Authentic street food in Bangkok is easy to find if you know where to look. We explored Bangkoks outer districts in search of authentic street food in Bangkok and found Thon Buri. What a treat!
Experience real Bangkok
You’ll read this article like most of us visit Bangkok. You’ll skim from one headline to another looking for highlights.
We search Google for, “The best places to visit in Bangkok”, “What to do in Bangkok for three days” and rely on anonymous bloggers to answer the question, “is Bangkok safe”.
When you arrive in the city, you’ll ride from one BTS train stop to another. Making sure you tick off every destination on the top-ranked Google result for “Authentic street food in Bangkok” or “A Guide to Bangkok’s Thonburi District“.
Below the “Fly-over” train system, there is something else happening that isn’t in the blog posts.
Something that can’t be defined, only experienced. The great masterpiece of this city is being spun and from the elevated train, as we go from highlight to highlight, we miss it all.
You see, only the spinner knows how all of the threads fit together to create Bangkoks tapestry.
What if you could catch a glimpse of how two threads in this giant metropolis connect to one another?
I dare you to get lost in Bangkok. Wander canals. Venture into its outer districts. Walk for hours.
This blog post talks about my experiences wandering in Bangkok and a few of the places I’d visit the next time I go back. It’s not a “Best of” list, but these experiences were the closest I’ve come to see the real Bangkok. These are the places I would visit if I only had 3 days in Bangkok, wanted to have the best street food in Bangkok, and see the different districts. These areas are safe for travellers in Bangkok and easily accessible by BTS.
Districts to find street food in Bangkok
Let’s start with where to get lost and find authentic street food in Bangkok. Enter Thon Buri.
Fifty districts make up the city, and they are subdivided into one hundred and eighty subdistricts. I chose to explore the sub-district of Talat Phlu in the district of Thonburi.
I chose Thonburi based on a recommendation from an Instagram friend from Bangkok. She said that the area was a good place to experience what local life was like.
Thonburi can be reached in several ways, MRT, BTS, Grab, and bus. From Siam BTS station it is about twenty minutes to the Pho Nimit stop. The MRT will take you more directly to Thonburi, but I don’t think you will want to miss out on the walk between Pho Nimit and Thon Buri. Personally, my favourite is taking the bus to Thonburi from Bangkok!
After you have exited the BTS at Pho Nimit, look to your right, and you should see buildings no more than three stories high with winding roads heading in every direction. If you look to your left, you will see high-rise apartment complexes.
Bangkok BTS | Hotels, Shopping Malls, Restaurants, Tourist Attractions near Bangkok Skytrain
We actually stayed at the massive IDEO apartment complex on the left-hand side of the road. From our window, you could see all the way across Thonburi village. It’s a pretty stark example at the changing face of Bangkok.
Walking through Thonburi to find street food in Bangkok
I always put my camera away when I wander into neighbourhoods. I would recommend you do the same. If you’re looking to experience a place, it should be through your eyes, not your lens, that’s my opinion.
From the Pho Nimit station, walk on the right or north side of the road. You should be facing away from Bangkok city. Look for a street called Sri Thoet Thai 21 and turn right.
Put this destination in your maps app, ถนน เทอดไท Bang Yi Ruea, Thonburi, Bangkok 10600, Thailand. If you don’t have a sim card, you can download a copy of Google Maps for Offline mode. Now, put away your phone and just enjoy walking through this neighbourhood. Just continue in the direction of the road that you turned down.
The road will wind around quite a bit, and please be cautious of cars and scooters. I would recommend that you start your exploration in the area a one and a half hours before sunset. This way it’s a bit safer from vehicles, and you get to experience the city after dark when everyone comes out.
Remember, you’re here to see real life. This is authentic learning in Bangkok and a great place to start is a food class. Take your time and wander down canals and side streets. Take in the differences between how we live in the Western world and Thonburi. Catch a glimpse that few ever get to see.
Eating in Thonburi And Finding Local Produce in Thon Buri
The address I gave you to put into your phone is actually my favourite eatery in Thonburi. To be honest, I’m not sure what it’s called but the name in Thai is, ถนน เทอดไท. You’re at the right place if you see chickens hanging in the windows. This is not a good place if you are a vegetarian! This is authentic street food in Bangkok and a great place to find local produce in Thon Buri.
If you’re like me, you don’t speak Thai and in these neighbourhoods, this provides a few complications. At ถนน เทอดไท simply point to either the fried or untried chicken and then grab a seat. They will bring you a bowl of soup (sometimes with liver) and your meal. They serve Pepsi products if you’d like a soda.
The sauce on the table is incredible! Depending on your spice tolerance level, I would drizzle a fair bit on your chicken. They will also bring you more soup if you are keen, so don’t be shy!
On the walls, you will see pictures of the history of the proprietors of the shop. This place has been here, serving this one dish for an awfully long time. Judging from the constant local traffic, they are doing a great job! If you’r looking to authentic learning in Bangkok this will give you a slice of history.
Price for dinner at ถนน เทอดไท: 60 Baht for two people.
If you’ve come at mid-day, there is typically a line at ถนน เทอดไท. If you’re not keen to wait for a table, there is a food cart I recommend.
Food Cart in Thonburi
The food cart is located in front of the Krungsri bank until about 1 pm, generally every day. The address is 522 Thoet Thai Rd. I pulled a street view from 2018 and cart was still in the exact place, so hopefully, nothing changes.
When you get there, look around at what others are eating and point to a dish you would like. They make incredible soup! On my last visit there I sat with a lady who said she was eighty years old. Apparently, the food is pretty good for people of all ages!
The soup is not very spicy so you can add whatever flavour you like. That being said, I would recommend some sort of spice as it helps to bring out the taste. We tried a number of other dishes across Bangkok that were wonderful outside of the Thonburi district.
Price for lunch a the food cart: 30 Baht for 1 Person
Night market – Finding local produce in Thon Buri
My final recommendation is for those of you who came after dark. There is a night market located at 938 Thoet Thai Rd.
While I don’t have any specific recommendation of the stall to eat at, I wouldn’t hesitate from eating anywhere. There are also several dessert places in the market or in the surrounding areas that are fantastic. If you’re looking for local produce in Thon Buri to take home and prepare this is a good place to start.
Grab a seat in the back and enjoy people watching. There is also a toilet in the back and a hand washing station.
From here, make your way back to wherever you’re staying. If your comfortable, you can walk back to Pho Nimit station or just use Grab. I’ve walked back to Pho Nimit at least a dozen times after dark with no issues. However, scooters and cars can be a little scary on the tight lanes.
Why did I come to Thonburi?
Hopefully, you’re like me, and you wanted to see something real in Bangkok. This is how local people live in the districts outside of Bangkok. This is the food they eat and the things they do every day. There are lots of street food options in Bangkok and places like Jay Fai (From Netflix) are incredible. Unfortunately, due to the popularity of these places, they lose the authenticity of Thonburi.
If you want to experience this every day, as I did, you can also stay in the area. I stayed at an Airbnb (check out our Chiang Mai review) in the IDEO apartment building. From here, I was able to explore the district for two weeks, and I can promise you it was worth it!
If you do stay in the area I would recommend a few other places to eat:
In front of the 7-11 are several food stalls. I ate at this food stall in the picture nearly every day. Everything is good on the menu, and the cart is thereafter 12p every day.
Down a canal and under a bridge is another good option. Again I have no idea what the name of the place is but here is the address, 644 Ratchadaphisek Rd, Bukkhalo, Thonburi, Bangkok 10600, Thailand. Again just point to what someone else is eating, and you’ll be good to go.
There is another night market located at, 132 Soi Ratchadaphisek 15 which serves up an assortment of wonderful local dishes.
I hope you enjoy seeing some of the threads that make up the tapestry of Bangkok. If you found this guide useful, please let me know! If you want to see something else, leave a comment.