Before heading north or reaching your luxury beach resort, many clients choose to combine a brief stay in the fascinating and frenetic city of Bangkok for a spot of culture, sightseeing and shopping. After a day spent enjoying the many river attractions and historic sites, visitors can venture to the night markets before relaxing atop one of the many rooftop bars and restaurants, such as Banyan Tree’s Vertigo Restaurant and Moon Bar. Offering a remarkable night-time vista of brightly lit skyscrapers, one can truly appreciate the scale of this sprawling city metropolis from the 61st floor. Whilst the stunning view may certainly mesmerise guests, diners can rest assured that the delectable dishes are an equal attraction for dining al fresco at a dizzying height (weather permitting of course)!
If more culture and sight-seeing is on the menu for the following day, then perhaps take a water taxi along the bustling Chao Phraya River, past the iconic Mandarin Oriental Hotel (the city’s oldest hotel), to The Grand Palace with its beautiful architecture and intricately adorned interiors or to the sacred grounds of Wat Prakaew with its enshrined Emerald Buddha. The river and canals provide an alternative to the bustling city roads, or more central skytrain, and are a simple way to navigate the city and reach Wat Arun or the restored Thai-style teakwood houses. They also provide a unique perspective for the floating markets and colourful street fare. Once the city highlights have been explored and popular souvenirs (such as Jim Thompson silks) have been purchased, visitors can fly north to Chiang Mai or Chiang Rai for iconic green paddy fields and authentic Thai village culture – the ideal antidote to the busy city and perfect prerequisite to any relaxing Thai beach or spa retreat.