, your efforts are appreciated.
Ask Our Intern: What He Loves About Bangkok
Carlos Martinez, Mexico
Night Markets / Food Hunting
"One of my favorite things about Bangkok are its many night markets.
Yes, we all know how good is the street food in the city, but probably the best time to try it is by night.
Any walk around town after it gets dark can (and most probably will) turn into a food hunting journey through any of Bangkok's countless night markets, filled with everything from local snacks and quick bites to Korean-style BBQ stands and everything in between.
Bonus points if you end up sharing dishes and beer towers with a multicultural crowd."
Find Out Your Favourite Thing About Bangkok
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Did we miss out your favourite reason or do you agree with our list?
Let us know in the comments below what reasons we missed or share if you agree!