Chao Phraya River – The legendary river of Bangkok

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Thailand is a very popular destination for Vietnamese tourists because it’s a paradise for shopping and travel easily. Thailand also attracts tourists due to its city is known as the Venice of the Eastern.

Chao Phraya River is a legendary river of Thailand. The most famous part of this river flows in the center of Bangkok which has buildings and beautiful temples on two river banks. It’s a must-see destination when traveling to Bangkok. When taking the boat on Chao Phraya River, you will have the opportunity to admire Bangkok with an ancient beauty and skyscrapers.

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About the river

Bangkok was interwoven with a system of canals in the 19th century, so the capital was dubbed as Oriental Venice. The Chao Phraya River (the river of kings) – the big river in Thailand and the canals that still exist today outline the memorabilia of traditional lifestyles derived from the river which still retained after centuries.

The river rises from the confluence of Ping River and Nan River in Nakhon Sawan Province. Chao Phraya River from the North to the South is 372 kilometers long. It flows from the Central Plains to Bangkok and into the Gulf of Thailand.  In Chainat Province, this river is divided into two parts: the main stream and Tha Chin river which flows parallelly to the main flow and flows into the Gulf of Thailand, about 35 kilometers to the west of Bangkok in Samut Sakhon. In the low-lying deltas beneath the Chainat Dam, there are many canals flowing out of the main stream, providing irrigation water for an area of about 160.000-kilometer square rice paddle field.

Chao Phraya River (via traveljapanbolg)
The Chao Phraya river divides Bangkok into two parts. One is the ancient Bangkok and the other is the modern Bangkok with many skyscrapers. Most big cities in Thailand are located on Chao Phraya river banks such as Nakhon Sawan, Uthai Thani, Chainat, Singburi, Ang Thong, Ayutthaya, Pathum Thani, Nonthaburi, Bangkok và Samut Prakan.

Travelling by boat is the best way to explore this river and admire the sightseeing on the river bank. Sitting on the boat, visitors will have a clear picture of life in Bangkok, feel the peaceful life of the residents located along the banks and see the wooden houses built on the water. Visitors will also hear about the history, architecture, and culture of the temples and the palace along the river. It is notable that the 76-centimeter high temple locates on the river. The material used to cast this tower was the remains of the wrecked ship.

The Chao Phraya River is also full of fish, like basa fish in Vietnam. This is a natural fish on the river belonging to Royal Thai, so no one catches them. Their food is the bread of visitors. Coming here, visitors have a relaxing moment when feeding bread to fish. They can drop their sandwiches at any point on the Chao Phraya River. The boat owners often take visitors to Wat Yannawa to let the visitors feed the fish. According to the introduction of the Thai guides, when dropping bread to fish, visitors can also drop the sadness of life to have a gentle and relaxed feeling.

Boats on Chao Phraya River (via mandarinoriental.com)

Boats and ferries on Chao Phraya River

There are five public boat systems operated by the Chao Phraya Shipping Company. They run from 6 am to 7.30 pm every day. At peak hours, the ‘local line’ stops at all 34 wharves, while those on other routes only stop at certain wharves. Only the Orange Flag line with the price of 15baht runs all day and the weekend. Others stop at 09:00 and start again at 16:00. The ferries usually operate in some major wharves, which will take you from the bank to the opposite bank for 3.5 baht.
The cruise ship is another option, offering the scenery to nine large berths for 150 baht ( from 09:30 to 15:00 daily). It is not bad if you are the one who likes to jump up and down but still enjoy the convenience when the train stops right where you want to go. Keep in mind that these trips run every 30 minutes, while local routes take 15 to 20 minutes. Another great option to explore this river is to rent a long tail boat (usually accompanied by a book tour to the city’s river), a yacht on the river or a yacht for dinner. Each means is a different view of this attractive river.

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