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4 Day Bangkok Itinerary: The Best Guide For First Timers!

If you’re visiting Bangkok and looking for the perfect 4 day itinerary to explore the city, then look no further. 

Bangkok is a bustling, vibrant city, where ancient traditions intertwine seamlessly into the modern chaos of this bustling metropolis.

From grand, serene temples to the vibrant nightlife and delicious cuisine, there is something for everyone!

buddhas wat pho temple bangkok

There is so much to see and do here that we created this 4 day Bangkok itinerary to help you make the most of your time, and enable you to take in all the highlights, as well as a few hidden gems, and really capture the true essence of Bangkok.

You’ll find lots of great Bangkok captions and quotes here to get you excited for your trip!

The Ultimate 4 Day Bangkok Itinerary

From exploring majestic temples to cruising down the Chao Phraya River, get ready for an unforgettable four-day adventure in the heart of Thailand’s capital.

bangkok wat arun temple

Day 1: Old Town Bangkok & Temples

Wat Arun

Start your day with a visit to the magnificent Wat Arun – also known as the Temple of Dawn. This stunning temple is one of Bangkok’s most iconic landmarks and should be at the top of your list to visit!

bangkok wat arun temple

Marvel at its intricate details and unique colorful ceramic tiles and climb to the top of the central prang for panoramic views of the city and the Chao Phraya River – but beware, the stairs are very steep!

bangkok wat arun temple tiles

It’s recommended you arrive at opening time so you can take your time to appreciate the beauty and tranquility of the temple before the crowds arrive.

bangkok wat arun temple

Arriving early will also mean you can get some really great Instagrammable photos without other people in as it does get very busy later on in the day!

Here you’ll find some great captions about Thailand to go with your photos if you need some inspiration!

Wat Pho

Take the short ferry ride across the Chao Phraya River from Wat Arun to Wat Pho, one of the most famous Buddhist temples in Bangkok and home to the famous reclining Buddha statue.

reclining buddha wat pho bangkok

You simply can’t go to Bangkok and not see the Reclining Buddha – lying at an impressive 46 metres long! Its feet are almost 5 metres long and the whole buddha is covered in gold leaf.

wat pho bangkok 4 day itinerary

The temple is really big, with several courtyards, ornate stupas and intricately designed halls, that make it a really peaceful place to visit. 

bangkok 4 day itinerary   

Eat Sight Story

Stop for some lunch before continuing your day. Eat Sight Story is located just outside Wat Pho on the river and provides a stunning view across to Wat Arun. Make sure to sit outside to enjoy the views!

This is also a great place to visit in the sunset, as Wat Arun is lit up beautifully in the evening!

eat sight story restaurant bar bangkok 

The Grand Palace

Continue on to The Grand Palace, just a short walk from Wat Pho.

The Grand Palace is home to the Thai Royal Family and a complex that houses the famous Temple of the Emerald Buddha. It’s another absolute must-visit when in Bangkok.

the grand palace 4 day itinerary

The Grand Palace is full of intricately designed architecture and ornate decorations, and it offers a fantastic look into the culture and history of the country.

the grand palace 4 day itinerary

There is so much to see and explore, so allow a couple of hours at least to see it all!

bangkok the grand palace    

Wat Benchamabophit (Marble Temple)

The stunning Wat Benchamabophit, or the Marble Temple as it is also known, is next. This elegant temple is a complete gem, with elements of Thai and European influences.

wat benchambophit Thailand bucket list destinations Asia

Admire the intricate Italian marble, and enjoy the serene atmosphere. The Marble Temple is a lot quieter than the other temples, yet it is simply stunning and not to be missed.

wat benchambophit the marble temple Bangkok

The Deck by Arun Residence

If you want to go somewhere different for dinner and don’t want to go to Eat Sight Story, check out The Deck by Arun Residence, just a few doors down!

Enjoy sunset cocktails and dinner whilst overlooking the Chao Phraya River and Wat Arun lit up at night – it looks so magical!

eat sight story restaurant bar bangkok was Arun views

Pak Khlong Talat

A 10-minute stroll from The Deck by Arun Residence takes you to Pak Khlong Talat – Bangkok’s busy and vibrant Flower Market that is open 24 hours a day! In fact around midnight is the busiest time there!

There are beautiful flowers everywhere, all available for a really good price. Plus, it’s a lovely place to visit if you want to escape the tourists, the humidity outside, and just be surrounded by locals!

Bangkok flower market indoor photoshoot ideas

Khao San Road

If you still have energy and want to explore Bangkok’s nightlife, take a tuk-tuk to Khao San Road – one of the best places to party in Bangkok!

Khao San Road is full of lively bars and nightclubs, plus you can get the chance to sample a Khao San delicacy – skewered insects if you fancy!

Partying on Khao San Road is a Thailand bucket list experience, so make sure you allow time to soak up the atmosphere here at least one evening on your four day Bangkok itinerary. It’s wild, but it’s definitely memorable!

khao san road bangkok

Day 2: Canals, Floating Markets & Railway Markets

Bangkok Klongs

Begin your second day in Bangkok by embarking on a canal tour of Bangkok’s waterways – known as klongs.

This is a really unique and authentic way to explore the cultural heritage of Bangkok and to really immerse yourself in the traditional way of life for the locals.

bangkok canals floating market

Sailing along the picturesque canals you’ll pass houses on stilts, as well as locals using long-tail boats as market stalls.

Ask your boat driver to pull up next to a vendor and buy yourself some fresh fruit or a bowl of hot noodle soup, and really embrace the local way of life.

This experience allows travellers to witness a side of Bangkok that is both incredibly charming and off the typical tourist track, as well as giving you a chance to escape from the bustling city streets!

You may wish to get off the boat and visit hidden temples such as Wat Traimit or Wat Paknam (where you’ll find the epic Giant Buddha), or just stay on the boat and enjoy the ride!

big golden buddha bangkok Wat Paknam Phasi Charoen

Damnoen Saduak Floating Market

A 1.5 hour drive from Bangkok (around 100 km southwest of the city) will take you to the famous Damnoen Saduak Floating Market – another must-visit place.

Damnoen Saduak Floating Market is a vibrant and bustling market, and one of Thailand’s most famous markets.

Here, vendors sell a variety of fresh fruits, vegetables, local delicacies and handicrafts from traditional long-tail boats.

It’s a very touristy place – much more touristy than a trip down the Bangkok klongs, but seeing all the many boats navigating through the narrow canals filled with goods and eager shoppers is an incredible experience!

damnoen saduak floating market bangkok

Mae Klong Railway Market

One of the things I love about Bangkok is its variety of markets! The Mae Klong Railway Market, just a 30 minute drive from Damnoen Saduak Floating Markets is actually a market on top of train tracks that are in use every day!

Several times a day the train runs through the market, and to see how quickly the locals move their produce out of the way from the train (which was actually double the width of the tracks!) was just phenomenal!

mae khlong flower market bangkok

The market does get very busy, and before the train arrived, I kept thinking how is a train going to get down here, it is so crowded and there is so much stuff and many umbrella shades protecting people from the sun.

When the train came, the vendors transformed their stalls within seconds to move away all their belongings and produce.

The market was actually surprisingly built before the railway, and officials decided to build a railway in order to deliver the goods from this market to other provinces around Thailand.

And so in 1905 the train tracks were built, cutting through the market.

Make sure to check the train timetable, and arrive a few minutes before the train is due to arrive.

The train comes through the market, and the market is the end of the line so the train waits there at the station for about 15 minutes before departing again.

If you walk along the railway line away from the train station, there will be a lot less tourists! Then just wait for the train to pass by again as it is leaving the market.

The trick to getting a photo of you with the train is to follow the train as it is driving away from you – definitely not as it is driving towards you!

If you are at the far end of the market away from the station,  you’ll be able to get photos without other people in!

mae khlong flower market bangkok

Day 3: Temples, Museums, Culture & Nightlife

Jim Thompson House

Begin your third day in Bangkok by visiting the Jim Thompson House. Explore the beautifully preserved traditional Thai house, tucked away amidst lush gardens.

Inside the house is a stunning collection of art and antiques gathered by the legendary American businessman, Jim Thompson, who played a significant role in reviving the Thai silk industry.

Learn about his life and uncover the secrets behind his disappearance and the lingering mystery that surrounds his life.

jim thompson house bangkok

Chinatown

Venture into the bustling streets of Chinatown in time for lunch. Here you can indulge in an authentic street food extravaganza, with hundreds of vendors selling everything from skewered meat to hot plates of Pad Thai.

If you want to try the best Thai curry in Thailand, head to Khao Gaeng Jek Pui (Je Chie)! They open at 3pm and close at 4pm, because they are that well known they sell out within the hour. So time your visit accordingly.

Relax in the afternoon with a Thai massage. If you’ve never experienced a Thai massage before, prepare for a unique experience.

Thai massages are a combination of sports yoga and massage and are designed to improve circulation and soothe aching muscles.

They are definitely not like a traditional massage – they are rough and at times painful, but your body feels so relaxed afterwards! I don’t recommend them if you have any injuries though!

There are massage parlors all over the city, but if you want to find an affordable massage, download the app GoWabi, which is a local beauty app with deals on massages and beauty treatments.

Wat Saket

Venture into the Old Town to uncover the hidden gem of Wat Saket, also known as the Golden Mount Temple. Climb the 318 steps to the top and enjoy the breathtaking panoramic views of Bangkok!

monk walking up steps of temple in bangkok

Visit here late afternoon when the weather is slightly cooler, so the climb up the steps isn’t too difficult!

Wat Ratchanatdaram

After visiting Wat Saket, head to the nearby Wat Ratchanatdaram which is just a 10 minute walk away. This is such a unique and beautiful temple, known as the ‘Metal Castle’, and it never gets busy!

Wat Ratchanatdaram (Loha Prasat) Bangkok

Giant Swing

A short tuk-tuk ride away is the famous Giant Swing in Bangkok, where you’ll find many tea houses surrounding the opposite Lan Khon Mueang Square.

wat suthat bangkok - the giant swing temple

For dinner, indulge in a traditional Thai meal at the nearby Michelin-star street food restaurant, Raan Jay Fai, which became famous after it appeared on the Netflix series Street Food: Asia.

Chatuchak Weekend Market

One of the top things to do in Bangkok at night is to visit a night market for street food, unique souvenirs, affordable clothes, and local handicrafts. 

If you’re here on a weekend, head to Chatuchak Market for a lively and bustling atmosphere. If you’re visiting mid-week, then head to Patpong Night Market instead – it’s the next best thing!

Haggling with the vendors for souvenirs is totally normal here, so don’t feel shy to haggle if there’s something you want to buy! Just keep it friendly and fair – remember this is their livelihood. 

bangkok night tuk-tuk

Finish up your day by enjoying the vibrant nightlife scene of Bangkok by visiting the trendy bars in Sukhumvit.

Day 4: Day trip to Ayutthaya Or Wat Sam Phran

For your last day in Bangkok, get the train to Ayutthaya, a UNESCO World Heritage Site and ancient city located just north of Bangkok. 

Ayutthaya is known for its stunning temples and ruins, as well as its rich cultural heritage. As Thailand’s former capital, it offers you the chance to step back in time and explore the remains of grand temples and palaces.

It’s a good idea to rent a bicycle to navigate the sprawling archaeological park, so you’re able to see the many temples and historical sites.

You can also rent a tuk-tuk driver for the day, but this can be expensive as they are known to rip tourists off here. It’s all flat in Ayutthaya, so you don’t need to be extremely fit to cycle from temple to temple – some people even walk!

It’s very peaceful here, with a nice serene atmosphere. Make sure to marvel at the majestic Wat Mahathat, known for its iconic Buddha head entwined within tree roots.

what mahathat Ayutthaya Bangkok 4 day itinerary day trip

Wat Sam Phran

If you don’t fancy heading to Ayutthaya, and would instead rather visit one of the most unique temples in Bangkok, head to Wat Sam Phran – 40 km west of Bangkok.

Wat Sam Phran, or The Dragon Temple as it is also known, is a beautiful pink circular temple 17 storeys high, with a dragon wrapped around its exterior. The dragon’s body are actually the steps up to the rooftop of the temple, that provide incredible views.

Wat Sam Phran is never crowded with tourists, and the atmosphere here is just beautiful!

the dragon temple bangkok wat sam phran

Thai Cooking School

Going to a Thai cookery class is a great way to embrace the Thai culture and learn more about the food and is another really great thing to do on your 4 day Bangkok itinerary.

It’s a really fun experience, and you’ll learn how to make some of the most well-known and delicious Thai dishes!

bangkok cooking school 4 day itinerary   

Silom Thai Cooking School is a really great place to go.

bangkok silom cooking school 4 day itinerary

silom cooking school bangkok 4 day itinerary

Sky Bar

As your time in this city comes to a close, treat yourself to a stunning rooftop bar where you can take in the scenic views of Bangkok at night.

One of the most popular rooftop bars is the iconic Sky Bar now known as Lebua at State Tower – which featured in The Hangover 2 movie.

sky bar rooftop bar bangkok 4 day itinerary

It’s expensive, but it’s one of the best experiences you can have in Bangkok. Dress to impress and book beforehand!

Final Thoughts

Hopefully this 4 day itinerary has inspired you to visit Bangkok and given you a taste of what to expect in this fantastic city!

4 day itinerary bangkok

After your four-day Bangkok adventure draws to a close, you may wish to take the overnight train up to Chiang Mai, or head down south to the islands such as Koh Samui, Koh Phi Phi or the James Bond Island near Phuket.