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Bangkok is Thailand’s capital city and its most populous. The city is the center of focus in Thailand for things political, social and economic and is one of the most important cities in Southeast Asia. Bangkok is home to many multinational corporations and its booming tourism industry is a major contributor to the city’s economy.
Bangkok counts among its many must-see venues the historically important Grand Palace, a complex of architecturally significant buildings that have served as the official residence of the Kings of Thailand since the 18th century and the Wat Pho, a Buddhist Temple adjacent to the Grand Palace, one of the oldest and largest temples in Thailand, believed to be the place where traditional Thai massage was first practiced and the site was a center of education for traditional Thai medicine long before the temple was first established. Wat Arun, or the “Temple of the Dawn” is another Buddhist Temple of historic and cultural significance. Located on the banks of the Chao Praya River, Wat Arun is an architectural treasure and is best visited in the early morning light to capture the essence of its nickname.
Visitors to Bangkok enjoy tours along the Khlongs (canals) in barges that are powered by rowers, sometimes as many as 50 on the larger craft. You may consider making a stop at the Royal Barges Museum where the magnificent boats that are used for royal processions on the river are proudly displayed. Morlam music, the infectious sound of country music from northeastern Thailand is heard almost everywhere in Bangkok. One of the best spots to enjoy performances is at TawanDaeng, where nearly every Friday evening one of Thailand’s headliners may be found accompanied by extravagantly costumed dancers. Muay Thai boxing is another favorite of residents and tourists with matches staged at various venues. Large, open air markets with up to 10,000 stalls are magnets for visitors, the best of which are Chatuchak Weekend Market and the smaller, less crowded SuamLum Night Bazaar. Bangkok is also famous for its exotic nightlife and red-light districts.
Parks and gardens abound in Bangkok. Well worth your consideration is a tour of the RommaniNart Park and the Mahachai Prison Corrections Museum on its eastern side. The Museum contains exhibits and discussions by actual former prison guards (the prison is no longer operating) focused on the fascinating tales of Thai prison life. The grounds of the park also are home to a zoo.
A trip to Bangkok, Thailand should be included in your list if your dreams include spending time in an exotic, modern city in the Far East with an ancient culture integrated into its way of life. Start planning that trip of a lifetime today.
The full name of the city is Krungthepmahanakhon Amonrattanakosin Mahintharayutthaya Mahadilokphop Noppharatratchathaniburirom Udomratchaniwetmahasathan Amonphimanawatansathit Sakkathattiyawitsanukamprasit. It's the longest city name in the world.
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