4.5 star rating: Recommended 382 Reviews

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  • Address: Chao Phraya River, Bangkok, Thailand
  • Admission: Free

Bangkok ATTRACTIONS See all

Chao Phraya River (Mae Nam Chao Phraya)

The Chao Phraya River (Mae Nam Chao Phraya) has always played a significant role within the city it flows through and remains the lifeblood of Bangkok to this very day, with passenger ferries, long-tail boats and slow barges laden with cargo making their way along the river daily. Most of the city’s main attractions are easily accessible from various points along its winding waterways, meaning visitors can also find great views from the water.

Escaping the traffic-clogged streets of Bangkok, a boat trip along the river reveals a mixture of skyscrapers, ancient temples and modern hotels set along the banks, providing a fresh perspective of the city, its residents and its key landmarks. Travelers will also witness just how important the river area is for locals, with wooden shacks jutting out over the water, kids splashing around and food vendors serving noodle soup to passing workers. This blend of the modern and the traditional is just one of the factors that makes the Chao Phraya River so charming and unique to Bangkok.

There are numerous ways to experience the river, with many boat tour options that take in Bangkok’s most important temples. Visitors can board a rice barge and learn about local life around the river, or hop aboard a motorized vessel to take in more of the major city sights. Travelers can also stay firmly on dry land and still see the river on a loop around the area via tuk tuk or bicycle tour. One of the most popular ways to experience the Chao Phraya River is on a nighttime dinner cruise, where you can listen to a live band while feasting on traditional Thai dishes and watching the twinkling lights of Bangkok’s skyline pass you by. 

Practical Info

The Chao Phraya River splits Bangkok vertically into two areas and serves as popular way to navigate the city. There are various ferries and tourist boats serving different parts of the river, but understanding their schedules and routes can become confusing. To save time, book a tour in advance to ensure you don’t miss anything on your list.

Did You Know? When the capital of Thailand moved to Bangkok at the beginning of the Rattanakosin period, the new capital was dubbed “the Venice of the East” by European visitors for its many canals.

Tours & Tickets

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Bangkok by Night: Temples, Markets and Food by Tuk-Tuk, Bangkok, null
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Bangkok by Night: Temples, Markets and Food by Tuk-Tuk

5 star rating: Highly Recommended 128 Reviews

Ride a tuk-tuk past Bangkok’s iconic sites as you tour the city at night. This 4-hour tour loops along the Chao Phraya River, stopping at several temples ...  Read more

Location: Bangkok, Thailand
Duration: 4 hours (approx.)

From USD $54.86
Bangkok Small-Group Bike Tour, Bangkok, Night Tours
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Bangkok Small-Group Bike Tour

5 star rating: Highly Recommended 45 Reviews

Get off the beaten track and explore Bangkok as you cycle through lane ways, past markets, traditional houses, canals and temples. Discover idyllic pockets ...  Read more

Location: Bangkok, Thailand
Duration: 3 hours (approx.)

From USD $56.46
Thailand's Ayutthaya Temples and River Cruise from Bangkok, Bangkok, Bike & Mountain Bike Tours
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Thailand's Ayutthaya Temples and River Cruise from Bangkok

4.5 star rating: Recommended 765 Reviews

Visit the Ayutthaya temples on a cultural day trip from Bangkok, it's a highlight of any Thailand visit. The tour to the ancient capital of Siam includes a ...  Read more

Location: Bangkok, Thailand
Duration: 9 hours (approx.)

From USD $56.71
$64.87 Save $8.16
Bangkok Rice Barge Afternoon Cruise, Bangkok, Day Trips
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Bangkok Rice Barge Afternoon Cruise

4.5 star rating: Recommended 97 Reviews

This relaxed afternoon 2.5-hour Bangkok cruise will allow you to observe Thai people going about their everyday business in the 'The Venice of the East'.

Location: Bangkok, Thailand
Duration: 3 hours (approx.)

From USD $31.40
Bangkok Grand Palace and River of Kings Canal Cruise Small-Group Tour, Bangkok, Day Cruises
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Bangkok Grand Palace and River of Kings Canal Cruise Small-Group Tour

4.5 star rating: Recommended 82 Reviews

Enjoy the best highlights of Bangkok on this Grand Palace and River of Kings Canal small group tour. Escape the Bangkok traffic and board a longtail boat for a ...  Read more

Location: Bangkok, Thailand
Duration: 4 hours (approx.)

From USD $73.10
Bangkok Canals Cruise including Grand Palace and Wat Arun, Bangkok, Full-day Tours
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Bangkok Canals Cruise including Grand Palace and Wat Arun

4.5 star rating: Recommended 78 Reviews

On this sightseeing tour of Bangkok's canals (or khlongs, as they are known locally) you will travel by a motorized boat on the Chao Phraya River to see the ...  Read more

Location: Bangkok, Thailand
Duration: 3 hours 30 minutes (approx.)

From USD $35.58
$64.05 Save $28.47
Bangkok by Night: Private Food, Drink and Shopping Tour, Bangkok, Half-day Tours
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Bangkok by Night: Private Food, Drink and Shopping Tour

4.5 star rating: Recommended 4 Reviews

Cocktails, dinner and shopping are the highlights of this private night tour in Bangkok. You’re in good hands as your local guide accompanies your private ...  Read more

Location: Bangkok, Thailand
Duration: 5 hours (approx.)

From USD $61.68
Bike Bangkok: Historic City Tour, Bangkok, Night Tours
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Bike Bangkok: Historic City Tour

4.5 star rating: Recommended 4 Reviews

Sure, you can hit all the temples you want in one day. You can eat banana pancakes with backpackers on Khao San Road. And you can visit the floating markets. ...  Read more

Location: Bangkok, Thailand
Duration: 4 hours (approx.)

From USD $35.58
Bangkok Dinner Cruise on the Chao Phraya River, Bangkok, Bike & Mountain Bike Tours
TVRM_SORTED : false ESSENTIAL : ADMISSION :

Bangkok Dinner Cruise on the Chao Phraya River

4 star rating: Recommended 403 Reviews

Enjoy Bangkok at night on a 2.5-hour dinner cruise along the Chao Phraya River. See two of the city’s top attractions — the Temple of Dawn (Wat ...  Read more

Location: Bangkok, Thailand
Duration: 2.5 - 3 hours

From USD $39.14
Private Tour: Bangkok Evening Experience with Thai Dinner by Chao Phraya River, Bangkok, Dinner ... 
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Private Tour: Bangkok Evening Experience with Thai Dinner by Chao Phraya River

3.5 star rating: Worth doing 6 Reviews

If seeing Bangkok by day isn’t impressive enough, Thailand’s capital comes even more into its own after dark. A drive through the old city reveals illuminated ...  Read more

Location: Bangkok, Thailand
Duration: 4 hours (approx.)

From USD $77.89

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