What is Living in Thailand REALLY Like?

Bangkok, Thailand

Profile of Bangkok, Thailand the “City of Angels” or the “Land of Smiles”

Bangkok is the capital city of Thailand and the most populated and largest city in the Thai nation. Thais call Bangkok, “Groong Thep” or something that sounds like it. They call it that because it’s true name is composed of 24 words and isn’t used much as you might imagine.

Population of Greater Bangkok

7 million Thai, Malaysian, Chinese, Vietnamese, Cambodian, Burmese, Japanese, and Laotians. Estimates of population vary widely.

Languages Spoken in Bangkok

Four main dialects of Thai, though “Bangkok Thai” is generally understood by all Thai people. Many Thais speak Cambodian, Laos, Burmese and Chinese too. English is spoken, though not at a very high level. Bangkok and specific tourist areas seem to have the highest incidents of English speakers.

Bangkok is a very modern city with great public transportation options. Most Thais use the bus and skytrain to get to work. Shopping is world-class and there is something for everyone. Men won’t be bored as there are more electronic shops and whole malls dedicated to computers, mobile phones, cameras, and other gadgets.

Bangkok is slowly becoming a free WIFI zone. True Network recently revealed plans to offer free WIFI broadband in the city.


Bangkok is located in what the Thais call the ‘west’ of Thailand on the Chao Phraya River near the Gulf of Siam (Gulf of Thailand). Bangkok is the hub of the country, it’s a very large city without a well-defined center. Attractions are spread out over a large area. Here are the Google maps for Bangkok, Thailand.

Bangkok Weather

Bangkok is the hottest city in the world according to the Guinness Book of World Records. Apparently, Bangkok remains very hot at night so, over a 24-hour period, it is the hottest city in the world -compared to other cities that are much hotter during the daytime, like Phoenix for instance. Current Bangkok, Thailand weather conditions

Bangkok's Lumphini Park
Bangkok’s Lumphini Park courtesy of Wikipedia


Bangkok Things to Do

Travel and Leisure voted in 2008 Bangkok, Thailand as the worlds best city. It is going to have even more tourists visit in the coming years. Currently, there are between 20 and 26 million visitors per year to this relatively small country that’s just a little larger than America’s state of California in land area. Bangkok, Thailand has many things to do – things to see and participate in. You won’t be bored. If you are there is a whole country filled with beaches, mountains, plains, and great people to explore.

Currency Exchange

Currently (7/2019) the Thai baht is at approximately 32 to 1 dollar. See Thai baht table for world currencies.

Bangkok Cost of Living

The cost of living in Thailand is much cheaper than in the USA. A bowl of soup can be had for $1 in most places. Soda might be 66 cents to a dollar, a beer is usually 3 dollars in a club and the same in 7-11 for a large beer. Food might run you $20 per day if you don’t eat too extravagantly. Usually, one can stay in an apartment in Bangkok for $300 USD per month and be comfortable. There are very high priced apartments for $50,000 USD per month. Bangkok can accommodate those of every income and lifestyle.

Shopping in Bangkok

Panthip Plaza large electronics mall.
Paragon Shopping Center – It’s said that there are 7 football sized floors of products here. This mall focuses on very high-end clothes and is built to a very large scale. The walking areas are as big as a two-lane highway.

Lumphini Park: A very large park in the middle of Bangkok.

Bangkok Transportation

Taxis, tuk-tuks (3 or 4 wheeled mini taxis) are available everywhere you look. They are reasonably priced if you’re not stuck in traffic too long. Ask the taxi drivers to run the meters when you get in if they don’t. Bargain with the tuk-tuk drivers before you get started. The BTS skytrain is fun and stops at major shopping districts. The Suvarnabhumi airport is very large and ultra-modern, having been completed in 2007. There is a large train station in Bangkok with trains going to most parts of the country with the exception of the whole way to Phuket. Plane, bus or van is necessary to reach Phuket Island.

Maps can be found at the Tourism Authority of Thailand (TAT) offices around the city.

Embassies in Thailand

78 Embassies in Bangkok

Other Bangkok Resources

  • There are two major newspapers published in Thailand, the Bangkok Post and The Nation. Of the two, The Nation is probably less biased.

Photos of Bangkok

Flickr’s Bangkok Group

Bangkok is a city of contrasts and will pique your curiosity about things you’ve never seen before. It’s a safe city during the daytime and there are plenty of foreigners around, you won’t feel like an odd-ball.

All content © Vern Lovic.

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