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Bangkok - Looking for good neighborhood

  • hezulltogo

    Joined Travelfish
    3rd June, 2012
    Posts: 6

    My husband and I are planning to leave from Melbourne, Australia for Bangkok when our lease on a rental apartment expires June 18. We are searching for a discounted flight deal - one way. We want to rent a fully furnished 1-bedroom apartment in Bangkok for 30-days. What are the best neighborhoods in Bangkok where we'll feel safe - in the City or withing walking distance but away from the bar/club night spots and a lot of noise?

    #1 Posted: 3/6/2012 - 00:51

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  • MADMAC

    Joined Travelfish
    6th June, 2009
    Posts: 6224
    Total reviews: 10

    How much money do you want to spend? And how close to western conveniences do you want to be?

    #2 Posted: 3/6/2012 - 01:02

  • hezulltogo

    Joined Travelfish
    3rd June, 2012
    Posts: 6

    Hi MADMAC, This is our first trip to Thailand. We have no idea what the costs are - that's our problem. We want to feel comfortable and safe in a fully furnished 1-bedroom apartment - preferably with 24 hour security in the City near public transportation.

    #3 Posted: 3/6/2012 - 01:10

  • MADMAC

    Joined Travelfish
    6th June, 2009
    Posts: 6224
    Total reviews: 10

    Bangkok is a pretty safe city, so you don't "need" 24 hour security. If it makes you feel better, that's fine. I have a lot of friends living in Bangkok, so if we start with your price range, I can ask around with my friends as to what they would recommend. Will take a few days as I am heading to the village and will be out of contact until Wedensday.

    #4 Posted: 3/6/2012 - 01:46

  • longbeach

    Joined Travelfish
    28th March, 2012
    Posts: 307

    spam ^^^^

    #5 Posted: 3/6/2012 - 03:32

  • longbeach

    Joined Travelfish
    28th March, 2012
    Posts: 307

    I'd look near the Victory Monument. There's a few bars, restaurants closeby but nothing too sleazy. You can access the city by skytrain. Google "
    bangkok apartments near victory monument"

    Most of the noise in Bangkok comes from traffic not bars.

    #6 Posted: 3/6/2012 - 03:35

  • hezulltogo

    Joined Travelfish
    3rd June, 2012
    Posts: 6

    Thanks, longbeach. I'll check out the neighborhood near Victory Monument.

    #7 Posted: 3/6/2012 - 03:44

  • DLuek

    TF writer
    Joined Travelfish
    19th June, 2008
    Location Thailand
    Posts: 871
    Total reviews: 14

    Hi,

    Bangkok is a metropolis of some 16 million people, so "in the city or within walking distance" doesn't exactly make sense. Unless you're staying way out in the outskirts, just walk out the door and you're already "in the city". Rather than there being a single "downtown" area there are several areas that have a central feel to them -- some are more central in the tourist sense, others in the business or local sense, and others somewhere in between. Also, "bar/club night spots" are scattered throughout the city -- if you avoid the big night life streets like Khao San, Pat Pong, and Soi Cowboy you'll be fine.

    Victory Monument area is an interesting suggestion... It's a major transportation hub and is a cool area with a very local vibe. Wouldn't be my first suggestion, but worth a look.

    Personally, I'd say somewhere on Sukhumvit Rd is a better place to start if it's your first time in Bangkok. Sky train runs right over Sukhumvit with many stops and there are tons of apartment buildings and hotels there. Sky train runs far south down Sukhumvit so where ever you are it will be easy to access the city. Thong Lo is a hip sort of area with a lot of good restaurants, wine bars and the like. Phloen Chit and Asoke BTS stops are more geared towards western tourists, but I'd say anywhere from Chitlom to Phra Kanong BTS stops are worth checking out.

    You also might want to check out the Sathorn / Silom area, or anywhere near Lumpini Park, as these will be easily accessible and central. Something along the Chao Phraya river is also good, although unless it's near Saphan Taksin BTS station you'll have to rely on Chao Phraya river boats by day, and/or taxis/tuk tuks by night to get around.

    If you want a more "local" style neighborhood away from the tourists, you might look near the sky train stations in Thonburi on the west side of the river (Krung Thonburi and Wongwian Yai), or out in northeast/east Bangkok, somewhere like Lat Phrao or Ramkamhaeng, which are accessed by the MRT (subway). Din Daeng is also a good "real" Bangkok area, with Victory Monument at its heart as mentioned.

    Depending on where you are and what kind of place you want, a fully furnished one-bedroom could run anywhere from 15,000 to 50,000 baht per month. Booking something for a whole month online before you've even been to Bangkok (let alone the apartment) is risky. It would maybe be better to do some research, get some ideas, and then check out a few spots once you're in the city. Sites like agoda.com and sawadee.com only offer rooms by the night, but you might check those for more serviced apartment style spots and inquire directly through the buildings' websites. www.mrroomfinder.com is another good resource.

    Bangkok is quite a city. I imagine it will take you a month just to get your bearings and start feeling comfortable getting around, but there's tons to see and do and it will no doubt be an adventure.

    Best of luck,

    DL

    #8 Posted: 3/6/2012 - 07:04

  • longbeach

    Joined Travelfish
    28th March, 2012
    Posts: 307

    Sukhumvit is full of expensive bars and tourists. Wouldn't want to spend a month there. The place gets tiring after a few days with the whole in your face tourism aspect and the sleazy lower sois are horrible. Yes i'ts on the skytrain and yes some of the rooms are good value but otherwise it's not good.

    There are some apartments near Lumpini which you could check out. I'd pick there over Suk.

    #9 Posted: 3/6/2012 - 18:22

  • exacto

    Joined Travelfish
    12th February, 2006
    Location United States
    Posts: 2362
    Total reviews: 47
    Places visited:
    At least 98

    I thought the Victory Monument idea was a good suggestion too. Right on the sky train and adjacent to perhaps the biggest bus stop area in the world. There are restaurants and bars and there was a good outdoor shopping area with many casual night spots to stop and grab a beer or a meal.

    Having said that, I agree with DLeuk that the Sukhumvit area or the Sathon/Silom area are better choices. For Sukhumvit, I'd look for something between Soi 39 and Soi 71. That puts you well in the middle of things for public transport, and you'll be spoiled for choice on restaurants and other services. Same is true in the Silom area.

    The sleeze factor is present in Bangkok, but it isn't in your face like other places I've lived or visited. As long as you avoid some of the places DLeuk mentioned above and don't go seeking it, you really won't come across the sleeze factor much if at all.

    I'd love to hear where you decide to stay, how much you paid, and how the experience turns out. Cheers.

    #10 Posted: 3/6/2012 - 19:29

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  • hezulltogo

    Joined Travelfish
    3rd June, 2012
    Posts: 6

    Thanks for the valuable information DLuek, longbeach and exacto.

    We decided to rent for the first two weeks of our trip to Bangkok, a serviced apartment that offers free Wi-fi, 24 hour security and breakfast. So far, it seems our top choice is THE LEGACY SUITES, located on Sukhumvit Soi 29. 1,800 Thai Baht per night.

    http://www.legacybangkok.com/

    We'll keep you posted.

    #11 Posted: 3/6/2012 - 19:52

  • DLuek

    TF writer
    Joined Travelfish
    19th June, 2008
    Location Thailand
    Posts: 871
    Total reviews: 14

    Agree with longbeach that there's a lot of sleeze and in-your-face tourism in some of the lower Sukumvhit sois, but definitely wouldn't say that about the whole road. As exacto says, from the high 30s up are good, and it's certainly not "in-your-face tourism" around Thong Lo, Ekkamai, Pra Khanong and On Nut stops.

    #12 Posted: 4/6/2012 - 01:31

  • MADMAC

    Joined Travelfish
    6th June, 2009
    Posts: 6224
    Total reviews: 10

    "Sukhumvit is full of expensive bars and tourists. Wouldn't want to spend a month there. The place gets tiring after a few days with the whole in your face tourism aspect and the sleazy lower sois are horrible. Yes i'ts on the skytrain and yes some of the rooms are good value but otherwise it's not good."

    There are two variables here. One is the assumption that the "in your face tourism and sleaze" are negatives. For many people they are not - which is why there are so many tourists there.

    The second is something I should have mentioned earlier - interests and hobbies. As veterans here know, for me it's salsa. So if I wanted a place in Bangkok, I would be looking for something around Soi 18, which is the center of Salsa in Bangkok. If the OP has somethhing specific they want to engage in here, that would be helpful in steering things.

    #13 Posted: 5/6/2012 - 01:46

  • hezulltogo

    Joined Travelfish
    3rd June, 2012
    Posts: 6

    Hi MADMAC and others who are providing information. We seek accommodations away from the noisy bars and nightclubs that cater to the night-life. I believe the neighborhood where the Legacy Suites is located on a side street at Sukhumvit Soi 29, will place us away from the heart of the sleaze - I hope. We haven't booked it as we continue to search for accommodations. We arrive June 18. We decided to stay in Bangkok for 2-weeks to explore the flavor of the City and take day trips before booking a land tour to Cambodia. So we'll have 14 days in Bangkok. A few day trips on our itinerary - so far are: Kanchanaburi and Ayutthaya. Does anyone have a recommendation for serviced apartments similar to the amenities offered by Legacy Suites (24 hour security, free wi-fi, air conditioning, breakfast, kitchenette)?

    #14 Posted: 5/6/2012 - 02:42

  • goonistik

    Joined Travelfish
    7th January, 2010
    Posts: 532

    When I found myself looking for a long-term place to stay in BKK, I found this.

    http://theriversidebangkok.com/

    I just don't know if it meets all your requirements as I am not familiar with that side of the city.

    #15 Posted: 5/6/2012 - 03:43

  • longbeach

    Joined Travelfish
    28th March, 2012
    Posts: 307

    2 weeks in bangkok is a lot. cool city at night but a drag during the day with the heat and traffic. i'd fly to krabi or somewhere like ubon to experience something different

    #16 Posted: 7/6/2012 - 10:43

  • longbeach

    Joined Travelfish
    28th March, 2012
    Posts: 307

    evergreen place is near mbk and skytrain. 2000 baht

    #17 Posted: 7/6/2012 - 10:44

  • MADMAC

    Joined Travelfish
    6th June, 2009
    Posts: 6224
    Total reviews: 10

    It's got a lot to see during the day Longbeach. All the temples and cool architecure near the river, the croc and snake farms, Jim Thompson House... I like the Chinese Quarter... get a massage. There is stuff to do in Bangkok in the daytime too. Bangkok is the quintessential Thai urab environment. But if you want something more provincial... then yes someplace like Roi Et or Nong Khai might meet the mail.

    #18 Posted: 7/6/2012 - 11:08

  • hezulltogo

    Joined Travelfish
    3rd June, 2012
    Posts: 6

    longbeach and others,
    I'm arriving in Bangkok by air at 2100 hours. I don't want to use public transportation and haul my luggage on the skytrain. Can you give me any advice about using a taxi, mini-van shuttle service, etc. - and the cost?

    #19 Posted: 7/6/2012 - 23:43

  • goonistik

    Joined Travelfish
    7th January, 2010
    Posts: 532

    Dear Hezulltogo,

    Look at the following about taking a taxi from the airport. I just don't know what the current costs. Late at night there is no need to take the tollway so you can save a bit there. Be sure you have the address of your accomodation in Thai. If you can bring a small location map, it helps.

    http://voices.yahoo.com/how-taxi-suvarnabhumi-airport-bangkok-3293348.html

    #20 Posted: 8/6/2012 - 01:53

  • longbeach

    Joined Travelfish
    28th March, 2012
    Posts: 307

    300-400 baht. metered taxi is easy.

    #21 Posted: 8/6/2012 - 11:44

  • longbeach

    Joined Travelfish
    28th March, 2012
    Posts: 307

    When you book hotels/apartments you can print out a map written in Thai. Always handy to keep in your wallet for taxis during your stay.

    #22 Posted: 8/6/2012 - 20:16

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