Photo: Chinatown boasts excellent street side eating.

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Eat and meet


It's nearly impossible to walk around Chinatown without noticing all the delicious food. It's everywhere: roasting chestnuts, barbecued pork skin, fresh fruit and whole fish. What you don't see on every other street corner you certainly will smell. This is a fascinating place to just wander -- and graze whatever takes your fancy.

Double Dogs Tea Room
406 Yaowarat Road, Bangkok
T: (086) 329 3075

Chinatown is a must for the culturally inclined Asian-food-loving traveller, but it’s also crowded, sticky, cramped, and most of all, exhausting. Double Dogs Tea Room is an oasis amid the chaos of Yaowarat Road that's well worth seeking out, especially if you're a tea... Read our full review of Double Dogs Tea Room.

Khao Phra Ram Long Song Mae Akarawan
Plaeng Nam Rd, Bangkok

Owner of a third-generation street cart business, Mae Akarawan specialises in the hard-to-find peanut, pork and rice dish known as khao Phra Ram long song, or “swimming Rama.” Perhaps no dish better exemplifies the blend of culinary cultures that come together in Thai... Read our full review of Khao Phra Ram Long Song Mae Akarawan.

Khanom Jeeb Wat Yuan
Plaeng Nam Rd, Bangkok

In business for more than five decades, Pae Sia and his helpers rise early to craft khanom jeeb by hand in an old shophouse kitchen. The youthful-looking 70-year-old then pushes a cart to the entrance of Wat Yuan, arriving just in time to dish out the dumplings to dedicated... Read our full review of Khanom Jeeb Wat Yuan.

Kuay-tiao Lod Phra Thep
Yawoarat Rd (between Soi Phadung Dao and and Soi Song Sawat), Bangkok

Take a bustling footpath lit by glowing red and yellow signs after dark. Add a street cart with steamer, brass pot and one very dedicated chef who treats his ingredients like a musician would a century-old violin. Throw in a few dented tables and stools; add chilli-vinegar to taste. What you get is one of Chinatown’s most beloved noodle stalls: Kuay-tiao Lod Phra... Read our full review of Kuay-tiao Lod Phra Thep.

Sweet Time
Yaowarat Rd, Bangkok

Every night in Chinatown, colourful sweetmeats and simmering pots of sugar syrup attract sweet-tooths in their thousands. Chinese-style desserts are hugely popular in this street-food haven, but many foreigners don’t know the first thing about them. At Sweet Time, sampling these distinctive goodies is as easy as... Read our full review of Sweet Time.

Toney Restaurant
64/1 Soi Rimklongongarg (off Chakphet Road), Bangkok

Not surprisingly, some of Bangkok’s best-value Indian food can be scored in Pahurat, or Little India, though it takes some courage to hunt for it amid the tangle of alleyways and fabric shops. Down one nondescript lane, Toney Restaurant dishes out cheap but delicious food in a pavement-side... Read our full review of Toney Restaurant.

Jay Ben Noodle
North end of Yaowarat Soi 1 (aka Soi Charoen Phanit), 50 metres from Odean Gate, Bangkok

For many of us, pick-up trucks conjure thoughts of country roads, farmers and landscaping. Those accustomed to Thailand, on the other hand, might associate them with piles of tropical fruit, uniformed kids on their way to school, or even a street kitchen on a bustling urban corner. In Bangkok’s Chinatown, Jay Ben Noodle proves that the sight of an old pick-up can make your mouth... Read our full review of Jay Ben Noodle.

Khao Muu Daeng Si Morakod
80-82 Soi Sukorn 1, Chinatown, Bangkok
T: (081) 567  9006

Khao muu daeng, or red pork with rice, is a staple Chinese-Thai street dish available all over Bangkok and beyond. The rich, porky flavours will be especially welcomed by those who shy from intense spice, pungent smells or “odd” animal parts, but only when they’re done well. In Chinatown, Khao Muu Daeng Si Morakod does an exceptional version of this street food... Read our full review of Khao Muu Daeng Si Morakod.

Odean Crab Noodle
724-726 Charoen Krung Rd (just south of Lamphun Chai Rd and north of the Odeon Gate and Wat Traimit), Chinatown, Bangkok
T: (086) 888 2341

Seafood is loved by nearly all Thai people, and saltwater crab holds a special place in the hearts and tongues of most. For an affordable taste in Bangkok’s Chinatown, make your way to the no-frills Odean crab noodle... Read our full review of Odean Crab Noodle.

Khao Thom 24
Soi Phlaeng Nam, Bangkok

When it comes to food in Bangkok’s bustling Chinatown, competition is stiff. Chefs who don’t deliver something truly special won’t make it for long. Even by these standards, nondescript Khao Thom 24 serves up phenomenal curries, stir-fries and fish around the... Read our full review of Khao Thom 24.

R&L Seafood and T&K Seafood
Corner of Soi Phadung Dao (Soi Texas) and Yaowarat Rd, Bangkok

On one side of Soi Texas (aka Soi Phadung Dao) sits the Red Shirts, and on the other, the Green Shirts. The Red Shirts are probably not the ones you are thinking of; the long-standing fracas between the Red and Green Shirts has little to do with Thai politics but rather it all comes down to crabs. And char-grilled freshwater prawns. And raw oysters on the half... Read our full review of R&L Seafood and T&K Seafood.

Ba Mii Jap Kang (Coolie Noodles)
On right, half-way down Charoen Krung Soi 23 off Charoen Krung Rd, Bangkok

Update, 1 June 2015: The Ba Mii Jap Kang noodle stall was sadly destroyed in a fire that also gutted several heritage houses. We will report back here if and when it... Read our full review of Ba Mii Jap Kang (Coolie Noodles).

Hua Seng Hong Restaurant
371-373 Yaowarat Rd
T: (02) 222 0653

Don't come for the atmosphere, but do come for the roasted duck and dumpling noodle soup, the excellent roasted pork steamed buns, and the tung hoon claypot prawns. Diners have to decide for themselves if eating shark's fin soup is ethical, but less politically-charged eating decisions abound and the food is prepared to a high standard. Dim sum is served every day from 10:00 - 14:00,... Read our full review of Hua Seng Hong Restaurant .

Eating at night in Chinatown
Yaowarat Rd and surrounds

In a city known for its night time indulgences, great late night street eats are a must. There are always a few noodle soup carts, grillers of pork skewers, or the flames of a fried noodle wok clustered around popular clubs and bars — but it’s more hangover cure/dancing fuel than culinary delight. But what if your long Bangkok evening revolved around food? You need a whole district devoted to... Read our full review of Eating at night in Chinatown.

Nahim Cafe and Handcraft
Charoen Krung Soi 22 (Soi Nana), Bangkok
T: (02) 623 3449

When Chinatown’s chaotic streets and scorching heat wears you down, head for the cool confines of Nahim Cafe and Handcraft on the increasingly trendy Charoen Krung Soi 22, or the other Soi Nana. Creative non-alcoholic drinks and snacks join handicrafts made by the artsy owners in a setting that’s conducive to an hour of chilling... Read our full review of Nahim Cafe and Handcraft.

Thai sweets at The Old Siam Plaza
Burapha Rd (just south of Charoen Krung Rd), Bangkok

Thai food gets a lot of props overseas — it’s almost ubiquitous now in North America, Europe and Australasia, but what doesn’t get much play are Thai desserts, or khong wan (literally: sweet things) in Thai. A great place to do some sampling is the The Old Siam near... Read our full review of Thai sweets at The Old Siam Plaza.

Royal India Restaurant
392/1 Chakphet Rd, Bangkok
T: (02) 221 6656

Tucked down a dark alley near Sri Guru Singh Sabah Sikh temple in Little India Pahurat, tiny Royal India Restaurant is a fine option for authentic Indian fare in an air-conditioned... Read our full review of Royal India Restaurant.

Yoo Fish Ball
433 Yaowarat Road (about midway between Soi Texas and Soi Phlaeng Nam), Bangkok
T: (089) 782 7777

Chinatown is no stranger to look chin pla, squishy, fishy balls that are usually served with rice noodles in a mild broth. Some of the best-known fish ball shops are found in dingy alleys, but Yoo Fish Ball serves up their signature variety at an easy-to-find, modern-style eatery right on Yaowarat Road. Don’t be turned off by the trendy decor; Yoo has been crafting fish balls for over 80... Read our full review of Yoo Fish Ball.

Viva & Aviv The River
River City, 23 Trok Rongnamkhaeng (Charoen Krung Soi 30), Bangkok
T: 02) 639 6305

Sometimes we long for the discomfort of travel – overnight train rides squashed next to a family of 10 in Kuala Lumpur, holes in the ground as toilets in Ban Lung, food so fresh off the street a piece of the vendor’s hair is tangled into the noodles (well, maybe not that last bit). But other times, we feel we’ve come this far, we might as well live it up. If that makes any sense at all (or... Read our full review of Viva & Aviv The River.

The Canton House
530 Yaowarat Rd, Bangkok
T: (02) 221 3335

It's not handcrafted splendour in each and every bite, but most of their dim sum is solid and a great value. Plus, it's a fun place to drink beers and kick it with the rest of middle class Thailand. Their Yaowarat branch is right next to the China House Hotel and convenient for a hung over breakfast. Nothing beats dim sum to get you back in the game. Canton House features 24 different... Read our full review of The Canton House.

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Where to next?

Where are you planning on heading to after Chinatown? Here are some spots commonly visited from here, or click here to see a full destination list for Thailand.

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