Bangkok For Kids

Who would have thought Bangkok could make a fun-filled destination for families with young children? Oh the sweltering heat, the unmoving traffic, the delicious but not so hygienic street food, the polluted air... 

There are a few big tips about Bangkok that every family should know:
1. The Traffic Jam Can Be Nerve-racking. Ask a local or ask a business traveller who frequents Bangkok.
2. Do More Walking. Bangkok has put up many sky walks, pedestrian overhead bridges where people can have a comfortable, weather permitting, carbon monoxide-free walk from point to point. There are sky walks from Platinum Mall to Gayson Plaza and Chid Lom BTS to Siam BTS.
3. Bring a Stroller. With the sky walk panning across long distances, you might want to consider bringing a stroller for your little ones whom you forsee might complain a little here and there.
4. Taxis and Tuk Tuks. Always board a taxi and ask, "Meter?" The taxis in Bangkok do not usually like to travel by meter. At peak hours, they try to convince you that you have to ride by their rate. Well, we gave in to some because we were too tired. Do not forget to haggle though! Same for Tuk Tuks.
5. Dress Codes. Remember to pack in a sleeved top or sarong when going around in case you decide to walk in a temple or Grand Palace on the fly. It is important to respect the local culture in covering up shoulders and refrain from exposing the legs.
6. Book Attraction Tickets Online. I noticed if you book your tickets online at some attractions like Dinosaur Planet and Kidzania Bangkok, you get to knock some bahts off your expenditure! So check before going.

If you had been longing for a trip to the land of smiles but shelved it because it just seemed impossible to lug the kids, you have every reason to convince the husband now. Look at this amazing list of entertainment Bangkok has to offer your family!

HAVING FUN WITH KIDS IN BANGKOK
ONE
GRAND PALACE is one of the places I've considered hard and long whether to put up on this post. To be honest, it was really a visit more for me to learn about the history, admire the architecture and indulge in some serious photography. The kids were begging me to leave because of the crowd and heat. It is a beautiful place to bag away some really awesome shots of your younglings if you are a photography buff like me! However, in my kids' opinions, they would rather not go to the Grand Palace.

I have decided to put this up because whether they like it or not, parents can take the chance to discuss with them about the history and traditions of Thailand. Why they put their hands together when they say Thank You, why they have to cover up their shoulders and legs when walking in the temple grounds and how important it is to respect their religion no matter what yours is.

I chose a weekday morning [0930 hours] to bring them thinking it will be less crowded. To my disbelief, it was still filled with bus loads of tourists. We sneaked into one or two groups and eavesdropped on little chunks of history.




Children below the height of 120cm enters the Grand Palace for free and the rest will have to pay 500 baht [S$21] per entry. There are shops outside the Grand Palace where you can purchase sarongs or sleeved tops if you arrived dressing inappropriately. Well, now that I've reminded you, dress correctly to avoid spending too exorbitant money on clothes you may not need. Adults are supposed to cover their shoulders and back, also to wear a bottom that goes beyond their knees.

Ewan and Faye were allowed entry with their sleeveless jumpsuits. I brought their cardigans along just in case but I guess they are less strict with the little ones.

It took me only 75 baht [S$3] to ride in a taxi from hotel to The Grand Palace but 200 baht to return without meter because the cabbies want to slay these tourists. Their excuse, "Traffic Jam". I gave one taxi 200 baht [S$8] to return back to the hotel because a Tuk Tuk was trying to charge me 400 baht to get back.

Address:
Na Phra Lan Road, Old City

Opening Hours:
0830 to 1530 hours daily


TWO
FANTASIA LAGOON WATERPARK is located on the rooftop of a heartland mall. It took us 30 minutes to travel to The Mall BangKae with a metered taxi at 5pm. As it is away from the city, be warned that hardly anyone speaks English but hey, you still get a Uniqlo there.

The pictures I gathered from online researches got me all hyped up for the visit. We went straight for the waterpark upon checking into the hotel. I was certain the children will enjoy themselves at water play and they did!


The park was packed! When my husband saw the amount of people in there, he went, "Holy Cow!" Well, to be fair, it was a Saturday plus a long weekend and this is an affordable, fun-filled playground for the Thais. Putting the crowd aside, I felt that it was designed perfectly for children of all ages! There were shallow pools just for splash and play toddler-suitable pools that allow them to play safely amidst slides, [adult] waist-high pools for the whole family and a Slider Tower for the bold. For a birds-eye view of the city below, be sure to head up to the Tower if you have a chance. We did not have the opportunity to drift along the Lazy River on an inflatable float (which requires rental) because the hassle to carry along the float was just not worth it, considering we had our mandatory accessories (the kids) to carry everywhere we went.


The entrance fee is 200 baht (S$8) per adult and my kids were free. Inside, you will find a counter near the toilets for equipment rentals. You can rent anything from swimming suits to life jackets. Do note that it is compulsory for everyone including babies to wear a swimming cap. So if you do not have one, it is available for rental at 10 baht (S$0.40) per cap.  If you have someone watching your belongings while you play, there isn't a need to rent a locker at 20 baht (S$0.80). Otherwise, you can find lockers in both the gents and the ladies.


The toilets. Well, on a crowded weekend, it is truly not for the faint-hearted. As spoilt as all Singaporeans are, I doubt you can accept the dirty flooding toilet. However, there is always a cleaner on-site trying her best to provide you a drier and cleaner toilet. The showers are heated but all you get is a shower head and a hook for your towel in each cubicle. It is a large changing room which can accommodate many people comfortably so it doesn't feel overcrowded. I survived showering Faye in there and I'm technically not a complainer. Experience a country how the locals would is how I like it to be. Don't worry too much about the cleanliness of the water. It may not be as clean as what we have in Singapore but none of us fell sick. Not even 11 months old Faye.

TIP: Go on a weekday where there is no crowd to enjoy clean toilets! Otherwise, wear your slippers into the shower. Oh and be careful on the slides. Pretty slippery!

Address:
275 Moo 1, Petchkasem Rd. Phasicharoen Bangkok 10600

Opening Hours:
1100 to 2200 hours

Where:
Rooftop of The Mall Bangkae

THREE
AMUSEMENT PARK at The Mall Bangkae is situated just beneath Fantasia Lagoon! After all the water fun, we settled our dinner at a Japanese restaurant (which was a meal ordering disaster because the staff cannot speak English!) and spent our night away going on kiddy rides and playing games. Ewan was so high from play, he almost refused to budge. It spans across the whole of Level 4 from end to end with eateries and a cinema in the middle. The cartoon town has fun looking houses, a painted sky, a carousal and even a tree with moving eyes. Oh the tree looks friendly but it frightened the children to the extent, Ewan wouldn't take the escalator next to it.




Did I mention about the indoor playground, arcade, fun-fare and suspended pirate ships (see picture below) that you can ride on? I would say go early for a day trip and take your time to enjoy the mall with shopping and play. It will be an exhausting trip but I bet you the children will absolutely love it!


Address:
275 Moo 1, Petchkasem Rd. Phasicharoen Bangkok 10600

Opening Hours:
1030 to 2200 hours

Where:
Level 4 of The Mall Bangkae

FOUR
SAFARI WORLD is 40 minutes away from our hotel. We hired a metered taxi to bring us from the hotel to Safari World. The ride including the driving tour inside the park, cost us 425 Baht (S$17). Well, that is only the price we had to pay on the meter. If you cannot get a metered taxi, the usual full-day hire would be 1500 baht. Your driver will wait for you to be done with the Safari and Marine Park before sending you back. Do note that there are admission tickets to visit the parks as well:


We found it to be an eye-opening experience. Not only for the children but for us as well. We had a good laugh when we arrived and was told that we will be touring the safari in our taxi! I had expected to be dropped off at the entrance and be whisked off into a safari jeep or bus of some sort. But no, we went on a safari tour in our yellow cab while some other visitors came in SUVs and convertibles. Well of course the convertibles weren't allowed to ride through the park without covering up.

The animals were free to roam about and we had close proximity to them from our windows! Even the tigers weren't caged up but warning signs were put up to remind you to keep your windows closed. Until today, 3 weeks after the trip, Ewan vividly recounts his experience at the Safari.





TIP: If you would like to feed the giraffes, you will need tickets to the Marine Park which is a traditional zoo with many interesting shows, river rides and photography opportunities with tiger cubs. Unfortunately, I do not recommend supporting the zoo or safari with a visit because I witnessed how they threw tiger cubs into cages and grabbed them out for photos like they were trash. They looked sedated too. Not the kind of establishment I would support.

Address:
99 Panyaintra road, Samwatawantok, Klongsamwa

Opening Hours:
Safari Park: 0900 to 1700 hours
Marine Park: 0900 to 1800 hours

Links:
Website

FIVE
KIDZANIA BANGKOK was CRAZY FUN! I was so impressed with the setup that I wished I could be part of the excitement as well! This is a city made for children, allowing them to do everything they've never been able to outside these doors. They can hit the dance floor in a Discotheque, work in a Coca Cola factory or even scale the wall of a building as a secret agent on a mission! It is a world built out of imagination and so creatively engaging! They say we learn from experience. KidZania is just the place for our children to learn about occupations and discipline first-hand through role-playing. They call themselves an edutainment centre.

The very first place every child is required to visit is the Bank. They will be given a cheque upon admission and are required to cash that in to buy products and services in KidZania. They are also given a working debit card to be used at ATM machines! Children earn kidZos, the official currency of KidZania, with every job they undertake. It teaches them about money handling, savings and expenditures. I think it is g.r.e.a.t!


This city belongs to the children so naturally, adults are prohibited. Needless to say, we are allowed to enter the city but we have to wait outside the courtroom while they play judge or police station as they go through a roll call to nab a thief! Ewan is almost 3 years old and he is underaged for majoirity of the experiences. We were lucky we entered as media visitors for this review and gave him the opportunity to role-play as a gas station attendant, Macdonald's staff, green tea factory worker, a dancer and a customer at an eye care centre. He was the tiniest little boy at every job and I am so proud that he did not display signs of separation anxiety.




While holidaying in a foreign country where English isn't their first language, I am really happy to find out that all staff are bilingual and the children participating in each job gets to listen to both Thai and English versions of each session! Majority of the entry requirement are for children 4 years and above. However, I would say the best age for KidZania would be 6 and above to be allowed entry for every single experience. If you have a baby or toddler that you need to bring along for the visit, be heartened that there is Ubano House on Level 2 for them, where the Parents Lounge is. There are ball pits, a kitchen play area, sand pit and other engaging activities for your littlest ones.


The only problem I had was, they are not part of the B.Kidzanian Pazzport programme. Kids will not be able to have their Pazzports stamped in Bangkok like other countries do. All they get is a collectable hologram sticker which prints "Bangkok" on it.

TIP 1: Avoid weekends and public holidays because the queue at each experience is going to take you at least 30 minutes.

TIP 2: Work for MacDonald's close to lunch hour so that your child can make his own hamburger for lunch!

Address:
Siam Paragon Shopping Centre, Level 5

Opening Hours:
Weekdays: 1000 to 1700 hours
Weekends: 1030 to 2030 hours

Links:
Website | Ticketing


SIX
TUK TUK is a motorised rickshaw which used to be everyone's favourite mode of transportation before taxis and the BTS. Today, it becomes a popular [cut-throat] tourist ride which I fall foolishly into paying exorbitant prices in exchange for the experience. They charge a rate of 150 baht for a short distance which would have cost us only 50 baht if we took a metered taxi. Oh yes, that's 3 times the price but then again, 150 baht is only S$6. A small sum to pay to make Ewan absolutely high from the ride. Tuk Tuk drivers are known to be reckless, whisking in and out of traffic at high speed. The wind in your hair and sharp manoeuvring around the bends were the highlights of the drive for Ewan. *haha* So, hold on real tight to the children and make sure you don't get thrown out! There is no harm giving it a go.

Tip: Avoid taking a tuk tuk during peak hours (0700 to 0900 hours and 1600 to 1900 hours). You don not want to be stuck in traffic for hours at end!



SEVEN 
SEA LIFE OCEAN WORLD is in the same shopping mall as KidZania. So, if you have time for it in a day's trip or residing just a stone's throw away, do pay a visit! Now you must be wondering why they are looking all so grown up out of a sudden. I've appended new attractions to this post when we make a second trip to Bangkok three years later.

The rave for this underground aquarium seems too good to be missed. There are activities for the whole family to enjoy like no other aquariums I've known. You can take a ride on a glass-bottom boat in the aquarium (350 baht), tour the back of the house to check out the "Aquatic Quarantine and Nursery Centre" (350 baht), go for an underwater walk amongst astounding sea creatures in a dive suit and 180 degree helmet (2000 baht), have a chance to dive amongst sharks and sting rays (5300 baht to 6600 baht depending on diving experience) and experience a 25-minute 4D virtual reality adventure (250 baht).


We took Combo B which costs 1490 baht for adults and 1290 baht for children aged 3 to 11. It includes tickets to SeaLife, Madame Tussaud, Glass-Bottom Boat Ride, Free Popcorn and Drinks. Personally, I feel it was a good experience but Bangkok doesn't seem as affordable as it used to be! Prices increased and we felt like we were paying the kind of money Singapore would price for their attractions.

I had a relatively good time in SeaLife Bangkok. Hmmmm I could safely say it is better than our SEA Aquarium [Meyer says, "Noooooo. SEA Aquarium is nicer."]. It not only housed fishes, we saw otters, penguins, snakes and the happiest part of the aquarium was the Living Art section for children introducing three different sea creatures in rooms designed attractively in ARTY-FARTY-KIDS-STYLE and one interactive room for drawing!.

Each child was given an activity booklet to fill. They were tasked to locate nine sea creatures and have their booklet stamped. When they accomplished their tasks, they will be presented with a badge which made Ewan and Faye very proud of themselves.


Address:
Siam Paragon Shopping Centre, Basement

Opening Hours:
1000 to 2100 hours

Links:
Website | Ticketing

EIGHT 
MADAME TUSSAUD is not somewhere I would put on the list for a family visit because I personally am not attracted to wax figures. We made it our last attraction of this trip because our SeaLife Combo B ticket had Madame Tussaud included in it.

Surprise surprise, when we were done at Exit, my son said, "I want to go again!"

I was shocked to hear that! Then I realised what it was he liked. He enjoyed all the games there was in there - football game, kungfu game, putt balls on the green with Tiger Woods and of course the 4D Ice Age show!

Oh that show. I enjoyed it the most out of everything Madame Tussaud had to offer! A mere eight minute 4D cartoon with seats that vibrate with water spraying at your face and wind coming out from the back of your head. The best part? SNOW! It's cold in Ice Age right? And so there is snow! We had two snow fall experience during the show and it was a very happy experience for us all.


Do note the show times of Ice Age 4D show to plan your time better. We spent 35 minutes in the wax museum and if you timed it the same, you will know what is the best time to enter Madame Tussaud and make it nicely for the next show.

Show Times commence with the first show at 1130 hours in a 30 minute interval until 2000 hours.

The only wax figurine I enjoyed was that of Thai King and Queen in their youths. I respect them as much as the Thais respected their King.


Address:
Siam Discovery, Level 4

Opening Hours:
1000 to 2100 hours

Links:
Website | Ticketing


NINE 
DINOSAUR PLANET is only three years old. Located just 300 meters from Karmakamet Diner [read review post], we took a walk with the children to Dinosaur Planet after our lunch at the cafe. We heard differing reviews about this attraction and had to see it for ourselves.

Dinosaurs in the city sounds exciting!

However, it is closing down on 20th April 2018.


There are eight attractions in Dinosaur Planet itself and besides the entrance fee of 600 baht [S$25] or adults and 400 baht [S$17] for children between the heights of 90 to 140 cm, the Ferris Wheel and Dinosaur Kiddy Rides are charged separately inside as well at 200 baht [S$8.40] per person per round. Not the kind of affordable I expected Bangkok to be but the kids enjoyed these extras, especially the slow-moving dinosaur ride. I guess it still appeals to a five year old! While Ewan went on his ride, Faye spent 30 minutes as a paleontologist digging up T-Rex fossils in the sand.


The most exciting attraction must be the Raptor X-treme where we were held prisoners in a maze with a life-size realistic raptor! Our mission was to look for a key card and a code to escape the place. Faye didn't want to enter initially but Ewan told her that dinosaurs are extinct and these are just bluffs. Yet when he came face-to-face with one that walked, he actually told me to run! He wanted to get out of there as soon as possible! It must be frightening for the little ones; exciting for the adults.


I would recommend going in the evening probably from about 1600 hours and catch the first show at 1830 hours. It is a display of how dinosaurs battled against each other one the world of predator and prey. It was pretty exciting I must say!

Take a seat on the benches because it vibrates when the Earth shakes during the show!


Address:
Sukhumvit 22 The Emsphere, Khlong Tan, Khlong Toei, Bangkok 10110 Thailand

Opening Hours:
Mon to Fri: 1000 to 2000 hours
Sat, Sun and PH: 1000 to 2100 hours

Show Time:
Mon to Fri: 1830 hours and 1915 hours
Sat, Sun and PH: 1830 hours, 1915 hours and 2000 hours

Links:
Website | Ticketing

There are a lot more to do in Bangkok than these nine activities I've shared - Trick Eye Museum, Fly a Boeing 737 and many more!

BE WARNED: This is a kids-centric trip and every day was filled with activities only for Ewan and Faye's pleasure. It was a VERY TIRING trip (for the parents) but your children will thank you for it.

Read also:
10 Nov 14: Bangkok Babymoon - Ladies Only [cafe reviews]

Where we stayed:
5 Apr 18: Grand Centre Point Ratcahdamri

Our little Travel companions 
May 2015 - Ewan at 3 years old and Faye at 11 months old
Apr 2018 - Ewan at 5 years old and Faye at 3 years old
Click on our Travel tab to read all about our tips and tricks!

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We want to echo the sound of love through our lives to inspire other mothers alike.

Comments

  1. Thank you for linking up on Travel Tuesday. This holiday looks AMAZING! Especially the hotel, that is totally my kind of hotel. The playground, the in-room washer/dryer.. I'm defnitely pinning this up for my future trips!

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  2. Replies
    1. Thank you. Do look at our Travel tab for the rest of our travel posts!

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  3. Wow, now Bangkok looks like it has tons of fun kids-friendly activities for the young ones! And the rates are way lower than ours too. I like the hotel you recommended! It certainly makes managing 2 kids a lot more comfy :p

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    Replies
    1. Ya actually, I'd return to BKK anytime with the kids

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  4. When I was planning my Bangkok trip, I found this post really useful! BTW that apartment looks so gorgeous!

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    1. It's really nice isn't it that hotel/apartment? But location is slightly out of the way though it's not too bad if you are willing to walk. Glad the post was of help!

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  5. I'm really amazed at so many kids-friendly activities that can be done in BBK.
    SAFARI World is must go place for my family next trip to BKK.

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    Replies
    1. Long trip out to SaFari World but worth the go!!

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  6. Omg! Mall Bangkae is soo fun! We are going in June, will definitely check these out.

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    1. Go Mall Bangkae! But do check with the driver first because not many people seem to know where this place is! Have fun in BKK!

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  7. I love your hotel recommendations and your photos are always so enticing! Would love to visit Safari World with the kids the next time we visit BKK.

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    1. Thank you Angie and vice versa! I'm glad I'm in this blogging circle. We get to learn so much more about a country even before visiting it.

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  8. Trust me the first time when we went to Bangkok it was very hot and kids really don't want to step out to visit places. Only thing we did was shopping, eating and shopping.

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    1. Oh dear. Siam Paragon has so much to offer children and if you give it another chance, Bangkok that is, I'm sure your children will love it to bits!

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  9. I'm so motivated by your post to go Bkk again, we went for KidZania, shopping n eating only... There are so much more to explore..

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  10. Are you looking for Baby Stoller for your Baby. Here is Reviews about Best Travel Strollers in 2020 for your little one. Get The Safe Stoller for your baby.

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