Tours of Bangkok

Is it worth going on a tour, or can you do it all independently?
Tours of Bangkok

There are many, many travel agents in Bangkok offering tours of the sights in Bangkok and surrounding provinces. The Khao San road travel agents tend to be the cheapest, but have a reputation for routinely selling more tickets than there are seats in the minibus. This is obviously not particularly comfortable. Many of the bigger hotels will have a travel agent of some sort which will be more expensive, though should be of better quality. Prices can vary a lot, so it's worth shopping around - make sure to check whether entrance fees are included in the price as this can make a big difference. Prices are generally around 500B per person for a half day tour, and go up to over 1000B per person for longer trips. Full day tours should include lunch in the price.

Some tours will just basically involve driving you from one sight to another, while others will have knowledgeable guides which can add a lot - try and check this before booking. Recommendations from others are the best way of deciding which company to go for, as things can change quickly.

The following is a guide to the most popular and widely available tours on offer:

Grand Palace and Wat Phra Kaew
(half day)
This can be easily visited by simply taking a taxi here, a tour will be expensive and have no real benefit over going independently. Detailed free guidebooks are given at the entrance, and multi-lingual guides are always available for hire if you need them. More details are on the Wat Phra Kaew and Grand Palace pages.
City and Temples tour
(half day)
Tours such as this will generally involve visiting Chinatown and Wat Traimit, the Pak Klong flower market, Wat Pho and perhaps some some other sights in the Banglamphu and Dusit districts. Again, this could be done cheaper and more flexibly by hiring a taxi but a tour is less hassle and could be reasonable value if you have a good guide.
Samut Prakan Crocodile Farm / Ancient City
(half day)
These are fairly close together and can both be visited in a whole day tour. They're both quite a hassle to get to using public transport, so a tour really is the way to go if you want to visit these. More details are on the day trips page.
Damnoen Saduak Floating Market / Rose Garden / Nakhon Pathom
(full day)
This is one of the best tours available, as reaching all of these in a single day otherwise would be very difficult. Details on all of these are on the day trips page.
Damnoen Saduak Floating Market / Kanchanaburi / Nakhon Pathom
(full day)
This another good trip, though it's worth spending more time in Kanchanburi if only to see the Erawan waterfalls nearby. This trip will basically only go to the Bridge Over The River Kwai, the cemetery and a museum in Kanchanaburi.
Jim Thompson's House and Suan Pakkard Palace
(half day)
These are located close to each other, not far from Siam Square. They're easy to see independently, and a tour is a bit of a waste of money. More information on both is on the other attractions page.
Vimanmek Palace and Abhisek Dusit Museum
(half day)
This is best visited simply by taking a taxi to Vimanmek, and the Abhisek museum is in the grounds. A tour is completely unnecessary really. Information on Vimanmek is in the Dusit section.
(full day)

The one day tours provide an excellent introduction to Ayuthaya, though it is so large that they will not cover all of the highlights there. Some include elephant riding and a longtail boat trip in the price, and some will include a 4 hour river trip to/from Bangkok and a stop at Bang Pa-In. Check to see what you are paying for, as the different tours can vary a lot in what they offer.
Thai Dinner and Classical Dancing
This is an entirely touristy show, but is okay if you just want to see some traditional Thai dancing.
River and Khlongs tour
(half day)
These go around the canals in Thonburi with a stop at Wat Arun, but vary in what other sights they offer. It's easier than hiring a boat yourself, but not as cheap or as flexible.
Safari World
(full day)
This is best visited on a tour, as some sections of the park require private transport to visit. More details about it are on the Day trips page.
(full day)
These generally go to an island off Pattaya, Ko Larn, for swimming and snorkeling. It's best going for more than a day if you can though, as these can be a bit rushed.


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