Moving to Bangkok
Situated in the Chao Phraya River Delta where Thailand’s major river flows into the Gulf of Thailand, Bangkok has always been an important location for trade and grew in importance with the increase in shipping between East and West. Today the city is a major financial centre even despite the collapse of the Thai baht in 1997 which precipitated the Asian crisis. It attracts millions of tourists each year who use Bangkok as a jumping off point for exploring South East Asia.
By most measures Bangkok is the only real city in Thailand - it is over forty times bigger than the next largest urban centre and is home to nearly 13% of the country’s total population. The economy relies largely on the manufacturing activity which takes place in the city and neighbouring districts, the products of which are exported, via Bangkok, all over the world.
The cityscape of the metropolis is dominated by the skyscrapers of the Ratchadamri and Sukhumvit areas which light up at night like glittering palaces of commerce. Countering these steel and glass giants are the large parks of Lumphini, Suanluang Rama IX and Chatuchak-Queen Sirikit-Wachirabenchathat and the low-rise historic centre - the former capital city of the Eighteenth Century Rattanakosin Kingdom. This area is separated from the mainland by one of Bangkok’s many canals along which water buses still ferry commuters and sightseers.