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Travel guide – Bangkok

Bangkok, the capital of Thailand and home to more than 7 million people, is one of the world’s most popular holiday destinations. Visitors come to shop, eat and drink at low prices, experience pulsating nightlife and take in the beautiful temples that can be found throughout the city. Getting to other destinations in Thailand or elsewhere in Asia is simple from the city’s huge, modern Suvarnabhumi Airport. Krung Thep, meaning “City of Angels,” is an alternative name for Bangkok.

Bangkok was Finnair’s first Asian destination, with the first service in 1976. Today, Finnair has the shortest routes between Europe and Asia. Most of our Bangkok flights are on the A350, a modern and advanced aircraft with increased passenger comfort.

Finnair is one of the most popular airlines flying to Bangkok. Our direct flights to Bangkok from Helsinki take around 10h, and there are at least two flights every day. You can also transit through Helsinki to reach Bangkok from numerous other cities. Stopovers are comfortable and convenient, and all transit facilities can be found in one terminal building. Book flights to Bangkok from Zurich, Stockholm, Munich, Geneva, St Petersburg, Manchester and more.

You’ll land at Suvarnabhumi Airport (BKK) when flying to Bangkok. Located around 30 kilometres (19 miles) from the city centre, it’s easy to reach the city by road and rail after flights to BKK.

Enjoy authentic Nordic hospitality, tasty cuisine and terrific in-flight entertainment when you book flights to Bangkok with Finnair. Benefit from priority check-in and boarding, fully flat seats and an exclusive in-flight menu when you upgrade to Nordic Business Class.

Bangkok is a bustling city all year round. Bangkok experiences three main seasons: hot, cool and rainy. March to June is the hot season, with temperatures really soaring in April and May. July to October is the rainy season; expect thunderstorms and rain showers. November to February is the cool season. 

Temperatures are still relatively high during the cool season and this is the peak travel time in Bangkok. Book well in advance to find the best Bangkok flight deals. This is often seen as the best time to visit Bangkok because of the cooler conditions.

April sees the country’s largest festival: Songkran. People take to the streets to celebrate traditional Thai New Year with huge water fights. Reserve your accommodation and airline tickets to Bangkok well ahead of time if you want to experience Songkran.

Although still busy, the rainy season is the low time for tourism in Bangkok. Rains don’t last all day and, while you may experience storms and heavy rain, there are often dry, sunny spells too. Pack an umbrella and non-slip footwear. This is the best time for budget travellers to explore the city, as you can usually find the cheapest flights to Bangkok and the best deals on hotels and trips during this period.

Grand Palace– Bangkok’s most famous landmark. The palace has been the official residence of the Kings of Siam (and later Thailand) since 1782. The king, his court and his royal government were based on the grounds of the palace until 1925.

Wat Phra Kaew– the renowned temple area next to the Grand Palace in Bangkok is one of the most spectacular sights in Bangkok and home to the mesmerising Emerald Buddha.

Wat Pho– one of the largest temples in Thailand, which houses the 15 metre-tall and 46 metre-long golden Reclining Buddha statue.

Rooftop terraces
Rooftop terraces abound in Bangkok and can be a more pleasant alternative to a visit to an observation deck. Lebua Tower has a four-floor rooftop terrace – featured in many famous films - providing stunning city views. Other rooftop terraces worth a visit can be found at Sofitel So and Banyan Tree hotel.

Baiyoke Tower II– the tallest skyscraper in Thailand with an 84th-floor observation deck offering panoramic views of the city.

Khao San Road– an area famous within the backpacker community, this street offers many inexpensive accommodation options.

Damnoen Saduak– this “floating market,” where women dress in traditional costume and sell fruit and vegetables from their boats, is 2 hours from Bangkok.

Hua Hin– established tourist resort with beautiful beaches. 3 hours from Bangkok.

Koh Samet– the perfect island for a quiet getaway during your stay. 4 hours from Bangkok.

Siam Square and Central World– cool down in western-style shopping malls when the heat of Bangkok gets too heavy. Good prices and global brands are represented together with a massive selection of restaurants.

MBK Center– also known as Mahboonkrong, this shopping mall has five floors of low-cost gadgets, clothes and handicraft. Visitors should be aware that a lot of the goods sold at markets are not genuine but cheap – from contact lenses to Gucci handbags.

Chatuchak Weekend Market– a gigantic outdoor market in Bangkok open on weekends with seemingly anything and everything on offer. We also recommend Pratunam Market.

Food and drink is generally very inexpensive in Thailand, and is especially true in regards to local Thai dishes available at small restaurants or when buying from one of the city’s countless food trucks. Bangkok has more expensive alternatives, however, and prices can differ dramatically depending on what you choose. Thai food in Bangkok is influenced by both Chinese and Indian cuisine. In Bangkok people eat using either a fork and spoon or chopsticks and rice is the most important component in cooking, along with the famous nam pla fish sauce.

Tom Yum Kung– lemongrass soup with chili peppers and prawns.

Gaeng Keow Wan Kai– green chicken curry in coconut milk.

Gaeng Deng– red curry dish with coconut milk and finely chopped pieces of meat.

Tom Yum Gung– a soup with lemongrass, galangal, mushrooms and prawns.

Tom Kha Kai– soup with coconut milk, lemongrass, galangal and chicken.

Pad Thai– wok noodles with vegetables, a tasty fish sauce, chili peppers and chopped cashew nuts.

Thai iced tea– strongly-brewed black tea mixed with condensed milk and sugar

Wine– available but expensive

Beer– local and international brews

Metropolitan Rapid Transit (MRT)– Bangkok’s subway and skytrain, the Bangkok Mass Transit System (BTS) is the best way to get around, but be aware that it does not go everywhere. Stations are well marked.

Taxi– using a taxi in Bangkok is relatively inexpensive and handy, also good to travel longer distances. Never agree a price for taxi, instead make sure the driver uses a meter.

River boats– good value boat tours in Bangkok are available from the Saphan Taksin area and are a handy travel option when visiting Bangkok’s riverside sights.

sawatdii kha (if you are female),
sawatdii khrap (if you are male)
Mai chai
Thank you
kapp khun kha (if you are female),
kapp khun khrap (if you are male)

Currency in Thailand– baht (฿)

Electricity in Thailand– 220 volts, 50Hz

Payment– consider paying with cash when visiting Bangkok, however card facilities are widespread

Tips– not common, although that is starting to change. Hotels and restaurants automatically add 10 percent to the check.

Bargaining– common at all markets but not in large stores.

Time zone– Bangkok (Thailand) UTC/GMT + 7 hours (-1 hour during summer time in countries that use summer time/winter time).

Water– drinking bottled water is recommended in Thailand, as tap water is best used for washing and cooking.

Suvarnabhumi International Airport (BKK)

The airport is located 25 km east of Bangkok.

  • Finnair flights: Level 4
  • Check-in opens 3 hours before departure
  • Check-in closes 1 hour before departure

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