Tourists are back in Bangkok, the most visited city in the world in 2019 before the global pandemic hit.
Many travelers will stay on the same trail of famous sights, but for Singaporeans wanting to avoid the crowds or see a new side to Bangkok on a repeat visit, here are five alternatives.
1. Bang Khun Phrom Royal Palace: Italian-inspired
Bypass Bangkok’s Grand Palace, beautiful as it is, and venture into the majestic Bang Khun Phrom Palace instead (273 Samsen Road, Wat Sam Phraya). Two years before the pandemic, I discovered that I could now visit this royal residence, which had been closed to the public for nearly a century.
While the Grand Palace was the primary residence of the Thai royal family from the 1780s to the early 1900s, they later dispersed into a series of smaller palaces just to the north in the Dusit district. Bang Khun Phrom Palace was built in 1903 for Thai Prince Paribatra, an influential military officer and minister.
Bangkok’s historic architecture is predominantly Thai-style, making this European-inspired palace unique.
Designed by an Italian architect, Bang Khun Phrom has a grand neo-baroque appearance marked by a striking color palette of yellow walls, dark green windows and white stonework. Its interior is sumptuous, with European sculptures decorating its huge halls.
Visitors are free to roam most of its luxurious rooms.