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Last updated: 31 July, 2022
Expert travel writer: Chris Schalkx

The Mandarin Oriental is a luxury landmark sandwiched between the bustling Chao Phraya River and Bangrak, Bangkok’s oldest district. The river affords views and ferries to the city’s best sights, while Bangrak’s historic streets are awash with atmosphere.

For those content to stay in and revel in its unsurpassed luxury, the hotel is home to one of the city’s finest spas, a 25m pool and several excellent on-site restaurants.

Thais love the tradition of afternoon tea and the sumptuous spread served in the Authors’ Lounge is legendary. At sunset, order a cocktail at the hotel’s waterfront Verandah bar – there are few finer places in the city to savour the sun going down.

The Mandarin Oriental is also home to the city’s finest cooking school – indulge yourself with a morning market walk and Thai cookery class, followed by lunch.

Surrounding area

The Mandarin shares its riverside location with several other five-star luxury hotels; this is a glitzy waterfront enclave, backed by gleaming high-rises, topped with some of the city’s best rooftop bars. Like everywhere in Bangkok, it’s busy and seethes with energy, but it’s safe and calmer at night than other areas.

The bustling Chao Phraya River, lined with luxury hotels, rickety houses on stilts and glittering wats (temples), is easily accessed from a public pier beside the hotel.

Head away from the river and you’ll find yourself in the heart of historic Bangrak, the oldest part of Bangkok, with its charming shophouses and simple eateries dishing up everything from roast duck to hearty curry.

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Key facilities

Airport transfers*
Beach: None
Fitness centre
Fitness classes
Golf course
Hot tub
Kids club
Parking: On-site (free)
Pool (adults only)
Pool (indoor)
Pool (outdoor)
Pool (kids)
Tennis courts
WiFi: Free

Food & drink

All inclusive
Kids menu
Restaurant on-site
Self catering
Additional charge

Room types


Room facilities

Air conditioning
Flat screen TV
Jacuzzi (private)
Pool (private)
Tea & coffee making facilities

Bedding options

2+ bedrooms
3+ beds
Connecting rooms
Rollaway/sofa bed

Bucket list experiences our writer says you must do in this destination, closest first

Bicycle tours of Chinatown

Bangkok, Central Thailand, Thailand[1.5 miles]

Bicycle tours through the back-alleys of Chinatown and Bangkok’s rural suburbs offer a fascinating peek into the daily lives of the city’s residents.

Best for ages: 13+ | £20 | 3-5 hours

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Jim Thompson’s House

Bangkok, Central Thailand, Thailand[3.3 miles]

The former home of silk magnate Jim Thompson – who mysteriously disappeared in the jungles of Malaysia – is a must-see for its well-preserved teak buildings and art.

Best for ages: 13+ | £4

Boat tours of Bangkok

Bangkok, Central Thailand, Thailand[3.7 miles]

From fancy river cruises to public transport boats, seeing Bangkok from its many waterways gives you a whole new perspective of the city and lives of the locals.

Best for ages: 4+ | £3 | 30+ minutes

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Grand Palace

Bangkok, Central Thailand, Thailand[3.8 miles]

Thailand’s most famous cultural site is a glittering complex of jaw-dropping magnificence dating back to 1782. This former seat of power of Siamese kings houses the Emerald Buddha – Thailand’s palladium.

Best for ages: Any | £11

Other worthwhile experiences in this destination if you have the time or the interest, closest first

Teak house surrounded by lush greenery

Bangkokian Museum

Bangkok, Central Thailand, Thailand[0.7 miles]

One of Bangkok’s most popular little museums. The charming, 70-year-old restored teak house offers a compelling glimpse of family life in Bangkok from the 1930s to the 1960s.

Best for ages: 13+ | Free

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Bangkok’s Creative District

Bangkok, Thailand[1.5 miles]

With galleries, concept stores and art markets amalgamating into a kaleidoscope of creativity, Bangkok’s de-facto design district offers an excellent primer on the city’s burgeoning creative scene.

Best for ages: 13+ | Free

Vibrant flowers in large woven baskets for sale

Flower Markets

Bangkok, Central Thailand, Thailand[2.9 miles]

Heaving with jasmine, orchids and marigolds, Bangkok’s flower market is a mesmerising riot of colours, floral scents and boisterous vendors. Visit after midnight, when wholesalers drop off their wares and the market is at its liveliest.

Best for ages: 13+ | Free

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Overhead view of the park, showing the lake in the centre and the distinct skyline in the background

Lumphini Park

Bangkok, Central Thailand, Thailand[3.1 miles]

When you feel the need to escape Bangkok’s oppressive traffic fumes, Lumphini Park is a lush central oasis and a fantastic place for a stroll. Go early morning and late afternoon when locals come for sports and you’ll find elderly ladies practicing sword fighting and Tai-Chi.

Best for ages: 4+ | Free

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Destination guides including or relevant to this place to stay


Central Thailand, Thailand

From dazzling temples to dizzying nightlife, Thailand’s capital is a dish of delicious contradictions, and one of the world’s most dizzying, fast-paced cities.

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