Bangkok

Bangkok

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Bangkok is the capital and largest urban area
Urban area
An urban area is characterized by higher population density and vast human features in comparison to areas surrounding it. Urban areas may be cities, towns or conurbations, but the term is not commonly extended to rural settlements such as villages and hamlets.Urban areas are created and further...

 city in Thailand
Thailand
Thailand , officially the Kingdom of Thailand , formerly known as Siam , is a country located at the centre of the Indochina peninsula and Southeast Asia. It is bordered to the north by Burma and Laos, to the east by Laos and Cambodia, to the south by the Gulf of Thailand and Malaysia, and to the...

. It is known in Thai
Thai language
Thai , also known as Central Thai and Siamese, is the national and official language of Thailand and the native language of the Thai people, Thailand's dominant ethnic group. Thai is a member of the Tai group of the Tai–Kadai language family. Historical linguists have been unable to definitively...

 as Krung Thep Maha Nakhon or simply Krung Thep , meaning "city of angels." The full name of Bangkok is Krung Thep Mahanakhon Amon Rattanakosin Mahintharayutthaya Mahadilok Phop Noppharat Ratchathani Burirom Udomratchaniwet Mahasathan Amon Phiman Awatan Sathit Sakkathattiya Witsanukam Prasit. The 167 letters make Bangkok's name the longest city name in the world. Bangkok is by far the most densely populated city in Thailand with about 9 million people. Bangkok was originally a small trading post on the west bank of the lower Chao Phraya River
Chao Phraya River
The Chao Phraya is a major river in Thailand, with its low alluvial plain forming the centre of the country. It runs through Bangkok, the capital city, and then empties into the Gulf of Thailand.-Etymology:...

 during the Ayutthaya Kingdom
Ayutthaya kingdom
Ayutthaya was a Siamese kingdom that existed from 1350 to 1767. Ayutthaya was friendly towards foreign traders, including the Chinese, Vietnamese , Indians, Japanese and Persians, and later the Portuguese, Spanish, Dutch and French, permitting them to set up villages outside the walls of the...

. It became the capital city in 1768 following the death of King Taksin when the capital was moved to the east bank of the river by Rama I. Today, Bangkok is one of the most important commercial centers in South East Asia and a gateway and principal destination for many visitors. It has more than 400 richly decorated temples, some of the biggest shopping centers in Asia, and six universities. Its numerous canals, some of which are home to floating markets, give Bangkok the name "Venice of the East."

Overview


Because of its strategic location in Southeast Asia, Siam (later Thailand) acted as a buffer-zone between the French and British colonial empires. Bangkok itself has gained a reputation as an independent, dynamic and influential city. Bangkok is the political
Politics of Thailand
The politics of Thailand are currently conducted within the framework of a constitutional monarchy, whereby the Prime Minister is the head of government and a hereditary monarch is head of state. The judiciary is independent of the executive and the legislative branches.Thai kingdoms and late...

, social
Social
The term social refers to a characteristic of living organisms...

 and economic
Economy of Thailand
The economy of Thailand is a newly industrialized economy. It is a heavily export-dependent economy, with exports accounting for more than two thirds of gross domestic product ....

 centre of Thailand, and one of the leading cities in Southeast Asia
Southeast Asia
Southeast Asia, South-East Asia, South East Asia or Southeastern Asia is a subregion of Asia, consisting of the countries that are geographically south of China, east of India, west of New Guinea and north of Australia. The region lies on the intersection of geological plates, with heavy seismic...

.

Due to the 1980s and 1990s Asian investment boom
Tiger Cub Economies
The term Tiger Cub Economies refers to the economies of the four dominant countries in the Southeast Asia after Singapore.The Tiger Cub Economies are: Indonesia Malaysia Philippines Thailand...

, many multinational corporations make their regional headquarters in Bangkok and the city is a regional force in finance
Finance
"Finance" is often defined simply as the management of money or “funds” management Modern finance, however, is a family of business activity that includes the origination, marketing, and management of cash and money surrogates through a variety of capital accounts, instruments, and markets created...

 and business
Business
A business is an organization engaged in the trade of goods, services, or both to consumers. Businesses are predominant in capitalist economies, where most of them are privately owned and administered to earn profit to increase the wealth of their owners. Businesses may also be not-for-profit...

. Its increasing influence on global politics, culture
Culture
Culture is a term that has many different inter-related meanings. For example, in 1952, Alfred Kroeber and Clyde Kluckhohn compiled a list of 164 definitions of "culture" in Culture: A Critical Review of Concepts and Definitions...

, fashion
Fashion
Fashion, a general term for a currently popular style or practice, especially in clothing, foot wear, or accessories. Fashion references to anything that is the current trend in look and dress up of a person...

 and entertainment
Entertainment
Entertainment consists of any activity which provides a diversion or permits people to amuse themselves in their leisure time. Entertainment is generally passive, such as watching opera or a movie. Active forms of amusement, such as sports, are more often considered to be recreation...

 underlines its status as an Alpha global city
Global city
A global city is a city that is deemed to be an important node in the global economic system...

. In 2009, it was the second most expensive city in South-East Asia behind Singapore.

The city's many cultural landmarks and attractions in addition to its nightlife venues has made it synonymous with exoticism
Exoticism
Exoticism is a trend in art and design, influenced by some ethnic groups or civilizations since the late 19th-century. In music exoticism is a genre in which the rhythms, melodies, or instrumentation are designed to evoke the atmosphere of far-off lands or ancient times Exoticism (from 'exotic')...

. Its rapid modernization, reflected in the cityscape and the urban society, has left untouched the historic Grand Palace, Wat Arun
Wat Arun
Wat Arun Rajwararam is a Buddhist temple in the Bangkok Yai district of Bangkok, Thailand, on the Thonburi west bank of the Chao Phraya River. The full name of the temple is Wat Arunratchawararam Ratchaworamahawihan...

, Vimanmek Palace Complex, hundreds of Buddhist temples, and the city's illegal (but tolerated) red-light district
Red-light district
A red-light district is a part of an urban area where there is a concentration of prostitution and sex-oriented businesses, such as sex shops, strip clubs, adult theaters, etc...

s draw about 10 million international visitors each year, second only to London.

Bangkok has an official population of 9,100,000 residents, while the greater Bangkok area contains some 11,971,000 (January 2008). The capital is a center of the megalopolis
Megalopolis
Megalopolis may refer to:* Megalopolis , an extensive metropolitan area or a long chain of continuous metropolitan areas.** See also, Megacity, Agglomeration, or Ecumenopolis....

 of 20 millions people, situated in a heavily urbanized triangle of central and eastern Thailand, which stretches from Nakhon Ratchasima
Nakhon Ratchasima
Nakhon Ratchasima or is a city in the north-east of Thailand and gateway to Isan. It is the capital of the Nakhon Ratchasima Province and Nakhon Ratchasima district...

 to the heavily Industrialized Eastern Seaboard
Eastern Seaboard of Thailand
The Eastern Seaboard of Thailand is an emerging economic region, and plays a key role in Thailand's economy. Its importance lies in the fact that it is Thailand's center for export oriented industries. High value goods, such as Japanese branded automobiles, which are manufactured there and...

. Bangkok borders five other provinces: Nonthaburi
Nonthaburi Province
Nonthaburi is one of the central provinces of Thailand. Neighboring provinces are Phra Nakhon Si Ayutthaya, Pathum Thani, Bangkok and Nakhon Pathom....

, Pathum Thani, Samut Prakan
Samut Prakan Province
Samut Prakan is one of the central provinces of Thailand. It is part of the Bangkok Metropolitan Region. Neighboring provinces are Bangkok, to the north and west, and Chachoengsao to the east....

, Samut Sakhon
Samut Sakhon Province
Samut Sakhon ) is one of the central provinces of Thailand.Neighboring provinces are Samut Songkhram, Ratchaburi, Nakhon Pathom and Bangkok.- Etymology :...

 and Nakhon Pathom
Nakhon Pathom Province
Nakhon Pathom ) is one of the central provinces of Thailand. Neighboring provinces are Suphan Buri, Ayutthaya, Nonthaburi, Bangkok, Samut Sakhon, Ratchaburi and Kanchanaburi...

, and all five provinces are joined in the conurbation of the Bangkok Metropolitan Area
Bangkok Metropolitan Area
The Bangkok Metropolitan Region , also known as Greater Bangkok, is the urban conglomeration of Bangkok, Thailand, which includes the city and the 5 adjacent provinces of Nakhon Pathom, Pathum Thani, Nonthaburi, Samut Prakan and Samut Sakhon....

. It is served by two international airports, Suvarnabhumi Airport
Suvarnabhumi Airport
Suvarnabhumi Airport , also known as Bangkok International Airport, is an international airport serving Bangkok, Thailand. It was officially opened for limited domestic flight service on 15 September 2006, and opened for most domestic and all international commercial flights on 28 September...

 and Don Mueang International Airport, four rapid transit lines operated by the BTS
Bangkok Skytrain
The Bangkok Mass Transit System, commonly known as the BTS Skytrain , is an elevated rapid transit system in Bangkok, Thailand. It is operated by Bangkok Mass Transit System Public Company Limited under a concession granted by the Bangkok Metropolitan Administration...

, MRT
Bangkok Metro
The MRT , sometimes referred to as the Bangkok Metro, is Bangkok's underground metro system in Thailand. It was constructed under a concession concept...

, and the SRT
State Railway of Thailand
The State Railway of Thailand is the state-owned rail operator in Thailand. The network sees around 50 million passengers per annum.-History:SRT was founded as the Royal State Railways of Siam in 1890...

, with plans to add additional lines by 2020.

History




The town of Bangkok began as a small trading center and port community on the west bank of the Chao Phraya River before the establishment of the Ayutthaya Kingdom
Ayutthaya kingdom
Ayutthaya was a Siamese kingdom that existed from 1350 to 1767. Ayutthaya was friendly towards foreign traders, including the Chinese, Vietnamese , Indians, Japanese and Persians, and later the Portuguese, Spanish, Dutch and French, permitting them to set up villages outside the walls of the...

, the precursor of modern Thailand, which existed from 1350 to 1767. The etymology of the town's name is unclear. Bang is the Central Thai name for a town situated on the bank of a river. It is believed that "Bangkok" derived from either Bangkok, kok (กอก) being the Thai name for the Java plum
Spondias mombin
Spondias mombin is a tree, a species of flowering plant in the family Anacardiaceae. It is native to the tropical Americas, including the West Indies. The tree has been naturalized in parts of Africa, India, Sri Lanka and Indonesia. It is rarely cultivated.The mature fruit has a leathery skin and a...

 (ma-kok, มะกอก), one of several trees bearing olive-like fruits); or Bang Koh, koh meaning "island," a reference to the area's landscape which was carved by rivers and canal
Canal
Canals are man-made channels for water. There are two types of canal:#Waterways: navigable transportation canals used for carrying ships and boats shipping goods and conveying people, further subdivided into two kinds:...

s. The Globe, an East India Company
East India Company
The East India Company was an early English joint-stock company that was formed initially for pursuing trade with the East Indies, but that ended up trading mainly with the Indian subcontinent and China...

 merchantman bearing a letter from King James I
James I of England
James VI and I was King of Scots as James VI from 24 July 1567 and King of England and Ireland as James I from the union of the English and Scottish crowns on 24 March 1603...

, arrived in "the Road
Roadstead
A roadstead is a place outside a harbor where a ship can lie at anchor. It is an enclosed area with an opening to the sea, narrower than a bay or gulf. It has a surface that cannot be confused with an estuary. It can be created artificially by jetties or dikes...

 of Syam" on August 15, 1612. Adam Denton's account mentions that he and his companions journeyed "up the river some twenty miles to a town called Bancope, where we were well received, and further 100 miles to the city...."

After the fall of Ayutthaya to the Burmese Kingdom
Konbaung dynasty
The Konbaung Dynasty was the last dynasty that ruled Burma from 1752 to 1885. The dynasty created the second largest empire in Burmese history, and continued the administrative reforms begun by the Toungoo dynasty, laying the foundations of modern state of Burma...

 in 1767, the newly declared King Taksin
Taksin
Taksin ; was the only King of the Thonburi Kingdom...

 established a new capital in the area of the then Bangkok, which became known as Thonburi
Thonburi
Thon Buri is an area of modern Bangkok. It was capital of Thailand from 1767 to 1782, during the reign of King Taksin, after the previous capital Ayutthaya was sacked by the Burmese. It is located on the opposite bank of Chao Phraya River to Bangkok...

. When Taksin's reign ended in 1782, King Buddha Yodfa Chulaloke
Buddha Yodfa Chulaloke
Phra Bat Somdet Phra Poramintharamaha Chakri Borommanat Phra Buddha Yodfa Chulaloke , posthumously titled "the Great", or Rama I , was the founder and the first monarch of the reigning House of Chakri of Siam . He ascended the throne in 1782, after defeating a rebellion which had deposed King...

 reconstructed the capital on the east bank of the river and gave the city a ceremonial name (see below) which became shortened to its current official name, Krung Thep Maha Nakhon. The new city also inherited the name Bangkok, which continued to be used by people from other countries, mainly in the Western world, to refer to the entire city and became its official English name, while in Thai the name still refers only to the old district on the west bank of the river. The city has since vastly modernized and undergone numerous changes, including the introduction of transportation and utility infrastructure in the reigns of King Mongkut
Mongkut
Phra Bat Somdet Phra Poramenthramaha Mongkut Phra Chom Klao Chao Yu Hua , or Rama IV, known in foreign countries as King Mongkut , was the fourth monarch of Siam under the House of Chakri, ruling from 1851-1868...

 and King Chulalongkorn
Chulalongkorn
Phra Bat Somdet Phra Poramintharamaha Chulalongkorn Phra Chunla Chom Klao Chao Yu Hua , or Rama V was the fifth monarch of Siam under the House of Chakri. He was known to the Siamese of his time as Phra Phuttha Chao Luang . He is considered one of the greatest kings of Siam...

, and quickly developed into the economic center of Thailand.

Full name



The full ceremonial name of the city given by King Buddha Yodfa Chulaloke
Buddha Yodfa Chulaloke
Phra Bat Somdet Phra Poramintharamaha Chakri Borommanat Phra Buddha Yodfa Chulaloke , posthumously titled "the Great", or Rama I , was the founder and the first monarch of the reigning House of Chakri of Siam . He ascended the throne in 1782, after defeating a rebellion which had deposed King...

, and later edited by King Mongkut, is:

Krung Thep Mahanakhon Amon Rattanakosin Mahintharayutthaya Mahadilok Phop Noppharat Ratchathani Burirom Udomratchaniwet Mahasathan Amon Phiman Awatan Sathit Sakkathattiya Witsanukam Prasit
.

This ceremonial name uses two ancient Indian languages, Pāli
Páli
- External links :* *...

 and Sanskrit
Sanskrit
Sanskrit , is a historical Indo-Aryan language and the primary liturgical language of Hinduism, Jainism and Buddhism.Buddhism: besides Pali, see Buddhist Hybrid Sanskrit Today, it is listed as one of the 22 scheduled languages of India and is an official language of the state of Uttarakhand...

, initiated with the only original Thai word Krung which means "capital". According to the romanisation of these languages, it can actually be written as Krung-dēvamahānagara amararatanakosindra mahindrāyudhyā mahātilakabhava navaratanarājadhānī purīramya uttamarājanivēsana mahāsthāna amaravimāna avatārasthitya shakrasdattiya vishnukarmaprasiddhi. It translates to "The city of angels, the great city, the eternal jewel city, the impregnable city of God Indra
Indra
' or is the King of the demi-gods or Devas and Lord of Heaven or Svargaloka in Hindu mythology. He is also the God of War, Storms, and Rainfall.Indra is one of the chief deities in the Rigveda...

, the grand capital of the world endowed with nine precious gems, the happy city, abounding in an enormous Royal Palace that resembles the heavenly abode where reigns the reincarnated god, a city given by Indra and built by Vishnukarma".

Local school children are taught the full name, although few can explain its meaning because many of the words are archaic, and unknown to all but a few. Most Thais who do recall the full name do so as a result of its use in a popular song
Pop music
Pop music is usually understood to be commercially recorded music, often oriented toward a youth market, usually consisting of relatively short, simple songs utilizing technological innovations to produce new variations on existing themes.- Definitions :David Hatch and Stephen Millward define pop...

, Krung Thep Maha Nakhon (1989) by Asanee-Wasan Chotikul and will often recount it by recalling the song at the same time, much as English speakers might sing the alphabet song
Alphabet song
An alphabet song is any of various songs used to teach children an alphabet, used in kindergartens, pre-schools and homes around the world. Alphabet songs typically follow the alphabetic principle...

 while reciting the English alphabet.

The full name of the city is listed by Guinness Book of Records as the world's longest place name.

Administration



Bangkok is one of two special administrative areas in Thailand
Thailand
Thailand , officially the Kingdom of Thailand , formerly known as Siam , is a country located at the centre of the Indochina peninsula and Southeast Asia. It is bordered to the north by Burma and Laos, to the east by Laos and Cambodia, to the south by the Gulf of Thailand and Malaysia, and to the...

, the other being Pattaya
Pattaya
Pattaya is a city in Thailand, located on the east coast of the Gulf of Thailand, about 165 km southeast of Bangkok located within but not part of Amphoe Bang Lamung in the province of Chonburi....

, in which citizens vote to choose their governor, unlike in Thailand's 76 provinces
Provinces of Thailand
Thailand is divided into 76 provinces , which are geographically grouped into 6 regions. The capital Bangkok is not a province but a special administrative area and is included as the 77th province since it is administered at the same level as the other 76 provinces. The name of the provinces are...

 (changwat). In the 2009 gubernatorial election
Bangkok gubernatorial election, 2009
The ninth gubernatorial election for the city of Bangkok, Thailand. The election was held on the 11 January 2009. The election came about after the resignation of Apirak Kosayothin on the 13 November 2008, the incumbent who was only just re-elected a little more than a month...

, M.R. Sukhumbhand Paribatra was elected governor.

The urban sprawl of the greater Bangkok Metropolitan Area
Bangkok Metropolitan Area
The Bangkok Metropolitan Region , also known as Greater Bangkok, is the urban conglomeration of Bangkok, Thailand, which includes the city and the 5 adjacent provinces of Nakhon Pathom, Pathum Thani, Nonthaburi, Samut Prakan and Samut Sakhon....

 extends beyond the borders of Bangkok province, spilling into the neighbouring provinces of Nonthaburi
Nonthaburi Province
Nonthaburi is one of the central provinces of Thailand. Neighboring provinces are Phra Nakhon Si Ayutthaya, Pathum Thani, Bangkok and Nakhon Pathom....

, Samut Prakan
Samut Prakan Province
Samut Prakan is one of the central provinces of Thailand. It is part of the Bangkok Metropolitan Region. Neighboring provinces are Bangkok, to the north and west, and Chachoengsao to the east....

, Pathum Thani, Nakhon Pathom
Nakhon Pathom Province
Nakhon Pathom ) is one of the central provinces of Thailand. Neighboring provinces are Suphan Buri, Ayutthaya, Nonthaburi, Bangkok, Samut Sakhon, Ratchaburi and Kanchanaburi...

 and Samut Sakhon
Samut Sakhon Province
Samut Sakhon ) is one of the central provinces of Thailand.Neighboring provinces are Samut Songkhram, Ratchaburi, Nakhon Pathom and Bangkok.- Etymology :...

. The province as it is today was created in 1971 when the previous Bangkok province, changwat Phra Nakhon, merged with Thonburi province.

Bangkok is subdivided into 50 districts (khet, also sometimes called amphoe in the other provinces), which are further subdivided into 169 kwaeng (แขวง, equivalent to tambon
Tambon
Tambon is a local government unit in Thailand. Below district and province , they form the third administrative subdivision level. As of the 2009 there are 7255 tambon, not including the 169 khwaeng of Bangkok, which are set at the same administrative level, thus every district contains 8-10 tambon...

in other provinces). Each district is managed by a district chief appointed by the governor. District councils, elected to four-year terms, serve as advisory bodies to their respective district chiefs.

There is also an elected Bangkok Metropolitan Council, which has power over municipal ordinances and the city's budget. The last elections for local councils in Bangkok were held on 23 July 2006. The government of Bangkok is called the Bangkok Metropolitan Administration or the BMA.

The seal of the city shows the god Indra
Indra
' or is the King of the demi-gods or Devas and Lord of Heaven or Svargaloka in Hindu mythology. He is also the God of War, Storms, and Rainfall.Indra is one of the chief deities in the Rigveda...

 riding in the clouds on Erawan
Airavata
Airavata is a mythological white elephant who carries the Hindu god Indra. It is also called 'Ardha-Matanga', meaning "elephant of the clouds"; 'Naga-malla', meaning "the fighting elephant"; and 'Arkasodara', meaning "brother of the sun". 'Abharamu' is the elephant wife of Airavata. Airavata has...

, a mythological elephant-shaped creature. In his hand Indra holds a lightning bolt, which is his weapon to drive away drought. The seal is based on a painting done by Prince Naris. The tree symbol of Bangkok is Ficus benjamina.

Topography and climate


The Bangkok special administrative area covers 1568.7 km² (606 sq mi), making it the 68th largest province in Thailand. Much of the area is considered the city of Bangkok, making it the 73rd largest city in the world. The Chao Phraya River
Chao Phraya River
The Chao Phraya is a major river in Thailand, with its low alluvial plain forming the centre of the country. It runs through Bangkok, the capital city, and then empties into the Gulf of Thailand.-Etymology:...

, which stretches 372 km (231 mi), is Bangkok's main geographical feature. The Chao Phraya River basin, the area surrounding Bangkok, and the nearby provinces comprise a series of plains and river deltas that lead into the Bay of Bangkok about 30 km (19 mi) south of the city center. This gave rise to Bangkok's appellation as the "Venice
Venice
Venice is a city in northern Italy which is renowned for the beauty of its setting, its architecture and its artworks. It is the capital of the Veneto region...

 of the East" due to the number of canals and passages that divide the area into separate patches of land. The city once used these canals, which were plentiful within Bangkok itself, as divisions for city districts. However, as the city grew in the second half of the 20th century, the plan was abandoned and a different system of division was adopted.

Bangkok lies about two meters (6.5 ft) above sea level
Above mean sea level
The term above mean sea level refers to the elevation or altitude of any object, relative to the average sea level datum. AMSL is used extensively in radio by engineers to determine the coverage area a station will be able to reach...

, which causes problems for the protection of the city against floods during the monsoon season. Occasionally after a downpour, water in canals and the river overflows the banks, resulting in floods in some areas. The Bangkok Metropolitan Administration (BMA) has recently installed higher banks alongside some canals to keep water levels from reaching street level. There are however some downsides for Bangkok's extensive canal routes, as the city is rumored to be sinking an average of two inches a year as it lies entirely on a swamp and there are fears that Thailand's capital will be submerged by 2030

Bangkok has a tropical wet and dry climate
Tropical savanna climate
Tropical savanna climate or tropical wet and dry climate is a type of climate that corresponds to the Köppen climate classification categories "Aw" and '"As."...

 under the Köppen climate classification
Köppen climate classification
The Köppen climate classification is one of the most widely used climate classification systems. It was first published by Crimea German climatologist Wladimir Köppen in 1884, with several later modifications by Köppen himself, notably in 1918 and 1936...

 system. Average temperatures in the city are about 2 °C (3.6 °F) higher than the ones shown for the Don Mueang Airport during the 1960–1990 period. The highest recorded maximum temperature is 40.8 °C (105.4 °F) in May 1983 and the lowest recorded minimum temperature is 9.9 °C (49.8 °F) in January 1955. The coldest temperatures were recorded in January 1924, January 1955, January 1974 and December 1999. The hottest year on record was 1997 (average yearly at Don Mueang 30.0 °C) and the coldest was 1975 (average yearly at Don Mueang 26.3 °C). The coldest daytime maximum temperature was 19.9 °C (68 °F), recorded in December 1992.

Districts



Bangkok has 50 districts or khet, which mark the administrative subdivisions under the authority of the Bangkok Metropolitan Administration. These are further subdivided into 169 khwaeng (แขวง), roughly equivalent to sub-districts tambon in the other provinces.
  1. Phra Nakhon District
  2. Dusit District
  3. Nong Chok District
  4. Bang Rak District
  5. Bang Khen District
  6. Bang Kapi District
  7. Pathum Wan District
  8. Pom Prap Sattru Phai District
  9. Phra Khanong District
  10. Min Buri District
  11. Lat Krabang District
  12. Yan Nawa District
  13. Samphanthawong District
  14. Phaya Thai District
  15. Thon Buri District
    Thon Buri (district)
    Thon Buri is one of the 50 districts of Bangkok, Thailand. Located on the west bank of Chao Phraya River, it was once part of Thon Buri province...

  16. Bangkok Yai District
  17. Huai Khwang District
  18. Khlong San District
  19. Taling Chan District
  20. Bangkok Noi District
  21. Bang Khun Thian District
  22. Phasi Charoen District
  23. Nong Khaem District
  24. Rat Burana District
  25. Bang Phlat District


  1. Din Daeng District
  2. Bueng Kum District
  3. Sathon District
  4. Bang Sue District
  5. Chatuchak District
    Chatuchak (district)
    Chatuchak is one of the 50 districts of Bangkok, Thailand. The district is bounded by seven other districts : Lak Si, Bang Khen, Lat Phrao, Huai Khwang, Din Daeng, Phaya Thai and Bang Sue.-History:...


  6. Bang Kho Laem District
  7. Prawet District
  8. Khlong Toei District
  9. Suan Luang District
  10. Chom Thong District
    Chom Thong (Bangkok)
    Chom Thong is one of the 50 districts of Bangkok, Thailand. The district is bounded by the districts Phasi Charoen, Thon Buri, Rat Burana, Thung Khru, Bang Khun Thian, and Bang Bon. The district, together with Thung Khru, are well known for its tangerines, the Bang Mot tangerine...


  11. Don Mueang District
  12. Ratchathewi District
  13. Lat Phrao District
    Lat Phrao (district)
    Lat Phrao is one of the 50 districts of Bangkok, Thailand. The district is bounded by six other districts : Bang Khen, Bueng Kum, Bang Kapi, Wang Thonglang, and Chatuchak.-History:...


  14. Watthana District
  15. Bang Khae District
  16. Lak Si District
  17. Sai Mai District
  18. Khan Na Yao District
  19. Saphan Sung District
  20. Wang Thonglang District
  21. Khlong Sam Wa District
  22. Bang Na District
  23. Thawi Watthana District
  24. Thung Khru District
  25. Bang Bon District


However, these district areas might not accurately represent functional divisions of Bangkok's neighborhoods. Throughout the years, Bangkok has grown from a city scattered along the river to a metro area
Bangkok Metropolitan Area
The Bangkok Metropolitan Region , also known as Greater Bangkok, is the urban conglomeration of Bangkok, Thailand, which includes the city and the 5 adjacent provinces of Nakhon Pathom, Pathum Thani, Nonthaburi, Samut Prakan and Samut Sakhon....

 that spans as many as six provinces. The city's main business districts and residential areas are continuously expanding. The influx of foreigners from Western countries as well as immigrants from neighboring Laos
Laos
Laos Lao: ສາທາລະນະລັດ ປະຊາທິປະໄຕ ປະຊາຊົນລາວ Sathalanalat Paxathipatai Paxaxon Lao, officially the Lao People's Democratic Republic, is a landlocked country in Southeast Asia, bordered by Burma and China to the northwest, Vietnam to the east, Cambodia to the south and Thailand to the west...

, Myanmar
Myanmar
Burma , officially the Republic of the Union of Myanmar , is a country in Southeast Asia. Burma is bordered by China on the northeast, Laos on the east, Thailand on the southeast, Bangladesh on the west, India on the northwest, the Bay of Bengal to the southwest, and the Andaman Sea on the south....

, Cambodia
Cambodia
Cambodia , officially known as the Kingdom of Cambodia, is a country located in the southern portion of the Indochina Peninsula in Southeast Asia...

 and many other Asia
Asia
Asia is the world's largest and most populous continent, located primarily in the eastern and northern hemispheres. It covers 8.7% of the Earth's total surface area and with approximately 3.879 billion people, it hosts 60% of the world's current human population...

n countries along with the growth of the Thai population has stemmed hundreds of housing projects around the metro area, developing communities along the outskirts. Within years, these communities are engulfed by the greater Bangkok and become another part of this urban jungle.


As the city expanded on the outskirts, the inner city has nowhere to grow but up. The city has a registered 1,000 skyscrapers and ranks 17th as the world's tallest city. This does not include hundreds of new buildings predicted as part of the construction boom in 2007 and the coming years. Areas such as Silom-Sathon
Sathon
Sathon or Sathorn is one of the 50 districts of Bangkok, Thailand. The district is bounded by six other districts : Bang Rak, Pathum Wan, Khlong Toei, Yan Nawa, Bang Kho Laem, and Khlong San ....

 and Asok
Asok
Asok may refer to:* Ashoka, Indian emperor of Maurya dynasty in the 3rd century BC* Asok * Asok or Asoke, alternative name for Sukhumvit Soi 21 in Bangkok* Asok Station, a BTS skytrain station in Bangkok...

 have for decades been Thailand's business center. From 1985 to 1996, Thailand experienced the world's highest growth rates and underwent an economic transformation, Bangkok went through dramatic changes. The Ratchadaphisek area was turned into a business district which continued through the Asok area up north for five kilometers (3 mi). The Sukhumvit
Sukhumvit
Sukhumvit can refer to:* Sukhumvit Road, one of the four major highways of Thailand, which follows a coastal route from Bangkok to Trat* Sukhumvit Line of the Bangkok Skytrain in Bangkok...

 area, stretching 15–20 km (9–12 mi), gradually turned into a mixed commercial and residential area. Wireless Road and Chitlom are where some of Bangkok's most expensive land plots exist. Part of the British Embassy on the corner of Wireless and Rama I Roads, nine rai or approximately 14400 m² (155,000.3 sq ft) in area, was sold for USD 92 million or THB 3.24 billion.

The most important business districts of Bangkok include Silom, Bangrak, Pinklao
Pinklao
Phrabat Somdet Phra Pinklao Chaoyuhua was the younger brother of King Mongkut and the Second King of Siam, who crowned him as a monarch with equal honor to himself.-Early life:...

, Sathon
Sathon
Sathon or Sathorn is one of the 50 districts of Bangkok, Thailand. The district is bounded by six other districts : Bang Rak, Pathum Wan, Khlong Toei, Yan Nawa, Bang Kho Laem, and Khlong San ....

, Phra Ram 2, Phetchaburi
Phetchaburi
Phetchaburi , also known as Phetburi, is a town in central Thailand, capital of the Phetchaburi Province. In Thai, Phetchaburi means city of diamonds . It is approximately 160km south of Bangkok, at the northern end of the Thai Peninsula...

, Phra Nakhon
Phra Nakhon
Phra Nakhon is one of the 50 districts of Bangkok, Thailand. It is the central district of Bangkok, including the Rattanakosin Island...

, Pathumwan, Chatuchak
Chatuchak
Chatuchak usually refers to Chatuchak Weekend Market in Bangkok, Thailand, but it may be used to refer to various places around the area:* Chatuchak Park, a public park just north of Chatuchak Weekend Market....

 (new central business district), and Phra Ram 3 (new financial center).
Bangkok's Phra Nakhon
Phra Nakhon
Phra Nakhon is one of the 50 districts of Bangkok, Thailand. It is the central district of Bangkok, including the Rattanakosin Island...

 district alongside Dusit
Dusit
Dusit is one of the 50 districts of Bangkok, Thailand.The district forms the main administrative center of Thailand, as both the national parliament as well as the royal palace are located in this district, as well as several ministries...

 is where most governmental agencies and ministries have their offices. Most of the well-known tourist attractions are also in this particular area due its cultural & historical heritage. This part of Bangkok is perhaps the most popular for tourists as most notable attractions such as the Grand Palace, Wat Pho
Wat Pho
Wat Pho , is a Buddhist temple in Phra Nakhon district, Bangkok, Thailand. It is located in the Rattanakosin district directly adjacent to the Grand Palace. Known also as the Temple of the Reclining Buddha, its official name is Wat Phra Chettuphon Wimon Mangkhalaram Ratchaworamahawihan...

, the Democracy Monument, the Giant Swing
Giant Swing
The Giant Swing is a religious structure in Bangkok, Thailand, Phra Nakhon district, located in front of Wat Suthat temple. It was formerly used an old Brahmin ceremony, and is one of Bangkok's tourist attractions.-History:...

, Sanam Luang
Sanam Luang
Sanam Luang is an open field and public square in front of Wat Phra Kaew and the Grand Palace, Bangkok, Thailand. Sanam Luang is located in the Phra Nakhon district, the historic center of Bangkok....

 and other venues are located here. Thon Buri also has its fair share of historic monuments mainly located near the river, such as Wat Arun
Wat Arun
Wat Arun Rajwararam is a Buddhist temple in the Bangkok Yai district of Bangkok, Thailand, on the Thonburi west bank of the Chao Phraya River. The full name of the temple is Wat Arunratchawararam Ratchaworamahawihan...

. The Victory Monument
Victory Monument (Bangkok)
Victory Monument is a large military monument in Bangkok, Thailand. The monument is located in Ratchathewi district, northeast of central Bangkok, at the center of a traffic circle at the intersection of Phahonyothin Road, Phaya Thai Road, and Ratchawithi Road.The monument is one of Bangkok's...

 in Bangkok is one of the city's biggest bus destinations. Although not officially a bus depot, its location in the center of city transits as many as 20 bus lines as well as a BTS Skytrain station. Starting from Victory Monument, Phahonyothin road early sois are occupied by ministries, government agencies, commercial buildings as well as upper-middle class residential areas. Further to the north, after the Lat Phrao/Phahonyothin intersection, the Northern Corridor is an expanding business district, where the famous Elephant Building can be found.

Bangkok's north and eastern areas are primarily residential areas for middle class residents of Bangkok. Whereas the inner city often has small apartments and low rises for poor immigrants, Lat Phrao
Lat Phrao (district)
Lat Phrao is one of the 50 districts of Bangkok, Thailand. The district is bounded by six other districts : Bang Khen, Bueng Kum, Bang Kapi, Wang Thonglang, and Chatuchak.-History:...

 and Si Nakharin offer residential compounds and townhouses. The two areas cover as much as 100 km² (38.6 sq mi) to 150 km² (57.9 sq mi) each, and have turned into what is now part of Bangkok as more suburban housing developments sprawl further out to the east and north. The west of Bangkok in Thon Buri is another growing area, approaching the degree of development experienced by the north and east. Suvarnabhumi Airport
Suvarnabhumi Airport
Suvarnabhumi Airport , also known as Bangkok International Airport, is an international airport serving Bangkok, Thailand. It was officially opened for limited domestic flight service on 15 September 2006, and opened for most domestic and all international commercial flights on 28 September...

 in the east is seen as a jump start for the eastern expansion of Bangkok as Don Mueang was for the north.

Ratchaprasong
Ratchaprasong
Ratchaprasong is the name of an intersection, and a shopping district named after it in Pathum Wan District, Bangkok, adjacent to Siam District. Located at the BTS Skytrain's Chit Lom Station and the intersection of Phloenchit, Rama I and Ratchadamri Roads...

 is at the forefront of Bangkok's shopping scene. The newly renovated Central World Plaza intends to serve as a square to Bangkokians. Just up the street is Siam Square
Siam Square
Siam Square is a shopping and entertainment area in the Siam District of Bangkok, Thailand. The area connects to other shopping centres and links to the other shopping districts by sky bridge, such as Siam Center/Siam Discovery Center, MBK Center, Siam Paragon, Ratchaprasong shopping district and...

, similar to Shinjuku in Tokyo
Tokyo
, ; officially , is one of the 47 prefectures of Japan. Tokyo is the capital of Japan, the center of the Greater Tokyo Area, and the largest metropolitan area of Japan. It is the seat of the Japanese government and the Imperial Palace, and the home of the Japanese Imperial Family...

 and Oxford Street
Oxford Street
Oxford Street is a major thoroughfare in the City of Westminster in the West End of London, United Kingdom. It is Europe's busiest shopping street, as well as its most dense, and currently has approximately 300 shops. The street was formerly part of the London-Oxford road which began at Newgate,...

 and Piccadilly Circus
Piccadilly Circus
Piccadilly Circus is a road junction and public space of London's West End in the City of Westminster, built in 1819 to connect Regent Street with the major shopping street of Piccadilly...

 in London
London
London is the capital city of :England and the :United Kingdom, the largest metropolitan area in the United Kingdom, and the largest urban zone in the European Union by most measures. Located on the River Thames, London has been a major settlement for two millennia, its history going back to its...

. The Sukhumvit area also serves as a shopping district for foreigners. The popular Chatuchak Weekend Market
Chatuchak weekend market
Chatuchak weekend market in Bangkok is the largest market in Thailand. Frequently called J.J., it covers over 35 acres and contains upwards of 5,000 stalls. It is estimated that the market receives 200,000 visitors each day. Most stalls only open on Saturdays and Sundays though Jatujak Plaza,...

 in the north of the city is where many people head for cheap, used and high quality products.

Bangkok's poorest districts are spread throughout the city. However, the most concentrated area is just north of the Port of Bangkok at the turn of the Chao Phraya River. For an area of 10 square kilometres (4 sq mi), the Khlong Toei
Khlong Toei
Khlong Toei is a district in central Bangkok, long known for its slum. It is bordered by the Chao Phraya River and contains major port facilities. It is also the name of a major market, though not touristic...

 district houses one of the poorest areas in the country with half-built houses and midrises for immigrants and workers from the northeast Isan
Isan
Isan is the northeastern region of Thailand. It is located on the Khorat Plateau, bordered by the Mekong River to the north and east, by Cambodia to the southeast and the Prachinburi mountains south of Nakhon Ratchasima...

 provinces.

Green zones and major parks



Bangkok has large sections of greenery either preserved by the Department of National Forestry or designated as green zones. The city however, continues to lack a green belt development as economic activity continues to pour into the capital, resulting in massive housing projects along the suburbs.

Bangkok is known for its large green sections within the city centre, including the large forest park between Yannawa and Samut Prakan. This part of the city covers an area of over 50 km² (19 sq mi). and is intended to buffer the CBD from the large industries of the west and south of Metropolitan Bangkok. Other areas include Bung Makkasan, an urban city buffer for residences, sections of many major roads which have unbuilt swamps and green fields. Some of these areas are intentionally undeveloped for protecting against urbanization, while others are land lost during the Asian Financial Crisis.

Lumphini Park
Lumphini Park
Lumphini Park is a 360-rai park in Bangkok, Thailand. This park offers rare open public space, trees and playgrounds in the Thai capital and contains an artificial lake where visitors can rent a variety of boats. Paths around the park totalling approximately 2.5 km in length are a popular...

 is regionally famous. Renowned as Bangkok's Central Park
Central Park
Central Park is a public park in the center of Manhattan in New York City, United States. The park initially opened in 1857, on of city-owned land. In 1858, Frederick Law Olmsted and Calvert Vaux won a design competition to improve and expand the park with a plan they entitled the Greensward Plan...

, it was built in the early 1920s by Rama VI with this intent. It has since been used to hold grand pageants, ceremonies of the Thai constitution, and was a camp for Japanese soldiers during World War II
World War II
World War II, or the Second World War , was a global conflict lasting from 1939 to 1945, involving most of the world's nations—including all of the great powers—eventually forming two opposing military alliances: the Allies and the Axis...

. On Sundays, the western gates are open for runners to run on to Silom Road. The park is normally closed at night due to the incidences of vandalism, robberies and murders reported. Chatuchak Park
Chatuchak Park
Chatuchak Park is the name of a public park in Chatuchak district, Bangkok, Thailand. It is also the name of the Bangkok Metro station that lies under the park....

 and Rama IX Park are two of Bangkok's largest parks. The two, built in the past 50 years cater to Bangkok's suburban population, include botanic gardens, sports clubs and complexes, English/French/Japanese gardens and parks as well as large ponds and lakes. Other famous parks include Queen Sirikit Park
Queen Sirikit Park
Queen Sirikit Park is a botanical garden in Chatuchak district, Bangkok, Thailand. Covering an area of 0.22 km², it is part of the larger Chatuchak Park complex. It was built in 1992 and named after Queen Sirikit to celebrate her 60th birthday...

 near Lat Yao, Benchasiri Park on Sukhumvit
Sukhumvit
Sukhumvit can refer to:* Sukhumvit Road, one of the four major highways of Thailand, which follows a coastal route from Bangkok to Trat* Sukhumvit Line of the Bangkok Skytrain in Bangkok...

 Rd, Saranrom Park across the Grand Palace, Sanam Luang
Sanam Luang
Sanam Luang is an open field and public square in front of Wat Phra Kaew and the Grand Palace, Bangkok, Thailand. Sanam Luang is located in the Phra Nakhon district, the historic center of Bangkok....

, Suan Romaneenat, and Dusit Park.

Economy





Bangkok is the economic center
Economy of Thailand
The economy of Thailand is a newly industrialized economy. It is a heavily export-dependent economy, with exports accounting for more than two thirds of gross domestic product ....

 of Thailand, dominating the country's economy and dwarfing any other urban centers. Development continues to pour in to Bangkok mostly neglecting the rest of the nation. Its combined economic output is roughly 140 billion dollars in purchasing power parity
Purchasing power parity
In economics, purchasing power parity is a condition between countries where an amount of money has the same purchasing power in different countries. The prices of the goods between the countries would only reflect the exchange rates...

 terms, which accounts for roughly 16 percent of Thailand's GDP also in PPP terms. However, there is a quite a large discrepancy and statisticians and economists would claim that Bangkok accounts for nearly 75 percent of Thailand's service sector which accounts for 45.2 percent of Thailand's 590 billion dollar economy. With the given GDP of the city, the estimates for per capita income is roughly 20,000 dollars. More realistic but unclaimed estimates put the city's output as high as 210 billion dollars, accounting for 38 percent of national income and per capita income at 33,000 dollars.

The Stock Exchange of Thailand
Stock Exchange of Thailand
The Stock Exchange of Thailand is the national stock exchange of Thailand. It is located in Bangkok. As of 31 December 2007, the Stock Exchange of Thailand had 541 listed companies with a combined market capitalization of $280 billion. The indices of the stock exchange are SET Index, SET50 Index...

, or the SET is located on Ratchadaphisek Road in inner-Bangkok with over 544 listed companies and combined market capitalization of about THB
Thai baht
The baht is the currency of Thailand. It is subdivided into 100 satang . The issuance of currency is the responsibility of the Bank of Thailand.-History:The baht, like the pound, originated from a traditional unit of mass...

 8.7 trillion (USD 290 billion) as of 30 May 2011. Due to the large amount of foreign representation, Thailand has for several years been a mainstay of the Southeast Asian economy and a key center in Asian business. The indices of the stock exchange are SET Index, SET50 Index and SET100 Index. As of Fall 2009, the index is one of Asia's top performing indices, up 58 percent since January.

Bangkok is home to the headquarters of all of Thailand's major commercial banks and financial institutions; 27 financial institutions and a number of international banks located in Bangkok include ABN AMRO
ABN AMRO
ABN AMRO Bank N.V. is a Dutch state-owned bank with headquarters in Amsterdam. It was re-established, in its current form, in 2009 following the acquisition and break up of ABN AMRO Group by a banking consortium consisting of Royal Bank of Scotland Group, Santander and Fortis...

, ANZ, Bank of America
Bank of America
Bank of America Corporation, an American multinational banking and financial services corporation, is the second largest bank holding company in the United States by assets, and the fourth largest bank in the U.S. by market capitalization. The bank is headquartered in Charlotte, North Carolina...

, Bank of Baroda
Bank of Baroda
Bank of Baroda is the third largest bank in India, after the State Bank of India and the Punjab National Bank and ahead of ICICI Bank. BoB is ranked 763 in Forbes Global 2000 list. BoB has total assets in excess of Rs. 3.58 lakh crores, or Rs. 3,583 billion, a network of over 3,409 branches and...

, Bank of China
Bank of China
Bank of China Limited is one of the big four state-owned commercial banks of the People's Republic of China. It was founded in 1912 by the Government of the Republic of China, to replace the Government Bank of Imperial China. It is the oldest bank in China...

, Bank of Tokyo-Mitsubishi, CIMB
CIMB
CIMB Group CIMB Group is a regional universal bank operating in high growth economies in ASEAN. CIMB Group has the widest retail branch network across the region and is an indigenous ASEAN investment bank....

, Citigroup
Citigroup
Citigroup Inc. or Citi is an American multinational financial services corporation headquartered in Manhattan, New York City, New York, United States. Citigroup was formed from one of the world's largest mergers in history by combining the banking giant Citicorp and financial conglomerate...

, DBS Bank
DBS Bank
DBS Bank Ltd is a bank incorporated in Singapore. It was previously known as The Development Bank of Singapore Limited, before the present name was adopted in July 2003 to reflect its changing role as a regional bank....

, Deutsche Bank
Deutsche Bank
Deutsche Bank AG is a global financial service company with its headquarters in Frankfurt, Germany. It employs more than 100,000 people in over 70 countries, and has a large presence in Europe, the Americas, Asia Pacific and the emerging markets...

, HSBC
HSBC
HSBC Holdings plc is a global banking and financial services company headquartered in Canary Wharf, London, United Kingdom. it is the world's second-largest banking and financial services group and second-largest public company according to a composite measure by Forbes magazine...

, Industrial and Commercial Bank of China
Industrial and Commercial Bank of China
Industrial and Commercial Bank of China Ltd. is the largest bank in the world by profit and market capitalization. It is one China's 'Big Four' state-owned commercial banks .It was founded as a limited company on January 1, 1984...

, Goldman Sachs
Goldman Sachs
The Goldman Sachs Group, Inc. is an American multinational bulge bracket investment banking and securities firm that engages in global investment banking, securities, investment management, and other financial services primarily with institutional clients...

, JP Morgan, Barclays, Indian Overseas Bank
Indian Overseas Bank
Indian Overseas Bank is a major bank based in Chennai , with 2018 domestic branches and six branches overseas. Indian Overseas Bank has an ISO certified inhouse Information Technology department, which has developed the software that 2018 branches use to provide online banking to customers; the...

, UBS, Credit Suisse
Credit Suisse
The Credit Suisse Group AG is a Swiss multinational financial services company headquartered in Zurich, with more than 250 branches in Switzerland and operations in more than 50 countries.-History:...

, OCBC Bank, Mizuho Corporate Bank
Mizuho Corporate Bank
, or MHCB, is the corporate and investment banking subsidiary of Mizuho Financial Group, the second-biggest Japanese financial services conglomerate...

, Calyon
Calyon
Crédit Agricole Corporate and Investment Bank is Crédit Agricole's corporate and investment banking entity. With a staff of 13,000 employees in 58 countries, Crédit Agricole CIB is active in a broad range of capital markets, investment banking and financing activities...

, RBS
Royal Bank of Scotland
The Royal Bank of Scotland Group is a British banking and insurance holding company in which the UK Government holds an 84% stake. This stake is held and managed through UK Financial Investments Limited, whose voting rights are limited to 75% in order for the bank to retain its listing on the...

, RHB Bank
RHB Bank
RHB Bank Berhad is a bank based in Kuala Lumpur, Malaysia. It specializes in commercial banking, corporate and investment banking and international banking services...

, Macquarie Group
Macquarie Group
Macquarie Group Limited is a global investment banking and diversified financial services group, providing banking, financial, advisory, investment and funds management services to institutional, corporate and retail clients and counterparties around the world...

, ING Bank, Scotia Bank, Sumitomo Mitsui Banking Corporation
Sumitomo Mitsui Banking Corporation
is a Japanese bank based in Yurakucho, Chiyoda, Tokyo, Japan. It is a member of the Sumitomo Group and Mitsui Group. As of the year 2009, SMBC was the second largest bank in Japan in terms of assets.-History:...

, United Overseas Bank
United Overseas Bank
United Overseas Bank Limited , abbreviated as UOB is a bank incorporated in Singapore. It was founded 6 August 1935 by Kuching-born Datuk Wee Kheng Chiang, father of the present United Overseas Bank Group Chairman, Mr...

, BNP Paribas
BNP Paribas
BNP Paribas S.A. is a global banking group, headquartered in Paris, with its second global headquarters in London. In October 2010 BNP Paribas was ranked by Bloomberg and Forbes as the largest bank and largest company in the world by assets with over $3.1 trillion. It was formed through the merger...

, Wells Fargo Bank and Standard Chartered. hold at least 1 billion dollars in total assets. Their bank deposits totaled approximately THB 9.6 trillion, the equivalent of USD 314 billion at the end of the third quarter in 2007. A large number of multinational corporations base their regional headquarters in Bangkok due to the lower cost of the workforce and firm operations relative to other major Asian business centers. Thirteen Bangkok-based companies make the Forbes 2000 list annually. The list includes the largest Thai bank, Bangkok Bank
Bangkok Bank
Bangkok Bank Public Company Limited , is a Thai commercial bank, with approximately US$64.6 billion in total assets. Its branch network includes over 1000 branches within Thailand, with 25 international branches or representative offices in 13 economies, spanning ASEAN and major economic countries,...

, the country's largest listing as well as the state-owned energy firm PTT
PTT Public Company Limited
PTT Public Company Limited, PTT PCL, or simply PTT is a Thai state-owned SET-listed oil and gas company. Formerly known as the Petroleum Authority of Thailand, it owns extensive submarine gas pipelines in the Gulf of Thailand, a network of LPG terminals throughout the Kingdom, and is involved in...

, and the renowned Charoen-Phokphand agri-foods conglomerate.

The market for flights to enter Laos and Cambodia is heavily dominated by airlines based in Bangkok such as THAI Airways International
Thai Airways International
Thai Airways International Public Company Limited is the national flag carrier and largest airline of Thailand. Formed in 1988, the airline's headquarters are located in Chatuchak District, Bangkok, and operates out of Suvarnabhumi Airport. Thai is a founding member of the Star Alliance. Thai is a...

, Bangkok Airways
Bangkok Airways
Bangkok Airways Co., Ltd. is a regional airline based in Chatuchak District, Bangkok, Thailand. It operates scheduled services to destinations in Thailand, Cambodia, China, Laos, Maldives, Burma, India and Singapore...

, and the multitude of low cost airlines in Thailand. Telecommunications, retail, real estate, airlines, and media conglomerates mainly cater to the country's growing population, however, few Thai corporations venture overseas and gain notoriety.

Tourism is a significant contributor to Thailand's economy, providing about 5 percent of GDP. Bangkok is Thailand's principal international gateway and a destination in its own right. This giant market has made Bangkok a prime location for hotel operations as well as the launching pad for small and medium accommodation enterprises. Moreover, Bangkok-based hospitality companies such as Dusit Thani Group
Dusit Thani Group
The Dusit Thani Group of companies, also known as Dusit International is a Bangkok-based hotel and resort company. The company was founded in 1948 by Honorary Chairperson Thanpuying Chanut Piyaoui...

, Erawan Group, and Siam Hotels and Resorts, have all expanded operations and can officially be classified as a multinational corporation in its own right.

Income inequality is a growing issue in Bangkok, especially between relatively unskilled lower-income immigrants from rural provinces in Thailand and neighboring countries and middle-class professionals (45% of registered residents), business elites, and retired and working foreign expats. About 7 percent of Bangkok's population (excluding illegal immigrants who constitute about 5–8 percent of population) live below the poverty line compared to the national average of 9 percent.

Demographics


The 2010 statistics report by the BMA Data Center notes a registered population of 5.7 million. However, this figure does not take into account the many unregistered residents. The city's registered population is composed mostly of ethnic Thais, but many minority groups are visible as well. The Chinese
Thai Chinese
The Thai Chinese are an overseas Chinese community who live in Thailand. Thailand is home to the largest, oldest, most prominent, and most integrated overseas Chinese community in the world with a population of approximately 9.5 million people...

 are by far the largest minority group in the city.

Recently, Bangkok has experienced a large influx of foreign immigrants, long-term residents, and expatriates. Long-term foreign residents include 250,000 mainland Chinese
People's Republic of China
China , officially the People's Republic of China , is the most populous country in the world, with over 1.3 billion citizens. Located in East Asia, the country covers approximately 9.6 million square kilometres...

, 105,000 Indians (most of whom are Sikh), of whom more than 80% have dual Thai citizenship, 44,000 Japanese, 25,000 Americans, 75,000 Europeans, 15,000 Taiwanese, 20,000 South Koreans, 6,000 Nigerians, 7,500 Australians, 12,000 people of Arabic speaking countries, 20,000 Malaysians, 4,000 Singaporeans, 5,000 Filipinos, and 800 New Zealanders. It is estimated that 5–10% of Bangkok's population (all are unregistered and unaccounted) are illegal immigrants (majority are domestic servants) from neighboring countries including Burma, Cambodia, and Laos. A vast majority of the population, 92%, is Buddhist
Buddhism
Buddhism is a religion and philosophy encompassing a variety of traditions, beliefs and practices, largely based on teachings attributed to Siddhartha Gautama, commonly known as the Buddha . The Buddha lived and taught in the northeastern Indian subcontinent some time between the 6th and 4th...

. The rest are Muslim
Islam
Islam . The most common are and .   : Arabic pronunciation varies regionally. The first vowel ranges from ~~. The second vowel ranges from ~~~...

 (6%), Christian
Christianity
Christianity is a monotheistic religion based on the life and teachings of Jesus as presented in canonical gospels and other New Testament writings...

 (1%), Hindu
Hinduism
Hinduism is the predominant and indigenous religious tradition of the Indian Subcontinent. Hinduism is known to its followers as , amongst many other expressions...

/Sikh
Sikhism
Sikhism is a monotheistic religion founded during the 15th century in the Punjab region, by Guru Nanak Dev and continued to progress with ten successive Sikh Gurus . It is the fifth-largest organized religion in the world and one of the fastest-growing...

 (0.6%), Jewish
Judaism
Judaism ) is the "religion, philosophy, and way of life" of the Jewish people...

 (300 residents), and others. There are some 450 Buddhist temples
Thai Temple Art and Architecture
This article on Thai temple art and architecture discusses Buddhist temples in Thailand. A typical Thai Wat, which is loosely translated as monastery or temple, has an enclosing wall that divides it from the secular world.-Wat architecture :The architecture of a Wat has seen many changes in...

, 170 mosques, 60 churches, 3 Hindu Temples, 3 synagogue
Synagogue
A synagogue is a Jewish house of prayer. This use of the Greek term synagogue originates in the Septuagint where it sometimes translates the Hebrew word for assembly, kahal...

s, 1 Sikh gurdwara
Gurdwara
A Gurdwara , meaning the Gateway to the Guru, is the place of worship for Sikhs, the followers of Sikhism. A Gurdwara can be identified from a distance by tall flagpoles bearing the Nishan Sahib ....

 and 2 Jain temple in Bangkok.
class="wikitable">
Date Population
1880 255,000
1910 365,000
1 April 1919 437,294
15 July 1929 713,384
23 May 1937 890,453
25 April 1947 1,178,881
25 April 1960 2,136,435
class="wikitable"> Date Population 1 April 1970 3,077,361 1 April 1980 4,697,071 1 April 1990 5,882,411 1 April 2000 6,320,174 1 January 2005 6,642,566 1 July 2007 8,160,522 January 2010 9,100,000 October 2011 text-align:right; > 12,000,000

Transportation



River and canals network



An elaborate network of canals known as khlong
Khlong
A khlong is the general name for a canal in the central plain of Thailand. These canals are spawned by the Chao Phraya, the Tha Chin, the Mae Klong Rivers and their tributaries...

s
gave Bangkok the nickname "Venice
Venice
Venice is a city in northern Italy which is renowned for the beauty of its setting, its architecture and its artworks. It is the capital of the Veneto region...

 of the East" at a time when most transportation was by boat. Today, nearly all of the canals have been filled in and converted into streets. While many khlongs still exist with people living along them and markets often being operated along the banks, most are severely polluted. A notable khlong market is the floating market in Taling Chan district
Taling Chan
Taling Chan is one of the 50 districts of Bangkok, Thailand. Its neighbor, clockwise from north, are Amphoe Bang Kruai of Nonthaburi Province, Bang Phlat, Bangkok Noi, Bangkok Yai, Phasi Charoen, Bang Khae, and Thawi Watthana districts of Bangkok....

. Through downtown Bangkok runs the Khlong Saen Saeb
Khlong Saen Saeb
Khlong Saen Saeb is a canal in central Thailand, connecting the Chao Phraya River to Prachin Buri and Chachoengsao. A portion of the canal is used for public transport by an express boat service in Bangkok...

, which has a canal boat service. The wide river Chao Phraya, flowing through the city, has several cross-river ferries and the Chao Phraya Express Boat
Chao Phraya Express Boat
The Chao Phraya Express Boat is a transportation service in Thailand that operates on the Chao Phraya River. It provides riverine express transportation between stops in the capital city of Bangkok and to Nonthaburi, the province immediately to the north. Established in 1971, the Chao Phraya...

 with as many as thirty stops along the both banks extending as far as the northern suburb of Nonthaburi.

Roads


Several elevated highways, newly rebuilt intersections, and many partially finished road and rail projects dot the landscape around greater Bangkok, but have done little to overcome the notorious traffic jams on Bangkok's surface roads as private vehicle usage continues to outstrip infrastructure development.

Due to a large number of traffic jams in Bangkok, the elevated highway (Thai
Thai language
Thai , also known as Central Thai and Siamese, is the national and official language of Thailand and the native language of the Thai people, Thailand's dominant ethnic group. Thai is a member of the Tai group of the Tai–Kadai language family. Historical linguists have been unable to definitively...

: ทางด่วน, , "express way"), linking most road networks in Bangkok together, is another choice for the rush. However, tax is to be paid for utilizing the highway depending on size of the vehicle. This highway also leads to some outskirts of Bangkok including Suvarnabhumi International Airport.

Inner-City Buses


A regular bus service is provided by the Bangkok Mass Transit Authority (BMTA) and it operates throughout Bangkok as well as to adjoining provinces. Most routes do not have service late in the evening, but some routes operate around the clock. Public buses are cheap, with a minimum fare of 7 baht to most destinations within metropolitan Bangkok. Air-conditioned buses have minimum and maximum fares of 11 and 24 baht, respectively. Air-conditioned micro-buses charge a flat fare of 25 baht all routes. A bus route map is available at bookshops.

Rail systems




On the birthday of HM King Rama IX, 5 December 1999, an elevated two-line Skytrain
Bangkok Skytrain
The Bangkok Mass Transit System, commonly known as the BTS Skytrain , is an elevated rapid transit system in Bangkok, Thailand. It is operated by Bangkok Mass Transit System Public Company Limited under a concession granted by the Bangkok Metropolitan Administration...

 (officially called BTS) metro
Rapid transit
A rapid transit, underground, subway, elevated railway, metro or metropolitan railway system is an electric passenger railway in an urban area with a high capacity and frequency, and grade separation from other traffic. Rapid transit systems are typically located either in underground tunnels or on...

 system was opened. The remains of the failed BERTS
Bangkok Elevated Road and Train System
The Bangkok Elevated Road and Train System , commonly known as the Hopewell Project after main contractor Hopewell Holdings, was a failed project to build an elevated highway and rail line from central Bangkok to Don Muang Airport...

 (Hopewell) project can still be seen all the way from the main railroad station out towards Don Mueang Airport. Due to the Asian financial crisis of 1997 construction was halted and the concrete pillars were left unused.

The MRT
Bangkok Metro
The MRT , sometimes referred to as the Bangkok Metro, is Bangkok's underground metro system in Thailand. It was constructed under a concession concept...

 subway system opened for use in July 2004. The MRT connects the northern train station of Bang Sue
Bang Sue
Bang Sue is one of the 50 districts of Bangkok, Thailand. Its neighbor, clockwise from east, are Chatuchak, Dusit and Bang Phlat, and Bang Kruai and Mueang Nonthaburi .-Places:...

 to the Hua Lamphong
Hua Lamphong
Hua Lamphong Railway Station , officially known as the Bangkok Railway Station, is the main railway station in Bangkok, Thailand. It is located in the center of the city in Pathum Wan District, and is operated by the State Railway of Thailand....

 central railway station near the city centre, while also going through the eastern part of Bangkok. It connects to the BTS system at BTS stations Mo Chit, Asok, and Sala Daeng.

A new high speed elevated railroad called the Suvarnabhumi Airport Link, links the city with the new Suvarnabhumi Airport
Suvarnabhumi Airport
Suvarnabhumi Airport , also known as Bangkok International Airport, is an international airport serving Bangkok, Thailand. It was officially opened for limited domestic flight service on 15 September 2006, and opened for most domestic and all international commercial flights on 28 September...

. The announced opening date after facing many delays was finally set on August 23, 2010. The Airport Express railway and City line (commuter service) is operated by the State Railway of Thailand
State Railway of Thailand
The State Railway of Thailand is the state-owned rail operator in Thailand. The network sees around 50 million passengers per annum.-History:SRT was founded as the Royal State Railways of Siam in 1890...

. It provides a 28.5 km (17.7 mi) link between the new airport and the City Air Terminal (CAT) at Makkasan where it connects with MRT Phetchaburi station and has another connection to the BTS at Phaya Thai. There are plans to extend the line to Don Mueang and Rangsit
Rangsit
Rangsit may refer to:*Rangsit, Prince of Chainat , Thai prince*Khlong Rangsit, a canal north of Bangkok*Rangsit, a city in Pathum Thani Province, Thailand*Rangsit University, a university in Pathum Thani Province, Thailand...

 (SRT Dark Red Line), but again, this is very dependent on the political situation.

Plans have been approved for a further extension of the BTS Silom line from Wongwian Yai to Bang Wa (4.5 km (2.8 mi)), Samrong to Samut Prakan (8 km (5 mi)), Mo Chit to Saphan Mai (11.9 km (7.4 mi)) and the National Stadium to Phran Nok (7.7 km (4.8 mi)). This includes five underground stations in the Rattanakosin area. The State Railway of Thailand has also been given approval to complete the Dark Red and Light Green lines. Alongside, MRT has also begun construction on two new lines, the Purple line from Bang Yai to Bang Sue, and the Blue line from Hua Lampong to Bang Khae and Bang Sue to Tha Pra.

For intercity travel by train, most passengers begin their trips at Hua Lamphong
Hua Lamphong
Hua Lamphong Railway Station , officially known as the Bangkok Railway Station, is the main railway station in Bangkok, Thailand. It is located in the center of the city in Pathum Wan District, and is operated by the State Railway of Thailand....

 at the southern end of the MRT. Here, trains connect Bangkok to Malaysia in the south, Chiang Mai
Chiang Mai
Chiang Mai sometimes written as "Chiengmai" or "Chiangmai", is the largest and most culturally significant city in northern Thailand. It is the capital of Chiang Mai Province , a former capital of the Kingdom of Lanna and was the tributary Kingdom of Chiang Mai from 1774 until 1939. It is...

 to the north, and Nong Khai
Nong Khai
Nong Khai is a city in North-East Thailand and is the capital of the Nong Khai Province...

 to the northeast and beyond to Laos
Laos
Laos Lao: ສາທາລະນະລັດ ປະຊາທິປະໄຕ ປະຊາຊົນລາວ Sathalanalat Paxathipatai Paxaxon Lao, officially the Lao People's Democratic Republic, is a landlocked country in Southeast Asia, bordered by Burma and China to the northwest, Vietnam to the east, Cambodia to the south and Thailand to the west...

.

When viewing the map, not all MRT and BTS lines stop at every station. Currently, the blue MRT line goes from Hua Lampong to Asok. The two BTS lines extend from Mo Chit to On Nut, and from National Stadium to Wongwian Yai. This line's final stop used to be Saphan Taksin station but has subsequently been extended across the Chao Phraya River
Chao Phraya River
The Chao Phraya is a major river in Thailand, with its low alluvial plain forming the centre of the country. It runs through Bangkok, the capital city, and then empties into the Gulf of Thailand.-Etymology:...

 to Wongwian Yai. Stations with BTS/MRT interchange are Mo Chit, Sala Daeng, and Asok.

Bus services



Virtually all cities and provinces are easily reached by bus from Bangkok. For destinations in the southwest and the west, buses leave from the Southern Bus Terminal, west of the city in the Thonburi
Thonburi
Thon Buri is an area of modern Bangkok. It was capital of Thailand from 1767 to 1782, during the reign of King Taksin, after the previous capital Ayutthaya was sacked by the Burmese. It is located on the opposite bank of Chao Phraya River to Bangkok...

 area. For destinations in the southeast, such as Pattaya
Pattaya
Pattaya is a city in Thailand, located on the east coast of the Gulf of Thailand, about 165 km southeast of Bangkok located within but not part of Amphoe Bang Lamung in the province of Chonburi....

, Ko Samet
Ko Samet
Ko Samet , is one of the Eastern Seaboard Islands of Thailand. It is located in the Gulf of Thailand off the coastline of the Thai province of Rayong, approximately southeast of Bangkok. Ko Samet is part of the Phe Subdistrict of the Amphoe Mueang Rayong , of Rayong province...

 and Ko Chang
Ko Chang
Ko Chang is the third largest island of Thailand , located on the Thai east coast 310 km away from Bangkok near the border to Cambodia in the Gulf of Thailand. The name means Elephant Island. Ko Chang was named for the elephant shape of its headland, although elephants are not indigenous to...

, buses leave from the Eastern Bus Terminal at Ekkamai. For all destinations north and northeast, the Northern Bus Terminal is at Mo Chit. Bangkok's less accessible southern terminal was recently moved even farther out. Though Bangkok is well connected to other cities, getting to the bus terminals often are a challenge in themselves.

There are numerous companies that provide bus services within Bangkok Metropolitan Region. The main operator, Bangkok Mass Transit Authority, has a service area covering Bangkok and its suburban areas in the adjacent provinces of Nonthaburi
Nonthaburi Province
Nonthaburi is one of the central provinces of Thailand. Neighboring provinces are Phra Nakhon Si Ayutthaya, Pathum Thani, Bangkok and Nakhon Pathom....

, Samut Prakan
Samut Prakan Province
Samut Prakan is one of the central provinces of Thailand. It is part of the Bangkok Metropolitan Region. Neighboring provinces are Bangkok, to the north and west, and Chachoengsao to the east....

, Pathum Thani, Nakhon Pathom
Nakhon Pathom Province
Nakhon Pathom ) is one of the central provinces of Thailand. Neighboring provinces are Suphan Buri, Ayutthaya, Nonthaburi, Bangkok, Samut Sakhon, Ratchaburi and Kanchanaburi...

, and Samut Sakhon
Samut Sakhon Province
Samut Sakhon ) is one of the central provinces of Thailand.Neighboring provinces are Samut Songkhram, Ratchaburi, Nakhon Pathom and Bangkok.- Etymology :...

. It serves approximately 3 million passengers per day. The service hours are 05.00–23.00 hrs, except 24-hr night-owl service on some routes. In September 2005, BMTA owns a fleet of 3,579 buses—comprising 1,674 ordinary buses and 1,905 air-conditioned buses. In addition to BMTA-owned buses, there are 3,485 private-own contract buses, 1,113 contract minibuses, 2,161 side-street songthaew
Songthaew
A songthaew , also known in English as a baht bus, is a passenger vehicle in Malaysia, Thailand and Laos adapted from a pick-up or a larger truck and used as a share taxi....

s, and 5,519 vans. In total, there are 15,857 buses and vans over 427 routes across 8 zones.

Premier Metro Bus 7 Line
  • Zone 1: North (Hubs: Rangsit, Bang Khen)
  • Zone 2: Upper East (Hubs: Bang Kapi, Minburi)
  • Zone 3: Lower East (Hubs: Samrong, Samut Prakan)
  • Zone 4: South Central (Hubs: Khlong Toei)
  • Zone 5: Southwest (Hubs: Dao Khanong, Phra Pradaeng)
  • Zone 6: West (Hubs: Bang Khae, Thonburi)
  • Zone 7: Northwest (Hubs: Nonthaburi, Pak Kret)
  • Zone 8: Central (Hubs: Huai Khwang)

Airports




Bangkok is one of Asia's most important air transport hubs
Airline hub
An airline hub is an airport that an airline uses as a transfer point to get passengers to their intended destination. It is part of a hub and spoke model, where travelers moving between airports not served by direct flights change planes en route to their destinations...

. In 2005, more than ninety airlines served Don Mueang International Airport (IATA
IATA airport code
An IATA airport code, also known an IATA location identifier, IATA station code or simply a location identifier, is a three-letter code designating many airports around the world, defined by the International Air Transport Association...

: DMK; ICAO
ICAO airport code
The ICAO airport code or location indicator is a four-character alphanumeric code designating each airport around the world. These codes are defined by the International Civil Aviation Organization, and published in ICAO Document 7910: Location Indicators.The ICAO codes are used by air traffic...

: VTBD). It was the 18th busiest airport in the world, second busiest in Asia
Asia
Asia is the world's largest and most populous continent, located primarily in the eastern and northern hemispheres. It covers 8.7% of the Earth's total surface area and with approximately 3.879 billion people, it hosts 60% of the world's current human population...

 by passenger volume, 15th busiest in the world and fourth busiest in Asia in international passenger volume. Don Mueang consistently ranked 19th in the world in cargo traffic, and seventh in the Asia-Pacific
Asia-Pacific
Asia-Pacific or Asia Pacific is the part of the world in or near the Western Pacific Ocean...

 region. Don Mueang is considered to be one of the world's oldest international airports, its opening in March 1914 making it almost twenty years older than London Heathrow. It has three terminals and is located about 30 km (19 mi) north from the heart of Bangkok.

On 28 September 2006, Suvarnabhumi Airport
Suvarnabhumi Airport
Suvarnabhumi Airport , also known as Bangkok International Airport, is an international airport serving Bangkok, Thailand. It was officially opened for limited domestic flight service on 15 September 2006, and opened for most domestic and all international commercial flights on 28 September...

 (IATA
IATA airport code
An IATA airport code, also known an IATA location identifier, IATA station code or simply a location identifier, is a three-letter code designating many airports around the world, defined by the International Air Transport Association...

: BKK; ICAO
ICAO airport code
The ICAO airport code or location indicator is a four-character alphanumeric code designating each airport around the world. These codes are defined by the International Civil Aviation Organization, and published in ICAO Document 7910: Location Indicators.The ICAO codes are used by air traffic...

: VTBS), became Bangkok's official international airport, replacing Don Mueang. Pronounced Suwannaphum (RTGS
Royal Thai General System of Transcription
The Royal Thai General System of Transcription is the official system for rendering Thai language words in the Latin alphabet, published by the Royal Institute of Thailand...

), or loosely Su-wan-na-poom, the airport is located southeast of the city center in Bang Phli
Amphoe Bang Phli
Bang Phli is a district of Samut Prakan Province in Thailand. It is home to Suvarnabhumi Airport , which opened on 28 September 2006 as Thailand's primary airport...

 district, Samut Prakan Province
Samut Prakan Province
Samut Prakan is one of the central provinces of Thailand. It is part of the Bangkok Metropolitan Region. Neighboring provinces are Bangkok, to the north and west, and Chachoengsao to the east....

. The progress of Suvarnabhumi Airport dates back to the early 1970s when a large plot of land 8000 acre (3,237 ha) (32 km²) was bought. A student uprising in October of the same year prevented further progress with the development when the military government of Thanom Kittikachorn
Thanom Kittikachorn
Field Marshal Thanom Kittikachorn was a military dictator of Thailand. A staunch anti-Communist, Thanom oversaw a decade of military rule in Thailand from 1963 to 1973, until public protests which exploded into violence forced him to step down...

 was subsequently overthrown. After several military coups and the Asian financial crisis of 1997, construction finally began in 2002, after five years of clearing the site. The first flights landed in September 2006, shortly after another military coup. Its two parallel runways are connected by the five concourses
Airport terminal
An airport terminal is a building at an airport where passengers transfer between ground transportation and the facilities that allow them to board and disembark from aircraft....

 of the main terminal
Airport terminal
An airport terminal is a building at an airport where passengers transfer between ground transportation and the facilities that allow them to board and disembark from aircraft....

 building. The airport features a 132.2 metres (434 ft)-tall control tower
Control tower
A control tower, or more specifically an Air Traffic Control Tower , is the name of the airport building from which the air traffic control unit controls the movement of aircraft on and around the airport. Control towers are also used to control the traffic for other forms of transportation such...

, the tallest in Asia and one meter (3.2 ft) taller than Kuala Lumpur International Airport
Kuala Lumpur International Airport
Kuala Lumpur International Airport , or KLIA serves the capital city of Malaysia, Kuala Lumpur, and is one of Southeast Asia's largest airports. It is also Malaysia's main international airport. It is situated in the Sepang district, in the south of the state of Selangor, about from Kuala Lumpur...

 control tower. It is the tallest stand alone purpose built control tower in the world. Airports of Thailand Plc. (AoT) have announced another terminal to accommodate a further fifteen million passengers. This will be part of Phase 2 of the airport, which is expected to begin construction in three to five years. The main airline of Suvarnabhumi is Thai Airways International
Thai Airways International
Thai Airways International Public Company Limited is the national flag carrier and largest airline of Thailand. Formed in 1988, the airline's headquarters are located in Chatuchak District, Bangkok, and operates out of Suvarnabhumi Airport. Thai is a founding member of the Star Alliance. Thai is a...

.

Much of the construction of Suvarnabhumi Airport took place during the premiership of Thaksin Shinawatra
Thaksin Shinawatra
Thaksin Shinawatra is a Thai businessman and politician, who was Prime Minister of Thailand from 2001 to 2006, when he was overthrown in a military coup....

, who took personal responsibility for its timely completion. Despite a "ceremonial" opening on the planned date, construction was over a year late. Continuing controversy surrounds the quality of planning and construction; accusations include cracks in the runway, overheated buildings, a severe shortage of toilet facilities and lengthy passenger walks to departure gates. The fact that the airport is already overcrowded and near its maximum capacity less than a year after opening is another concern.

Don Mueang remains in use as a base of the Royal Thai Air Force
Royal Thai Air Force
The Royal Thai Air Force or RTAF is the air force of the Kingdom of Thailand. Since its establishment in 1913, as one of the earliest air forces of Asia, the Royal Thai Air Force had engaged in many major and minor battles. During the Vietnam war era, the air force has been developed with USAF-aid...

. Most of the low-cost airlines now use the airport for domestic flights, in an effort to ease congestion at Suvarnabhumi, until the next terminal is opened.

Transport network

  • Khlong Saen Saep Express Boat
    Khlong Saen Saep Express Boat
    The Khlong Saen Saep Express Boat service operates on the Khlong Saen Saep in Bangkok, providing fast, inexpensive transportation through the city's traffic-congested commercial districts...

  • Chao Phraya Express Boat
    Chao Phraya Express Boat
    The Chao Phraya Express Boat is a transportation service in Thailand that operates on the Chao Phraya River. It provides riverine express transportation between stops in the capital city of Bangkok and to Nonthaburi, the province immediately to the north. Established in 1971, the Chao Phraya...

  • Bangkok Noi Longtail Express Boat
  • Sathon-Khlong Toei Express Boat
    Sathon-Klong Toei Express Boat
    The Sathon-Klong Toei Express Boat is a new express boat service which operates on the Chao Phraya, providing fast, inexpensive transportation between traffic-congested inner Bangkok and the southern part of the city. The service is now serving local commuters and is expected to serve tourists in...

  • Sathon-Wat Dao Khanong Express Boat
  • Sathon-Samut Prakan Express Boat
  • Khlong Phasi Charoen Express Boat (Under new testing)
  • Khlong Lat Phrao Express Boat (Under new testing)
  • Khlong Prem Prachakhon Express Boat (Under new testing)
  • Khlong Phadung Krung Kasem Express Boat (Under new testing)
  • BTS or Bangkok Skytrain
    Bangkok Skytrain
    The Bangkok Mass Transit System, commonly known as the BTS Skytrain , is an elevated rapid transit system in Bangkok, Thailand. It is operated by Bangkok Mass Transit System Public Company Limited under a concession granted by the Bangkok Metropolitan Administration...

  • MRT or Bangkok Metro
    Bangkok Metro
    The MRT , sometimes referred to as the Bangkok Metro, is Bangkok's underground metro system in Thailand. It was constructed under a concession concept...

  • SRT or State Railway of Thailand
    State Railway of Thailand
    The State Railway of Thailand is the state-owned rail operator in Thailand. The network sees around 50 million passengers per annum.-History:SRT was founded as the Royal State Railways of Siam in 1890...

  • BRT (Bangkok) or Bus Rapid Transit
  • METROBUS or Premier Metro Bus
  • BTS Links
  • BMTA or Bangkok Bus
    Bangkok Bus
    Bangkok Mass Transit Authority , also known as BMTA , is the main operator of public transit buses within Greater Bangkok area. It is the largest city bus system in Thailand...

  • Suvarnabhumi Airport Link
  • SRT Lines (U/C, finish 2012)
  • Chula-Siam Monorail
    Chula-Siam Monorail
    Chula-Siam Monorail is a new monorail rapid transit system in Bangkok, Thailand. This line was proposed by BMA with cooperation from Chulalongkorn University. The system consists of 3 routes around Chulalongkorn University area...

     (Planned)
  • Bangkok City Tour Shuttle Bus

Taxis



Bangkok has many taxis. Many roam the streets looking for customers, but there are also a number of taxi companies whose vehicles can be booked by telephone. Taxis are metered, with a fixed starting fare, and charge by distance and waiting time.

Three-wheeled open-air motorized taxis called tuk-tuks (auto rickshaws in other countries) are popular for shorter journeys. Price should be negotiated before the ride.

Motorcycle taxis stands, called win motoesai , are found all over the city. Motorcycle taxis usually accommodate one, or sometimes two, passengers, and typically only cover small local areas.

The fare for tuk-tuks and motorcycle taxis is usually negotiable between passenger and driver, except for cases where an organised taxi rank is in operation, where prices to certain locations may be printed on a sign on display at the rank. When two passengers use a motorcycle taxi the fare is usually doubled, although no such increases apply to tuk-tuks.

Education




The majority of the country's universities, both public and private, are located in and/or around the capital. Chulalongkorn University
Chulalongkorn University
Chulalongkorn University is the oldest university in Thailand and is the country's highest ranked university. It now has nineteen faculties and institutes. Regarded as the best and most selective university in Thailand, it consistently attracts top students from around the country...

, Kasetsart University
Kasetsart University
Kasetsart University is a public university in Thailand and a top-ranked Public University in Thailand. It is ranked No.401-500 in the world by QS. It was also the first agricultural university and the third oldest university in Thailand...

, Mahidol University
Mahidol University
Mahidol University is a public research university in Bangkok, Thailand. Established back in 1888 as School of Medical Practitioners, Siriraj Hospital and reorganized in 1943 as University of Medical Sciences . The university originally focused on Health Sciences but also expanded to other...

 and Thammasat University
Thammasat University
Thammasat University , or in brief TU , is Thailand's second oldest university. Officially established on 27 June 1934, the university was originally named by founder Pridi Banomyong, University of Moral Science and Politics , reflecting the political fervor of the time...

 are at the forefront of tertiary education. They are public universities and have been a foundation for young thinkers for nearly a century. Over the past few decades the general trend of pursuing a university degree has prompted the founding of new universities to meet the needs of the Thai students. Bangkok became not only a place where immigrants and provincial Thais go for job opportunities, but also for a chance to receive a university degree. Ramkhamhaeng University
Ramkhamhaeng University
Ramkhamhaeng University is one of two open universities in Thailand. The university was named in honor of King Ramkhamhaeng the Great of Sukhothai, who traditionally is credited for creating the Thai alphabet....

 emerged in 1971 as the only open university. It has the highest enrolment of students compared with any other Thai university. Ramkhamhaeng was one of the Thai government's ways to deal with the rise in a demand for tertiary education. The demand for higher education has led to the founding of many other universities and colleges in the metropolitan area. Vocational/technical colleges are also on the rise. One of such is SAE Institute Bangkok
SAE Institute Bangkok
SAE Institute, Bangkok Thailand , branch of the SAE Institute with local partner Mahajak Development Co., Ltd. We are located in the heart of Bangkok’s bursting shopping belt. Sharing the same objective and concept like any other SAE around the world, SAE Bangkok open it door to aspiring students...

 (started in 2002). In recent years a large number of private institutions, primarily with Western ties and exchange programs, were established in the capital. The rise in the number of schools offering English teaching has raised the bar for many state-run institutions to compete with the standards set by private education.

Assumption University, Chulalongkorn University
Chulalongkorn University
Chulalongkorn University is the oldest university in Thailand and is the country's highest ranked university. It now has nineteen faculties and institutes. Regarded as the best and most selective university in Thailand, it consistently attracts top students from around the country...

, Kasetsart University
Kasetsart University
Kasetsart University is a public university in Thailand and a top-ranked Public University in Thailand. It is ranked No.401-500 in the world by QS. It was also the first agricultural university and the third oldest university in Thailand...

, Mahidol University
Mahidol University
Mahidol University is a public research university in Bangkok, Thailand. Established back in 1888 as School of Medical Practitioners, Siriraj Hospital and reorganized in 1943 as University of Medical Sciences . The university originally focused on Health Sciences but also expanded to other...

, Silpakorn University
Silpakorn University
Silpakorn University is a well-known public university in Thailand. The university was founded in Bangkok in 1943 by Italian-born art professor Corrado Feroci, who took the Thai name Silpa Bhirasri when he became a Thai citizen. It is the leading Thai university in the fine arts and archaeology,...

, Srinakharinwirot University
Srinakharinwirot University
Srinakharinwirot University is a government sponsored university located in Bangkok, Thailand. The university was founded in 1949. It was named by His Majesty King Bhumibol Adulyadej and is the leading Thai university in the field of Education and Fine Arts...

 and Thammasat University
Thammasat University
Thammasat University , or in brief TU , is Thailand's second oldest university. Officially established on 27 June 1934, the university was originally named by founder Pridi Banomyong, University of Moral Science and Politics , reflecting the political fervor of the time...

 rank among the nation's top universities. Bangkok also plays host to the Asian Institute of Technology
Asian Institute of Technology
The Asian Institute of Technology is an international institution for higher education in engineering, advanced technologies, and management and planning...

 (AIT), built as an international co-operative institute between Asia-Pacific nations. There are also many Buddhist universities branching into the realm of religious studies in which Bangkok has taken a leading role.

Amidst all this, however, the tertiary education scene in Bangkok is still over-populated with non-Bangkokians. Officials currently stress the need for a revamping of the Thai educational system. Education has long been a prime factor in the centralization of Bangkok and will play a vital role in the government's efforts to decentralize the country.

Health care and medical centers


Bangkok has a large number of hospitals and medical centers, which include eight of the country's fifteen medical schools. Many hospitals in Bangkok act as tertiary care centers
Tertiary referral hospital
A tertiary hospital, tertiary referral center or tertiary care center is a term without a formal definition which in the United States generally refers to:...

, receiving referrals from distant parts of the country. Lately, especially in the private sector, there has been much growth in medical tourism
Medical tourism
Medical tourism is a term initially coined by travel agencies and the mass media to describe the rapidly-growing practice of travelling across international borders to obtain health care...

, with many hospitals providing services specifically catering to foreigners.

The Bumrungrad Hospital is the main international class hospital on Sukumvit Road, and is popular with expats, wealthy Thais and medical tourists. Its closest competitors are Samithivej Hospital and Bangkok Hospital Medical Center. All 3 of which have achieved accreditation from the Joint Commission International (JCI).

Tourism



Bangkok is considered to be one of the world's tourist hotspots. Bangkok is Thailand's major tourist gateway
Tourism in Thailand
Tourism is a major economic factor in the Kingdom of Thailand, contributing an estimated 6.7% to Thailand's GDP in 2007.-Overview:Among the reasons for the increase in tourism in the 1960s were the stable political atmosphere and the development of Bangkok as a crossroads of international air...

, which means that the majority of foreign tourists arrive in Bangkok. The city boasts some of the country's most visited historical venues such as the Grand Palace, Wat Pho
Wat Pho
Wat Pho , is a Buddhist temple in Phra Nakhon district, Bangkok, Thailand. It is located in the Rattanakosin district directly adjacent to the Grand Palace. Known also as the Temple of the Reclining Buddha, its official name is Wat Phra Chettuphon Wimon Mangkhalaram Ratchaworamahawihan...

, and Wat Arun
Wat Arun
Wat Arun Rajwararam is a Buddhist temple in the Bangkok Yai district of Bangkok, Thailand, on the Thonburi west bank of the Chao Phraya River. The full name of the temple is Wat Arunratchawararam Ratchaworamahawihan...

. There are numerous projects to maintain Bangkok's historic sites in the Rattanakosin area and river districts.

Festivals and events


Bangkok Songkran Festival 13–15 April
The traditional Thai New Year is an occasion for merriment all over the city, but most notably at Sanam Luang, near the Grand Palace, where the revered Phra Phuttha Sihing image is displayed and bathed by devotees. In the Wisutkasat area, a Miss Songkran beauty contest is held and accompanied by merit-making and entertainment. Khao San Road, Bang Lamphu area is also one of the high-spots in the city where locals and tourists play water by the water-throwing activities.

Royal Ploughing Ceremony May

An ancient Brahman ritual, conducted at Sanam Luang, in which farmers believe, is able to forecast the abundance of the next rice crop. The event is a result of a series of ceremonies that are conducted by Phraya Raek Na, portrayed by a high-ranking official from the Ministry of Agriculture and Cooperatives who wears colourful traditional costumes. This ceremony was re-introduced in 1960 by King Bhumibol Adulyadej and is considered the official commencement of the rice-growing season.

The Queen’s Birthday Celebration 12 August

To display their loyalty and to honour Queen Sirikit on the occasion of her royal birthday, the Thai people decorate their houses and public buildings. Around Bangkok, Ratchadamnoen Avenue, the area around the Grand Palace and other well-known locations are bedecked with coloured lights and magnificent adornments.

Trooping of the Colours December

The King and Queen preside over this impressive annual event, held in the Royal Plaza near the equestrian statue of King Chulalongkorn. Dressed in colourful uniforms, amid much pomp and ceremony, members of the elite Royal Guards swear allegiance to the King and march past members of the Royal Family.

The King’s Birthday Celebrations 5 December

King Bhumibol Adulyadej
Bhumibol Adulyadej
Bhumibol Adulyadej is the current King of Thailand. He is known as Rama IX...

, the world’s longest reigning monarch is well beloved and deeply respected by all Thais old and young. The occasion of his royal birthday provides his loyal subjects the opportunity to express their reverence for him. All over the country, buildings and homes are elaborated and the area around the Grand Palace is spectacularly illuminated.

Media




There is an average of four million readers for more than 25 Bangkok based newspapers, one of which, Thai Rath
Thai Rath
Thai Rath is a Thai-language daily newspaper published in Bangkok and distributed nationwide. The paper is a broadsheet published with two sections. The first section is devoted to news. Although the news section is best known for its sensationalist coverage of crime and accidents, it also...

, sells over a million copies a day. Bangkok also has two major English-language dailies, the Bangkok Post
Bangkok Post
The Bangkok Post is a broadsheet, English-language daily newspaper published in Bangkok, Thailand. The first issue was sold on August 1, 1946. It had four pages and cost 1 baht, a considerable amount at the time....

and The Nation
The Nation (Thailand)
The Nation is a broadsheet, English-language daily newspaper founded in 1971 and published in Bangkok, Thailand, and is owned by the Nation Multimedia Group.The Nation is a member of the Asia News Network...

and the new free-sheet, The Daily Xpress. The Asian Wall Street Journal and International Herald Tribune
International Herald Tribune
The International Herald Tribune is a widely read English language international newspaper. It combines the resources of its own correspondents with those of The New York Times and is printed at 38 sites throughout the world, for sale in more than 160 countries and territories...

are printed in Bangkok and have high distribution numbers. There are also a number of weekly publications normally published on Fridays that deal with political issues. Other publications, such as lifestyle and entertainment magazines are also plentiful.

Many gossip and fashion magazines are also published in Bangkok, especially after the launch of the Bangkok Fashion City
Bangkok Fashion City
Bangkok Fashion City project is a campaign under the Ministry of Industry of Thailand. This 1.8-billion-baht program's purpose is to establish Bangkok as a regional fashion hub and eventually as a world fashion leader....

 project in 2004. Since then, United Broadcasting Corporation (UBC, or now True Visions), the Thai cable operator, has launched a new channel devoted to Thai fashion as well as a Thai edition of E! Entertainment television.

There is a large amount of television media in Bangkok. Six television stations operated and controlled by the government and many major cables TV operators such as True Visions (formally UBC), MTV
MTV
MTV, formerly an initialism of Music Television, is an American network based in New York City that launched on August 1, 1981. The original purpose of the channel was to play music videos guided by on-air hosts known as VJs....

, TTV, PTV, ASTV are based in Bangkok. They broadcast a total of 100 channels to viewers with including many Thai television stations such as TITV, Nation Channel, ETV, DLTV, Royal TV, Money Channel, SMe TV, six sports channels, and Channel V
Channel V
Channel [V] is the brand name for multiple international music television networks owned by STAR TV and Fox International Channels, fully owned subsidiaries of News Corporation.-Channel [V] International:...

, among others. There are more than 50 FM radio stations within the Bangkok metro vicinity and 50 AM channels including international brands such as Virgin Radio
Virgin Radio
Absolute Radio is one of the UK's three Independent National Radio stations. The station rebranded to its current name at 7.45am on 29 September 2008.The station is based in London and plays popular rock music...

. Radio stations mainly broadcast in Thai, although some broadcast solely in English due to the growing expat population and the growing number of locals who enjoy learning English.

Chalerm Krung Theater and the National Theater have been in operation since the early 20th century whereas the newer Thailand Cultural Center hosts a variety of plays and events.

Bangkok has dozens of cinema multiplexes, and the city hosts two major film festivals annually, the Bangkok International Film Festival
Bangkok International Film Festival
The Bangkok International Film Festival is an international film festival held annually in Bangkok, Thailand, since 2003. In addition to film screenings, seminars, gala events and the Golden Kinnaree Awards.-First years:...

 and the World Film Festival of Bangkok
World Film Festival of Bangkok
The World Film Festival of Bangkok is an annual international film festival held between October & November in Bangkok, Thailand.The 8th Annual World Film Festival of Bangkok will be held between 5 - 14 November, 2010.-History:...

.

Art




The National Gallery located near Sanam Luang is a popular venue for art in Thailand.

The arts in Bangkok have well developed almost exclusively and anonymously in the services of Theravada
Theravada
Theravada ; literally, "the Teaching of the Elders" or "the Ancient Teaching", is the oldest surviving Buddhist school. It was founded in India...

 Buddhism since the golden age
Golden Age
The term Golden Age comes from Greek mythology and legend and refers to the first in a sequence of four or five Ages of Man, in which the Golden Age is first, followed in sequence, by the Silver, Bronze, and Iron Ages, and then the present, a period of decline...

 in Ayutthaya period
Ayutthaya kingdom
Ayutthaya was a Siamese kingdom that existed from 1350 to 1767. Ayutthaya was friendly towards foreign traders, including the Chinese, Vietnamese , Indians, Japanese and Persians, and later the Portuguese, Spanish, Dutch and French, permitting them to set up villages outside the walls of the...

 and continuing to the present day by incorporating Western elements which is called the Rattanakosin or Bangkok style. Nowadays, the modern art scene is centered around Bangkok as the capital of contemporary art
Contemporary art
Contemporary art can be defined variously as art produced at this present point in time or art produced since World War II. The definition of the word contemporary would support the first view, but museums of contemporary art commonly define their collections as consisting of art produced...

 in the region, while traditional art can be found in many commercial areas in the old city as well as temples
Thai Temple Art and Architecture
This article on Thai temple art and architecture discusses Buddhist temples in Thailand. A typical Thai Wat, which is loosely translated as monastery or temple, has an enclosing wall that divides it from the secular world.-Wat architecture :The architecture of a Wat has seen many changes in...

 and palaces throughout the city. There are also a number of artists who prefer to live and work outside the metropolis. The number of artists is constantly on the rise, so an increasing variety of works are available on the art market. Many art galleries in Bangkok tend to sell work restricted to traditional rural motifs. The artists creating this type of art are often influenced by traditional Buddhist beliefs and motifs, and are popular among the general Thai public. Nevertheless, some Thai artists are breaking away from these norms by addressing more controversial issues in their work, for example the loss of traditional values and the obsession with money in today's society.

Bangkok is home to the National Gallery of Thailand
National Gallery of Thailand
- History :The Treasury Department and Ministry of Finance presented the old Royal Mint building to the Fine Arts Department to be converted into the National Gallery on April 19, 1974. The grand opening took place on August 8, 1977, to celebrate Queen Sirikit's birthday which took place on 12...

, Bangkok Metropolitan Museum of Contemporary Art
Bangkok Metropolitan Museum of Contemporary Art
Bangkok Art and Culture Centre is a contemporary arts museum in Bangkok, Thailand.-History:The plans for a contemporary art museum in Bangkok were initiated by Bangkok governor Bhichit Rattakul. Construction started in 2000, but was later halted due to funding problems and alleged corruption. In...

 and Thailand Creative & Design Center as well as many other museums, concert halls, theatres, and art galleries. It is home to the Thailand Cultural Centre
Thailand Cultural Centre
Thailand Cultural Centre is a performing-arts venue in Bangkok, Thailand.-History:Built with a grant from Japan, the Thailand Cultural Centre opened on October 9, 1987 as part of celebrations for King Bhumibol's 60th birthday.-Facilities:The venue consists of two auditoriums and one...

 and the National Theatre.

Sport




Modern sports have been introduced to the people of Bangkok dating back a century by King Chulalongkorn. Horse racing
Horse racing
Horse racing is an equestrian sport that has a long history. Archaeological records indicate that horse racing occurred in ancient Babylon, Syria, and Egypt. Both chariot and mounted horse racing were events in the ancient Greek Olympics by 648 BC...

 followed by golf
Golf
Golf is a precision club and ball sport, in which competing players use many types of clubs to hit balls into a series of holes on a golf course using the fewest number of strokes....

 began in Bangkok over 100 years ago when the king bestowed land for the first race course. The objective of His Majesty was to introduce and promote the quality of horse racing and breeding in Thailand, while providing sporting facilities of international standards for Thailand. Today, horse racing is one of the most popular sports in the capital and one of the most famous sport events in the region. Bangkok has hosted the Asian Games
Asian Games
The Asian Games, officially known as Asiad, is a multi-sport event held every four years among athletes from all over Asia. The Games were regulated by the Asian Games Federation from the first Games in New Delhi, India, until the 1978 Games. Since the 1982 Games they have been organised by the...

 four times, in 1966, 1970, 1978 and 1998. Bangkok was also the host of the first SEA Games in 1959 and Summer Universiade in 2007.

Bangkok's popular modern sports are football, golf, bowling and horse racing. The city has many famous league
Sports league
League is a term commonly used to describe a group of sports teams or individual athletes that compete against each other in a specific sport. At its simplest, it may be a local group of amateur athletes who form teams among themselves and compete on weekends; at its most complex, it can be an...

 football clubs with a number of international class football stadiums as well as many golf courses and bowling alleys throughout the city. The popular traditional sports are Muay Thai
Muay Thai
Muay Thai is a combat sport from Thailand that uses stand-up striking along with various clinching techniques. It is similar to other Indochinese kickboxing systems, namely pradal serey from Cambodia, tomoi from Malaysia, lethwei from Myanmar and muay Lao from Laos...

. Fights can be seen in two major boxing stadiums in the city: Rajadamnern Stadium
Rajadamnern Stadium
Rajadamnern Boxing Stadium or, in Thai, Sanam Muay Rajadamnern , is an indoor sporting arena located in Bangkok, Thailand. Along with Lumpinee Stadium, the Rajadamnern is one of the two main stadiums for modern Muay Thai...

 along with Lumpini Stadium, Takraw, which is played in open spaces throughout the city, and kite fighting, which is easy to see in the centre of the old city. Sanam Luang
Sanam Luang
Sanam Luang is an open field and public square in front of Wat Phra Kaew and the Grand Palace, Bangkok, Thailand. Sanam Luang is located in the Phra Nakhon district, the historic center of Bangkok....

, on the north side of Wat Phra Kaew
Wat Phra Kaew
The Wat Phra Kaew is regarded as the most sacred Buddhist temple in Thailand. It is a "potent religio-political symbol and the palladium of Thai society". It is located in the historic centre of Bangkok , within the precincts of the Grand Palace.The main building is the central ubosoth, which...

, is transformed each year around February from a sedate little patch of greenery in the midst of a concrete jungle into an ongoing kite festival as locals come to the park to practice the art of flying kites.

Rajamangala Stadium
Rajamangala Stadium
Rajamangala National Stadium , also known as Hua Mark Indoor Stadium, is the national stadium of Thailand and the home stadium for the Thailand national football team. Located in Khwaeng Hua Mak, Khet Bang kapi, Bangkok, it officially opened in 1998....

 is Bangkok's new national stadium. It can seat more than 65,000.

Bangkok features a number of sports clubs including the Royal Bangkok Sports Club, Royal Turf Club of Bangkok, Krungthep Kreetha Sports Club, Rajapruk Sport Club (North Park), Royal Thai Police Sports Club, Piyarom Sports Club, Southerners Sports Club
Southerners Sports Club (Bangkok)
The Southerners Sports Club is an informal, non-commercial Bangkok-based club of expats and Thais. The Southerners field teams in Bangkok's local rugby, netball, touch rugby and cricket competitions, and also tour to neighbouring countries for regional-based sports tournaments.The club aims to...

 and the British Club, which was established in Bangkok in 1903.

Multicultural Communities


Bangkok has several concentration areas of people of foreign origin. Yaowarat Road
Yaowarat Road
Bangkok's Chinatown is centered on Yaowarat Road in Samphanthawong district.The Chinatown is an old business center covering a large area around Yaowarat and Charoen Krung Road. There are many small streets and alleys full of shops and vendors selling all types of goods...

 is the home of Bangkok's sizable Chinatown
Chinatown
A Chinatown is an ethnic enclave of overseas Chinese people, although it is often generalized to include various Southeast Asian people. Chinatowns exist throughout the world, including East Asia, Southeast Asia, the Americas, Australasia, and Europe. Binondo's Chinatown located in Manila,...

, while those of Indian ethnicity have congregated around Pahurat Road. At the West End of Silom Road was the first European community in Bangkok called the old Farang
Farang
Farang , also spelled falang, is the generic Thai word for a Westerner. A general term for foreigners is khon tang prathet . There is no expressly negative or positive implication in the word itself. However when it is used along with other words, it can bring a negative meaning depending on...

 Quarter. The Portuguese Embassy operates from 1820 and was the first embassy to be established in the capital, with their community around the Santa Cruz Church on the Thonburi
Thonburi
Thon Buri is an area of modern Bangkok. It was capital of Thailand from 1767 to 1782, during the reign of King Taksin, after the previous capital Ayutthaya was sacked by the Burmese. It is located on the opposite bank of Chao Phraya River to Bangkok...

 side. The Haroon Mosque, a small, attractive stucco building is used by the local Muslim population. The French Embassy was the second to be established in the area within walking distance from the Assumption cathedral
Assumption Cathedral, Bangkok
The Assumption Cathedral is the principal Roman Catholic church of Thailand, located at 23 Oriental Avenue, New Road, in the Bang Rak district of Bangkok. It is the main church of the Archdiocese of Bangkok...

, one of the biggest building in the area, still serving the community. Along Sukhumvit Road
Sukhumvit Road
Sukhumvit Road , or Thailand Route 3 , is a major road in Thailand, and a major surface road of Bangkok and other cities it winds through. It follows a coastal route from Bangkok to Trat and is just over in length....

 communities of Japanese are around Phrom Phong, Koreatown
Koreatown
Koreatown is a term to describe a Korean ethnic enclave within a city or metropolitan area. Similar terms may include Little Seoul or Little Korea.-Beijing:There are more than 150,000 Koreans living in Beijing...

 can be found around Asok Station
Asok Station
Asok station is a BTS skytrain station, on the in Watthana and Khlong Toei District, Bangkok, Thailand. The station is located on Sukhumvit Road at Asok Montri Road , with interchange to at Sukhumvit Station....

 and the nearby Nana Station
Nana Station
Nana station is a BTS skytrain station, on the in Watthana and Khlong Toei District, Bangkok, Thailand. The station is located on Sukhumvit Road at Sukhumvit Soi 9, to the east of Nana intersection . It is arounded by variety classes of hotels and facilities for foreign tourists...

 is dense with Arab and Afican cultures and food, "Little Africa" neighborhood can be found here.

Urban lifestyle


Although it is one of Asia's most important cities economically, the urban
Urban area
An urban area is characterized by higher population density and vast human features in comparison to areas surrounding it. Urban areas may be cities, towns or conurbations, but the term is not commonly extended to rural settlements such as villages and hamlets.Urban areas are created and further...

 pace of Bangkok is somewhat relaxed, as the city offers enormous amounts of getaway locations. Most residents tend to stress over the amount of traffic in the city. Peak hours are between 6:30 am to 9:30 am and 4:30pm to 8:00 at night on weekdays, with a general state of traffic on Monday morning and Friday night.

Many residents leave town on weekends to visit seaside resorts such as Hua Hin
Hua Hin
Hua Hin is a famous beach resort town in Thailand, in the northern part of the Malay Peninsula, some 200 km south of Bangkok. It has a population of 84,883 in an area of 911 km², and is one of eight districts of the Prachuap Khiri Khan province.Hua Hin is closely associated with the...

, Cha-am, and Pattaya
Pattaya
Pattaya is a city in Thailand, located on the east coast of the Gulf of Thailand, about 165 km southeast of Bangkok located within but not part of Amphoe Bang Lamung in the province of Chonburi....

. Others return home to visit elderly relatives in Isan
Isan
Isan is the northeastern region of Thailand. It is located on the Khorat Plateau, bordered by the Mekong River to the north and east, by Cambodia to the southeast and the Prachinburi mountains south of Nakhon Ratchasima...

 and the northern provinces. Saturday is somewhat considered a work day to many of the residents of Bangkok.

Religion
Religion
Religion is a collection of cultural systems, belief systems, and worldviews that establishes symbols that relate humanity to spirituality and, sometimes, to moral values. Many religions have narratives, symbols, traditions and sacred histories that are intended to give meaning to life or to...

 does not play a very influential role in the capital as it would compared to other cities. However, a good proportion of the population remains devout and offers daily alms to the monks who walk their neighbourhoods. Muslims are often either assimilated entirely by the Thai or live in remote parts of the city such as the Nong Chok
Nong Chok
Nong Chok is one of the 50 districts of Bangkok, Thailand. It is bounded by other districts : Amphoe Lam Luk Ka of Pathum Thani Province, Amphoe Bang Nam Priao and Amphoe Mueang Chachoengsao of Chachoengsao Province, Lat Krabang, Min Buri and Khlong Sam Wa of Bangkok...

 district where traditional Thai Muslims still live.

Current issues


Bangkok has long been notorious for its massive traffic jams, which are still a serious problem. The recent construction of the elevated second-level, third-level and fourth-level expressways, many tunnels and flyovers, BTS and MRT systems, four new SRT lines and BRT Bangkok has eased some of the congestion along specific corridors, but has done little to alleviate overall congestion. The major reason is the continued popularity of private automobiles, and extensive consumer credit for automobile purchases.

Environmental issues such as air pollution
Air pollution
Air pollution is the introduction of chemicals, particulate matter, or biological materials that cause harm or discomfort to humans or other living organisms, or cause damage to the natural environment or built environment, into the atmosphere....

, a large part of which is caused by the traffic and dirt left on streets from construction projects, was a major problem. Industrial pollution has also contributed to poor air and water quality. Though sulfur dioxide
Sulfur dioxide
Sulfur dioxide is the chemical compound with the formula . It is released by volcanoes and in various industrial processes. Since coal and petroleum often contain sulfur compounds, their combustion generates sulfur dioxide unless the sulfur compounds are removed before burning the fuel...

 and ozone
Ozone
Ozone , or trioxygen, is a triatomic molecule, consisting of three oxygen atoms. It is an allotrope of oxygen that is much less stable than the diatomic allotrope...

 levels have fallen substantially, PM (particulate matter) still exceeds health standards in some areas. However, the large volume of trash in the canals must be cleaned out by other means. Mold
Mold
Molds are fungi that grow in the form of multicellular filaments called hyphae. Molds are not considered to be microbes but microscopic fungi that grow as single cells called yeasts...

 growth is ubiquitous in Bangkok, as the wet tropical climate makes it grow, and many residents simply ignore it.

As in many other Asian cities, the sale of illegally copied copyright-protected material
Copyright infringement
Copyright infringement is the unauthorized or prohibited use of works under copyright, infringing the copyright holder's exclusive rights, such as the right to reproduce or perform the copyrighted work, or to make derivative works.- "Piracy" :...

, mostly software and DVD
DVD
A DVD is an optical disc storage media format, invented and developed by Philips, Sony, Toshiba, and Panasonic in 1995. DVDs offer higher storage capacity than Compact Discs while having the same dimensions....

 movies, is widespread in Bangkok, but technically illegal.

Prostitution


Another issue which has given the city a reputation is the sex industry. Prostitution in Thailand
Prostitution in Thailand
Prostitution in Thailand is illegal, although in practice it is tolerated and partly regulated. Prostitution is practised openly throughout the country. Local officials with commercial interests in prostitution often protect the practice. The precise number of prostitutes is difficult to assess;...

 is technically illegal, but can be found all over Bangkok in vast numbers of massage parlors, saunas, parks, and hourly hotels, serving foreign tourists as well as locals.

Crime


Foreign residents and tourists alike complain of widespread scams and blatant price gouging
Price gouging
Price gouging is a pejorative term referring to a situation in which a seller prices goods or commodities much higher than is considered reasonable or fair. In precise, legal usage, it is the name of a crime that applies in some of the United States during civil emergencies...

. Elaborate gem store scams
Thai Gem Scam
The Thai Gem Scam is a confidence trick performed in Bangkok, Thailand as well as other cities in the country. It is one of the most pervasive scams in Thailand. Most of the shops are gold or jewelry shops. It has been alleged that this scam has been operating for the past 20 years, sometimes...

, involving earning the trust of a shopper by a westerner who is in cooperation with local merchants, have robbed tourists of thousands of dollars, although overcharging is more of a common occurrence. Commission-based profiteering is common for restaurants, hotels, and other kinds of businesses. The Tourist Police
Royal Thai Police
The Royal Thai Police are the national police of Thailand.-About:Primary responsibility for the maintenance of public order through enforcement of the kingdom's laws was exercised by the Thailand National Police Department , a subdivision of the Ministry of Interior...

 lack police powers and are largely responsible for writing out reports for insurance companies for victims of theft. In more serious cases, they will translate reports to be passed on to the regular police in Bangkok. Also, despite stringent drug laws, the illegal drug trade
Illegal drug trade
The illegal drug trade is a global black market, dedicated to cultivation, manufacture, distribution and sale of those substances which are subject to drug prohibition laws. Most jurisdictions prohibit trade, except under license, of many types of drugs by drug prohibition laws.A UN report said the...

 continues to thrive.

Armed robbery and violence against tourists are rare, but murders involving tourists and long-term foreign residents do occur. A dramatic increase in the number of illegal immigrant workers in Thailand has resulted in many of the crimes being committed by these illegal immigrants. However, Bangkok is generally considered safe from the standpoint of violent crime. The rates for violent crimes such as murders and muggings are fairly low when compared to other large Asian and international cities.

2011 floods



The size and scope of the 2011 flood
2011 Thailand floods
Major floods are occurring during the 2011 monsoon season in Thailand, most severely in the Chao Phraya but also in the Mekong River basin. Beginning in late July and continuing for over three months, the floods have caused 602 reported deaths by early November, affected over 2.3 million people,...

 can, in part, be attributed to the low rainfalls of the 2010 monsoon season. Dam
Dam
A dam is a barrier that impounds water or underground streams. Dams generally serve the primary purpose of retaining water, while other structures such as floodgates or levees are used to manage or prevent water flow into specific land regions. Hydropower and pumped-storage hydroelectricity are...

 levels hit a record lows on June 2010. The evidence shows the dams collected large amounts of water and built reserves and provided a buffer reducing early flooding. The scale of the rainfalls of 2011 is evidenced by the amount of waters collected behind Bhumiphol Dam
Bhumibol Adulyadej
Bhumibol Adulyadej is the current King of Thailand. He is known as Rama IX...

. Over 8 billion cubic meters of water were collected in 3 months filling this dam to 100%. Once at capacity, continuing rains forced officials to increase flows from the dams despite increasing flooding and this led to accusations that the dams were mismanaged early in the monsoon season. However, the counter argument is that had the monsoon season for 2011 been short and the dam levels not been built up, then even lower levels than in 2010 would have been mismanagement, too.

The Bangkok Metropolitan Administration arranged a Brahman water-lowering ceremony on Saturday the 8th of October 2011 at 14.39 at the Bangkok City Pillar Shrine to beg Khong Kha, the River Goddess, to lower the flood in Bangkok rapidly. The response was not favorable. With the second-greatest volume of water bearing down on the city — the greatest having been in 1942 — contradictory and confusing information was issued by different branches of government. Acknowledging that the country’s flood crisis has overwhelmed her government, Thailand’s new premier, Prime Minister Yingluck Shinawatra
Yingluck Shinawatra
Yingluck Shinawatra , or nickname Pu , is a Thai businesswoman and politician, member of the Pheu Thai Party, and the 28th Prime Minister of Thailand following the 2011 general election...

 pled for mercy from the media and solidarity from the country in battling the relentless waters. Following an urgent appeal for sandbags — and disagreements over whether bags provided were suitable for sandbagging — Bangkok's governor ordered 200 households outside the capital's northern flood prevention dyke to evacuate within 24 hours. Adding to the fearful mood, the fisheries department said a special "rapid movement" team has been set up to catch crocodiles which escaped from flooded farms, mostly in central Thailand. "If you encounter a crocodile, don't panic," it advised in a statement. "Normally they are afraid of human beings. So just use a wooden stick or your hand to bang the water and the crocodile will swim away." Many of Bangkok’s government-run shelters sat largely empty, as some citizens sought refuge with friends and family, and others were reluctant to leave behind their few possessions — swamped neighborhoods still showed signs that life goes on despite disaster.

Bangkok as seat of international and regional organizations


With its geograpical location at the heart of mainland Southeast Asia and as one of Asia's hubs of transportation, Bangkok is home to many international and regional organizations, including regional headquarters or offices (for Southeast Asia, Asia-Pacific region, or East Asia) of many organs under the United Nations
United Nations
The United Nations is an international organization whose stated aims are facilitating cooperation in international law, international security, economic development, social progress, human rights, and achievement of world peace...

 system and some organization not belonging to the UN. Bangkok is host to 74 foreign embassies and 32 offices of international organizations

Among others, Bangkok is the seat of the Secretariat of the UN Economic and Social Commission for Asia and the Pacific (ESCAP), as well as the Asia-Pacific regional offices of the Food and Agricultural Organization (FAO
Fão
Fão is a town in Esposende Municipality in Portugal....

), the International Civil Aviation Organization (ICAO), the International Labour Organization (ILO
Ilo
Ilo is a port city in southern Peru, with some 58,000 inhabitants. It is the largest city in the Moquegua Region and capital of the province of Ilo.-History:...

), the International Telecommunication Union (ITU
Itu
Itu is an old and historic municipality in the state of São Paulo in Brazil. The population in 2009 was 157,384 and the area is 641.68 km². The elevation is 583 m. This place name comes from the Tupi language, meaning big waterfall. Itu is linked with the highway numbered the SP-75 and are flowed...

), the UN High Commission for Refugees (UNHCR), the UN Children's Fund (UNICEF), and the International Committee of the Red Cross (ICRC).

For the list of offices of the UN agencies in Bangkok, please visit http://www.un.or.th/unagencies/index.html

Twin towns – Sister cities



Bangkok has a number of sister cities
Town twinning
Twin towns and sister cities are two of many terms used to describe the cooperative agreements between towns, cities, and even counties in geographically and politically distinct areas to promote cultural and commercial ties.- Terminology :...

. They are:
Washington, D.C.
Washington, D.C.
Washington, D.C., formally the District of Columbia and commonly referred to as Washington, "the District", or simply D.C., is the capital of the United States. On July 16, 1790, the United States Congress approved the creation of a permanent national capital as permitted by the U.S. Constitution....

, United States
United States
The United States of America is a federal constitutional republic comprising fifty states and a federal district...

, since 1962 Beijing
Beijing
Beijing , also known as Peking , is the capital of the People's Republic of China and one of the most populous cities in the world, with a population of 19,612,368 as of 2010. The city is the country's political, cultural, and educational center, and home to the headquarters for most of China's...

, China (PRC)
People's Republic of China
China , officially the People's Republic of China , is the most populous country in the world, with over 1.3 billion citizens. Located in East Asia, the country covers approximately 9.6 million square kilometres...

, 1993 Moscow
Moscow
Moscow is the capital, the most populous city, and the most populous federal subject of Russia. The city is a major political, economic, cultural, scientific, religious, financial, educational, and transportation centre of Russia and the continent...

, Russia
Russia
Russia or , officially known as both Russia and the Russian Federation , is a country in northern Eurasia. It is a federal semi-presidential republic, comprising 83 federal subjects...

, since 1997 Manila
Manila
Manila is the capital of the Philippines. It is one of the sixteen cities forming Metro Manila.Manila is located on the eastern shores of Manila Bay and is bordered by Navotas and Caloocan to the north, Quezon City to the northeast, San Juan and Mandaluyong to the east, Makati on the southeast,...

, Philippines
Philippines
The Philippines , officially known as the Republic of the Philippines , is a country in Southeast Asia in the western Pacific Ocean. To its north across the Luzon Strait lies Taiwan. West across the South China Sea sits Vietnam...

, since 1997 Saint Peterburg, Russia
Russia
Russia or , officially known as both Russia and the Russian Federation , is a country in northern Eurasia. It is a federal semi-presidential republic, comprising 83 federal subjects...

, since 1997 Astana
Astana
Astana , formerly known as Akmola , Tselinograd and Akmolinsk , is the capital and second largest city of Kazakhstan, with an officially estimated population of 708,794 as of 1 August 2010...

, Kazakhstan
Kazakhstan
Kazakhstan , officially the Republic of Kazakhstan, is a transcontinental country in Central Asia and Eastern Europe. Ranked as the ninth largest country in the world, it is also the world's largest landlocked country; its territory of is greater than Western Europe...

, since 2004 Chaozhou
Chaozhou
Chaozhou is a city in eastern Guangdong province of the People's Republic of China. It borders Shantou to the south, Jieyang to the southwest, Meizhou to the northwest, the province of Fujian to the east, and the South China Sea to the southeast...

, China (PRC)
People's Republic of China
China , officially the People's Republic of China , is the most populous country in the world, with over 1.3 billion citizens. Located in East Asia, the country covers approximately 9.6 million square kilometres...

, since 2005 Seoul
Seoul
Seoul , officially the Seoul Special City, is the capital and largest metropolis of South Korea. A megacity with a population of over 10 million, it is the largest city proper in the OECD developed world...

, South Korea
South Korea
The Republic of Korea , , is a sovereign state in East Asia, located on the southern portion of the Korean Peninsula. It is neighbored by the People's Republic of China to the west, Japan to the east, North Korea to the north, and the East China Sea and Republic of China to the south...

, since 2006 New York City
New York City
New York is the most populous city in the United States and the center of the New York Metropolitan Area, one of the most populous metropolitan areas in the world. New York exerts a significant impact upon global commerce, finance, media, art, fashion, research, technology, education, and...

, United States
United States
The United States of America is a federal constitutional republic comprising fifty states and a federal district...

, since 2006 Berlin
Berlin
Berlin is the capital city of Germany and is one of the 16 states of Germany. With a population of 3.45 million people, Berlin is Germany's largest city. It is the second most populous city proper and the seventh most populous urban area in the European Union...

, Germany
Germany
Germany , officially the Federal Republic of Germany , is a federal parliamentary republic in Europe. The country consists of 16 states while the capital and largest city is Berlin. Germany covers an area of 357,021 km2 and has a largely temperate seasonal climate...

, since 2006
Fukuoka
Fukuoka
Fukuoka most often refers to the capital city of Fukuoka Prefecture.It can also refer to:-Locations:* Fukuoka, Gifu, a town in Gifu Prefecture, Japan* Fukuoka, Toyama, a town in Toyama Prefecture, Japan...

, Japan
Japan
Japan is an island nation in East Asia. Located in the Pacific Ocean, it lies to the east of the Sea of Japan, China, North Korea, South Korea and Russia, stretching from the Sea of Okhotsk in the north to the East China Sea and Taiwan in the south...

, since 2006 Ankara
Ankara
Ankara is the capital of Turkey and the country's second largest city after Istanbul. The city has a mean elevation of , and as of 2010 the metropolitan area in the entire Ankara Province had a population of 4.4 million....

, Turkey
Turkey
Turkey , known officially as the Republic of Turkey , is a Eurasian country located in Western Asia and in East Thrace in Southeastern Europe...

, since 2006 Hanoi
Hanoi
Hanoi , is the capital of Vietnam and the country's second largest city. Its population in 2009 was estimated at 2.6 million for urban districts, 6.5 million for the metropolitan jurisdiction. From 1010 until 1802, it was the most important political centre of Vietnam...

, Vietnam
Vietnam
Vietnam – sometimes spelled Viet Nam , officially the Socialist Republic of Vietnam – is the easternmost country on the Indochina Peninsula in Southeast Asia. It is bordered by China to the north, Laos to the northwest, Cambodia to the southwest, and the South China Sea –...

, since 2006 Ulanbator, Mongolia
Mongolia
Mongolia is a landlocked country in East and Central Asia. It is bordered by Russia to the north and China to the south, east and west. Although Mongolia does not share a border with Kazakhstan, its western-most point is only from Kazakhstan's eastern tip. Ulan Bator, the capital and largest...

, since 2006 Buenos Aires
Buenos Aires
Buenos Aires is the capital and largest city of Argentina, and the second-largest metropolitan area in South America, after São Paulo. It is located on the western shore of the estuary of the Río de la Plata, on the southeastern coast of the South American continent...

, Argentina
Argentina
Argentina , officially the Argentine Republic , is the second largest country in South America by land area, after Brazil. It is constituted as a federation of 23 provinces and an autonomous city, Buenos Aires...

, since 2006 Brisbane
Brisbane
Brisbane is the capital and most populous city in the Australian state of Queensland and the third most populous city in Australia. Brisbane's metropolitan area has a population of over 2 million, and the South East Queensland urban conurbation, centred around Brisbane, encompasses a population of...

, Australia
Australia
Australia , officially the Commonwealth of Australia, is a country in the Southern Hemisphere comprising the mainland of the Australian continent, the island of Tasmania, and numerous smaller islands in the Indian and Pacific Oceans. It is the world's sixth-largest country by total area...

, since 2007 Milan
Milan
Milan is the second-largest city in Italy and the capital city of the region of Lombardy and of the province of Milan. The city proper has a population of about 1.3 million, while its urban area, roughly coinciding with its administrative province and the bordering Province of Monza and Brianza ,...

, Italy
Italy
Italy , officially the Italian Republic languages]] under the European Charter for Regional or Minority Languages. In each of these, Italy's official name is as follows:;;;;;;;;), is a unitary parliamentary republic in South-Central Europe. To the north it borders France, Switzerland, Austria and...

, since 2007 Liverpool
Liverpool
Liverpool is a city and metropolitan borough of Merseyside, England, along the eastern side of the Mersey Estuary. It was founded as a borough in 1207 and was granted city status in 1880...

, United Kingdom
United Kingdom
The United Kingdom of Great Britain and Northern IrelandIn the United Kingdom and Dependencies, other languages have been officially recognised as legitimate autochthonous languages under the European Charter for Regional or Minority Languages...

, since 2007 Tokyo
Tokyo
, ; officially , is one of the 47 prefectures of Japan. Tokyo is the capital of Japan, the center of the Greater Tokyo Area, and the largest metropolitan area of Japan. It is the seat of the Japanese government and the Imperial Palace, and the home of the Japanese Imperial Family...

, Japan
Japan
Japan is an island nation in East Asia. Located in the Pacific Ocean, it lies to the east of the Sea of Japan, China, North Korea, South Korea and Russia, stretching from the Sea of Okhotsk in the north to the East China Sea and Taiwan in the south...

, since 2007 Cape Town
Cape Town
Cape Town is the second-most populous city in South Africa, and the provincial capital and primate city of the Western Cape. As the seat of the National Parliament, it is also the legislative capital of the country. It forms part of the City of Cape Town metropolitan municipality...

, South Africa
South Africa
The Republic of South Africa is a country in southern Africa. Located at the southern tip of Africa, it is divided into nine provinces, with of coastline on the Atlantic and Indian oceans...

, since 2007
Budapest
Budapest
Budapest is the capital of Hungary. As the largest city of Hungary, it is the country's principal political, cultural, commercial, industrial, and transportation centre. In 2011, Budapest had 1,733,685 inhabitants, down from its 1989 peak of 2,113,645 due to suburbanization. The Budapest Commuter...

, Hungary
Hungary
Hungary , officially the Republic of Hungary , is a landlocked country in Central Europe. It is situated in the Carpathian Basin and is bordered by Slovakia to the north, Ukraine and Romania to the east, Serbia and Croatia to the south, Slovenia to the southwest and Austria to the west. The...

, since 2007 Sydney
Sydney
Sydney is the most populous city in Australia and the state capital of New South Wales. Sydney is located on Australia's south-east coast of the Tasman Sea. As of June 2010, the greater metropolitan area had an approximate population of 4.6 million people...

, Australia
Australia
Australia , officially the Commonwealth of Australia, is a country in the Southern Hemisphere comprising the mainland of the Australian continent, the island of Tasmania, and numerous smaller islands in the Indian and Pacific Oceans. It is the world's sixth-largest country by total area...

, since 2007 Perth
Perth, Western Australia
Perth is the capital and largest city of the Australian state of Western Australia and the fourth most populous city in Australia. The Perth metropolitan area has an estimated population of almost 1,700,000....

, Australia
Australia
Australia , officially the Commonwealth of Australia, is a country in the Southern Hemisphere comprising the mainland of the Australian continent, the island of Tasmania, and numerous smaller islands in the Indian and Pacific Oceans. It is the world's sixth-largest country by total area...

, since 2007 Stjørdal
Stjørdal
is a municipality in Nord-Trøndelag county, Norway. It is part of the Stjørdalen region. The administrative centre of the municipality is the town of Stjørdal, also called Stjørdalshalsen...

, Norway
Norway
Norway , officially the Kingdom of Norway, is a Nordic unitary constitutional monarchy whose territory comprises the western portion of the Scandinavian Peninsula, Jan Mayen, and the Arctic archipelago of Svalbard and Bouvet Island. Norway has a total area of and a population of about 4.9 million...

, since 2009 Istanbul
Istanbul
Istanbul , historically known as Byzantium and Constantinople , is the largest city of Turkey. Istanbul metropolitan province had 13.26 million people living in it as of December, 2010, which is 18% of Turkey's population and the 3rd largest metropolitan area in Europe after London and...

, Turkey
Turkey
Turkey , known officially as the Republic of Turkey , is a Eurasian country located in Western Asia and in East Thrace in Southeastern Europe...

, since 2009 Guangzhou
Guangzhou
Guangzhou , known historically as Canton or Kwangchow, is the capital and largest city of the Guangdong province in the People's Republic of China. Located in southern China on the Pearl River, about north-northwest of Hong Kong, Guangzhou is a key national transportation hub and trading port...

, China
People's Republic of China
China , officially the People's Republic of China , is the most populous country in the world, with over 1.3 billion citizens. Located in East Asia, the country covers approximately 9.6 million square kilometres...

 Ragunda, Sweden
Sweden
Sweden , officially the Kingdom of Sweden , is a Nordic country on the Scandinavian Peninsula in Northern Europe. Sweden borders with Norway and Finland and is connected to Denmark by a bridge-tunnel across the Öresund....

 Vientiane
Vientiane
-Geography:Vientiane is situated on a bend of the Mekong river, which forms the border with Thailand at this point.-Climate:Vientiane features a tropical wet and dry climate with a distinct monsoon season and a dry season. Vientiane’s dry season spans from November through March. April marks the...

, Laos
Laos
Laos Lao: ສາທາລະນະລັດ ປະຊາທິປະໄຕ ປະຊາຊົນລາວ Sathalanalat Paxathipatai Paxaxon Lao, officially the Lao People's Democratic Republic, is a landlocked country in Southeast Asia, bordered by Burma and China to the northwest, Vietnam to the east, Cambodia to the south and Thailand to the west...

 Riyadh
Riyadh
Riyadh is the capital and largest city of Saudi Arabia. It is also the capital of Riyadh Province, and belongs to the historical regions of Najd and Al-Yamama. It is situated in the center of the Arabian Peninsula on a large plateau, and is home to 5,254,560 people, and the urban center of a...

, Saudi Arabia
Saudi Arabia
The Kingdom of Saudi Arabia , commonly known in British English as Saudi Arabia and in Arabic as as-Sa‘ūdiyyah , is the largest state in Western Asia by land area, constituting the bulk of the Arabian Peninsula, and the second-largest in the Arab World...

, since 2010 Madrid
Madrid
Madrid is the capital and largest city of Spain. The population of the city is roughly 3.3 million and the entire population of the Madrid metropolitan area is calculated to be 6.271 million. It is the third largest city in the European Union, after London and Berlin, and its metropolitan...

, Spain
Spain
Spain , officially the Kingdom of Spain languages]] under the European Charter for Regional or Minority Languages. In each of these, Spain's official name is as follows:;;;;;;), is a country and member state of the European Union located in southwestern Europe on the Iberian Peninsula...

, since 2010

See also


  • Large Cities Climate Leadership Group
    Large Cities Climate Leadership Group
    The Large Cities Climate Leadership Group, now officially known as the C40 is a group of cities working to reduce urban carbon emissions and to adapt to climate change. It believes it has an important role to play as cities contain around 50% of the world population, consume 75% of the world's...

  • List of metropolitan areas in Thailand by population
  • Megalopolis (city type)
    Megalopolis (city type)
    A megalopolis is typically defined as a chain of roughly adjacent metropolitan areas. The term was used by Oswald Spengler in his 1918 book, The Decline of the West, and Lewis Mumford in his 1938 book, The Culture of Cities, which described it as the first stage in urban overdevelopment and...

  • United Nations Climate Change Conference 2009
  • Thailand floods of late 2010

External links