The City of Angels is not necessarily an easy one to traverse. This is especially true for those travellers taking on the city alone. Fret not, as we at Mad Monkey know all the ins and outs of exploring Bangkok so that you can successfully tackle the city, even if you are ridin’ solo. Here, a complete guide to travelling alone in Bangkok.
Travelling alone in Bangkok: Where should I stay?
Be sure to stay in a hostel in Bangkok over a hotel when you are travelling alone. Hostels foster an atmosphere that’s great for making friends. Just sit in the main lobby area and wait until the travellers start milling about. Also, be sure to stay in a dorm (the more beds, the better). There will undoubtedly always be someone in the room to chat with.
Mad Monkey Hostel Bangkok has plenty of large dorm rooms and common areas that are great spaces in which to mingle with other guests. There is a dining area equipped with long tables that encourage everyone to sit with one another, a pool with bean bag chairs at its exterior, and a lounging area along the canal. There are also activities happening every night of the week. All guests are encouraged to join in on the events which include karaoke, limbo, and free shots at the bar every evening.
If you are not staying at Mad Money, be sure to stay in a lively area of Bangkok that will be teeming with other travellers, such as Silom or Sukhumvit. The more secluded the area, the less likely you are to meet your fellow travellers!
Travelling alone in Bangkok: Where should I eat?
Dining out alone can either be an exciting or excruciating endeavour, depending on the traveller. That being said, there are plenty of delicious markets that are perfect for grabbing a few Thai dishes to-go and eating them streetside.
Those diners who eat on the side of the road are more likely to be joined than those who eat out in a restaurant, as well. Some amazing outdoor markets in Bangkok that are great for pulling up a chair solo and enjoying some delicious Thai street food include the Or Kor Tor Market, Pratunam Market, Chatuchak Weekend Market, and the Neon Market, just to name a few.
If you truly do not want to eat out alone, then instead order food from a delivery service like Food Panda, Uber Eats, or GrabFood. These websites deliver food from some of the best restaurants in town and come right to your doorstep.
Travelling alone in Bangkok: What activities should I do?
Be sure to book activities where large groups must partake in something together, like a cooking class, for example. Private tours are not likely to get you very far in your endeavour to meet people while travelling alone. Some of the most noteworthy cooking schools in Bangkok include Silom Thai Cooking School, Pink Chili’s Thai Cooking Class, Blue Elephant Cooking School, and more. Traveling Spoon also offers private Thai cooking classes straight out someone’s home, as well. Eating and learning to cook with a local is a memorable way to spend an afternoon in Bangkok with good company. It will also allow you to learn more about the country’s cuisine culture.
Bangkok is also brimming with museums, temples, and markets that, regardless of whether or not you have a companion, are worth exploring. Forget finding a partner for a day and instead head to the stunning Wat Arun to take photographs. Take in the awe-inspiring artwork at the Bangkok Art and Cultural Centre. Shine that baht and head to the luxurious Siam Paragon mall and get some shopping done. Whatever it is that interests you, do not feel as though you need someone to join in order to do it.
Travelling alone in Bangkok: How do I meet people?
Bangkok is simply crawling with tourists, expats, and locals who are all looking to expand their friend groups. When travelling alone, you will likely have to creep out of your comfort zone in order to meet these people, which is exactly why many travel solo in the first place.
One surefire way to meet other people is to download a dating app. Write what it is you are looking for in your profile and swipe until you find someone using an application like Tinder or Bumble. Another great website to check out is Meetup. People are always posting about things going on around town and inviting anyone in the area to join in on the fun.
If you are female and travelling to Bangkok a bit more long-term, then be sure to request to join the Bangkok Girl Gone International Facebook group. Women post both questions and suggestions about things going on in the capital. Many will write on the wall asking for a buddy to join in on whatever it is they are doing for the day, as well. Girls Gone International is another Facebook group that women should join before boarding their red-eye. Simply post that you are going to Bangkok and see who responds: you never know who happens to be in the Big Mango at the same time as you.
Another great way to meet people is by frequenting one of the many gyms in the area. The studios and fitness arenas around the capital are filled with friendly expats and locals. We have found that tangling your way through one too many yoga poses is a great conversation starter! Co-working spaces and cafes in the city are watering holes for digital nomads, as well, making them great spots for meeting fellow travellers.
Travelling alone in Bangkok: How do I get around town?
Because you are travelling alone, the cost to get around town is going to be a bit more expensive than if you had the luxury of splitting up the cost of a taxi. Instead, opt for public transportation with set fares. These will take you long distances without the steep cost. The BTS Skytrain is one of the cheapest ways in which to explore the city. It reaches many of the major attractions in town. The MRT Subway is also a good option for solo travellers looking to get from point A to point B on a budget, as well.
Most signs around the city are in both Thai and English, so you do not have to be worried about not being able to get to where you are trying to go. If you have to travel by taxi, make sure they use a meter. Also, be sure to purchase a sim card if you are travelling alone. Download helpful applications like Google Maps and MAPS.ME to avoid getting lost.
Travelling alone in Bangkok: How do I stay safe?
As with any city, there are more risks to exploring Bangkok if you alone. That being said, there are ways in which to help keep from having an incident happen and spoil your trip. For example, on a night out, do not accept drinks from strangers. Use apps like Grab and Uber to avoid having to wait for a taxi alone for a longer period of time at night. If you are alone on a night out, be sure to check out the best backpacker bars in Bangkok that are great for meeting fellow travellers, as well.
Long story short … travelling alone is worth it
In the end, travelling alone is worth all the hardship that comes along with it. From the memories to the friends and all the other things that you gain by venturing out into the world solo, powering through any fears you may have will be the best decision you have ever made. Odds are you will not be travelling alone for long if you follow our guide!
Want to learn more about how to travel solo in Bangkok?
If you enjoyed reading this article about traversing the capital alone and want to know more about how to successfully get around Bangkok solo, then check out these excellent articles we have rounded up to get you prepared!
- Solo Travel Tips: Bangkok, Thailand by Aleah for Solitary Wanderer
- The solo woman’s travel guide to Thailand by Elizabeth Bradley for Matador Network
- Go it alone: solo travel in Thailand by Helen Ochyra for Rough Guides
- A Solo Traveler’s Guide to Bangkok by Kelly Iverson for Culture Trip
- 11 Bangkok Travel Tips for Solo Female Travelers for Bangkok Bits