Written by Dawn Pillay
We know you love shopping in Bangkok, and we do too.
So we also know some of the challenges faced when planning that yearly or biannual trip to Bangkok – worse when it’s a last minute trip!
For those of us who have jobs, we need to take leave from work to go on holidays, and it can be tricky sometimes.
Whether you’re able to take leave for a weekend Bangkok trip, or are only able to make it to Bangkok during the weekdays – we have you fully covered with the best things to do in 4 days.
Just for our dear readers, get 8% OFF any first-time bookings (capped at S$15). Simply apply the promo code ‘TRIPCANVASTH’ when you check out!
When to Go
(When should I take leave?)
Most of the time, people prefer weekend Bangkok trips, just because they think that the best markets are only available during that time. This is not true.
There’s PLENTY of good markets available during the weekdays too!
You can feel free to plan a trip to Bangkok any time of the week – unless you’re the type who just can’t miss out on a day in Chatuchak (only available on Saturdays).
PS: 4 days is just enough for a fun and fulfilling time in Bangkok. You’ll find out why soon!
What to Prepare
How to avoid wasting time on queueing or getting scammed?
1. Local Sim Cards
There are 2 options. You can choose to get a local sim card once you reach the airport. (We recommend Trumove or DTAC.) For more convenience, you can also pre-order your local sim card through Klook. It’s inexpensive too! (From USD $7, Easily book via Klook!)
2. Airport Luggage Services
If you really want to make full use of your time in Bangkok, and head straight to the cafes/shops upon touching down – Klook has a great luggage delivery service that will bring your luggage straight to the hotel, while you make the most of your first day in Bangkok! (From USD $3, Easily book via Klook!)
3. Airport Transfers
To avoid scams or unnecessary waiting time, consider getting an airport transfer that will whisk you away to your first destination upon exiting the airport. It’s fast and affordable! (From USD $27, Easily book via Klook!)
4. Transport around Bangkok
How to avoid wasting time on travelling around or getting stuck in bad traffic jams especially in central Bangkok? Take the BTS! For places that might be slightly out of the way, take the BTS to the nearest BTS station to your destination – then get a taxi or Uber (use this when taxi drivers don’t know where you want to go) the rest of the way.
Where to Stay
(How to make sure I don’t waste time travelling during my trip?)
If you don’t want to waste time getting around or travelling to different places during your holiday…
The smartest thing to do is to find a stay in a central location that’s close to anywhere/everywhere you’ll want to go. Otherwise, you could also choose a stay that’s located near a BTS, so travelling is easily accessible!
Here are your best options!
(I only want to go to the best places!)
There are 3 types of shopping available in Bangkok, and here’s the cheat sheet you need when planning your 4D3N shopping itinerary.
– Shopping Malls
– Weekday Markets
– Weekend Markets
1. 4 Must-visit Shopping Malls
i. Every Bangkok shopaholic’s favourite – Platinum Mall
Photo via style_blues_online, 安雅, 99999.shop
A long time favourite, Platinum Mall carries a huge range of fashion options at decent prices. It’s also located smack in the middle of Pratunam, the central shopping district! (Coordinates here)
ii. This might be better than Platinum Mall! – Union Mall
It’s a secret most don’t know, but Union Mall might actually be better than Platinum Mall. It has a similarly huge range of fashion choices, and tends to be slightly cheaper than Platinum Mall.It’s a place where you’ll see mostly locals shopping, and there’s a good night market right outside too! (Coordinates here)
iii. Get quality mid-range designer fashion here – Terminal 21
Photo via spacestoriesbygift
More for mid-range designer shopping, this one’s for those on the lookout for unique designer clothes at mid-range prices. (Coordinates here)
iv. There’s quality designer fashion, street shops and more! – Siam Square One
Photo via vision_street.eyewear
Similar to Terminal 21, Siam Square One provides mid-range designer shopping, but what we love is that there’s so much more to do in the area too! (Coordinates here)
2. 4 Must-visit Weekday Markets
i. Great weekday market hidden in plain sight – Palladium Night Market
Photo via renaldoroan98
A huge range of fashion available here, including a good variety of kids’ clothes, and some customisable/DIY wares. (Coordinates here)
ii. Locals love this market and you will too! – Indy Night Market Dao Khanong
Photo via nantaphop66, TripCanvas
A market for the locals, there’s a good variety of things to buy here from clothes to accessories and more. Prices may also be slightly cheaper than the usual markets! (Coordinates here)
iii. Enjoy the shopping and that train market vibe – Talad Rot Fai Ratchada
Photo via fee_tolozazik
If you’re too lazy to travel further out, or are looking for an easily accessible market, this market is a great option. It might be smaller than the Srinakarin branch, but it’s almost as good with the variety of goods and eats. (Coordinates here)
iv. Old-school Bangkok street market with great buys – Huai Khwang Night Market
For those longing to have a taste of Bangkok in the good old days, this market is more like an old-school night market on the sides of a long stretch of road. There’s plenty to shop, eat, and you can even get a massage or mani-pedi done here too. (Coordinates here)
PS: Here are other weekday night markets to check out, if you’re interested:
– Hua Mum Night Market (Tue-Sun, 6pm to 12midnight)
– The Proud Market RCA (Thu-Sun, 7pm to 1am)
– Airplane Flea Market (Tue-Sun, 4pm to 11pm)
3. 2 Must-visit Weekend Markets
i. If you can visit this train market, you definitely should! – Talad Rot Fai Srinakarin
The biggest train night market with tons of things to buy, see and eat. If you manage to have a weekend in Bangkok, you won’t regret making a visit! (Coordinates here)
ii. Wholesale goods and so much more – Chatuchak
Everyone’s heard of Chatuchak, and it remains a must-go weekend market for good reason. Everything you could possibly need to buy can be found here. Fashionable clothes at great prices, crystals, pet wares, homewares, and even vintage instruments. (Coordinates here)
Where to Eat
(Show me the best places to dine in 4 days!)
There are different types of dining experiences available in Bangkok. Whether you’re looking to cafe-hop, go fancy at a restaurant, have afternoon tea, or try local food – feel free to choose your must-go places to dine at!
i. An unforgettable experience, especially for animal lovers – Big Dog Cafe
Photo via kid_skyline
A must-go in our books!!! You will spend a happy 1-2 hours here eating, and playing with many cute breeds of dogs from small to super-sized. (From USD $4.50 / 150 Baht, Coordinates here)
ii. Chill in a delicately quaint garden cafe – The 66 Cottage
Photo via vava.varang
This quaint garden cafe exudes English vibes with its brick footpaths, fountain, and baroque furnishings. Great for those looking for an instagrammable garden cafe that’s quiet but still located centrally. (From USD $8.50 / approx. 300 baht, Coordinates here)
iii. Instagrammable, chic, and oh-so-delicious – It’s ‘happened to be” a Closet
From affordable breakfast/brunch meals, to pricey fine-dining mains, this cafe/restaurant is a gem that’s in a central location – but feels hidden in plain sight. It’s gorgeous and provides an exclusive designer ambiance. Good if you’re feeling especially indulgent, or if it’s a special occasion. (From USD $8.50 / approx. 300 Baht, Coordinates here)
iv. Here’s how to go fancy when you dine! – The Rome Restaurant
Photo via Keattisak Areechon
If you’re looking for a themed/unique and fancy dining experience, The Rome Restaurant delivers magnificence with both food, style and ambiance. (From USD $14 / approx. 500 Baht per person,Coordinates here)
2. Afternoon Teas
i. All things airy and romantic (spa available too!) – Organika Cafe
Photo via erica_h00
For romance, or something special, the afternoon tea at Organika Cafe will leave you feeling refreshed, at peace – and you’ll be able to instagram the beauty of the cafe too. It also offers massage/facial treatments, if that’s something you’re keen on doing! (From USD $18 / approx. 625 Baht per person, Coordinates here)
ii. Your quintessential English afternoon tea awaits – Bonnie Dolly’s Tea Room
For that quintessential English afternoon tea experience, this hidden tea room is a quiet place to tuck into teas and patisseries, including Queen Victoria sponge cake, strawberry tarts and English scones. (USD $11 / approx. 380 Baht per person, Coordinates here)
iii. Up for a luxurious and indulgent afternoon tea? – Shangri-La Hotel Bangkok
Photo via vivi_fxh
Melodic harp tunes with a golden birdcage afternoon tea, this is the most indulgent of the lot! Luxurious afternoon tea is served with views – and scrumptious morsels from Nova Scotia Lump King crab on pink brioche, to double creme brulee tart. (From USD $17.50 / approx. 599 Baht per person, Coordinates here)
3. Local Food
i. The best pork tomyum noodles you might ever try – Roong Rueng
If you’re serious about trying some of the best local food, then you should check out this centrally located famous pork tomyum noodles in Bangkok. The noodles here are so good, you won’t be able to stop at 1 bowl. (From USD $1.50 / 40 Baht, Coordinates here)
ii. One local dish you must NOT miss, crispy pork belly! – Thanee Restaurant
Photo via Junesawitri
Situated right next to Ari BTS station, this is where you’ll find a local dish that’s been perfected over the years – incredible crispy pork belly. You won’t have to waste time hunting down local dishes as good as this, since it’s located so centrally! (From USD $1.50-2 / approx. 40-50 Baht, Coordinates here)
iii. Can’t say no to this ancient recipe, 40 year old beef broth – Wattana Panich Beef Stew
Photo via rudsooparb
It’s right in Ekkamai, and is one of our favourite must-eats, this 40 year old beef broth is a rare find. It’s surprisingly easy to get to, and you’ll enjoy this rich ancient recipe for sure. Do note that it’s closed every last Monday of the month. (From USD $1.50-7 / approx. 50-200 Baht, Coordinates here)
iv. Get a taste of the best authentic Padthai! – Hia Dum Pad Thai Fai Look
Photo via foodoflife_online, thekung
Looking for the best Padthai? Thankfully, this one’s located right in Sukhumvit! Street food with a blazing show – eating here is an unforgettable street dining experience. (From USD $2 / approx. 60 Baht, Coordinates here)
i. The rooftop bar with views for days – Above Eleven
This rooftop bar will ensure you let your hair down for the night. Toast to your quick holiday, and enjoy having fun with your travel friends. There’s a great view, mouthwatering food, and delicious drinks! (Cocktails from USD $8.50 / approx. 300 Baht, Coordinates here)
ii. Chill atop this revolving restaurant – Club Lounge, the Revolving Restaurant
Photo via superfluously_ailsa
Have a birds-eye view of the city and Chao Phraya River at this revolving restaurant/bar. It’s more of a unique drinking experience rather than a party session. Enjoy some chill drinking, take it slow, and enjoy your night of great ever-changing views. (From USD $5.60 / approx. 200 Baht, Coordinates here)
iii. Take your drinks to the next level with art and performances – Sing Sing Theatre
Located in Phrom Phong and close to everything, it’s easy to spend a night drinking at this themed bar/club. It’ll be a fun and unforgettable night with the 1930s Shanghai vibes, and performances by various artists! (From USD $3 / approx 100 Baht, Coordinates here)
iv. Moonshine and magic mixed just right – Iron Fairies
This bar will take you on a literal magical trip. Hidden in central Thonglor, and looking like a medieval blacksmith shop with its dark nordic interiors – this is for those looking for a not-so-typical place to drink. (From USD $7 / approx. 200 Baht, Coordinates here)
From travelling tips that provide convenience and efficient use of precious travel time, to all the must-dos to maximise your time in 4 days in Bangkok…
This is the only guide you’ll need to quickly put a last minute shopping itinerary to Bangkok together.