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What to Eat in Bangkok

The world is your oyster when it comes to the dining scene in Bangkok. The city is considered to be a top foodie destination for a variety of reasons, but its main calling card is its street food. There are more than 300,000 street food vendors in the city, meaning you could probably spend your entire stay in Bangkok without stepping into a sit-down restaurant. You can find street food all over the city, but you should start in Chinatown, particularly on Yaowarat (the neighborhood's main thoroughfare), Khao San and Sukhumvit roads. Here you'll find street vendors in droves, lined up side by side, serving up all kinds of delectable Thai fare.
Stir fries, fried rice, curries, grilled meat and fish skewers, pad see ew, and other noodles dishes are all staples in the street food scene, as is papaya salad, or som tam. Som tam is grated papaya mixed with string beans, chilies, garlic and a host of other spices. This mixing of opposites, such as the sweet and savory or the sweet and spicy, is what Thai cuisine is all about. This blend can also be found in other popular Thai dishes, including massaman curry, a coconut curry with savory ingredients, including potatoes, or sticky rice with mangos, which is sticky rice mixed with mangos and covered in a coconut cream sauce. 
Now that you know where to go and what to order, it's important to know how to order, as well as what to look out for when approaching a street vendor. Contrary to popular belief, Bangkok is not getting rid of its street vendors. Instead, the local government is implementing measures to make street food more sanitary. If you see a stall that people – especially locals – aren't visiting, it's best to keep moving. And remember: Some stalls may have English menus, but most don't. Travelers have said that merely pointing to certain ingredients, pictures or what other diners are eating can be the easiest way to order if the vendor only speaks Thai (as most do). Vendors are aware of Bangkok's reputation as a street food capital and are accustomed to dealing with tourists; they'll be able to understand you with even the slightest gesture. 

The world is your oyster when it comes to the dining scene in Bangkok. The city is considered to be a top foodie destination for a variety of reasons, but its main calling card is its street food. There are more than 300,000 street food vendors in the city, meaning you could probably spend your entire stay in Bangkok without stepping into a sit-down restaurant. You can find street food all over the city, but you should start in Chinatown, particularly on Yaowarat (the neighborhood's main thoroughfare), Khao San and Sukhumvit roads. Here you'll find street vendors in droves, lined up side by side, serving up all kinds of delectable Thai fare.

Stir fries, fried rice, curries, grilled meat and fish skewers, pad see ew, and other noodles dishes are all staples in the street food scene, as is papaya salad, or som tam. Som tam is grated papaya mixed with string beans, chilies, garlic and a host of other spices. This mixing of opposites, such as the sweet and savory or the sweet and spicy, is what Thai cuisine is all about. This blend can also be found in other popular Thai dishes, including massaman curry, a coconut curry with savory ingredients, including potatoes, or sticky rice with mangos, which is sticky rice mixed with mangos and covered in a coconut cream sauce.

Now that you know where to go and what to order, it's important to know how to order, as well as what to look out for when approaching a street vendor. Contrary to popular belief, Bangkok is not getting rid of its street vendors. Instead, the local government is implementing measures to make street food more sanitary. If you see a stall that people – especially locals – aren't visiting, it's best to keep moving. And remember: Some stalls may have English menus, but most don't. Travelers have said that merely pointing to certain ingredients, pictures or what other diners are eating can be the easiest way to order if the vendor only speaks Thai (as most do). Vendors are aware of Bangkok's reputation as a street food capital and are accustomed to dealing with tourists; they'll be able to understand you with even the slightest gesture. 

Find the Best Restaurants in Bangkok

  • #1
    Benihana-Bangkok
    #1 of 13,699 Places to Eat in Bangkok
    TripAdvisor Traveler Rating 5 based on 893 reviewsTripAdvisor (893)
    $$ | Japanese, Sushi, Asian, Contemporary
    257/1-3 Charoennakorn Road Anantara Bangkok Riverside, Bangkok 10600 Thailand
    Read More »
  • #2
    Benihana at Avani Atrium Bangkok
    #2 of 13,699 Places to Eat in Bangkok
    TripAdvisor Traveler Rating 5 based on 1021 reviewsTripAdvisor (1021)
    $$ | Japanese, Sushi, Asian
    1880 New Petchburi Road Bangkapi, Huay Kwang, Bangkok 10310 Thailand
    Read More »
  • #3
    RedSquare Rooftop Bar
    #3 of 13,699 Places to Eat in Bangkok
    TripAdvisor Traveler Rating 5 based on 191 reviewsTripAdvisor (191)
    $ - $$ | Bar, International, Fusion
    25th floor, 27 Soi Sukhumvit 4 Klongtoey,, Bangkok 10110 Thailand
    Read More »
  • #4
    Nami Teppanyaki Steakhouse - at the JW Marriott Hotel Bangkok
    #4 of 13,699 Places to Eat in Bangkok
    TripAdvisor Traveler Rating 5 based on 2402 reviewsTripAdvisor (2402)
    $$ | Japanese, Steakhouse, Seafood, Sushi, Asian, Grill
    4 Sukhumvit Road, Soi 2 JW Marriott Hotel Bangkok, Bangkok 10110 Thailand
    Read More »
  • #5
    Colonnade
    #5 of 13,699 Places to Eat in Bangkok
    TripAdvisor Traveler Rating 5 based on 771 reviewsTripAdvisor (771)
    $$ | European, Asian, International
    The Sukhothai, 13/3 South Sathorn Road, Bangkok 10120 Thailand
    Read More »
  • #6
    Bawarchi Indian Restaurant - Chidlom
    #6 of 13,699 Places to Eat in Bangkok
    TripAdvisor Traveler Rating 4.5 based on 824 reviewsTripAdvisor (824)
    $$ | Indian, Asian
    973 Ploenchit Road B-level, Intercontinental Hotel, Bangkok 10330 Thailand
    Read More »
  • #7
    Goji Kitchen + Bar
    #7 of 13,699 Places to Eat in Bangkok
    TripAdvisor Traveler Rating 5 based on 2237 reviewsTripAdvisor (2237)
    $ - $$ | Seafood, European, Asian, Thai
    199 Sukhumvit Soi 22, Klong Ton, Klong Toey Bangkok Marriott Marquis Queen’s Park, Bangkok 10110 Thailand
    Read More »
  • #8
    New York Steakhouse - at the JW Marriott Hotel Bangkok
    #8 of 13,699 Places to Eat in Bangkok
    TripAdvisor Traveler Rating 4.5 based on 1165 reviewsTripAdvisor (1165)
    $$ | Steakhouse
    4 Sukhumvit Road, Soi 2 JW Marriott Hotel Bangkok, Bangkok 10110 Thailand
    Read More »
  • #9
    Yao Restaurant and Rooftop Bar
    #9 of 13,699 Places to Eat in Bangkok
    TripAdvisor Traveler Rating 5 based on 615 reviewsTripAdvisor (615)
    $ - $$ | Chinese, Asian
    262, Surawong Road Si Phraya, Bang Rak, Bangkok 10500 Thailand
    Read More »
  • #10
    BarSu
    #10 of 13,699 Places to Eat in Bangkok
    TripAdvisor Traveler Rating 5 based on 564 reviewsTripAdvisor (564)
    $ - $$ | Bar, International
    250 Sukhumvit Road G Fl., Sheraton Grande Sukhumvit, Bangkok 10110 Thailand
    Read More »
  • #11
    The Lobby Lounge
    #11 of 13,699 Places to Eat in Bangkok
    TripAdvisor Traveler Rating 5 based on 150 reviewsTripAdvisor (150)
    $ - $$ | Cafe, Thai, Deli
    262 Surawong Road Si Phraya, Bangkok 10500 Thailand
    Read More »
  • #12
    Tsu Japanese Restaurant - at the JW Marriott Hotel Bangkok
    #12 of 13,699 Places to Eat in Bangkok
    TripAdvisor Traveler Rating 5 based on 1538 reviewsTripAdvisor (1538)
    $$ | Japanese, Seafood, Sushi, Asian
    4 Sukhumvit Road, Soi 2 JW Marriott Hotel, Bangkok 10110 Thailand
    Read More »
  • #13
    The District Grill Room and Bar
    #13 of 13,699 Places to Eat in Bangkok
    TripAdvisor Traveler Rating 5 based on 706 reviewsTripAdvisor (706)
    $$ | American, Steakhouse, European, Wine Bar, Grill
    2 Sukhumvit Soi 57 Klongtan Nua, Wattana, Bangkok 10110 Thailand
    Read More »
  • #14
    Praya Kitchen
    #14 of 13,699 Places to Eat in Bangkok
    TripAdvisor Traveler Rating 5 based on 701 reviewsTripAdvisor (701)
    $ - $$ | Seafood, International, Sushi, Thai, Asian
    262, Surawong Road Si Phraya, Bang Rak, Bangkok 10500 Thailand
    Read More »
  • #15
    Steps with Theera
    #15 of 13,699 Places to Eat in Bangkok
    TripAdvisor Traveler Rating 5 based on 128 reviewsTripAdvisor (128)
    $ - $$ | Cafe, International, Healthy, European
    29/8 Ekamai Soi 10, Sukhumvit 63, Bangkok 10110 Thailand
    Read More »
  • #16
    The Family
    #16 of 13,699 Places to Eat in Bangkok
    TripAdvisor Traveler Rating 5 based on 223 reviewsTripAdvisor (223)
    $ | Thai, Asian
    1/6, Prachathipatai Rd. Ban Phan Thom, Phra Nakhon, Bangkok 10200 Thailand
    Read More »
  • #17
    Riverside Terrace
    #17 of 13,699 Places to Eat in Bangkok
    TripAdvisor Traveler Rating 5 based on 912 reviewsTripAdvisor (912)
    $ - $$ | Seafood, Asian, Thai, International
    257/1-3 Charoennakorn Road Anantara Bangkok Riverside, Bangkok 10600, Thailand
    Read More »
  • #18
    The Rain Tree Cafe
    #18 of 13,699 Places to Eat in Bangkok
    TripAdvisor Traveler Rating 5 based on 1626 reviewsTripAdvisor (1626)
    $$ | Seafood, Sushi, International
    61 Witthayu Road The Athenee Hotel, Bangkok 10330 Thailand
    Read More »
  • #19
    Elements
    #19 of 13,699 Places to Eat in Bangkok
    TripAdvisor Traveler Rating 4.5 based on 391 reviewsTripAdvisor (391)
    $$ | French, Contemporary
    The Okura Prestige Bangkok; 25FL, 57 Wireless Road, Park Ventures Ecoplex, Lumpini, Pathumwan, Bangkok 10330 Thailand
    Read More »
  • #20
    The Reflexions at The Athenee Hotel
    #20 of 13,699 Places to Eat in Bangkok
    TripAdvisor Traveler Rating 5 based on 899 reviewsTripAdvisor (899)
    $$ | French, European, Contemporary, Fusion
    61 Witthayu Road The Athenee Hotel, Bangkok 10330 Thailand
    Read More »

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