With ornate shrines, bustling markets and amazing street food, Bangkok is one of the most exciting cities in the world to visit. But with a population of over eight million people, it can be difficult to know where to call your home base while you’re in the city. Where you stay really impacts your travel experience here, which is why it’s smart to familiarize yourself with the local neighborhoods. Here are our top picks for where to stay in Bangkok.

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Khao San Khao San Road in Bangkok, Thailand
Khao San Road in Bangkok, Thailand

Khao San

Why Stay Here: Authentic chaos and budget-friendly for backpackers.
Top Hotels: ibis Styles Bangkok Khaosan Viengtai | Nouvo City Hotel

Favored among backpackers looking for budget-friendly accommodations, the Khao San area of Bangkok has a lot to offer travelers. Stay here if you’re looking to save money with a hostel or find a good mid-range hotel that won’t break your budget. The neighborhood is close to cultural attractions, and the best ways to get around are by tuk-tuk, taxi, or bus. Stay here to get an authentic Bangkok experience with busy streets, a walkable area, and lots of street vendors. Even if you don’t stay overnight in Khao San, it’s fun to come party here and enjoy a few drinks in the excitingly chaotic environment.

Silom Tall buildings on Silom Street
Tall buildings on Silom Street

Silom

Why Stay Here: Close to business centers and a nice park.
Top Hotels: Silom City Hotel | Kokotel Bangkok Surawong

The Silom area of the city is known as the Wall Street of Bangkok with lots of financial institutions, corporate offices, and towering skyscrapers. But at night, people come here for bars and the Patpong red light district. You can find some luxury hotels in the area that are popular among business travelers. But due to the nighttime entertainment options, this might not be the best place to stay with kids. However, Lumphini Park, which is the largest park in the city, is located in this area and a nice place to get outside.

Sukhumvit Aerial view Benchasiri Park next Sukhumvit street
Aerial view Benchasiri Park next Sukhumvit street

Sukhumvit

Why Stay Here: Well-connected part of the city and exciting nightlife.
Top Hotels: Ambassador Hotel Bangkok | Bodega Bangkok Party Hostel

In Sukhumvit, you’ll find lively market activity out into the streets and alleyways. This is a part of the city that is well-connected to the rest of Bangkok to make sightseeing easy. Sukhumvit has some great luxury hotels, plenty of highly-rated restaurants, and is a good place to be for nightlife. There are two red light districts in this area of Bangkok, so it might not be the best area to stay in if you’re traveling with kids. However, it is a nice place for couples to spend a honeymoon.

Siam Tourists in Siam Square area
Tourists in Siam Square area

Siam

Why Stay Here: Great access to shopping and safe for families.
Top Hotels: Arnoma Grand Bangkok | Novotel Bangkok on Siam Square

Siam Square is a great place to be if you want to shop and have easy access to the city’s big malls. This is an ideal location for shopping and a family-friendly place to stay with kids because it is safe and full of amenities. Malls in the area include Siam Center, Siam Paragon, and Central World Mall. While you’re in the Siam area, check out the sky-bars with lovely views and drink specials. This is more of a place with mall restaurants than street food vendors, and it has a more glamorous vibe than other parts of town.

Suvarnabhumi Airport Area Interior design of Suvarnabhumi Airport
Interior design of Suvarnabhumi Airport

Suvarnabhumi Airport Area

Why Stay Here: Easy transportation access if you have an early flight or long layover.
Top Hotels: Novotel Bangkok Suvarnabhumi Airport | Paragon Inn

If you are only in Bangkok for a very short time, consider staying near the airport to make your trip easier and more convenient. There are numerous hotels near Suvarnabhumi Airport. Stay in this area if you have an early morning flight and don’t want to deal with a transportation hassle. Airport hotels are also nice if you have a long layover in Bangkok, especially if the hotel you choose has a free airport shuttle service.

Old Town Wat Phra Kaew, commonly known in English as the Temple of the Emerald Buddha
Wat Phra Kaew, commonly known in English as the Temple of the Emerald Buddha

Old Town

Why Stay Here: Close to museums and palaces in a walkable part of the city.
Top Hotels: Innspire Bangkok | Samsen Sam Place

If you want to be close to all of the top museums, temples, and palaces, then plan to stay in the Old Town area of Bangkok. It is also called Rattanakosin and a very walkable part of town. The top things to see here are the Grand Palace, National Gallery, and Wat Phra Kaew. Old Town is charming and puts you in the middle of so many spectacular attractions to learn about the city’s history.

Riverside Scenic view of Riverside at Bangkok
Scenic view of Riverside at Bangkok

Riverside

Why Stay Here: Romantic and scenic views with lots of luxury hotel options.
Top Hotels: Mandarin Oriental, Bangkok | Baan Wanglang Riverside

When you choose to stay along the river, you’ll have your pick of excellent hotels and also be near many cultural attractions. It’s fun to take a tour on a private river boat when you stay in the Riverside area. You can also access the Skytrain from here to reach other parts of town. It’s also romantic to stay along the river if you are traveling to Bangkok for your honeymoon. The Riverside area is known for its familiar chain luxury hotels, such as the Four Seasons and Mandarin Oriental.

Chinatown The gate to Chinatown in Yaowarat at night, Bangkok
The gate to Chinatown in Yaowarat at night, Bangkok

Chinatown

Why Stay Here: Local, non-touristy vibe and great street food.
Top Hotels: Millennium Hilton Bangkok | Hotel Royal Bangkok at Chinatown

The Chinatown area is a historic part of Bangkok that is more of a local and residential area than a tourist attraction. However, there are some nice hotels here if you want to experience a different side of Bangkok. Expect the streets to be chaotic, packed with locals, and have lots of market stalls. Just know that this isn’t a top area to stay in for nightlife or basic travel amenities, so it may be best for travelers who aren’t visiting Bangkok for the first time. The public transportation options here aren’t as good as in other parts of the city; however, the street food is amazing.

Ekkamai Ekkamai BTS station
Ekkamai BTS station

Ekkamai

Why Stay Here: Foodie paradise and access to other parts of the country.
Top Hotels: Hotel Nikko Bangkok | The Salil Hotel Sukhumvit 57 – Thonglor

A more under-the-radar place to stay in Bangkok is Ekkamai, which is a great place for foodies. It has both tiny food stalls and fine-dining restaurants, and it is well connected to the Skytrain. Ekkamai is a nice place to call your home base If you are planning to check out other cities outside of Bangkok as well. There’s a large shopping mall here and ritzy condos that are popular among stylish locals.

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