Phra Khanong

Mom and pop shops and sidewalk stalls downriver from Bangkok's bustling center.

East of central Bangkok, Phra Khanong thrives downriver from the city's fast pace. Phra Khanong replaces the urban center's high-rises with wooden docks and Buddhist temples. Mostly residential and distinctly casual, Phra Khanong's inhabitants are apt to maintain mom-and-pop markets and slurp noodles from a sidewalk stall where the owner knows their name. Although the neighborhood is near upscale areas like Thong Lo, Phra Khanong's pockmarked sidewalks feel more down-to-earth compared to its cleaner, modern counterparts.

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On the Map

Phra Khanong is bordered by Bang Na, Suan Luang, Prawet, and Klong Toey

Suvarnabhumi Airport: 25 minute drive or 1 hour by public transit and Airport Link Express
Siam BTS Skytrain Station: 20 minutes by pubic transit
Khao San Road: 45 minutes by public transit
Asok BTS Skytrain Station: 15 minutes by public transit

  • Public transit is Easy
  • Having a car is Possible

Phra Khanong: Residential Along the River

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Phra Khanong feels like Bangkok before high-rises were built, when seasons were measured by the height of the river.

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A few miles downriver from Sathorn and Silom, Thais commute into the center by skytrain.

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In Phra Khanong, however, most of the neighborhood's activity centers on the river just as it has for generations. Its boats remain a favored form of transport.

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Phra Khanong's ardor for the past doesn't translate to strict allegiance.

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The neighborhood evolves with the times. It fuses past traditions with present trends.

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Spas and food stalls offer contemporary amenities and fusion flavors.

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Temples like Wat Tai Temple remain central to the neighborhood's identity.

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Phra Khanong finds the balance.

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The area is not touristy which is great with a mix of traditional and modern markets. We felt safe and secure at all times and the Thai people were so lovely."


Visited in 2013

Day to Night Markets In Everyday Bangkok

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Like most areas in Bangkok, Phra Khanong's food stalls and flea markets cultivate an active street life.

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Street food remains fundamental to the area's identity.

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Papaya salad and noodle bowls are everyday staples.

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Day turns to night in Phra Khanong and still its stalls are open.

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Phra Khanong: The Endurance of Mom-and-Pop Shops

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Phra Khanong sets itself apart from nearby areas like Thong Lo.

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While Thong Lo feels ultra-urbanized and upscale, Phra Khanong celebrates local mom-and-pop shops and family-run businesses.

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It's hard to find places like them in Phra Khanong's surrounding areas.

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Off the River In Phra Khanong

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Phra Khanong lacks many of the skyscraping apartment complexes commonly found throughout Bangkok.

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Instead, the neighborhood's homes reflect contemporary influences and modern amenities.

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Apartment buildings in Phra Khanong feature sleek pools and lush courtyards.

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Airbnb works with local photographers to capture the spirit of neighborhoods all around the world. The photography on this page includes work by:

Nic Dunlop

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Nic Dunlop is a Bangkok-based photographer and writer represented by Panos Pictures in London. In 1999, he received an award from the John Hopkins University for Excellence in International Journalism for his discovery and exposure of Pol Pot's chief executioner Comrade Duch, a story told in his book, 'The Lost Executioner'. He also co-directed the Emmy nominated HBO film 'Burma Soldier'. His new book, 'Brave New Burma' spans 20 years of his photographs of Burma's crisis.