When we first started traveling to Bangkok I always felt intimidated by the Bangkok street food. Then, two things happened: First, we took a Taste of Thailand Food Tour. Second, we lived in Bangkok for about 18 months. In this Bangkok food blog post, I will share how Taste of Thailand Food Tours truly offers a top-notch Bangkok culinary tour. But, I will also tell you about how this particular Bangkok food tour gave me more confidence to understand what a taste of Bangkok, Thailand, is all about – even when we lived there!
What is a Taste of Thailand Food Tour
From the moment we started our Thailand culinary tour in Bangkok I knew we were in for something different. First, we had two tour guides, a local Thai and an “expat” who lived in Bangkok almost all of her life. We explored the Bangrak neighborhood. At the time of the tour, we had never really explored this portion of Bangkok. It’s so far away from the more touristy areas of Bangkok most known to travelers – Sukhumvit and Khao San Road. It’s a neighborhood that still is not on the top of the list of places to visit in Bangkok. Little did we know that over the 18 months we lived in Bangkok, this neighborhood became almost like our backyard.
Even while living in Bangkok, I wrote about Bangkok food, but always thought there were Thai food blogs that understood the local cuisine better than I did. But, our Taste of Thailand Food Tour did a great job of educating us on Bangkok street food, and to help us look at Thai food as more than just Pad Thai. I would certainly recommend it as one of the top things to do in Bangkok.
Check out our video review of Taste of Thailand Food Tours:
What we ate on our Bangkok Food Tour
Our small group explored the Bang Rak neighborhood, which lies just to the east of the Chao Phraya river. Referred to as the village of love, I certainly fell in love with the city all over again on this Bangkok food tour. And, as much as we started the tour so close to some of the top Bangkok attractions, we were about to explore some back alleys, off the typical Bangkok sightseeing path.
The Best Food in Bangkok for Breakfast
We started our Bangkok tour just under the Saphan Taksin BTS station, where we learned a little about Bangkok and Thai history, before making our first pitstop, just around the corner.
We stopped at a street stall selling curry puffs, called kalipap, in all different flavors. I really wanted to go with an old standby, like curry potato, but actually chose the black sesame seed puff, trying to be more adventurous. It was amazing, with a sweetness to the sesame seeds offset by the savory flavor of the crust. Already I was pleased with the tour for offering me foods I have never tried before. This is a very typical Thai street food eaten for breakfast on-the-go.
Next, as we made our way more deeply into the Bang Rak neighborhood, we stopped at a roadside tea cart for an icy Thai iced tea. It was, a little embarrassingly, my first of this trip to Thailand. Called Cha Yen, it was sweet and creamy, just like I remembered. When living in Bangkok, I did not drink a lot of Thai iced tea. It’s a perfect taste of Bangkok for travelers, but for me, it was a little too sweet to drink on a regular basis.
Learning Thailand Food Culture at a Local Bangkok Market
We continued the Bangkok city tour as we made our way to the local wet market. I love visiting fresh markets in Asia. It’s one of my favorite things about booking culinary tours – a visit to the local market. This one was a little smaller than others, but hosted all of the fresh produce, meats, and seafood found in typical Thai food. This was also the first time we were introduced to the Tom Yum packet, a ball of ingredients, including chili, garlic, and lemongrass, used to make the famous Tom Yum soups. It’s even possible to find this in Thai supermarkets.
Near the wet market was a simple shop front, I don’t even remember there being a sign. But, this shop is the go-to place for fresh, homemade chili pastes, made with lemongrass, galangal, cumin, coriander, coconut, and other spices. Although we could not taste, because it was all raw, the colors and smells made me salivate. I knew Thai curry was a must eat in Bangkok. Before traveling to Thailand, though, I would not have known there were so many different types of curry paste.
What to Eat in Bangkok? Thai Snacks and Sweets
After visiting the market and curry stall, our Bangkok walking tour focused on some pre-lunch Thai snacks. We stopped at a stall that sold traditional fish cakes, called tod man pla, dipped in a fish sauce. I like anything fried, and although I tend to shy away from many Asian fish dishes, afraid that they will be too fishy, these were simply perfect.
A late-morning sweets stop allowed us to taste a few authentic, traditional Thai desserts, a Bangkok local food that I still don’t fully understand. I am still not sure what we ate, but it involved a lot of sticky rice and coconut and steamed bananas. We also tried a golden drop, made of egg yolk and flour, with jasmine and rose water. The golden drop is inspired by the Portuguese influence on Bangkok, of which I was unaware. This was a surprising stop on our Bangkok street food tour.
At a traditional Chinese shop house, that has been run by the same family for over 80 years, we tasted an herbal drink, nam comb, that is said to keep people young and healthy. It was certainly bitter, and as much as I could force myself to drink a glass a day to keep myself young, the owner of the shop drinks at least 4 glasses a day! They say “the more bitter, the better for you,” so this drink must be amazing for you! A stop like this is not something you often see recommended on a Bangkok food blog.
Best Thai Food For Lunch – Bangkok Food Tour
I was quite happy to cleanse my palette at our next stop, a Chinese duck house. This was our “lunch” stop where we tried roasted duck with wanton noodles and roasted duck rice. We were at one of the best places to eat in Bangkok for Chinese food, and you could tell, it was packed with lunch goers all slurping down a little soup and dreamy duck filled wontons. This was a surprise stop for us as I assumed we would be focused on the best Thai food in Bangkok, not Chinese food.
As if our “lunch” was not enough, we continued on the Bangkok food tour for even more tasty eats. After meandering through the Bang Rak neighborhood a bit more, and learning about the traditional way of life that still exists in the back alleys, we stopped for Issan cuisine, inspired from the northeastern areas of Thailand. This is the Bangkok Thai food that is a little harder to find for typical tourists.
We tried laab moo, one of my favorites, which is a salad of minced pork, ground rice, spring onions, and mint, along with a papaya salad, or som tum, made with grated, unripe green papayas, and other shredded vegetables with fish sauce, lime, garlic, chili, dried shrimp, and peanuts.
Together, these two dishes are what I learned Thai food to be. Before spending time in Thailand I knew Pad Thai and other similar dishes, but the minced pork salad and papaya salad, with their perfect combinations of sweet and spicy, have come to identify Thai food for me. It is some darn good food in Bangkok, and so much more than Pad Thai.
What I loved about this Bangkok Thailand Food Tour was that although we have been to Thailand so many times before, we still tried dishes we had never tasted. And, at the Issan restaurant, we tried Lemongrass salad, or yum takai. Yum indeed.
As a dessert before our final stop, we tried turtle egg snacks, which no, are not deep fried turtle eggs, but instead, are filled with potato and taro. They are only called turtle eggs for their shape. No turtles were hurt in the making of this food to eat in Bangkok.
We finished up with a green curry and coconut ice cream, served in the Thai royal fashion, at a restaurant run by descendants of the Thai royal family!
Bangkok Thailand Tour for Foodies
We have been on a lot of food tours, and they each were enjoyable in their own way. But the Taste of Thailand version of the Bangkok food tour was just something special. Our guide was peppy and knowledgeable, having lived in Bangkok since she was six, and the entire production was handled so professionally. I loved my day walking Bang Rak, and learning where to eat in Bangkok!
Looking for Other Thailand Food Travel Experiences?
|Tour||Duration||Price From||Book It!|
|4 Day Foodie Tour of Bangkok||4 Days||$378|
|Private Organic Farm Tour & Cooking Class||8.5 Hours||$191|
|Speakeasy Bar Crawl Through Thonglor||6 Hours||$175|
|Night Food Tour by Tuk Tuk||4 Hours||$65|
|Thai Fruit & Vegetable Carving Class||6 Hours||$148|
|Half Day Thai Cooking Class||4 Hours||$45|
|Bangkok Food Tour||3.5 Hours||$51|
*This post contains compensated links. Find more info in my DISCLAIMER.
We were hosted by Taste of Thailand Food Tours, but as always, my opinions and my yummy sounds are all my own. The Village of Love Food Tour is a Bangrak food tour and generally costs only $45 per person! Learn what other travelers say about the Taste of Thailand Tour on TripAdvisor.
Where to Stay in Bangkok
Mandarin Oriental, a luxury option, on the Chao Phraya river, and very historic, with rooms from $500 a night. Grab a cocktail at the famous Bamboo Bar and use the hotel riverboat for transport (Check out Trip Advisor Reviews here | Book here)
Sofitel So Bangkok, a contemporary option, away from the noise of Sukhumvit, but still centrally located, with rooms from $160 a night. Their rooftop bar offers a view over Bangkok that cannot be found anywhere else. (Check out Trip Advisor Reviews here | Book here)
Pullman G Bangkok, another contemporary value option, again away from the noise of Sukhumvit, with rooms from $115 a night. They offer one of the best burgers in Bangkok downstairs and a great cocktail bar with views upstairs. (Check out Trip Advisor Reviews here | Book here)
Pin It!! Street Food Tour Bangkok
Amber Hoffman, food and travel writer behind With Husband In Tow, is a recovering attorney and professional eater, with a passion for finding new food and drink destinations. She lives with her husband, Eric, in Girona, Catalonia, Spain. Together over the last 20 years, they have traveled to over 70 countries. Amber is the author of the Food Traveler’s Guide to Emilia Romagna.