Some of the more important venues and activities include the following. The Grand Palace complex, the official residence of the Kings of Siam since 1782, situated right on the Chao Phraya River is a must see as is a cruise on the river itself. Perhaps take one of the ferries sailing up and down the river from which you can get on and off at leisure at any of the sites along the way. . On the riverbanks, you can also visit the Wat Pho Temple with its Reclining Buddha, the Wat Phra Kaeo Temple with its Emerald Buddha and the Wat Arun Temple also known as the Temple of Dawn.
Worth a visit is the Jim Thompson House, the CIA-operative's mansion assembled by combining six traditional Thai-style houses and the Vimanmek Mansion, the largest golden teakwood house in the world. The street markets and night bazaars are second to none and offer a wide array of merchandise at excellent prices.
The second area of interest would be a visit to Northern Thailand perhaps travelling overland via such ancient cities as Sukhothai, a world heritage site and the first capital of Thailand dating back to the 13th Century with its restored temples and monuments and nearby Ayuthaya, another world heritage site and previous capital with extensive archaeological discoveries.
Close to Bangkok are two very interesting side trips. The first is the Kanchanaburi region famous as the place where the “Bridge over the River Kwai” was located. Here you can visit the bridge, the cemetery and stay overnight in a floating hotel. The other is to travel to Damnoen Saduak to experience a traditional floating market and also visit the Rose Garden for a show including Thai traditional dancing, Thai boxing and musical entertainment. Although there are many beach resorts throughout Thailand, mainly in the south of the country, there are a few which are not too far from Bangkok such as Pattaya, Hua Hin, Ko Samet and Ko Chang.