Bangkok is pretty much on anyone’s list when it comes to places to travel to in Thailand. Even if you're just staying for a weekend, you have about a few thousand places to stay ... so which hostel or hotel do you choose?
That’s where our volunteers who live in Thailand for a semester come in (thank you ILP Thailand volunteers!). Every ILP volunteer has vacation time and every weekend off, so it’s pretty much a guarantee that a trip to Bangkok will happen at least once during your semester, maybe even twice.
If you like the sound of that ....
you might want to know more about volunteering in Thailand
Our volunteers are college-aged, and usually with a college budget, but in Asia, just a few dollars can get you a pretty nice place to stay. Each one of these spots come recommended by volunteers (plus you can read the Hostelworld reviews for more info).
We even have a bit about those dreamy hotels that have a rooftop pool to swim in if you are feeling a bit spendy.
Our Favorite Budget Bangkok Hostels
We’ve included a price range next to a bit about the hostel, and have a link for booking. Since this city is so huge, we also outlined how far each hostel is from the Grand Palace, which is absolutely something you should see, to just give you an idea of where these places are.
Niras Bankoc Cultural Hostel
“AMAZING!!” is how one ILP volunteer described this hotel. Niras Bankok Cultural Hostel comes very highly rated on Hostelworld, with travelers all over mentioning its great location, and really helpful staff (also, another spot with free breakfast, though you will have to pay for hot drinks). It has a cool, Old Bangkok vibe we’re also in love with.
Find this hostel about 6-minutes away (via taxi) from the Grand Palace — It’s directly west of this tourist hot spot.
We have had several ILP groups stay here and love it. Volunteers have commented on the helpful staff that helped them book a tour to the floating markets, plus this place has free breakfast which we all love. Good One Hostel also has a cool area to hang out up on the 7th floor and other services (like a laundry service).
This hostel is about a 15-minute car ride to the northwest to reach the Grand Palace
Yim Yam Hostel & Garden Bangkok
Yim Yam hostel is a pick for volunteers looking for a spot with a good location, helpful staff and a free breakfast (that’s the real deal maker right there). Yim Yam also does a free brunch on Sundays. This hostel is right by the skytrain which can help you get around the big city, and they have an English speaking staff to help you out even more.
To help you out, it’s about an 11-minute taxi ride from the Grand Palace, heading west.
Live It Up Asok
Fun and vibrant, Live It Up Asok is also very conveniently located by a handful of transportation spots, with the BTS and MRT right outside. Past guests mention that the door to this hostel is not on the main drag, but down one of the alleys, so be sure to follow signs to help you find your way. This is another favorite place to stay, according to our ILP volunteers (also, be sure to visit the Terminal 21 food court; it’s just a couple minutes away by walking and has some great places to eat.
In a taxi, you’ll drive west to hit the Grand Palace and get there in about 22 minutes.
Comfy Bed Hostel
You can kinda get the idea based on the name, but this hostel boasts some comfy beds and other perks like being close to transportation options, but far enough away from the busy city that rooms stay relatively quiet. It's found very close to temple, Khaosan road, and the nearby bus stop. The staff also has connections to help you book any tours you're interested in Bangkok. Book here.
Happy Station Hostel
We've had groups visit Bangkok twice in their semester who stayed here both visits. There are a few perks that make this a top choice, like a restaurant where you can get breakfast or dinner (handy if you want to eat before exploring, or come home and know a place you can get dinner). The hostel is found on edge of Chinatown, near Bangkok’s main train station (it's also close to the MRT Blue Line “Hualamphong” station. Book here.
Everyday Bangkok Hostel
With a chill vibe and some perks like an on-site cafe, Everyday Bangkok Hostel has a score of rave reviews (making it a popular place to stay). The hostel is located near the Patpong area of the city, where you can find a handful of Japanese restaurants. It's also close to the MRT station (about a 5-minute walk).
In a taxi, you're about a 12-minute drive away from the Grand Palace (and the main attractions of the city).
+ Airbnbs And Hotels
A Few Hotel Recommendations
We have had some volunteers stay at the 4-start hotel, Galleria 12. It’s a pretty luxurious and lovely place to stay if you want to spend more than what you'd spend for a hostel.
Other groups have booked at Royal River Hotel. As you might have guessed, the hotel is situated right on the west banks of the Chao Phraya River (it lends to some pretty views out of a few rooms at the hotel). It's a little bit out of the way of some attractions (the Grand Palace is a 20+ minute drive) just as a heads up.
We Love These Airbnbs
This is another Airbnb past groups have stayed at (and recommend). It kind of has a hostel-style setup, with private rooms with bunks for your group, but you book on Airbnb instead.
This condo has a couple of bedrooms, a teeny kitchen, and a couch for a movie night (plus, we really really really like the pool here, can't you tell?) Book it on Airbnb here.
Best Places For Bangkok Rooftop Pools
If you’re really looking for a bucket list adventure, you can hang out and grab dinner above the pulsing city of Bangkok at a rooftop restaurant, or take a swim in one of their rooftop pools. Most hotels need you to be a guest at the hotel in order to use their pool, but we have our favorite recommendations below if you’d like to make that happen (just look at the picture from So Sofitel … you are going to want to make that happen).
Bangkok Marriott Hotel Sukhumvit
Take a dip in this pool, that's only a few dozen floors up from Thailand's capital city at the Bangkok Market Hotel Sukhumvit. Their rooftop pool is for guests only but does give you a dizzying view of surrounding skyscrapers.
Nightly rates range, but you can find a few rooms for $180+ USD (these can be shared with 1-2 other people to help lower the cost).
SO Sofitel Bangkok
Swim amongst the skyscrapers by staying at the So Sofitel Bangkok hotel. Being a guest here means access to their top tier pool, which gives you a whole view of Bangkok spilling out below you at dizzying heights.
You can get a variety of rooms, but one option sleeps three and is about $150 - $200 USD per night, but you can spend triple that if you upgrade to more luxurious suites.
This hotel is a 15-minute taxi ride to the Grand Palace (it sits southeast of this tourist spot).
Dying to take a dip in one of these pools, or spend a weekend (or two) running around Bangkok?
We don't blame you, this place is dreamy. Good thing we can help you with the whole "live in Thailand for a semester" part of your plan. Get your questions answered about being a part-time English teacher (no experience necessary) and more about our Thailand program by chatting with someone who's volunteered with us before: