You won’t go hungry in Bangkok– even if you have just a few small coins in your pocket one of the ubiquitous street stalls will fix you up. There are more than 50,000 dining outlets in Bangkok, not counting the individual street sellers. Food courts, food markets, family restaurants, fine dining – it’s all here and at all hours. Whatever your favourite cuisine, make sure you take advantage of the wonderful Thai food and its aromatic blend of sweet, sour, spicy and salt.
Our top picks
The Seafood Market and Restaurant
89 Sukhumvit Soi 24
Look for the sign that says “If it swims we have it” and prepare yourself for a seafood experience that takes some beating. A huge restaurant with a difference, you browse the dozens of ice trays, pick the seafood of your choice, much of it live, pay at the checkout, choose a cooking style (help is on hand), then sit down and wait for your meal to appear. Prawns big and small, crab, lobster, shellfish of all shapes and sizes, fish, squid, and more. Order separately for beer and spirits.
Soul Food Mahanakorn
56/10 Sukhumvit Soi 55
It is run by an American but the real reason this relatively hidden Thai gem made the US Top 10 restaurants in Bangkok is the food. Soul has kept faith with its original concept of offering authentic Thai street food in a comfortable setting backed by a good wine list and some great cocktails. It’s popular with locals and tourists, so book.
Eat like a local
Bangkok is the home of street food. Grab a bite on the run or stay a while, you will find everything from mainstream to bizarrely exotic – anyone for fried insects in Chinatown? It pays to know where to go, for both the best street food and the freshest (and even the most hygienic).
313 Mahachai Road
If you are in the hunt for that most iconic of Thai noodle dishes, pad Thai, go no further than this unpretentious street restaurant reputed to serve the best pad Thai in the world. The number of woks on the go give an insight into the popularity of this place. What’s more, it is incredible value for money.
Sukhumvit Soi 38
Talk about a city of contrasts. On the one hand, there are the flash restaurants of Sukhumvit Road. On the other, there are street food sellers, particularly those at Sukhumvit Soi 38. Be prepared to eat kerb-side, off plastic plates, perched on plastic stools around small tables. The food is fresh, the cooking quick, and there are menu options in English.