Touring the river in Ratanakosin Bangkok  » Travel  »
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Ratanakosin Bangkok
  • I believe the best way to see Ratanakosin is by river
  • In fact, with streets always backed up with traffic I think the River in Ratanakosin is really the most logical choice
  • You will see the longtail taxis that I believe are truly symbolic of Bangkok
  • The city of Ratanakosin has such an enduring sense or association with the river, the boating expedition, in my opinion has to be undoubtedly the highlight of anyone’s trip to the ceremonious city festooned with canals
  • I believe the Chao Phraya River is the most interesting at sunset

    • by DawnMichel
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      I believe the best way to see Ratanakosin is by river. It is also a good way to get to the Grand Palace. In fact, with streets always backed up with traffic I think the River in Ratanakosin is really the most logical choice. My advice is don’t bother with the streets unless you like sitting in traffic.

      You are going to receive a better jest of the city if you travel by boat. It is much easier than traversing upon the streets and you can access all the important sites—even the one I just mentioned.

      You may easily access Ratanakosin within an easy walk from Banglamphu however it is best to travel on the river which you may do by taking an express boat from the piers located at Tha Chang (for sightseeing of the Grand Palace and Sanam Luang).

      If you are coming from the downtown area, you will need to hop on board the Sky train to the Saphan Taksin train station. Once you make it to the station then you will want to take one of the express boats from the Central Pier (Sathorn).

      The longtail boats may be another option for you as they are quite unique. If you are wanting to take the scenic route I suppose your best off chartering a longtail taxi. Here you may observe residential areas including everything from structurally unsound dwellings to fabulous estate style houses with clean front lawns. I’d say the express boat is more for the practical adventurer. You


      may easily take in the sights on the Chao Phraya River. It generally transports local commuters and persons visiting, starting at Krung Threp Bridge which is positioned in the south of Ratanakosin and runs all the way to Nonthaburi in the north. You may ride the express for right around B13. The entire ride I have just described takes roughly around one hour and thirty minutes and you will be able to observe much as to what is going on alongside the river as well as on the river. You will see the longtail taxis that I believe are truly symbolic of Bangkok. The boats produce a great deal of noise. The longtail boat uses a diesel powered engine and that is probably the reason for its noisiness. The boat’s elongated design is splendid and I adore the colorful canopies. You just do not see this type of boat that often in other parts of the World. It is charming in its effect no matter the number of passengers it may be designed to hold.

      There are other styles, as well, of boats used for sightseeing boats prowling up and down the Chao Phraya River. The city of Ratanakosin has such an enduring sense or association with the river, the boating expedition, in my opinion has to be undoubtedly the highlight of anyone’s trip to the ceremonious city festooned with canals.

      Additionally adding to the conviviality of the entire riverboat experience are the “obedient” ferries playing (metaphorically speaking) their role(s) in ...


      • carrying passengers from one-side of the Chao Phraya River to the opposite river bank.

        Then there are the boats engaged in commercial enterprise: the tug boats that slowly move their cargo to the destination port.

        Also if you travel the Bangkok River route of which I’ve mentioned in its full entirety you will be able to gaze on quite a few fascinating and beautiful sites. There are structural presentations of the Colonial era that are brightly colored and remind me a bit of Colonial colorful buildings I’ve seen in Belgium—the pointy front sure does. The structural diversification continues as you view the modernity of skyscrapers and recognizable rooftops of the grand temples. The building structures I’ve just described is what you will notice heading down the charming Chao Phraya River. As you venture upstream on the express boat service you will probably notice the Bangyikan Distillery house. It is where Thailand’s Mekhong whiskey is manufactured.

        There are probably twelve or so bridges in addition that cross the river, however a beautifully modern-styled bridge is the Rama VIII Bridge.

        It was erected on the Thonburi bank and adheres to the law where you cannot place high structures within eye-range of the Grand Palace.

        You can always take the public boats if you wish to explore the canal areas. One of the best canal routes if not the best is Khlong Saen Saeb. If you chose this waterway you will move along in an easterly direction beginning at Banglamphu to Sukhumvit and further.

        The out of the way

        waters of Thonburi are probably considered more scenic than the canal routes taken by the public boats and once again to view the more residential sections you will need to employ a colorful Bangkok style longtail taxi with its fun and colorful canopy and noisy diesel engine.

        Of course the express boat of which I’ve mentioned will certainly give you your money’s worth and you may always stop off at preferred sites along the way like the Grand Palace as long as you’ve taken the correct express boat: in this case Tha Chang.

        Once you ride the Express, you will receive a very good sense of the river. It may be helpful for you to know that the canals are referred to as klongs. You will find a number of them in the Thonburi area of the city and on the west bank. Here you will find the provincial style stilt homes of which you may expect to find on river’s edge.

        A boat makes good sense in traveling about in the city of Ratanakosin. The river to me seems to be the lifeblood of Ratanakosin and I preferred it much to the streets seemingly overrun with cars.

        I believe the Chao Phraya River is the most interesting at sunset. To me, a gray pall seems to fall over everything and it is within this muted uniqueness I once again find my soul after a busy day full of sightseeing and exploration. I don’t believe there is anything quite as profound as the river at sunset.




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