Chao Phraya River
Chao Phraya River Cruise
The Chao Phraya is the main river in the old kingdom of Siam of what is now known as Thailand. Among the names given to this river the most fitting tribute to its sense of grandeur has got to be “Grand Duke” of Rivers or River of Kings. The river passes through the central plains of Bangkok and on to the Gulf of Thailand. This river is the main source of water for small canals that served as the region’s natural irrigation system for rice paddies. Because of its importance, man-made efforts began as early as the Ayutthaya Period.
In 1538, merchant ships traveled from the Gulf of Siam to the ancient city of Ayutthaya. In the past, the river served as one of the main ways to transport teak and rice to Bangkok until the advent of roads and railway systems. Early settlers have found this river teeming with an abundant amount of fishes. By the year 1722 Khlong Lat Kret Noi served as the shortcut for those who want to see the sights of Bangkok. It was dubbed as the Venice of the East for obvious reasons.
Sights and Sounds of Present Day Chao Phraya River
- Cruising in Style
Take a ride aboard the Chao Phraya Princess Cruise which is a leader when it comes to Thailand’s famous floating restaurants. Thai and International dishes are served ala Buffet on board the Princess Cruise. A welcome drink is served and some snacks and refreshments later on. Dance and gyrate to the beat played by the live music band. Take your pick of the five cruises that TriStar Management team has to offer. No wonder tourists favor taking a tour aboard these ships. There are actually several other cruises offering almost the same kind of cruise.
Take a luxurious cruise aboard the Grand Pearl. This cruise is known for its romantic ambiance like taking a candlelight dinner with a loved one. Professional guided tours are offered with their packages such as a Day Tour. Expect to spend a little more though. Climb aboard Manohra and get a taste of an intimate cruise. Imagine, cruising the river on board restored rice barges. Take a peek at what Bangkok’s floating market has to offer. Visit grand temples and river front houses while sampling some refreshing cocktail drinks. Manohra offers a more intimate ambiance since it offers a limited seating capacity of 40 to 70 persons per cruise. Private charters for excursions are available through Manohra Cruises.
Wan Fah Dinner Cruise offers set menus. They offer local Thai cuisines and seafood. This cruise offers a spectacular performance of classical Thai dance as guests enjoy the sumptuous feasts of Thai and seafood cuisine. Among those who offer similar cruises, Wan Fah offers a traditional Thai river cruise.
- Shop To Your Heart’s Delight
When it comes to shopping there is nothing to compare with the four story mall River City Shopping Complex. It is in the mall where tourists can purchase antiques and other collectible items. The first legal auction house in Thailand organizes a monthly auction in this mall. Visitors might just be one step away from being the proud owner of a one of a kind Object d’ Art. Seeking beautiful jewelry pieces, head to the mall’s jeweler shops. Dine Al Fresco on the riverside eateries. There is also an option to taste classical French cuisines at the La Grande Pearl. They have a good range of wine collection from their wine cellar. River City Bar-B-Q garden is located on top of the 5th floor of the mall.
Fabulous Asiatique boasts of 1500 stores that specialize in selling unique items. This place had successfully combined the concept of night bazaar and mall. Charoen Krung is the largest section that can be found in Asiatique where visitors can definitely find something among the 1000 shops that dot the area. Watch traditional Thai puppets perform on Joe Louise Traditional Thai Puppet Theater. Enjoy an exhilarating experience at Calypso Cabaret. This cabaret boasts of talented Thai transgender artists that makes each show unique. More than 500 fashion shops can be found on the Factory portion of Asiatique. The easiest way to go to Asiatique is by taking a boat ride.
- Boat Ride
For first time visitors to Bangkok taking a blue flag tourist boat ride along the Chao Phraya River might just be the perfect way to find major attractions. Ask if the boat will go to the chosen destination before climbing aboard. Some tourists do recommend the orange flag boat as the best from the multi-colored flag boats that ply along this river. One of the main reasons is that, cheaper tickets are sold on board. The blue flag boat provides English narration though.
- Visit Ayutthaya
Since this ancient capital sits near the Chao Phraya River why not rent traditional Thai long boats. This allows visitors to take a peek on the ancient ruins and other riverside communities that still live along this Grand River. Feast on local Thai dishes by stopping by Khlong Sabua floating market. Each boat sells a different kind of food. On weekdays this market offers theatrical performances for guests to enjoy.
- Wholesome Day of Fun at Safari World
Spend a whole day of quality fun with the family in Safari World. See the various world class shows. One of the most amazing shows has got to be the Boxing Show by the Orang Utans. This marine park has been recognized as a world of happiness for those who love animals and other endangered species. Their website guides visitors to a map of recommended places to visit within this open zoo. It would be a fun yet learning experience for both young and old while taking a tour at Safari World. Visitors would definitely agree that this place is more than just a zoo because it is a sanctuary where man and animals can enjoy each other’s company without the risks of danger.
A few days it not enough to take a sample of what Chao Phraya River attractions have to offer. To maximize the experience, it is suggested to write down an itinerary of the top ten things to see or do while visiting this place in Thailand.