Bangkok Feature


Bangkok Dinner Cruises

Though they're definitely touristy, lunch or dinner cruises on the Chao Phraya River are worth considering. They're a great way to see the city at night, although the food is often subpar. You might even want to skip the dinner, just have drinks, and dine at a real Thai restaurant afterward. Two-hour cruises on modern boats or refurbished rice barges include a buffet or set-menu dinner, and often feature live music and sometimes a traditional dance show. Many companies also offer a less expensive lunch cruise, though the heat can make these a little unpleasant. In general, it's wise to reserve a few days in advance, and reservations are a must for some of the more popular dinner cruises.

Horizon. Departing each evening at 7:30 pm, the Horizon costs B2,300 per person. Four days a week there's also a bus trip to Ayutthaya with a cruise back for B1,950. It departs at 8 am and returns around 5 pm. Shangri-La Hotel, Charoen Krung (New Rd.), 89 Soi Wat Suan Plu, Bang Rak, Bangkok, 10500. 02/236–7777.

Manohra Song. The most beautiful dinner boat on the river, the Manohra Song offers both lunch and dinner cruises. It's smaller than most of the others, with less space to walk around. A mediocre set-price dinner is B1,990 per person. Marriott Royal Garden Riverside Hotel, 257/1–3 Charoen Nakhorn, Thonburi, Bangkok, 10600. 02/477–0770.

Yok Yor. Departing each evening at 8 pm, the Yok Yor is a little like a floating restaurant. The boat ride costs B140, and the food is ordered à la carte—which in this case is a plus. 885 Somdet Chao Phraya 17, Klong San, Bangkok, 10600. 02/863–0565.

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