Bang Krachao: Everything You Need to Know About Exploring Bangkok's Green Lung

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by hry

Where and what is Bang Krachao?

In the heart of Bangkok, there’s an island oasis called Bang Krachao, a veritable ‘urban jungle’ that remains unknown to many travelers. I’ll understand if you are a bit perplexed by the concept of an ‘island’ in a huge metropolitan city like Bangkok so I’ll explain. Bang Krachao is a man-made island that is situated in the middle of the Chao Praya River. It’s not the archetypical island with beaches but it is an ecological wonder. Bang Krachao is referred to as the ‘Green lung of Bangkok’ due to the positive effect it has on the city, as its enormous number of trees clean up a great deal of pollution. The island is encircled by thousands of mangrove trees and the interior has sections of dense jungle foliage.
To see more about attractions and tours in Bang Krachao click here.

Why is Bang Krachao special?

Bang Krachao is a big agricultural area consisting of 16 square kilometers of mangrove forest, canals, and homesteads, you can get a great view of the canals from elevated walkways but they are not for the faint-hearted! There’s also a completely floating market, old Buddhist temples, and an eco-resort complete with tree houses that you can sleep in. Many tourists like to hire a bicycle to explore the island and get a first-hand view of the traditional Thai lifestyle and culture.
The reason that all this is special is that all this tranquillity and traditional culture exists right in the middle of one of the busiest and most rapidly developing cities in the world!

Trying out the cycle paths at Bang Krachao

Trying out the cycle paths at Bang Krachao

How to get to Bang Krachao?

Getting to Bang Krachao will normally include a ferry ride and there are two ferries that you can choose from to get to your destination. From the North-side you can get the ferry from Khlong Toei Pier and have a leisurely trip to Bang Kachao Pier. From the East-side ferries are available from Sanphawut Pier to Wat Bang Nam Phueng Nok Port.
Either option is fine for your journey although most tourists will travel by ferry from Khlong Toei Pier to Bang Kachao Pier as it’s situated closer to the city center. To get to the pier you can take the BTS train to Phrom Phong or Thonglor. Alternatively, take the MRT to Khlong Toei. From there it is easy to get a taxi to Khlong Toei Pier but bear in mind that the pier is located at a large port and may be difficult to find if the driver does not know of it. Once you get there take the ferry from Khlong Toei Pier to Bang Kachao Pier, this costs 10 THB per person.
For those staying on the East-side of Bangkok, consider taking the BTS train to Bang Na and from there you can take a taxi to Sanphawut Pier.
Please bear in mind that weekends around the pier are very busy as it shares a location with the Wat Samrond Nuea temple which creates a lot of traffic. The solution is to walk the last 400 meters to catch the ferry. The fare from Sanphawut Pier to Wat Bang Nam Phueng Nok Portis 6TBH.

Catching the ferry to Bang Krachao

Catching the ferry to Bang Krachao

When is the best time to visit Bang Krachao?

The best time to visit Bang Krachao, in terms of comfortable weather, is from January to April. with the lowest temperature being around 68℉ and the warmest being 99℉. This is the most comfortable season to visit although the weather can be tolerable all year round.

Enjoying glorious weather in the park

Enjoying glorious weather in the park

What can I do in bang Krachao?

Sri Nakhon Khuean Khan Park

If you, like many other tourists in Bangkok, are keen on cycling then Sri Nakhon Khuean Khan Park is the place for you. This is a well-maintained park on the north of the island and contains an abundance of natural flora and fauna as well as ponds and wildlife. Pa Sam Yuk is the cycling trail that will lead you to the mangrove forest, the coconut garden island, the Nipa palm, the mangrove apple tree, and the birdwatching tower.
This park is only accessible to walkers and cyclists and is serviced by asphalt roads and wooden bridges with wheelchair access. It’s a great idea to have a picnic in this park with food bought from the floating market (see below).
Sri Nakhon Khuean Khan Park is open from 05:00 until 19:00 and is free. A typical tour will take around 1 hour but of course, a bit longer if you stay to picnic.

Ponds in the Sri Nakhon Khuean Khan Park

Ponds in the Sri Nakhon Khuean Khan Park

Bang Krachao Floating Market

The famous Bang Krachao Floating Market is situated on the east side of Bang Krachao. This market is called ‘floating’ because it is built by canals but in reality, it’s not floating at all, it’s a normal market. This market is only open at weekends so it’s a good idea to combine it with a cycling tour at the weekend.
The market sells a huge variety of foods, drinks, gifts, and novelties and every market stall seem to specialize in its own individual products. The market is clean and it can take you up to 2 hours to stroll around its entirety browsing its wares which includes the famous northern Thai sausage, perfect for the picnic in Sri Nakhon Khuean Khan Park!
For food, my suggestion is that you buy some delicious food from the market and use the spacious area with wooden tables, seats, and benches there. There are also many small restaurants located near to the canals of Bang Krachao Floating Market in which you will get more value.
Most tourists will enter Bang Krachao at Bang Kachao Pier. Here you can rent a bicycle and ride to the Market by following the path. Alternatively, if you arrive from Wat Bang Nam Phueng Nok Port, you can take the songthaew to the market. This trip will cost 10 THB per person. These taxis are available until 17.00. After that, you will need to get a motorcycle, these are available until 19.00. At this time the last ferry from Wat Bang Nam Phueng Nok Port leaves.
The floating market is open from 08:00 until 16:00 on Saturday and Sunday.

The unique floating market

The unique floating market

Explore Bang Krachao

When you rent a bicycle at one of the shops, you will receive a map with all the activities available like the temples, the Green Road and many local farms. It’s also fun to ride along one of the many raised soi’s (side streets) but the paths are quite narrow so care needs to be taken.

Cycling in Bang Krachao

Cycling in Bang Krachao

Where to stay in Bang Krachao?

Here’s a selection of accommodation near Bang Krachao.

Avani Sukhumvit Bangkok

The new-build Avani Sukhumvit Bangkok Hotel features rooms and suites in signature Avani style – contemporary, sunlit, and showcasing wow views of Bangkok’s soaring skyline.

Trinity Silom Hotel

Trinity Silom Hotel is perfect for tourists and busy executives, located within easy walking distance to some of Bangkok’s iconic and sought-after shopping and entertainment districts.

Haven't Met Hotel Silom

Whether you are looking for a convenient place to stay in the city, the hotel is the perfect place to stay for both business and leisure travelers. Here you can easily visit the city's major tourist, shopping and dining venues.

Holiday Inn Express Bangkok Sathorn

Offering easy access to the city, Holiday Inn Express Bangkok Sathorn is a 3-minute walk to Chongnonsi BTS Station.

At Ease Saladaeng

Close to Saladaeng SkyTrain station and Silom Subway Station, AT EASE Saladaeng offers guests easy access to Bangkok’s city center, business, and tourist districts.

FAQ about Bang Krachao

  • What is the main attraction of Bang Krachao?

    Apart from the attractions detailed I would have to say that getting away from the busy city for a day of relaxion is the best attraction.

  • Are there any safety factors I need to know about Bang Krachao?

    The narrow, elevated wooden bicycle paths can be difficult to ride on, go slowly!

  • What is the culture of Bang Krachao?

    The indigenous culture is the Mon culture which is still flourishing on the island.

  • Is there any accommodation on the island?

    The only accommodation on Bang Krachao the eco-friendly Bangkok Tree House. Most tourists travel from Bangkok city.

  • What would you suggest I take on a bike trip on Bang Krachao?

    I suggest you wear sunscreen and a hat, take plenty of water (you can also get drinking water there). Bring mosquito spray and a small backpack.

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Bang Krachao