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Day Trip from Bangkok– Thai Puppets, Temples and Crafts at a Traditional Artist Village

Day Trip from Bangkok– Thai Puppets, Temples and Crafts at a Traditional Artist Village

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Even in ancient cities like Bangkok, where the old and new blend so effortlessly, it can be hard to find traditions from the past that are still in practice today. But a quick long boat or taxi ride from Bangkok takes you to a traditional cultural village where artists create, children dance and puppets come to life– all set against the backdrop of crumbling temples and a canal lined with wooden homes on stilts.

I hesitate to use the cliché, but a day trip to the cultural village of Khlong Bang Luang really does offer something for everyone. I can confirm that shoppers will love the vintage bric-a-brac and authentic artisan crafts. Non-shoppers can while away hours touring the sites or strolling along the canal. Culture buffs can hang out in the artists center and watch a show or two (the puppet show here is one of the few places left to watch authentic Thai puppets in Thailand).

long boat ride tour bangkok canal river

Most tourists arrive here via long boat from Bangkok.

1. Tour the Temples

crumbling temples thailand bangkok asia

The faded elegance of the temples here only adds to the romantic atmosphere.


2. Shop for Artisan Crafts, Vintage Goods and Bric-a-Brac

You won’t find tawdry souvenir shops here. Shop from the street cart vendors walking the grounds, the craft stands in the artists house, or the small vintage shops facing the canal.

thai broom vendor street cart

A vendor sells traditional Thai brooms.

crafts thai

Crafts from the street stalls.

fish food canals Thailand

Feed the fish in the canals with this colorful fish food.


thailand bangkok vintage antique shop

This is every vintage lovers dream– a slightly chaotic, random assortment of bric a brac– who knows what treasures might be uncovered here.

thai paintings fish original art

Original paintings for sale in the artist house.

thai tin lunch boxes

Colorful tin lunch boxes.


thai artist paint

You can watch the artists here create pieces right in front of you– works generally take about thirty minutes.


3. Join the Local Thai Community for a Snack and a Show

I was so busy exploring the canals and vintage shops that I completely missed the Thai puppet show. But I did manage to catch the end of the Thai dance performance (pro tip: get there early to snag a good seat).


card game thai

The artist house is very much a local hang out, where tourists mingle with locals for a game of cards, tea or a snack.

thai streetfood vendor dumplings

Come hungry– the vendor food stalls all looked incredible.

thai dog bangkok

Cute pooch waits patiently for leftovers.

Have you been to Khlong Bang Luang? Tell us about your favorite experience!

My visit to Thailand was hosted by the Tourism Authority of Thailand.




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Sunday 10th of April 2016

Love the article, thanks for sharing... and the images are great...


Friday 21st of August 2015

As parttimetraveler mentioned above, your colors are so stunning! Looks like a treasure trove for nicknacks and souvenirs.


Monday 13th of July 2015

Love the colors in your photos! You've captured the experience of being there brilliantly. (Let's go back?)

Kristin Francis

Tuesday 14th of July 2015

aww thanks! Yes that was such an amazing trip!!