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Bangkok’s Rattanakosin district is the city’s most historic area. Found upon an island beside the meandering Chao Phraya River, Rattanakosin boasts some of the most important spiritual and architectural landmarks in the Thai capital. From the interesting colonial structures lining the busy streets, to the grandeur of the Royal Palace, this small but bustling district is filled with sites to explore.
Rattanakosin is arguably Bangkok’s premier tourist destination, with many dozens of famous attractions.
There are several palaces that are well-worth checking out. The Grand Palace is Thailand’s most prestigious and most elegant structure. The entire complex is filled with temples, statues and other historic buildings, making it Bangkok’s most famous landmark. Tha Phra Palace is another royal residence that shouldn’t be missed either.
Rattanakosin is renowned for its many intricate temples. The largest temple in the Thai capital, Wat Pho, rests upon the island. It is where the Reclining Buddha is located. Not far away are Wat Saket and the Golden Mount, and Wat Suthat. Plenty of temple tours are available for tourists.
There are also a number of tremendous museums located within Rattanakosin. The National Museum takes visitors through Thailand’s and more specifically, Bangkok’s, intriguing history. Both temporary and permanent exhibits are found here. The Museum of Siam is a smaller but still fascinating collection of historical exhibits.
Restaurants and Bars
For such a popular tourist destination, Rattanakosin doesn’t have a lot of dining or drinking establishments. Na Phra Lan Road is home to a few cafés and food stalls, but there is little else to be found near the Grand Palace area. Khao San Road is not too far away. This busy street is where much of Bangkok’s backpacker population stays. Bars and cafés are in abundance here.
This district is the best place in Bangkok to find religious items, but tourists need to remember that purchasing Buddhist amulets and other similar items is considered taboo by local authorities. Street markets, including Bobae Market and Klong Lot Night Market, are very popular attractions when it comes to shopping in Rattanakosin. Everything from toys, to clothes to accessories can be found here.