a VirtualTourist member
We are only in Bangkok for a day and are staying near the Grand Palace. (on a Wednesday) We are going to the Grand Palace & Wat Pho and would like to experience some of the markets and have read the negative reviews of Khao San Road, here on VT. Other suggestions?
Khao San Road is not at all that bad. I went there last year and I don't see any problems. I think it all depend on each individual. For instance, if you are travelling with family members than it is not advisable to stay in that area otherwise it is OK, because when we stay in that area we will meet lots of travelers, be it group or individual. We can exchange information in traveling, get extra tips for hotels, foods, must do tips, etc..etc. Knowing something before hand and prepare our self in a foreign country is always an add advantage. Since you are visiting Grand Palace and Wat Pho, why not hop in the ferry and visit Wat Arun. It just nearby and it beautiful, a great design of its own. Have a view in my Page on Thailand.
I do not know about shopping in the area that you mention. I did my shopping in Platinum mall and Pradyum mall. I found them very good, lots of variety and reasonable prices.
Shopping anywhere in Bangkok should be fun.
Have a good trip,
Meter taxis are cheap in Bangkok if you only use the meter. Same price for one passenger or for 3 more. If shopping is big on your list maybe check out Pratunam area. Visit Platinum Mall, Panthip Plaza and some of the wholesale markets and vendors between Phetchaburi Road and Baiyoke Hotels. You can visit MBK too. Lots of shopping opportunities all in one building and it is air conditioned!
Khao San Road area is popular with young backpackers looking for a cheap hotel and to be around other young tourists. No city rail service available in KSR area but several things you can walk to.
When you use a meter taxi in Bangkok have coins and small bills to pay the driver. Do not get in the taxi unless the driver agrees to use the meter. Most will do it unless you look easy! Meter taxis are cheaper than tuk-tuks for most tourists. Meter is cheaper!
MBK is good, has lots of Thailand 'stuff' and is on the overhead transit train which is easy to use. Also shops and street markets near Sala Daeng (also on the transit train). Jatuchak (sometimes spelled 'Chatuchak') is a huge market area but you might need a whole day to do it justice.
Good advice by sirhalberd and Vpas. I believe that Chatachuk market is closed for development and it was only open sat and sun . another place to consider is to walk down Sukhumvit road where there are hundreds of stalls set up at the side of the road in the evening, usually selling fake items and souvenirs directed towards the many tourists in that area. Khao San Road is not the place to experience a market as it is full of young backpackers spending time with each other and the stalls are full of items directed towards the young tourist.
Chatuchak renovations are taking place during the week, leaving the weekends, as in "weekend market", business as usual.
Are you interested in visiting"markets", or are you interesting in shopping? If the latter, what would you be shopping for?
If the former, I might send you to Sampeng Chinatown. This is an "open-to-the-public" wholesale district, selling everything from silver jewelry, to Hello Kitty. Actually, there is no telling what might be found around these alleys.
Sampeng is easy to reach by express boat from the Grand Palace area. Just take a south bound orange flag express boat, from either Tha Chang (pier 9) or Tha Tian (pier 8), to Ratchawong (pier 5). From there, head up Ratchawong, to Ssmpeng: http://goo.gl/maps/sOQF6
About the grand palace area ...
Do not listen to anyone telling you this or that is closed. Ignore any friendly strangers offering shopping or tour advice. They are all scammers.
Do not accept anything anyone tries to hand you. Once in your hand, you will be charged an ridiculous price for it.
Here is a map of the Grand Palace area: http://tinyurl.com/grandpalacemap
Great. Thanks. That is helpful
If you only have a day in Bangkok, my suggestion is head to MBK as it has everything that caters a tourist. You can take a taxi from the palace to there. MBK has all the lower-end stuffs (clothing, souvenir, etc). The shopping area right across from MBK connected by a footbridge also has some cheap independent clothing shops. If you want international brand names, the mall diagonally across from MBK will do, which is connected by a pedestrian walkway. It is called Siam Centre/Siam Discovery. High-end brands can be found next door at Siam Paragon. There is also an aquarium, a high-end supermarket and a large food court inside. If you still want to do more shopping, you can keep walking east Central World on the footbridge underneath the BTS tracks. Central World has a good mix of mid-range brand names, department stores, supermarket and lots of restaurant choices on the top floors.
Spending one day in BKK then you have make a smart decision for the happy traveling of course visiting temple and grand palace is the top destination then Khao San road is also great for tourist destination besides its not too far from the grand palace. Bkk is safe not too much worry but of course traveling everypart in this world we have to be careful. As previous mentioned give you some great in put, If you like to buy some clothes and accesories then visiting shopping mall like Platinum,Siam paragon then Central World mall also MBK could be great but if you are only want to have an leisure traveling to enjoy the BKK atmosphere then I recommend you to take the taxi river from Khao San or Grand palace pier to Saphan Taksin then move to a shuttle boat to the front river night market "Asiatique" to enjoy the sun set time and for night life you can back to Saphan Taksin change the public transport bts to visit the nightlife phatphong at saladieng or soi cowboy at asok. So your day will be colorful to see the BKK city richest with its temple,people,taxi river, market, nightlife just for one day.
Hope this help, because I have done
Shopping malls :siam paragon siam center platinum mall MBK
Weekend market : chatuchak
Night market :patpong night market