Bangkok Cheap Tours: 9 Of The Very Best On Offer

Guided tours are one of the best ways to explore the many faces of a city. As luck would have it, there are a myriad of Bangkok cheap tours lining up to take you into the depths of the city’s nooks and crannies.

Some people like to explore cities by themselves, setting their own agenda and wandering as they see fit. Others prefer the structure and opportunities offered by a guided tour – particularly if that tour is lead by a knowledgeable local ready to invite you into their world.

Neither way is necessarily better than the other — it’s totally your call on what works best for you.

But don’t be fooled into thinking that cheap tours in Bangkok are only for tourists: they’re actually a great way for anyone to get to know this city better and to experience all its hidden surprises.

Bangkok has got a plethora of tours on offer: from tuk tuk trips around the old city, boating explorations of the floating market to late night, expensive dinner cruises on the Chao Phraya.

We’ve sorted out the wheat from the chaff to assemble the 9 very best cheap (under ฿2,000) Bangkok tours operating right now.

Let’s take it away…

1. Walking tour in Chinatown

Price: ฿750
Duration: 2 hours
Operator: Co Van Kessel

bangkok cheap tours

By Pietro Motta (Creative Commons)

This reasonably priced walking tour takes you through the sprawling labyrinth of one of the world’s biggest and best Chinatowns in our dear Bangkok.

As well as having time to explore the markets, shrines and simple daily life in this thriving neighbourhood, the tour promises a glimpse into the historic development of Chinatown from its beginnings over 200 years ago at the start of the Chakri dynasty.

Perfect for photographers thanks to the relaxed on-foot pace, this tour will guide you into further appreciation and understanding of the complex Thai-Chinese culture and heritage.

2. Bangkok Temples Tour

Price: From ฿1,150
Duration: 4 hours
Operator: Travel Hub

bangkok cheap tours

Wat Pho

You’ll know if you’ve visited any of Bangkok’s temples before that tour groups are utterly ubiquitous in these parts. While they can be – understatement of the century – a little annoying, this tour is anything but.

Run by a licenced English speaking tour guide, you’ll be lead around the sites of Wat Traimit, Wat Pho, Wat Arun and Wat Benchamabhophit. While, sure, it’s easy to simply turn up at these sites by yourself and have a look around, to find out the history and significance behind such sacred places from your guide is a much deeper experience than just reading a generic guidebook.

The cost of this tour also includes hotel pick-up and return, and private transportation between the sites.

3. Talin Chan Floating Market

Price: ฿1,300
Duration: 4.5 hours
Operator: Day Tours Bangkok

things to do in thailand

By Globe-trotter (Creative Commons)

The most famous of the floating markets near Bangkok is Damnoen Saduak, but with its popularity has come huge crowds and an air of inauthenticity. Talin Chan, on the other hand, is not nearly as busy and feels very local – and it’s only a few kilometres from Bangkok.

While you may want to bring a bit of spending money to actually buy things at the market – the food, especially seafood, here is pretty epic, for starters – everything else is included in the price of the tour, including tuk-tuk pick-up, a longtail boat ride and a guided stroll. A tuk-tuk will return you to the Khao San Road area of Bangkok upon its completion.

4. Historic Bang Rak Food Tasting & Culture

Price: ฿1,150
Duration: 3.5 hours
Operator: Bangkok Food Tours

Not only is this one of the tastiest cheap tours in Bangkok, it’s also one of the best – it was awarded Thailand’s Best Tour Program in 2013!

It’s a guided walking tour through the district of Bang Rak, which encompasses the Silom and Sathorn neighbourhoods as well as the swathe of alleyways and riverside communities up to Chinatown. It’s known for being a Bangkok hot spot when it comes to amazing local food.

Mom & Pop restaurants and cafes are the focus here; and you’ll get to experience some of the diverse arrays of regional and ethical cuisine on offer. This tour won’t only benefit you and your tastebuds, but also the local communities and businesses in this part of town.

5. Diversity & Harmony Walking Tour

Price: ฿990
Duration: 3.5 hours
Operator: Expique

It’s over to the other side of the river now to explore the diversity in Thonburi where Christian, Muslim, Buddhist and Chinese communities live side by side in a peaceful co-existence.

Although religion and religious buildings are an important part of the tour, the main focus is how these different communities arrived in Bangkok and the manifestations of these very different cultures.

There’s also plenty of opportunity to taste the local snacks and street cooking as you go – the tour starts along foodie hub Tha Din Daeng.

6. Bangkok City Culture

Price: ฿950
Duration: 3 hours
Operator: Thailand Biking

bangkok cheap tours

Klong Toey Slum. By Trevor Soh (Creative Commons)

One for the more adventurous – this 3 hour cycle tour takes you through the heart of Bangkok’s CBD. For many locals and expats, at least, this neighbourhood will be very familiar and well trod, but the tour promises to show another side to the city’s main financial and business hub.

Local temples, train graveyard, the slum and Klong Toey fresh market are all on the cards, before you’ll make you way to Benjakitti Park, the Tobacco Monopoly and alongside the foreign embassies on Wireless Road. Beautiful Lumpini Park is the final stop on this tour.

Water, snacks, insurance, bike, helmet and an English-speaking guide are all included in the tour cost.

7. Chao Phraya Tourist Boat

Price: ฿150 day pass
Operates: 09.30 – 16.00; every 30 minutes from Sathorn Pier

bangkok cheap tours

Chao Phraya Express Boat. By David McKelvey (Creative Commons)

Not a tour in the strictest sense of the word, but the Chao Phraya Tourist Boat is one of the best ways to explore Bangkok’s River of Kings and the myriad of attractions that run alongside it. Just hop on and off as you please – make sure to buy a ฿150 day pass.

The route runs from Saphan Taksin pier in Sathorn up to Phra Athit Pier in Banglamphu with 8 piers in between. These allow you access to such delights as Chinatown, the flower market, Grand Palace, Wat Pho, National Museum, Khao San Road, Siriraj Medical Museum, Wat Arun and much more.

Some might argue that it’s cheaper to simply use the Chao Phraya Express Boat. While that’s most certainly true, it’s also the boat used by commuters and locals and is invariably incredibly busy with no guide to help you out if you’re feeling lost. Choose according to your confidence level!

8. Bangkok Night Lights

Price: From ฿1,850
Duration: 4 hours
Operator: Expique

bangkok cheap tours

By Colin Tsoi (Creative Commons)

Bangkok at night is truly a wonder to behold – an entirely different beast to its daytime persona – and Bangkok at night by tuk tuk is something else entirely.

This tour explores the night markets and temples of the city as well as the nighttime street food vendors that dominate the streets as darkness falls. Wat Pho and the flower market are other stop points on the agenda.

Expique somewhat bravely suggest that they’ll be very little traffic during this nighttime tour and that it should wind up by 11.30pm.

9. Rocket Boating

Price: ฿1,850
Duration: 5 hours
Operator: Co Van Kessel

If you fancy exploring more of Bangkok’s waterways than what’s on offer with the Chao Phraya Tourist Boat, this 5-hour multi boat extravaganza is likely to be right up your alley.

Starting on the express boat, you’ll head to Nonthaburi before exploring the canal systems there on a longtail boat, sailing alongside the peaceful, rural communities making their living in homes a world away from the mania of Bangkok.

From there, it’s a change of pace into a rocket boat – otherwise known as the James Bond boat made famous in The Man With The Golden Gun – where you’ll be maneuvered at breakneck pace through the narrow canals. Finally, another longtail boat will transport you to Chinatown.

You’ll be guided by an experienced local and will be provided drinks and snacks en route.

Bonus! Eat with Locals

Price: On request
Operator: Bangkok Food Tours

cheap tours in bangkok

By #FoodTograpiya | PauLRivera (CC BY-ND 2.0 licence)

We’re not sure that this can necessarily be categorised as a Bangkok cheap tour, but it’s nevertheless worth including as a great way to learn more about local life – and perhaps even make a friend or two!

Khun Arm will invite you into his home, prepare and cook a traditional Thai meal for you – all the while imparting his knowledge of Thai culinary heritage and the unique Thai way of life. You can even enjoy an impromptu lesson in the kitchen.

There’ll be at least 4 dishes and desserts, made from Khun Arm’s family recipes. His specialty is Southern Thai food.

 

What Bangkok tours do you recommend?

Featured image is of Chinatown by drburtoni (Creative Commons)

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