Bangkok: The Rough Guide

Overview

Introduction
The headlong pace and flawed modernity of Bangkok match few people's visions of the capital of exotic Siam. Spiked with scores of high-rise buildings of concrete and glass, it's a vast flatness which holds a population of at least seven million, and feels even bigger. But under the shadow of the skyscrapers you'll find a heady mix of chaos and refinement, of frenetic markets and hushed golden temples, of early-morning almsgiving ...
See more details below
Available through our Marketplace sellers.
Other sellers (Paperback)
  • All (13) from $1.99   
  • New (2) from $34.38   
  • Used (11) from $1.99   
Close
Sort by
Page 1 of 1
Showing All
Note: Marketplace items are not eligible for any BN.com coupons and promotions
$34.38
Seller since 2014

Feedback rating:

(266)

Condition:

New — never opened or used in original packaging.

Like New — packaging may have been opened. A "Like New" item is suitable to give as a gift.

Very Good — may have minor signs of wear on packaging but item works perfectly and has no damage.

Good — item is in good condition but packaging may have signs of shelf wear/aging or torn packaging. All specific defects should be noted in the Comments section associated with each item.

Acceptable — item is in working order but may show signs of wear such as scratches or torn packaging. All specific defects should be noted in the Comments section associated with each item.

Used — An item that has been opened and may show signs of wear. All specific defects should be noted in the Comments section associated with each item.

Refurbished — A used item that has been renewed or updated and verified to be in proper working condition. Not necessarily completed by the original manufacturer.

New
Brand New Item.

Ships from: Chatham, NJ

Usually ships in 1-2 business days

  • Canadian
  • International
  • Standard, 48 States
  • Standard (AK, HI)
  • Express, 48 States
  • Express (AK, HI)
$45.00
Seller since 2014

Feedback rating:

(149)

Condition: New
Brand new.

Ships from: acton, MA

Usually ships in 1-2 business days

  • Standard, 48 States
  • Standard (AK, HI)
Page 1 of 1
Showing All
Close
Sort by
Sending request ...

Overview

Introduction
The headlong pace and flawed modernity of Bangkok match few people's visions of the capital of exotic Siam. Spiked with scores of high-rise buildings of concrete and glass, it's a vast flatness which holds a population of at least seven million, and feels even bigger. But under the shadow of the skyscrapers you'll find a heady mix of chaos and refinement, of frenetic markets and hushed golden temples, of early-morning almsgiving ceremonies and ultra hip designer boutiques.
Bangkok is a relatively young capital, established in 1782 after the Burmese sacked Ayutthaya, the former capital. A temporary base was set up on the western bank of the Chao Phraya River, in what is now Thonburi, before work started on the more defensible east bank, where the first king of the new dynasty, Rama I, built his fabulously ornate palace within a defensive ring of canals. He named this "royal island" Ratanakosin, and it remains the city's spiritual heart, not to mention its culturally most rewarding quarter. No visit to the capital would be complete without seeing Ratanakosin's four star attractions - if necessary, the Grand Palace, Wat Phra Kaeo, Wat Po and the National Museum can all be crammed into a single action-packed day.
Around the temples and palaces of the royal island spread an amphibious city of shops and houses built on bamboo rafts moored on the river and canals. Even though many of the canals have since been built over, one of the great pleasures of the city is a ride on its remaining waterways; the majestic Chao Phraya River is served by frequent ferries and longtail boats, and is the backbone of a network of canals and floating markets that remains fundamentally intact in the west-bank Thonburi district. Inevitably the waterways have earned Bangkok the title of "Venice of the East", a tag that seems all too apt when you're wading through flooded streets in the rainy season.
Bangkok began to assume its modern guise at the end of the nineteenth century, when the forward-looking Rama V relocated the royal family to a neighbourhood north of Ratanakosin called Dusit, constructing grand European-style boulevards, a new palace (still in use today), and a fine temple, Wat Benjamabophit (the "Marble Temple"). Since then, Bangkok has attracted mass migration from all over Thailand, pushing the city's boundaries ever eastwards in an explosion of modernization that has blown away earlier attempts at orderly planning and left the city without an obvious centre.
The capital now sprawls over 330 square kilometres and is far and away the country's most dominant city. Bangkokians own four-fifths of the nation's cars and the population is forty times that of the second city, Chiang Mai. London's New Statesman recently reported that Bangkok has the worst transport problems of any world city, and it boasts just 0.4 square metres of public parkland per inhabitant, the lowest figure in the world, compared, for example, to London's 30.4 square metres per person. Modern Bangkok is not without its beauty however, the sleek glass towers and cool marble malls lending an air of energy and big-city drama to the eastern districts of Silom, Siam Square and Sukhumvit.
North and west of the city, the unwieldy urban mass of Greater Bangkok peters out into the vast, well-watered central plains, a region that for centuries has grown the bulk of the nation's food. The atmospheric ruins of Thailand's fourteenth-century capital Ayutthaya lie here, ninety minutes' train ride from Bangkok and, together with the ornate palace at nearby Bang Pa-In make a rewarding excursion from the modern metropolis. Further west, the massive stupa at Nakhon Pathom and the traditional floating markets of Damnoen Saduak are also easily manageable as a day-trip, and combine well with an overnight stay at the town of Kanchanaburi, impressively sited on the River Kwai and location of several moving World War II sites, including the notorious Death Railway.
When to visit
Bangkok's climate is governed by three seasons. The cool season, which runs from November through February is the pleasantest time to visit; days are invariably bright and clear, and temperatures average a manageable 27C (though they can still reach a broiling 31C at midday). Not surprisingly this is peak season for the tourist industry, so it's well worth booking accommodation and flights in advance during this period; prices for hotel rooms are at their highest during this time, rising to a climax over Christmas and New Year. March sees the beginning of the hot season, when temperatures can rise to 36C, and continue to do so beyond the end of April. During these sweltering months you'll probably be glad of an air-conditioned hotel room, and may find yourself spending more money than anticipated, simply because it's more comfortable to travel across the city in an air-conditioned taxi rather than sweat it out on foot (though air-con buses are a good compromise option). The daily downpours that characterize the rainy season can come as a welcome relief, though being hot and wet is a sensation that doesn't appeal to everyone. The rainy season varies in length and intensity from year to year, but usually starts with a bang in May, gathers force between June and August, and comes to a peak in September and October, when whole districts of the capital are flooded. Rain rarely lasts all day however, so as long as you're armed with an umbrella, there's no reason to reschedule your trip - and you'll get more for your money, too, as many hotels and airlines drop their prices right down at this time of year.
Read More Show Less

Product Details

  • ISBN-13: 9781858283456
  • Publisher: Rough Guides, Limited
  • Publication date: 3/1/1999
  • Series: Mini Rough Guide Series
  • Edition description: 1st Edition
  • Edition number: 1
  • Pages: 288
  • Product dimensions: 4.12 (w) x 5.68 (h) x 0.73 (d)

Table of Contents

Introduction
BASICS
Getting there from Britain and Ireland
Overland routes from southeast Asia
Red tape and visas
Health
Money, banks and costs
Opening hours and festivals
Cultural hints
THE GUIDE
1 Introducing the city
2 Ratanakosin
3 Around Democracy Monument
4 Chinatown and Pahurat
5 Thonburi
6 Dusit
7 Downtown Bangkok
8 Chatuchak and the outskirts
LISTINGS
9 Accommodation
10 Eating
11 Nightlife
12 Gay Bangkok
13 Entertainment
14 Shopping
15 Kids' Bangkok
16 Directory
EXCURSIONS FROM BANGKOK
Bang Pa-In
Ayutthaya
Nakhon Pathom
Damnoen Saduak floating markets
Kanchanaburi and the River Kwai
CONTEXTS
The historical framework
Religion: Thai Buddhism
Art and architecture
Books
Language
Glossary
Index
Read More Show Less

Customer Reviews

Be the first to write a review
( 0 )
Rating Distribution

5 Star

(0)

4 Star

(0)

3 Star

(0)

2 Star

(0)

1 Star

(0)

Your Rating:

Your Name: Create a Pen Name or

Barnes & Noble.com Review Rules

Our reader reviews allow you to share your comments on titles you liked, or didn't, with others. By submitting an online review, you are representing to Barnes & Noble.com that all information contained in your review is original and accurate in all respects, and that the submission of such content by you and the posting of such content by Barnes & Noble.com does not and will not violate the rights of any third party. Please follow the rules below to help ensure that your review can be posted.

Reviews by Our Customers Under the Age of 13

We highly value and respect everyone's opinion concerning the titles we offer. However, we cannot allow persons under the age of 13 to have accounts at BN.com or to post customer reviews. Please see our Terms of Use for more details.

What to exclude from your review:

Please do not write about reviews, commentary, or information posted on the product page. If you see any errors in the information on the product page, please send us an email.

Reviews should not contain any of the following:

  • - HTML tags, profanity, obscenities, vulgarities, or comments that defame anyone
  • - Time-sensitive information such as tour dates, signings, lectures, etc.
  • - Single-word reviews. Other people will read your review to discover why you liked or didn't like the title. Be descriptive.
  • - Comments focusing on the author or that may ruin the ending for others
  • - Phone numbers, addresses, URLs
  • - Pricing and availability information or alternative ordering information
  • - Advertisements or commercial solicitation

Reminder:

  • - By submitting a review, you grant to Barnes & Noble.com and its sublicensees the royalty-free, perpetual, irrevocable right and license to use the review in accordance with the Barnes & Noble.com Terms of Use.
  • - Barnes & Noble.com reserves the right not to post any review -- particularly those that do not follow the terms and conditions of these Rules. Barnes & Noble.com also reserves the right to remove any review at any time without notice.
  • - See Terms of Use for other conditions and disclaimers.
Search for Products You'd Like to Recommend

Recommend other products that relate to your review. Just search for them below and share!

Create a Pen Name

Your Pen Name is your unique identity on BN.com. It will appear on the reviews you write and other website activities. Your Pen Name cannot be edited, changed or deleted once submitted.

 
Your Pen Name can be any combination of alphanumeric characters (plus - and _), and must be at least two characters long.

Continue Anonymously

    If you find inappropriate content, please report it to Barnes & Noble
    Why is this product inappropriate?
    Comments (optional)