Bangkok is a hubbub of traffic, in between the towering skyscrapers and peaceful canals and temples. As a top destination for many across the globe, most people come to sample the street food, temple hop, shop, and of course, get a massage.
While it might not seem the most eco-friendly city with its millions of motorbikes and cars, Bangkok has a green side that you should definitely not overlook. Here is our eco travel guide to Bangkok, including where to stay, eat, drink, shop and see:
Where to stay
Bangkok Tree House
For the ultimate outdoor sustainable experience, venture out to the green lungs of Bangkok to stay at the Bangkok Tree House. You can choose to stay on their Tree Top Next, Bee Hive, or View with a Room, and all rooms come with free bicycle rental and ice cream.
Bangkok Tree House, 60 Moo1 Soi Bua Phueng Pattana, Bang Namphueng, Phra Padaeng, Samut Prakarn, Greater Bangkok, Samut Prakan 10130
The Yard Hostel
In the up-and-coming neighbourhood of Ari, the Yard Hostel is a budget choice for eco-conscious travellers who want to stray a little off the beaten path. The hostel is built using shipping containers with a huge garden and open spaces to reduce the need for air conditioning. Guests can borrow reusable bottles during their stay to reduce plastic use!
Yard Hostel, 51 Phahon Yothin 5, Samsen Nai, Phaya Thai, Bangkok 10400
Old Capital Bike Inn
The Old Capital Bike Inn is an eclectic heritage stay in the heart of the old town with only ten rooms. If you’re looking for family vibes, authentic Thai breakfast, and free vintage bicycle rentals, this is the place for you.
Old Capital Bike Inn, 607 Phra Sumen Rd, Khwaeng Wat Bowon Niwet, Phra Nakhon, Bangkok 10200
If traditional larger hotels are more up your alley, try Asia’s first single-use plastic-free hotel, the Akyra Tas Sukhumvit; the Anantara Riverside, which has signed up to the Green Growth 2050 Global Standard, or the riverside Shangri-La for Thailand’s largest hotel-based solar-powered system (at the time of installation).
Where to eat
Sustaina Organic Restaurant
One of the top choices for sustainable restaurants, Sustaina is a Japanese restaurant that uses organic vegetables from the Harmony Life Organic Farm and sustainably sourced wild seafood from across Thailand. They also have an organic store if you need to buy something.
Sustaina, 1/40 Sukhumvit 39 Bangkok, Thailand 10110
The vegan restaurant Broccoli Revolution is named after its signature broccoli and quinoa burger. Their plant-based menu covers everything from the quintessential salads to Thai dishes. For dessert, don’t miss the soy ice cream and banoffee pie!
Broccoli Revolution, 899 Sukhumvit Rd, Khlong Tan Nuea, Watthana, Bangkok
Where to drink
Bangkok is often crowded and hot, and the perfect antidote to that is a refreshing juice. Veggiology is founded by local Tan after the discovery of her thyroid gland tumour. They have a variety of cold-pressed juices for those who want a healthy lifestyle.
Veggiology, 8 Sukhumvit 41 Alley, Klongtan Nue, Watthana, Bangkok 10110
At Wasteland, Thailand’s first sustainable bar, there is little waste, as their drinks aim to repurpose kitchen ingredients to reduce food wastage. Here, you’ll find innovative cocktails using ingredients like egg white and rice wine, all with an environmental twist. Try their craft sodas as well that pair well with all kinds of food!
Wasteland, 24 Sukhumvit 53 Alley, Khlong Tan Nuea, Watthana, Bangkok 10110
Where to shop
This quirky cafe slash vintage shop is stocked with all kinds of handbags, shoes and accessories from bygone eras – just take a look at their Instagram page to get a glimpse of what’s in store. After your vintage shopping spree, be sure to grab some sweet treats and a drink from the (Un)Fashion cafe, too.
See more at @unfashion_vintagecollection
Founded in the 1980s, Green Cotton’s ethos is just like its name, to produce 100% cotton products without any chemicals. They use simple sewing and patterns that focus on wear and comfort with a range of products, from underwear to flip-flops.
Green Cotton, various locations across Bangkok
Patom Organic Living
The owners of Patom are behind the Sampran Model Movement that supports and connects organic farmers. Selling skincare as well as snacks with a flagship shop and cafe in Thonglor, they have a 10-acre farm in Nakhon Pathom that offers on-site workshops. They also have a spa that uses only organic oils, scrubs, and herbs.
Patom, 9, 2 Phrom Phak Alley, Khlong Tan Nuea, Watthana, Bangkok 10110
What to see
Take Me Tour
Don’t worry if you don’t have a local friend in Bangkok, because you’re sure to find a hidden gem activity with a local through Take Me Tour. Whether it’s an off-the-beaten-path local market or visiting a shrimp farm on your way to Ayutthaya, you get to engage with the local community and join a day of their life through Take Me Tour.
A Chef’s Tour
As easy as it is to Google the best food to eat in Bangkok, the insight and anecdotes from a local are invaluable. A Chef’s Tour is another community-driven tour company with local-led lunch and evening food tours. Sample a wide array of Bangkok’s best street food and dishes while your guide tells you all about the history and even takes some local transport you might not have otherwise.
Bang Kra Jao: The Green Lungs of Bangkok
On the southern edge of the city across a river, Bang Kra Jao is known as the Green Lungs of Bangkok and is popular as a cycling and birdwatching destination. Come for a welcome change from the downtown cityscape, starting with a scenic ferry ride across the river.
Sign up for the 8Shades weekly newsletter to get our top stories in your inbox!