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Bangkok History, Thailand

The city of Bangkok was initially used as a tiny trading center and port on the west bank of the Chao Phraya River. It earlier used to serve the Ayutthaya Kingdom which was the precursor of modern Thailand and ruled from 1350 to 1767. It is often believed that the name of the city came from either Bang Makok where bang was the Central Thai name meant for towns and/or villages situated on the bank of a river. Makok was the Thai name of Spondias pinnata, Spondias mombin or Elaeocarpus hygrophilus which are plants. Another view is that the name originated from Bang Koh, ko which means “island.'

Before Bangkok became the capital of Thailand in 1782 and the center of the Thai government, many cities and states formed loosely organized principalities in Thailand. In fact, military strength of a province determined as to which state was ruler within the larger area.

With the aim of unifying the Thai states into a unitary nation, government officials and the Thai people invited Phra Buddha Yodea Chulaloke to become the first king of the Chakri period. Chulaloke got famous by the name as King Rama I.

King Rama promoted Buddhism along with encouraging the other religions of his people. Thus, he carried out renovation of the old temples and building of new ones. This became one of the important traditions that needed to be followed by every king ruling the kingdom. Hence, the history of Bangkok is depicted in all its important palaces, temples, building, and monuments.

After the Ayutthaya Empire lost to the Burmese Kingdom in 1767, Taksin was declared king. Taksin established a new capital in the area which was then called Bangkok. The place was later known as Thonburi. After Taksin's reign ended in 1782, the capital was reconstructed on the east bank of the river by King Buddha Yodfa Chulaloke and the city. The reigns of King Mongkut and King Chulalongkorn brought about an improvement in the infrastructure of the city. The city saw array of development and modernization since then. It has become the economic hub of Thailand.

The city was then given the formal name which became shortened to its current official name, Krung Thep Maha Nakhon. The name meant city of angels. It continued to be known as Bangkok. The name became famous among the tourists and the government used it as the official English name of the city.

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  • MadSuhFrom Koh Tao via Chumpon to Bangkok
    review by MadSuh posted more then 30 days ago
    The last few days on Koh Tao were beautiful. We met some nice people there, a transvestite who was doing Maria's hair and gave Irina a face mask and manicure. Some nice people we met over at our favorite restaurant and some people we met while being out at night. The most fun part was probably...
  • MadSuhStill in Bangkok
    review by MadSuh posted more then 30 days ago
    So I picked up my Irina and Maria at the airport and then we headed for the first culture shock. I guess we did stop at our hotel first, where we took a quick nap. I also had to run back to my old hotel where I had left my airplane tickets to Krabi. By the way, if you are ever going there,...
  • MadSuhArriving back to Bangkok
    review by MadSuh posted more then 30 days ago
    Finally I am back in Bangkok. My trip was alright, I was flying with LTU and it turned our to be very convenient. One thing that was funny was that now they charge €60 for the Emergency seats, how funny. "Would you like an upgrade to Emergency, Sir?" How funny is that. Anyhow, I...
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Bangkok City Ratings

  • Rating91%
    City Rank71
  • History & Culture: rated for 90%
  • Night Life & Entertainment: rated for 100%
  • Family & Fun: rated for 40%
  • Outdoors Activities: rated for 20%
  • Food: rated for 100%
  • Sightseeing: rated for 100%
  • Shopping: rated for 100%
  • Public Transportation: rated for 90%
  • Must visit this place: rated for 100%
Bangkok is one of the "must visit" tourist destinations in the world. This rank is based on what other travelers shared about their experiences in Bangkok
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