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Bangkok On Nut is a neighborhood that is still a bit of a hidden gem. Deemed ‘too far from the city center’ for some visitors, the district is actually well-connected to Bangkok attractions by the BTS Sukhumvit Line. Boasting numerous restaurants, craft beer bars, fascinating markets, nearby nature and a handful of sights, On Nut shouldn’t be missed!
How We Discovered On Nut Bangkok
Bangkok is a remarkable city…but it can be overwhelming. The city is massive, traffic is chaotic, and the heat can be downright unbearable. We think the key to enjoying the city is staying in a neighborhood that provides a reprieve from all the commotion. Accommodations with a pool, easy access to public transport and nearby restaurants – while keeping it within a reasonable budget – are essential. On Nut in Upper Sukhumvit ticks all the boxes…and offers even more than we expected.
Sukhumvit Road extends more than 300 miles (488.4 km) across Thailand; from Bangkok to almost the Cambodian border. A main Bangkok thoroughfare, Sukhumvit commences in the city center and wraps around the city to the east before turning south to the water and following the coastline all the way to Trat. The streets – or sois – that extend from the main road are numbered (beginning with Sukhumvit Soi 1 in the city center to well into the 100s south of On Nut).
Because the road is so long, it is often referred to in sections – Lower, Mid and Upper Sukhumvit – and the names correspond with the associated sois. Although there are no formal district lines, Lower Sukhumvit runs from Soi 1 to about Soi 24, Mid Sukhumvit is from Soi 24 to Soi 45 and Upper Sukhumvit – which includes On Nut – runs from Soi 45 south to the Bang Na BTS station.
Bangkok On Nut
The On Nut Bangkok BTS Station once marked the end of the Skytrain line. The end-of-the-line district was off the radar for many people, including developers. Traditional houses, family-run restaurants and quiet sois attracted a mix of locals and expats. Even today – long since the train line has been extended and while high-rise condos are being built at a furious pace – the district retains a relatively low-key vibe.
In On Nut, Sukhumvit 77 (also named On Nut Road) is a central artery that roughly follows the nearby canal and continues east to the Suvarnabhumi Airport. Just steps from the On Nut BTS Station, Sukhumvit 77 is lined with restaurants, shopping centers, temples and condo complexes. However, there is much more to On Nut than just one road, which we discovered during our stay.
Things To Do in On Nut, Upper Sukhumvit Bangkok
Before we dive into our list of the top things to do in Bangkok On Nut, we have a few tips. First, On Nut – which is often spelled as one word, Onnut, is pronounced On Noot. (Be prepared for confusion or giggles if you use the English word Nut.) Second, our list is not ranked in any particular order. And, third, we provide a useful On Nut Bangkok Map at the end of the post.
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#1 Phra Khanong Khlong Ban Pa Ferry
The canal running parallel to Sukhumvit Soi 77 is a great place to begin your exploration of the On Nut district. Bangkok was once a city of canals (khlongs) – and often referred to as The Venice of the East. Although most of the canals have been filled in as streets, water still flows in Khlong Ban Pa, merging into the Chao Phraya River just downstream from Phra Khanong and the On Nut district.
Visitors can get a glimpse of life on the canal on a ferry boat ride. Inexpensive long-tail ferry boats transport passengers from the Phra Khanong Market upstream to the Iam Sombat Market, making numerous stops along the way. Traditional houses and temples line the canal – as well as newly built condo projects. It’s a fascinating mix of old and new.
Top Tips: Tickets to ride the ferry cost 15 baht. The length of the entire route is about 9 km and takes about 30 minutes. The schedule is fairly limited, with boats departing from Phra Khanong at 7:00, 7:30, 8:00, 8:30, 9:00, 10:00, 12:00, 14:00, 16:00 and 18:00 Monday to Friday. Downstream boats from Iam Market depart at 6:00, 6:30, 7:00, 7:30, 8:00, 9:00, 11:00, 13:00, 15:00, and 17:00 Monday to Friday. On Saturday, Sundays and Holidays, the first boat departs at 9:00 (and then follows the weekday schedule).
#2 Best Beef Sukhumvit Bangkok
More than just a place to eat, Best Beef On Nut Restaurant is the most unique and entertaining dining experience in the district. The open-air (but covered) restaurant is massive – and from the moment it opens, the seats are filled (with locals, visitors and expats!). Contrary to the name, there is more than just beef on the menu (hello, Bacon…and, oh, nice to see you, Squid!). And, despite the All-You-Can-Eat food offerings, it is not a traditional buffet.
Best Beef is a cook-it-yourself restaurant; each table has its own small wood-fire grill (fitted with a grid and/or pan). Diners order a selection of meats – with choices of several different cuts of beef, pork, chicken and variety of seafood – along with vegetable accompaniments by filling out paper slips. Guests have two hours to complete their meal and can put in an unlimited number of orders.
There are three different All-You-Can-Eat packages – Just Food (299 baht), Food plus Non-Alcoholic Drinks (369 baht) and Food plus Unlimited Drinks Including Beer (499 baht).
We opted for the gluttonous beer package – and were not disappointed. The raw meat platters came as quickly as we ordered them…and our beers were refilled before we even had to ask. Unlike some self-cook dining experiences in Southeast Asia (like hot pot), we were completely confident in our meat-grilling abilities. Using butter, onions and mushrooms, we created flavorful combinations. We gorged on sizzling bacon, giant shrimp, beef brisket and sirloin tip. By the time our 2 hour slot was up, we were too full to indulge in dessert at the ice cream station.
Top Tips: Even though the restaurant is gigantic, it gets busy fast! Arrive early or make reservations to ensure you won’t have to wait.
#3 Wat Mahabut
There are hundreds of temples in Bangkok; in fact, some of the most famous Thai temples – Wat Pho, Wat Phra Kaew and Wat Arun – are in the capital city. So, why visit Wat Mahabut in On Nut? Because, rather than housing a Buddha relic or an enormously large reclining Buddha, Wat Mahabut has a ghost. As a haunted temple, Wat Mahabut has an array of incredibly bizarre shrines and offerings.
The Mae Nak Ghost Story
According to legend, a young woman named Mae Nak haunts the temple – some say it is in love, but not all agree. The story goes that Mae Nak and her unborn child died while her husband was away fighting during a war. When he returned, she appeared to him as if she were still alive; anyone who spoke to him of her passing would meet an untimely death of their own. When her husband once saw her spirit disappear through the floor, he realized the truth and escaped next door to the temple.
The house of Mae Nak has been incorporated as a shrine into the temple complex. Women go there to pray for their husband to be spared from military service or active duty. Pregnant women visit and ask Mae Nak for a healthy delivery (while other pregnant women steer clear of the temple until after the birth). Lottery players go to get their numbers blessed.
Those whose wishes are granted must return with a gift – like a pretty dress – for Mae Nak or suffer the consequences. Although it is difficult to fully comprehend the offerings and activities at the uncharacteristic shrine, I found the scene to be quite bewildering.
Top Tip: The complex sees very few foreign tourists, so there is very limited information in English. As always, dress appropriately when visiting the temple (cover shoulders and knees) and be respectful of those there to pray and make offerings.
#4 Bang Kachao Bike Riding
Right in the heart of the sprawling concrete city of Bangkok is an oasis of nature: Bang Kachao. Often referred to as the Green Lungs of Bangkok, Bang Kachao is an artificial island in a loop of the Chao Phraya River.
The rural landscape of Bang Kachao feels a world away from Bangkok. The preserved land is relatively free from developers and has only a small population of mostly farmers. A network of narrow, elevated paths weave around fields and through forests…and are ideal for a bike ride.
Bang Kachao Sights
The island features a handful of sights – there are nine temples, a Siamese Fighting Fish Gallery, a weekend market and a botanical garden. There are also numerous cafes where cyclists can stop for a refreshing drink; the Bangkok Tree House is among the most popular.
We attempted a route through the island to featured highlights, but our course was better in theory than in practice. Instead, we ditched any sort of itinerary and were content to pedal around taking in the striking contrast from the massive city sitting right across the river.
We did make it to the Sri Nakhon Khuean Khan Park and Botanical Garden, which we highly recommend as a destination point. The nearby Saphan Yao Food and Drink restaurant is an excellent choice for a cold beverage or light lunch, too.
Top Tip: There are a number of ways to get to Bang Kachao. From On Nut, we took a Grab Taxi to the Bang Na Pier. The ferry ride across only costs 4 baht. When we departed the ferry, we came face-to-face with Wat Bang Nam Phueng Nok (one of the most beautiful temples on the island) and then turned to our left along the riverside where we rented cheap bicycles (50 baht each, map included) for the day.
#5 Talad Rod Fai Train Night Market Bangkok
Located to the east of On Nut, the Talad Rod Fai Train Night Market is actually nowhere near a train, train tracks or a train station…well, except for show. The market – known for vintage goods and hipster vibes – was relocated to the current spot when the original location (which actually was on land owned by the State Railway of Thailand) was shut down.
Tucked behind the popular Bangkok mall, Seacon Square, Talad Rod Fai is the most fashionable night market near Sukhumvit…and possibly in the entire city. The market has an eclectic mix of vendors selling everything from retro gear to home goods to classic cars. The market is comprised of both vendor stalls and permanent structures, with a few cool food trucks and pop up bars in between.
Although it appears to be a typical market from afar, Talad Rod Fai Night Bazaar is almost posh, with only a touch of the grittiness that is the standard of most Southeast Asia markets. In addition to the stylish wares, there is a trendy tattoo parlor and an old-school barbershop – and several of the bars feature live bands.
As with any Thai market, the food offerings are off the charts. In addition to standard Thai cuisine, chefs prepare international fare and gourmet treats. Talad Rod Fai Train Market is not the place to go for cheap shopping in Bangkok. It is, perhaps, the most upscale market we have visited in Thailand!
Top Tip: The Talad Rod Fai Train Market is open Thursday through Sunday from 17:00 until 01:00 (5pm to 1am). The location is slightly difficult to reach; from the BTS On Nut Station, take a Grab Taxi. Rush hour traffic can cause the streets around the station to be gridlocked, so we recommend waiting until around 7:00pm – or later – to head to the market on Thursdays and Fridays.
#6 Beacon Place: On Nut Sukhumvit Nightlife
Beacon Place is a small plaza near the On Nut BTS Bangkok Station featuring boutique shops, chic restaurants and fun bars. Attracting mostly expats, the space is filled with restaurants serving international fare – like Rolling Stone (woodfired pizzas), Bon Bon Do (a Japanese-style Izakaya that we highly recommend), Easy Burger and New Sushi Bar.
Patrons can play pool at Fifty-Fifty Bar, sample craft beer at Dog Step (more on Thai craft beer in a minute!) or throw back a few Thai beers at long-time favorite Charlie’s Bar. The popular establishment was formerly called Cheap Charlie’s when it was located on Soi 11…the beers are no longer ‘cheap’ in the Beacon Place location, but the self-service dive bar still draws a rowdy crowd.
The patios of all the establishments converge in the courtyard, creating a festive atmosphere. More than once, we ended up on Beacon Place for a few drinks and some food.
Top Tip: The bars that don’t serve food allow patrons to order – and eat – food from the adjacent restaurants.
#7 Classic On Nut Restaurants
Even though the district is making room for new stylish eateries, there are still many decades-old street stalls and On Nut restaurants.
Honestly, I don’t know if that is the real name of the restaurant, but I do know it’s their specialty. In business for more than 40 years, it’s mostly locals that fill the seats of the narrow restaurant. Perhaps it is the large dish of stewing pork parts (innards, hooves and all) at the front of the store that is off-putting for foreigners, but we couldn’t resist following the local crowd in for lunch.
They had to scramble to find an English menu, but were able to squeeze us into the last table next to the kitchen. Steering clear of intestines, we ordered a simple meal of Pork Leg on Rice, which was accompanied by a boiled egg and pickled vegetables. The scrumptiously tender meal was a delightful combination of salty and sweet – and we savored every single bite.
Kiang Aroy of Yaowarat
Located on Sukhumvit 77, Kiang Aroi may not have the most attractive storefront, but the food is phenomenal. In business since 1947, the famous chef’s dishes are so well-prepared that he has been invited to the palace to cook for royalty. The extensive menu features a mix of Chinese and Thai food, but we didn’t even look at it. We both ordered the signature dish: Crispy Pork Neck with Garlic. The meal was absolutely perfect, with a lovely balance of moist meat and crispy coating.
Top Tip: These are just two of the highly rated places to eat in On Nut. Find more recommendations on TripAdvisor.
#8 Craft Beer in Bangkok
There are laws prohibiting craft breweries from producing beer in Thailand, but that hasn’t kept creative brewers from figuring a way around the rule. Brewing in small batches or across the border in Cambodia and then importing ‘Thai Craft’ has become a sneaky way to fill the Thailand Craft Beer void. New craft beer bars – serving select ‘locally produced’ beer and beers from international microbreweries – are popping up all over Bangkok – two of our favorites are in On Nut.
Where Is My Beer
Owned by friendly German expats, Where Is My Beer is a cozy neighborhood bar. The unpretentious vibe makes it feel like you’re visiting a friend’s house (and the bar is actually on the ground floor of a traditional home along a quiet soi). Although their selection is limited, it is certainly unique. We tried their tasty homebrew when we visited, as well as a bottle of their refreshing Ladybrau brand Berlin White. In addition to the beers, they offer German-inspired bar food (like sausages and schnitzel).
Dog Step Beer
Located in the (already mentioned) Beacon Place, Dog Step is a fun little craft beer bar that welcomes an easy going, beer loving crowd. With six taps of Thai craft beer and 20+ bottles, we always found something to suit our palates. They offer a beer taster tray, as well as happy hour discounts.
Top Tip: Find more tips for Bangkok craft beer in our 4-Day Bangkok Itinerary.
#9 Corner 79 Food Market Bangkok
The Corner 79 Market sits right below the On Nut Station, encircling a small fountain (some call it a pond). The On Nut market is relatively new – at least in comparison to other Bangkok markets – and is wildly popular. A variety of vendor stalls ring the small space that is jam-packed with tables. Some of the offerings include whole grilled fish, sushi and BBQ – in addition to traditional Thai market food.
However, unlike most markets where you order, pay and wait for your food, the process is quite different at Corner 79. Patrons order food, sit at a table, are served by the vendor (I don’t know how they can find the customers in the sea of people!) and then ask for payment upon delivery. Drinks and beers are ordered and delivered from waitstaff.
Top Tip: The market has big screen TVs used for English Premier League games and other sports; an unusual twist to the neighborhood market!
#10 Habito Mall and Ban Suan Kitchen
The small boutique Habito Mall features a nice selection of upscale restaurants and luxury coffee shops. The main attraction, however, is the co-working space, Hubba-To, which offers a stylish and artistic place for remote workers. We wouldn’t necessarily encourage visitors to go out of their way to visit Habito Mall unless looking for a quiet space to get work done.
Top Tip: On the other hand, the Ban Suan Kitchen that is tucked away behind the mall is a hidden gem of a restaurant – and we highly recommend seeking it out for a relaxing meal. Nestled in a leafy garden and spread over a large terrace, the meals are inexpensive and delicious.
#11 New On Nut Night Market Bangkok
When the original Bangkok On Nut Night Market closed (due to developers gobbling up the space), the On Nut Market relocated to Sukhumvit Soi 81. Dubbed the New On Nut Market Bangkok, the small space has just a handful of food vendors and a bar.
When we visited, the thin crowd was comprised of expats and lacked energy. Perhaps we just visited on an off night. That said, the food was good and the beer was cold…what more can you ask for?
Looking for more Things To Do in Bangkok? Check out our detailed 4-Day Bangkok Itinerary!
More on On Nut
We have a few more tips for On Nut BKK!
On Nut Bangkok Massage
One of my favorite things to do in Bangkok is get a traditional Thai massage – and there are plenty of places in On Nut the offer inexpensive massages. Although I didn’t partake on this trip, I look forward to getting a massage in On Nut the next time we are there!
Supermarkets: Tesco Lotus OnNut and Big C Bangkok
A big draw of the On Nut district to expats and long-term visitors is the two gigantic supermarkets – Big C On Nut and Tesco Lotus – that are just a short walk from the On Nut BTS Station. Both stores offer a variety of products – including groceries, home goods and cosmetics – including heaps of international brands. Each of these shopping complexes feature air-conditioned food courts and recognizable fast food chains. We shopped (and dined at the food courts) at both shopping centers – and didn’t necessarily have a preference for one over the other.
Tesco Lotus On Nut
The On Nut Tesco Lotus is directly across from the BTS Station – use this link to Google Maps.
Tesco Lotus On Nut Opening Hours: 6:00am to 12:00am daily.
Big C Sukhumvit
The Big C On Nut Bangkok is located on Sukhumvit Soi 77, just around the corner from the BTS Station – Use this link to Google Maps.
Big C Supermarket Opening Hours: 9:00am to 11:00pm daily.
On Nut BTS
The On Nut Station is the central hub of the district. There are 9 stops from On Nut to centrally located Siam Station. The ride should take about 15 minutes and costs 44 baht. At peak times, trains run every 3 to 4 minutes, but at rush hour they can be extremely crowded.
Riders can transfer to the MRT (separate ticket required) at the Asok Station, which is just 5 stops from On Nut.
Bangkok Train Map and Info
Find more info, routes, fares and maps online on the official BTS website.
Finding the Best Place to Stay in Bangkok On Nut
Our search for a cheap apartment to rent in Bangkok near a BTS station is what introduced us to the On Nut district – and we found numerous options when we focused in on the area. For our week-long stay, we rented an Airbnb apartment in an On Nut condo complex that had a pool and gym and was located at the intersection of Sukhumvit Road and On Nut Road (Soi 77).
Our On Nut Apartment
As is often the case with rentals in Bangkok, the apartment we rented was not the apartment shown in photos. It had a different view, was not as well decorated and lacked kitchen gadgets that were clearly pictured in the listing. Regardless, the apartment was inexpensive, spacious and ideally located for our stay, so we really had no complaints. However, we would recommend that other travelers thoroughly read reviews prior to booking on Airbnb.
Vacation Rentals and Airbnb in Bangkok
Technically, short-term rentals, like those found on Airbnb, are ‘illegal’ in Thailand. In fact, there was a giant sign in the lobby of our building announcing that daily and weekly rentals are forbidden. However, there are several On Nut Bangkok apartments (and apartments all over the country) listed on Airbnb, so it led us to believe that it’s a law that is rarely enforced. As long as it is a law, however, travelers rent at their own risk.
On Nut Hotel
Travelers who would rather stay in hotels near the On Nut BTS Station have some really good options, too.
Avani Hotel On Nut Bangkok – Located just steps from the BTS Station, Avani is a luxury hotel featuring an outdoor pool, fitness center, on-site restaurant and bar. Check Availability!
X2 Vibe Bangkok Sukhumvit Hotel – The chic X2 Vibe Hotel is just a short walk from Tesco. Hotel features include an outdoor pool, fitness room, restaurant and bar. They also offer studio rooms with small kitchenettes at reasonable prices. Get the best rate!
Qiu Hotel – Just a 3-minute walk from the BTS Station (and practically next to the Corner 79 Market), Qiu Hotel offers rooms and apartments at reasonable rates. The property has an outdoor pool and on-site restaurant. Check out the reviews!
Looking for the best hostels in Bangkok On Nut? There are two cheap, dorm hostels that get rave reviews from fellow travelers: First Inn Bangkok (read reviews!) and On Nut Hostel (read reviews!). Both are just a short walk from the BTS Station.
Bangkok Airport to Sukhumvit On Nut
There are two major airports that service Bangkok: Suvarnabhumi International Bangkok Airport and Don Mueang International Airport.
There is a Suvarnabhumi Airport to Sukhumvit Train that makes getting into the city cheap and easy. Passengers need to ride the Airport Rail Link to the end of the line (Phaya Thai) and then transfer to the BTS Sukhumvit SkyTrain and ride to On Nut.
Don Mueang Airport
The easiest way for getting from the Don Mueang International Airport to Sukhumvit On Nut is to take a Grab Taxi. Visitors can also book a less-expensive shared airport transfer in advance online.
On Nut Map
Use this link to Google Maps for an online version of our On Nut Map of Sights.
We Want To Know: Have you been to Bangkok On Nut? What would you add to our list of things to do in On Nut Bangkok? Give us your best tips and advice in the comments!
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