Bangkok, Thailand




Museums & Buildings

Samphanthawong Museum
Song Wat Rd (inside Wat Pathum Khongkha School). Opens: Monday-Friday from 8:00 a.m. to 4:00 p.m.
This is a community museum dedicated to the early Chinese immigrants in Bangkok. Pictures and text in Thai and English give visitors an overview of the history including the lives and contribution of the Chinese in Yaowarat (part of which is also called Samphanthawong District). An interesting museum if you want to get a deeper understanding of the area.

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King's Birthday Celebration Arch
Odeon Circle (at the intersection of Tri Mit Rd and Charoen Krung Rd).
This Chinese-style ceremonial gate (also known as the Chinese Arch) is located at Odeon Circle in Yaowarat. This magnificent red arch was built by Thais of Chinese descent to show their loyalty to King Bhumibol and officially revealed on his 72nd birthday in December 1999. The four Chinese characters on the arch mean "Long Live The King" and are in the handwriting of Princess Maha Chakri Sirindhorn, who is fluent in the Chinese language.

Celebration (Chinese) Arch by Globetrotter

King Rama I the Great Monument
Tri Phet Rd (behind the Memorial Bridge).
Situated at the foot of Pathom Boromrachanuson (Rama I the Great Memorial Bridge)the monument was built in 1932 to commemorate Bangkok's 150th anniversary. King Rama I was the first king from the Royal House of Chakri and founder of Bangkok as the capital of the Kingdom of Siam (Thailand's former name). He was born in the former capital of Ayutthaya in 1736 and ascended to the throne in 1782, passing away 27 years later.

Holy Rosary Church (also known as Kalawar Church)
1318 Yotha Rd (slightly north of River City, behind the Wanit 2 Market). Religious services: Monday-Saturday at 6:00 a.m., Sunday at 6:15 a.m., 8:00 a.m. and 10:00 a.m.
Early Portuguese traders and their descendants in Ayutthaya first settled in Thonburi but gradually moved across the river to Yaowarat. As the Portuguese were important traders in Siam, the church was built with a land grant from King Rama I in 1786 - four years after Bangkok was established as Siam's capital. As Portugal's overseas influence diminished, the Portuguese community dispersed and the church fell into disuse. During the Indochina Wars, many Catholic Vietnamese and Cambodians fled to Bangkok and adopted this church as their main house of worship. Throughout its history, the church has been rebuilt twice with the present church dating from the 1890s. This cream-coloured church has a towering spire, European-style stained-glass windows and a statue of Christ that is carried through the streets during Easter.

Bangkok Bank Building
Intersection of Sampeng Lane and Mangkon Rd (opposite the Tang To Kang gold shop).
The Bangkok Bank Building in Yaowarat is one of Bangkok's oldest commercial buildings. The exterior is an example of classic early Rattanakosin-style architecture with its very distinct European influences. The interior is heavy with hardwood panelling, giving it a very ornate appearance.

Bangkok Bank Building by Globetrotter

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