Summer Palace Bang Pa-In - Thailand

Two hours north of Bangkok, situated on the banks of the mighty Chaopraya River, this iconic 17th century palace complex was once the favourite summer residence of the Thai royal family and their court. While still occasionally visited by the king, the public can now enjoy strolling through beautiful parks, pavilions and palaces of Bang Pa-In.

Royal splendour and vibrant gardens

Following the Burmese raids of the late 18th century, the palace complex lay empty and abandoned for almost 100 years, until King Mongkut began the process of restoring Bang Pa-In to its former glory. You’ll now find a magnificent site containing opulent buildings – some with vivid Chinese-style red and yellow decorative features, others showcasing a more European influence – as well as exotic manicured gardens, tranquil ornamental ponds and topiary elephants. Take a shady seat in the Aisawan Thiphya, a peaceful floating pavilion said to be a popular poetry-reading spot for the royals. Admire the view from the Ho Withun Thasana, a colourful look-out tower boasting fabulous views of the grounds. Take a moment to pay your respects at the marble memorials to Queen Sunanda and several royal children, complete with a poem written by her heartbroken king.

Top Tips from our Experts


Destination Manager

“On hot days, you can rent an electric golf cart to get around the sprawling park. You’ll see more and enjoy a cooling breeze as you go.”


Destination Executive

“Look out for the beautifully carved dragon in the throne room (Phra Thinang Wehart Chamrun). It’s a masterful, intricate example of traditional Thai craftsmanship.”