Bangkok Art Guide: Inside the Best Art Galleries in Bangkok
Hidden among the food stalls and markets of Bangkok lies a quieter, calmer side to the city. Dotted around the busy streets are a ton of gallery and exhibition spaces that are a joy to discover. Here’s our guide to the best art galleries in Bangkok!
Some of these galleries look grand and imposing from the outside while some look like little more than a trendy café. All are worth a visit so wear your comfiest flip flops and head out to explore.
Let’s start with a biggie. The Bangkok National Museum is a center of Asian culture and has plenty of historic artifacts on show, but we’re here for the art. There’s an impressive collection of Thai art as it has developed through the ages, and you can lose yourself for hours wandering the rooms and corridors, admiring both the paintings and the buildings that house them. The National Museum is set in several structures that used to make up the Wang Na Palace so expect sumptuous décor and traditional furnishings.
Location: 4 Na Phrathat Road, Phra Borom Maha Ratchawang, Phra Nakhon, Bangkok 10200
Cost: 200 baht (about $6)
Hours of Operation: 9 AM – 4 PM Wednesday to Sunday
Our next recommendation is a beautiful exhibition space that plays host to an ever-changing series of art installations and cultural shows. The gallery itself is a beautiful building flooded with natural light, perfect for showing off the art in its best possible form. This is more of a collection of small venues than one large cohesive space, with small cafes nestling beside souvenir vendors and independent exhibitors. Check the website before you come to see what’s on for your visit: http://en.bacc.or.th/.
Location: 929 Rama I Road, Wangmai, Pathumwan, Bangkok, 10330
Cost: Free, but bring some baht as you’re bound to fall in love with something!
Hours of Operation: 9:30 AM – 9 PM Tuesday to Sunday, closed Mondays
This next pick is a real gem of a place, relatively unknown to visitors but one of the best places in Bangkok to hang out and grab a beer. Jam Café Bangkok is a small, independently-run bar which effortlessly mixes music and art to create a vibrant atmosphere which is a pleasure to experience. The crowd here is young and diverse and the careers of many bands, both alternative and mainstream, have been launched from the small stage at the back of the bar. If there’s no music on then check out the film screenings or one of the art exhibitions which are frequently held here. Cool yet unpretentious, Jam Café is a real local’s secret and is a place that really shouldn’t be missed on a visit to the capital.
It’s important to note that Jam doesn’t always have exhibits going on, so be sure to check out their Facebook Page to be sure!
Location: 41 Charoenrat Road, Soi 1, Yannata, Sathorn, Bangkok 10120
Cost: Free to enter
Hours of Operation: 6 PM – Midnight Tuesday to Sunday, closed Monday
This is a chill out venue, art dealers, puppeteers and tourist destination all rolled into one. The house itself is traditional Thai style and crammed full of arts and crafts for you to take home with you- think everything from Chinese lanterns to painted cooking pots. Every afternoon at 2pm (excluding Wednesdays) there’s a puppet show performance which goes on for about an hour and gives you a good insight into old-style Thai entertainment. Browse the art on display before heading to the on-site café for a bite to eat and a browse on the free WiFi.
Location: 315 Wat Tong Salangam, Phet Kasem 28, Thanon Phet Kasem, Ps Si Charoen, Bangkok 10160
Cost: Free to enter
Hours of Operation: 09:30 AM – 6 PM
Bangkok Art Galleries are Seemingly Everywhere
The Bangkok art scene is thriving, and a trip to any one of these galleries and cafes will give you an insight into the cultural life of the capital. If you only have time to visit one then make it Jam Café as you can get your art, music and drinks all in one place!