Bangkok is full of tourist traps disguised as day tours.
From “floating markets” that take you to a canal with literally 3 boats selling touristy shit, to “private bus tours” that drop you off at Bangkok’s public bus terminal for you to fend for yourself… Many popular Bangkok tour companies are actually just greedy assholes trying to take advantage when you visit Thailand.
〤 Don’t give a shit about your safety
〤 Are only in it for fast money
〤 Don’t care that they have 1.2 stars on Google or TripAdvisor
It’s SO easy to avoid those nasty tours and experiences by taking 5 minutes to choose a reputable tour ahead of time… And that’s what we’re doing here & now.
Continue reading for my top recommendations of Bangkok tours, so you can make the most of your Thailand solo travel adventure.
✶ Are offered by reputable companies who LIVE to provide amazing experiences
✶ Are run by hosts or tour guides who love what they do
✶ Are created to connect YOU with Thai culture
✶ And some even offer the chance to meet other travelers from around the world
And to make things even simpler – I’m going to show you the ONLY two tour companies in Bangkok that you need to get a total culture, food, and fun balance during your Thailand solo trip.
PS. I receive absolutely ZERO commission from these tours. I’m telling you about them because this is the way that I solo travel in Thailand and explore the world as a solo female traveler.
The best thing about Airbnb Experiences is this: Each tour is HONESTLY reviewed by unbiased guests who have taken these tours. Unlike TripAdvisor where companies hire their friends to leave fake reviews (it’s a rampant problem, don’t trust TripAdvisor blindly) – Airbnb Experience Reviews immediately show you which tours are worth your time.
Here is my favorite Airbnb Experience in Bangkok: A Floating Market Tour with an incredible woman named Pook.
The tours are easy to book before you travel Thailand solo. Some are private to create a personal experience for solo travelers. Some are in a group giving you the chance to make new friends.
Burn your calories while you stuff your face via an active food tour through the back streets of Bangkok and indulge in the city’s best street food.
Your host, Dwight, is a foodie legend in Bangkok who will take you on an epic food tour Bangkok’s best markets and street food stalls.
See how locals live by exploring local life along the canals in a longtail boat, hidden local temples and when the tides are right, through a small floating market.
The Courageous Kitchen is a non-profit cooking school here in Thailand inspiring marginalized youth through the power of food! Shop at a local market then back to the kitchen for a Thai cooking class!
Want to explore Bangkok’s nightlife with rooftop bars and fancy cocktails, but don’t want to do it alone? This is that.
The least touristy tour there ever was through hidden alleys and local temples…plus a professional photography session for the gram.
Guaranteed, the most professionally executed tours in Bangkok to make you feel safe, special, and treated like a travel princess on your Thailand trip… All while learning 5 days-worth of Thai culture in one balanced day of adventure.
The tour guides from Bangkok Urban Adventures are locals who can give you a unique insight into Bangkok culture, history, and food.
One of my faves! Take a guided tour through “old Bangkok” while eating authentic Bangkok street food and visiting ancient temples.
The ultimate Bangkok tour and one of the best temple tours in Bangkok! See the Grand Palace, The Reclining Buddha, and experience a long-tail boat on the river with a super friendly Thai guide!
Get off the beaten tourist path as you cycle through Bangkok’s back streets, visiting temples and passing smiling locals who are happily surprised to see you!
The best way to sightsee throughout Bangkok without having to walk in the heat for hours at a time.
CAN’T DECIDE WHICH BANGKOK DAY TOUR TO TAKE?
Lemme help ya.
It’s one of the top tours in Bangkok, especially for solo travellers. You get temples, boats, and an authentic peek into day-to-day Bangkok life – all from a local English-speaking Thai guide.
This tour offers a calm break from the bustling city with a peaceful long-tail boat ride through the Choa Phraya River canals, enjoy the beauty of the statues, murals, and Emerald Buddha at the Grand Palace, and marvel at the size of the Reclining Buddha at Wat Pho!
Meet your tour guide at 8:30 am at the lobby of Nouvo City Hotel, 2 Samsen Rd, Soi 2
Plan to leave the hotel by 8:45 am, after a friendly briefing, and walk to the pier to hop in a riverboat!
How to get to Nouvo City Hotel in Bangkok:
Option 1: Take the BTS to Phaya Thai or Ratchathewi Station (26 – 44 Baht), then hop on a motorbike (80 baht/person) taxi or order a GrabTaxi from the BTS to Nouvo City Hotel.
Option 2: Order a GrabCar from Khao San Road to Nouvo City Hotel (about 80 Baht)
A quick walk from the hotel will take you to Santi Chai Prakan Park, home of the Phra Sumen Fort. Here you will board a colorful long-tail boat in Bangkok’s the Chao River! This river is used as a highway for Bangkokians headed to work and into the city to play…as many locals live along the canals.
You’ll pass residential life through narrow channels where you can see Thai-style houses on stilts, temples, and locals. You’ll then visit a small floating market, all from the comfort of your boat!
You’ll also make a quick stop to buy a loaf of bread (10 baht) to feed the massive catfish that rise up from the depths of the river.
Canal Tour: About 1 hour
The Thai longtail boat is covered to protect you from the sun, but it’s still important to wear sunscreen and drink lots of water!
Look for Thai locals fishing from the docks and try to spot some monitor lizards.
Your long-tail boat will arrive Chao Phraya River Port where you’ll disembark and start your Bangkok walking tour! To exit the pier, you’ll walk through an old local market built on wooden stilts over the river. This is a great spot to grab a water (or beer), buy some postcards and of course, use the bathroom!
Once outside, you’ll start your journey to the opulent Grand Palace – formerly home to King Rama I – King Rama V, and is now used to host royal ceremonies and guests!
Walk from port: 10 minutes
The Grand Palace Tour: 1.5 hours
Drink at the market: 10 – 20 baht / Restroom: 5 baht (10 baht if you need tissue)
Visit Wat Phra Kaew, which is regarded as one of the most important Buddhist temples in Thailand and see the Emerald Buddha, carved from a single block of jade. Must remove shoes
Take a rest at the Golden Place to get coffee and snacks (30 – 100 baht), where the food has been grown by local Thai farmers to be sold at the shop
You’ve got to see it to believe it. Photos will never do this 46-meter long reclining Buddha justice! Wat Pho is the only Buddha of this size, covered in pure gold leaf with the mother-of-pearl illustrations decorating Buddha’s feet.
Purchase a bowl of coins at the entrance of the temple (20 baht), dropping them into the 108 bronze bowls along the walls – making a wish with each drop.
Outside, You’ll wander into the 4 chapels with over 300 golden Buddha images and see lines of Buddha statues from other parts of Thailand. Stop at the small museum just inside to view the model of Wat Pho, (softly) hit the ancient gong, see the prayer area, and place gold leaf on the Buddha statues.
Walk from Grand Palace to Wat Pho: 10 minutes
Fruit from street vendors: 20 – 40 baht / Drink at Cafe: 45 – 65 baht
Wat Pho Tour: 1.5 hours
The tour will finish after Wat Pho. Stay and get a massage at the temple (which was also Thailand’s first public university, now known as a center for traditional massage and medicine) or allow your guide to direct you back on track towards your hotel.
OR if you’re hungry, head to Baan ThaTien Cafe and try the green curry (60 – 80 baht) and the Thai tea with lime (60 baht).
Stay hydrated! Bring a collapsible water bottle and fill up at the temples
Dress Modestly: No bare shoulders, tank tops, or short shorts. If you prefer to wear shorts & tank tops on your adventure day, that’s okay – wraps can be rented from the Grand Palace right when you enter.
Dress requirements to enter the Grand Palace are very strict. Please ensure your clothes cover your shoulders and waist (scarves or shawls worn over sleeveless tops are not permitted). Trousers must be ankle-length, and skirts below the knee. Please do not wear ripped, torn or see-through clothes or items that are very tight fitting such as yoga pants or leggings. Loose, lightweight, long clothing is both respectful and cool in the predominantly hot and humid Bangkok climate. -BANGKOK URBAN ADVENTURES
Be prepared to take off your shoes before entering the temples.
Wear supportive walking sandals!
Bring a bag that’s comfortable to carry all day.
Remember flushable tissue for the restrooms (not provided in many Thai restrooms)
Ask your tour guide for Thai food recommendations in the area!
Total Cost: Around $80 USD – Day trip cost includes boat ride and tickets for temples. Bring extra cash for drinks and food plus, transportation to and from the tour!
Total Tour Time: 4 – 5 hours
Before you embark on your Thailand solo travel adventure, check out my solo female travel guides to make the most of your Southeast Asia trip. Choose from my range of Thailand travel tips, written as a solo traveler, designed to make solo travel in Thailand as safe, fun, and easy as it gets.
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I'm a bestselling author, hotel reviewer and pickleball player. I teach women how to travel the world solo without going broke or getting kidnapped.
In 2011, I left Seattle with just $200 in my pocket to travel the world solo. Today, I'm the founder and creator of The Solo Girl’s Travel Guide, the #1 travel guide book series for women - and the author of The One-Way Ticket Plan.