Where to stay in Bangkok

Which is the best area to stay in Bangkok?

By Molly Higgs. Updated March 14, 2024

Bangkok is a huge city with many great places to stay and a wide range of accommodation from budget to luxury. By far the best area to stay in is Pathum Wan district. This thriving district located right in the heart of Bangkok has a vibrant nightlife, a range of excellent hotels and a huge upmarket shopping district that you could spend days wandering around. This is not to mention the world-class international restaurants in Pathum Wan that satisfy the appetite of any hungry traveller. Pathum Wan is very safe, full of fellow tourists and is well-connected to the city’s transport network.


There is no city quite like Bangkok! Thailand’s sprawling capital hub of 14 million people is one of the most popular tourist cities globally. In fact, it has been listed as the most-visited city in the world as recently as 2019. Receiving almost 23 million tourists per year (pre-pandemic), Bangkok is excellent for backpackers, family holidaymakers and cultural travellers. It is a city rich in culture, cuisine and entertainment and has some outstanding historical monuments such as the Grand Palace and The Temple of The Reclining Buddah. Despite the hectic chaos and traffic, Bangkok has a magical and captivating charm.

Hotel   Avg price
ibis Bangkok Siam
927 Rama
81€ - 88$
Hotel   Avg price
Novotel Bangkok on Siam Square
44 Siam Square Soi 6
123€ - 134$
Sindhorn Midtown
68 Lang Suan Road Khwaeng Lumphini
129€ - 141$
Hotel   Avg price
Sivatel Bangkok
53 Wittayu Road
147€ - 160$
Centara Grand At Centralworld
999 99 Rama I Rd
172€ - 187$
Grand Hyatt Erawan
494 Rajdamri Road, Pathumwan
231€ - 252$
Kimpton Maa-Lai Bangkok
78 Soi Ton Son
240€ - 262$

If you are interested in where to stay in Bangkok, you may also be interested in where to stay in Phuket, where to stay in Krabi, where to stay in Koh Samui and where to stay in Chiang Mai.

Pathum Wan, the best place to stay in Bangkok


First Time / Tourists / Safe



Pathum WanAlthough there are multiple places to stay all over Bangkok, the Pathum Wan district stands out above the rest with multiple hotels to choose from. Pathum Wan’s finest attraction has to be its Lumpini Park. This large, open-air park is frequently filled with families, locals and tourists enjoying the lovely green spaces. You can row on the lake, do many outdoor sports or simply relax with a picnic in this tranquil setting.


Aside from the park, there are numerous international restaurants in Pathum Wan. Want food from all over the globe? No problem! Here, you can find Mexican, European, Japanese and of course Thai restaurants all serving up authentic cuisine at a very fair price. Pathum Wan is also a shopper’s paradise! The district boasts some of Bangkok’s largest and most upscale shopping malls, such as Siam Paragon and the Central World Department Store.


Pathum Wan is also the place to be for Bangkok’s exciting nightlife. Here you can find some of the city’s most famous rooftop bars, such as CRU Rooftop Bar at Centara Grand and the Red Sky Bar. There is always a buzzing atmosphere at these bars and you can enjoy cocktails with fine, panoramic views of the city.



Hotels in Pathum Want





Other areas to stay in Bangkok



Khao San


Backpackers / Cheap / Nightlife



Khao SanLocated right in the heart of Bangkok, Khao San road is a fairly small area, yet it is full of places to stay. It is known as one of the backpacker’s hubs of Bangkok, with numerous budget hostels and a vibrant backpacker’s community. However, there are also mid-range and high-end hotels to choose from, so Khao San is definitely not exclusively for backpackers.


Khao San Road is particularly suited to tourists who love delicious, cheap food and a lively nightlife. Around this area, you can find numerous restaurants, cafés and street food stalls selling local specialties for bargain prices. And if you love to party, you won’t struggle to find bars or clubs in this youthful area which are open every day until late.


Although Khao San isn’t known for sightseeing, its central location gives you easy access to other touristy districts - both on foot and by local transportation.



Hotels in Khao San






Luxury Travelers



SathornOne of Bangkok’s major business districts, Sathorn is a gem for luxury travelers, with an excellent range of luxury hotels and resorts, many with fantastic city views. You can really treat yourself here, relaxing in upmarket accommodation away from the hectic city crowds. There are also cheaper options, such as some mid-range hotels. With many bars, restaurants and street food, Sathorn has a lively atmosphere.


Sathorn is also a great place to stay for park lovers. You can walk around the pleasant Lumpini Park and have a picnic lakeside. Or, if you want to treat yourself, take a scenic boat ride along the Chao Phraya River. You can embark from the busy Sathorn Pier and take an insightful tour around.


You can also sightsee around Sathorn, despite the relative lack of landmarks here. One popular place to visit is M.R. Kukrit’s house- a museum dedicated to former Thai Prime Minister Mr. R.Kukrit.



Hotels in Sathorn




Khlong Toei


Markets / Upscale Hotels



Khlong ToeiKhlong Toei also boasts a fantastic central location within Bangkok, close to Pathum Wan. Famous for its huge slum, parts of Khlong Toei are some of the poorest in Bangkok; however, other parts are completely different. Indeed, the touristy part of Khlong Toei is a lively, fast-developing area lined with upscale hotels, restaurants and luxury malls. Staying on Sukhumvit Road (the touristy heart of the district) is a very comfortable and convenient option.


Khlong Toei is an interesting cultural district, and is home to Bangkok’s biggest wet market- the Khlong Toei Market. Here, tourists and locals pack the market daily with pretty much everything for sale.


Aside from the market, Khlong Toei is home to many other cultural attractions and pretty parks. You can admire the Plai Nern Palace, or simply relax at Benjakitti and Benchasiri Park. For typical local Thai Street Food, head to Sukhumvit Soi 38 Night Food Market.



Hotels in Khlong Toei






Expats / Sightseeing



WatthanaWatthana District is a lively international hub and one of the best-developed areas in Bangkok. It is a great choice for luxury travellers, as Watthana is home to some of Bangkok’s best upmarket, designer hotels and fancy restaurants. Formerly a part of Khlong Toei, Watthana became its own separate district in 1998. It is ideally located close to Khlong Toei, with great access to Sukhumvit Road and the city’s subway system.


As well as all the tourists, Watthana is home to a very large international community, with many international workers and retirees and a range of international schools within the district. As a result, there is a lively, diverse nightlife and numerous foreign restaurants ranging from Japanese to American. You could try something new every night!


Watthana also has some fascinating historical and cultural attractions, especially the Wat That Thong Buddhist Temple that is well worth adding to your itinerary.



Hotels in Watthana




Bang Rak


Business / Nightlife / Upscale Hotels



Bang RakAnother of Bangkok’s classy and upmarket locations, Bang Rak is particularly famous for its vibrant nightlife, commercial district and excellent restaurants.


Bang Rak is located on the banks of the Chao Phraya River, with great access to the city’s subway system. If you are a luxury traveller, why not stay in one of the elegant riverside hotels with fantastic views of the Chao Phraya River and Bangkok as a whole? Also, treat yourself to some quality local cuisine at one of the brilliant riverside restaurants.


Bang Rak is also a stunning place to stay if you enjoy a lively night scene. You can treat yourself at Lebua State Tower’s Sky Bar whilst enjoying some stunning panoramic views. Also, Bang Rak is situated close to Silom, one of Bangkok’s most lively nightlife areas. This includes Patpong Night Market, where you can buy local souvenirs before partying the night away!



Hotels in Bang Rak






Shopping / Cheap



PratunamPratunam is another thriving neighbourhood in the heart of Bangkok. There are a range of hotels available here, suitable for all kinds of travellers. It is also perfectly located a short walk from a few of Bangkok’s Skytrain stations, such as Phaya Thai BTS Station.


There are many shopping hubs within Bangkok, and Pratunam is certainly up there with the best! This neighbourhood is home to the trendy Platinum Fashion Mall, The Shibuya Shopping Mall and The Paladium World Shopping. You are simply spoilt for options! As well as these modern malls, Pratunam is also home to authentic Thai markets, including the cultural Pratunam Market and even the Talad Neon Downtown Night Market.


Pratunam is not just for shoppers, though; there are plenty of cultural and historical attractions here. Most notably, you can visit the Suan Pakkad Palace (which was formerly a royal home) and also admire the Trimurti Shrine.



Hotels in Pratunam






Weekend Markets / Sightseeing / Thrift shopping



ChatuchakHome to the world’s largest weekend market, Chatuchak district is a thriving area with a distinctly local feel. While it may not have the endless accommodation options of Watthana, it boasts a selection of mid-range hotels and upscale apartments.


Most of Chatuchak’s accommodation is situated within striking distance of its weekend market: a sprawling labyrinth of over 15,000 stalls. This shopper’s paradise features vintage clothing, handmade jewellery, homeware, and everything in between. Nestled between stores are on-the-go cafes and a mouthwatering selection of street food. After an afternoon of haggling, weary shoppers can cool off in one of Chatuchak’s many parks and green spaces. To escape the heat of downtown Bangkok, many locals take the BTS to Chatuchak Park or Queen Sirikit Park, with both providing leafy boulevards and plenty of picnic-worthy spots.


With close proximity to Lumpinee Thai Boxing Stadium, a range of speakeasy-themed cocktail bars, and food markets galore, Chatuchak offers a plethora of exciting evening activities.



Hotels in Chatuchak






Architecture / Streetfood / Nightlife



SamphanthawongOrnate temples, neon lights, and steaming pots of dim sum line the streets of Samphanthawong District: an area that seldom sleeps. Despite its pulsating nighttime scene, this district has plenty of places for tourists to rest and re-charge: boasting quirky homestays, cosy Airbnbs, and luxury hotels.


Wherever you decide to stay in Samphanthawong, you’ll never be far from Chinatown: a magnet for foodies and photographers who are drawn to its neon lights and tantlising cuisine. Tucked away in side streets are some of the best bars in all of Bangkok. Rooftop venues provide a perfect spot for people watching with a cocktail in hand, while chinese-themed bars celebrate the district’s heritage.


While the best time to visit Chinatown is after dark, tourists are spoilt for choice when it comes to daytime activities in Samphanthawong. This riverside district offers boat trips to floating markets, a selection of ancient temples, and museums dedicated to Bangkok’s Chinese community.



Hotels in Samphanthawong




Din Daeng


Cheap Accommodation / Cultural Exploration / Shopping



Ratchada Train Night MarketWhile often overlooked by tourists, Din Daeng district offers a unique insight into the Bangkok of old. Here, monks stop for roadside Pad Krapao, locals cycle through palm-lined alleyways, and cats doze in the afternoon sun. Suprisingly, there are plenty of accomodation options for tourists in an otherwise residential area, with lower nightly rates than central Bangkok.


Din Daeng’s most famous attraction is the Ratchada Train Night Market. From above, this atmospheric bazaar is a sea of vibrant colour, with stalls stretching for miles. Whether you’re an adventurous foodie, art lover, or curious soveigner hunter, you’ll be sure to find something that intruiges you among the bustling lanes.


In addition to it’s night market scene, Din Daeng features plenty of cultural activities, cafe-hopping opportunities, and some of the most delicious food Bangkok has to offer. Visitors can rent traditional Thai costumes for an unforgettable photo opportunity or practice Muay Thai at authentic gyms.



Hotels in Din Daeng

Molly HiggsMolly Higgs

As a travel writer, I've seen my fair share of Asian cities, but none are as vibrant, charming, and hectic as Bangkok. Since my first stay in 2020, I've lived for months at a time in Thailand's vibrant capital, and discover something new with each stay.