Bangkok is known as a modern, fast-paced city with deep historic and cultural roots. Still, the exotic city has plenty to offer families with kids—if you know where to look. Here are a few activities that will entertain the kids and bring out everyone’s inner child.
Play a game of “I Spy” in one of the city’s lively floating markets such as Damnoen Saduak, where you can also interact with locals and sample unusual tropical fruits such as spiky lychee and pungent durian.
Bangkok is a great place to take a cooking class, where the whole family can learn to turn market finds into popular Thai dishes including pad Thai.
At Kidzania in the Siam Paragon shopping center, kids enter a role-playing interactive mini-town and “work” in their chosen career path, whether that involves giving manicures at the beauty salon, landing planes at the airport, or singing it out on a live stage.
Southeast Asia’s tropical islands offer excellent snorkeling opportunities, but in Bangkok, the best place for guaranteed sightings of colorful fish is Sea Life Bangkok Ocean World. Check out otters, penguins, and sharks, or head underwater as an aquanaut in one of the saltwater tanks.
Check out ancient temples such as Wat Pho, home to a massive golden Buddha, then beat the heat by zipping around on coasters or waterslides at Dream World or Siam Park City.
When you’re ready to escape Bangkok’s hustle and bustle, head out on a day trip to the popular seaside resorts town of Hua Hin (southeast) or Pattaya (southwest). Both beckon families with laid-back dining options, white sand beaches, and watersports just two hours from Bangkok.