Recent Searches
Clear
Chao Phraya River (Mae Nam Chao Phraya)
Chao Phraya River (Mae Nam Chao Phraya)

Chao Phraya River (Mae Nam Chao Phraya)

star-4.5
8,264 Reviews
Chao Phraya River, Bangkok

The Basics

Traveling via the Chao Phraya River is a great way to tour Bangkok while escaping thick city traffic. Most of Bangkok’s main attractions—including the Grand Palace, Temple of Dawn (Wat Arun), Temple of the Reclining Buddha (Wat Pho), and Temple of the Emerald Buddha (Wat Phra Kaew)—are easily accessible from various points along the river. Both Chao Phraya Express boats and converted rice barges ferry visitors to popular city sights. Dinner cruise options abound, complete with live bands and traditional Thai meals, while some small-group boat tours explore the more remoteklongs (canal ways) in Thonburi. In addition to traditional sightseeing tours, visitors can tour the night market and the floating market, or try one of many food-based tour options. All offer unique vantages from which to see the city and help visitors avoid the stress of navigating ferry and boat schedules. You can also stay on land and see the river on a tuk-tuk or bicycle tour.

Show all
Lonely Planet Experiences: Grand Palace, Wat Pho & Chao Phraya Canal Cruise

Traveler Favorite

Lonely Planet Experiences: Grand Palace, Wat Pho & Chao Phraya Canal Cruise
star-4.5
$77.96 per adult
Grand palace tour
Our guide A was very informative and interacted with us the whole time. Very helpful as i have a bad knee and was most concerned with our safety at all times. Lots of fun. An excellent guide we would recommend him as a guide for anyone
JoAnne_N, Mar 2020

Recent reviews from experiences in Bangkok

star-4
Great way to see Bangkok’s highlights in 1/2 day
ogolovneva, Nov 2019
Lonely Planet Experiences: Grand Palace, Wat Pho & Chao Phraya Canal Cruise
Overall, I enjoyed the tour and especially the canal cruise. I wish the local tour guide gave more time for photos though
star-4
Fun and relaxing way to see Bangkok at night
Artzyguylou, Oct 2019
Bangkok Dinner Cruise on the Chao Phraya River
This was a great way to see the temples all lit-up. The food was good and the entertainment ok. It was relaxing and enjoyable.
star-4
Nice way to spend an evening
Itstheprincipal, Sep 2019
Wan Fah Dinner Cruise Along Chao Phraya River
The boat was very ornate. The food was surprisingly delicious and plentiful. The dancing was interesting, a little more explanation of the meaning and history would have been nice. Also most sights are seen from the right side of the boat with seating pre assigned. Perhaps a chance to pay more for the right side could be offered.
star-4
Very enjoyable evening - would recommend if you prefer a peaceful cruise
Hannah B, Jan 2020
Wan Fah Dinner Cruise Along Chao Phraya River
Overall the evening was very enjoyable. We boarded the boat at 6.30pm and we quickly had out drinks order taken (drinks aren't included in the price). We had the Thai menu which had food such as spring rolls, spicy shrimp soup, green curry, etc. on it which was very tasty although not extraordinary. The boat itself was unique amongst the other large modern white dinner cruise boats, which I preferred. It was more traditional and cosy. One criticism is that despite the fans and being outside, the boat was still quite hot for the first half of the trip. The highlight of the cruise was the traditional Thai dancers who performed on the way back to the pier. I would recommend this experience to anyone who prefers a more traditional and peacful experience. I had an amazing time!

Things to Know Before You Go

  • If you’re exploring by day, bring sun protection and plenty of water.

  • Chao Phraya Express boats can be identified by their orange, green, or yellow flags. Only the orange boat is open every day.

  • The Chao Phraya Tourist Boat, which can be identified by its blue flag, is usually less crowded—albeit more expensive—than the express boats.

  • Some boats leave every five minutes, while others leave every 25 minutes; be sure to check the timetable of your boat before arriving.

Show all

How to Get There

The Chao Phraya splits Bangkok vertically into two areas and is a popular way to navigate the city. You can get to the river by taking the BTS Skytrain to Central Pier or Sathorn Bridge Pier. River City Pier, located on the eastern side of the river roughly 20 minutes by road or ferry from the Grand Palace, is also a popular jumping-off point for city tours and dinner cruises. To save the hassle of transportation, opt for a dinner cruise with hotel pickup and drop-off.

Show all


When to Get There

Bangkok is most crowded in November and March due to soccer tourism. March, April, and May are the hottest months, while the rainy season lasts from the end of May through October. The Chao Phraya River is a popular thoroughfare morning, noon, and night. For spectacular city views and the best temperatures, consider early morning or evening sunset cruises.

Show all

Exploring Bangkok’s Klongs

When the capital of Thailand moved to Bangkok at the beginning of the Rattanakosin period, European visitors dubbed the new capital “the Venice of the East” for its many canals. Choose a cruise that navigates some of the city’s more remoteklongs to see wooden, riverside stilt houses, kids splashing in the river, and some of the city’s colorful and chaotic floating markets.

Show all