Water activity

Lonely Planet Experiences: Bangkok Temple Tour and Cruise

4.3 / 5

39 reviews

Lonely Planet Experiences: Bangkok Temple Tour and Cruise

From US$ 74.79 per person

Explore the canals of the Chao Phraya River by longtail boat. Experience local Bangkok away from the tourist trail. Wander through the Wat Pho temple complex. Marvel at the dazzling Grand Palace. See the revered Emerald Buddha at Wat Phra Kaew.

About this activity

Free cancellation
Cancel up to 24 hours in advance to receive a full refund
Covid-19 precautions
Special health and safety measures apply. Learn more
Mobile ticketing
Use your phone or print your voucher
Duration 5 hours
Check availability to see starting times.
Instant confirmation
Live tour guide


  • Explore the canals of the Chao Phraya River by longtail boat.
  • Experience local Bangkok away from the tourist trail.
  • Wander through the Wat Po temple complex.
  • Marvel at the dazzling Grand Palace.
  • See the revered Emerald Buddha at Wat Phra Kaew.
Full description
Experience the best travel stories for yourself! Join a local expert and uncover hidden gems on this Lonely Planet Experience. Discover Bangkok’s glittering heart on this grand journey along its web of canals. Glide down the Chao Phraya River on a longtail boat past a vibrant array of daily life. Admire the reclining Buddha on a tour through Wat Pho and marvel at the magnificence of the Grand Palace. From the fluid veins of the city, to the spiritual heart of the nation, embark on this voyage of discovery. Begin your Bangkok tour by riding a local public bus to The Grand Palace Complex. Built in 1782 in time for the coronation of King Rama I, the Grand Palace served as the official residence of the King of Siam, the Royal Court and administrative seat of government until the early 1900s. Despite no longer being the official residence of the king, the Grand Palace is still very much the spiritual centre of the nation and used for various ceremonies during the year. Included in the trip will be a visit to Wat Phra Kaew, which houses the revered Emerald Buddha. Your local guide will take you through the grounds of the palace providing a fascinating insight into this majestic place. After that, walk to the nearby magnificent temple Wat Pho which derives its name from the original Wat Potaram (in 1801 the temple was renamed Wat Phra Chetuphon). The temple is the center of the Buddhist religion in Thailand, the country’s first university, and is still a center of learning for traditional Thai massage and medicines. Founded in the 17th century, Wat Pho is the oldest Buddhist temple in Bangkok. Your guide will take you on a tour through the temple complex. Continue the tour by walking down to the Chao Praya River (meaning River of Kings), where you board a long tail boat for a journey along the river and into the khlongs (canals) of Bangkok. In centuries past, Bangkok was often referred to as the "Venice of the East" with a vast network of khlongs through the city which were utilised as a transport network. With the passage of time many of these khlongs have been filled in and converted to roads for more modern forms of transport. In the Thonburi area of Bangkok many of the khlongs survive, and this boat trip will provide you with an insight into the lives of people who live along the khlongs, which seems a world away from the chaotic streets of Bangkok. At the end of your walking tour in Bangkok you are free to continue exploring the area or your guide will assist you in getting a taxi back to your hotel.
  • English speaking guide
  • Entrance fees as indicated
  • Transport as indicated
  • Drop off transfer
  • Items of a personal nature
  • Tips or gratuities for drivers or guide
Not suitable for
  • Wheelchair users
Covid-19 precautions
Traveler requirements
  • All participants who are over 18 years old must present proof of full vaccination. Participants aged 6-17 must present either proof of full vaccination, proof of Covid-19 infection in the past 9 months, or a negative PCR or lateral flow Covid-19 test taken no more than 72 hours before the activity starts

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Prepare for the activity

Meeting point

Inside Sanam Chai MRT Station at the bottom of the escalators of Exit 1 (Museum Siam). If you arrive by taxi, please enter the MRT station in the grounds of Museum Siam and go down two sets of escalators.

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Important information

Not allowed

  • ripped clothing

Know before you go

  • Children must be aged between 6 and 11 years
  • Dress requirements to enter the Grand Palace are very strict. Please ensure your clothes cover your shoulders and waist (scarves or shawls worn over sleeveless tops are not permitted). Trousers or skirts must be ankle-length.
  • Closure of sites: the order of the tour itinerary and the route of the klong (canal) tour may change depending on the water levels in individual klongs
  • If you are happy with the services provided by your local guides and drivers a tip is appropriate, although not necessary
  • Cancellations made more than 2 days prior to travel receive a full refund Cancellations made 2 days or less prior to travel attract a cancellation fee.
Customer reviews

Overall rating

4.3 /5

based on 39 reviews

Review summary

  • Guide
  • Transportation
  • Value for money
  • Safety

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too crowded around the Royal Palace Because of the King's death

Security wise, my husband nearly fell in the River when disembarking because only one men was keeping the boat close to the shore with a rope. He lost his balance when he put one foot on the tire hung from the dock and fell. Fortunately I was still in the boat and was able to help him not falling in the water by pulling one of his leg in the boat. What a nightmare! Never again.

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November 26, 2016

Very good tour with tons of information

My girlfriend and I were truly satisfied with the width and depth of information provided by our guide Wahwah, who's English was quite good and her knowledge of country, city and people impressive. The tour leads through some quite busy areas and it is recommended for families to take their kids' hands in order not to lose touch with them. Taking the tour is an ideal way to learn more about religion, culture and the people of Thailand. We can recommend doing this tour wholeheartedly! :-) Thank you! Additional note: It is highly recommendable to reconfirm the meeting point for the tour as ours had changed from the one initially stated when booking the tour. We had our hotel receptionist do it and it proved to be quite a wise decision as she could handle it in Thai. ;-)

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April 10, 2016

The hotspots in half a day with an authentic, good guide

For sure you are visiting the touristic hotspots, so there are a lot of tourists. But with Joe we had a local guide (who was a buddhistic monk for 5 years in the temple of the lying buddha), who told us a lot of interesting things, that were beyond the commonly known facts available in the internet. With this tour you get a well organized, condensed overview of the most important attractions, so you have time to explore the other days the huge and even more exciting rest of the city. I recommend to do this tour at the very beginning of your stay, since the guide will help you afterwards to find a public transportation to your next destiny and e.g. show you the thing with the many different boats on the river or the chaotic bus system.

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July 24, 2013

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Product ID: 3039