CK Travels

Talat Noi, Bangkok – 28 Things to do (2023)

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One of the most historical neighbourhoods in Bangkok, Talat Noi (aka Talad Noi) is an epic and endearing enclave full of hidden alley-ways.

It is packed with sublime street art, cool coffee shops, riverside views and some of Bangkok’s best restaurants – as such, there are so many things to do in Talat Noi, Bangkok.

A creative hub and industrial area that is fast becoming a hipster hangout, Talad Noi (which is translated as ‘small market’) is one of the oldest areas of Bangkok, with a large Chinese community.

For every instagrammable coffee shop or bubble tea kiosk in Talat Noi, you’ll also see a grimy garage or huge warehouse of car-parts with locals hard at work – it such a diverse area to explore and amble around the side-streets.

From the peaceful surroundings of riverside shrines to the retail splendour of warehouse shops and malls plus cute coffee shops galore, this is our guide to the best things to do in Talat Noi / Talad Noi, Bangkok:

Talat Noi Bangkok Street art map
Keep an eye out for the elderly man and his pet tortoise in the Talat Noi area!

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How To Get to Talat Noi

There are several ways to get to Talat Noi in Bangkok by public transport.

Our preference to arrive at Talat Noi is usually to arrive by the Chao Phraya Express Orange flag boat and jump off at stop 4 (the Marine Department). This is the closest drop-off to the best street art and coffee shops in Talad Noi, plus the sublime Rong Kuak riverside shrine.

Chao Phraya Express Orange flag boat

Alternatively, you can visit Talat Noi by taking the MRT to Hua Lamphong Station and walking from there (take exit 2).

Finally, you can also visit Talad Noi as part of a several Bangkok bicycle tours including a bicycle tour by day and a Talat Noi Bicycle tour by night.

Bicycle tour

Accommodation in Talat Noi, Bangkok

There are lots of hostels and hotels in and around Talat Noi including:

The highest rated and most central accommodation in Talat Noi. Given how beautiful the inside is, we’ve also included Photohostel as one of the top things to do in Talat Noi later on. Check rates and availability for Ago Hotel PhotoHostel >

Ago Hotel Chinatown
A 3 star hotel with affordable prices that is a short walk from Talat Noi and the riverside. Check rates and availability for Ago Hotel Chinatown >

The Quarter Chaophraya by UHG
A four star hotel with an amazing pool just across the river from Talat Noi. Check rates and availability for The Quarter Chaophraya >

1. Talat Noi Street Art / Buk-Ruk Graffiti Wall

Amidst all the historic houses and alley-ways, you’ll find dozens of stunning street art murals along the walls and house exteriors in Talat Noi / Talad Noi.

Talat Noi Street-Art

It all began with the Buk Ruk arts festival that was held in Talat Noi back in 2016, whereby international and local street artists and designers were invited to create art along Charoenkrung Soi 32 / Trok San Chao Rong Kueak.

Street art in Talat Noi can be seen from renowned artists such as Alex Face, Lolay and Sabek.

Talat Noi Street-Art Bangkok

The best places for street art in Talat Noi include:

  • Street art in Trok San Chao Rong Kueak / Charoenkrung Soi 32
  • The area outside Baan Rim Nahm riverside retreat and cafe
  • The alley on the right hand side of Soi Chao Sua Sun, as you approach Soi Wanit 2
  • Warehouse 30 to Charoenkrung Soi 30
  • The alleys south of River City
Talat Noi Street-Art Bangkok

At the time of writing (September 2023), there is also a huge new commercial mural below Mother Roasters coffee shop which is colourful (wear sunglasses) but not as in-keeping with the more organic Talat Noi artwork.

Talat Noi Street-Art Bangkok

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2. Mother Roaster

The ‘Mother’ of all Talat Noi coffee shops?

Mother Roaster is a super cool cafe and coffee shop – hidden away on the top floor of an old garage.

As you take the first steps into the building, you are greeted by a ground floor full of car / bicycle parts and coils – so far, so grungy.

Mother Roaster cafe Bangkok

However, Mother Roaster is a coffee shop of two halves – walk up the wooden steps from the dimly lit workshop basement to a beautiful wooden terrace with seating (and dozens of cute cats and kittens dozing in the afternoon sun!).

Once inside, you are greeted with a wonderful wooden interior and the strong aroma of freshly brewed coffee. Some of the interior is quite quirky with bicycles nailed to the wall and strategically placed musical instruments.

Mother Roaster cafe Bangkok
Mother Roaster cafe Bangkok

Hipster as, Mother Roasters Talat Noi is a great place to hang out and try coffee curiosities and mingle with fellow tourists and expats as soft music emanates from the speakers.

Mother Roaster coffee has several locations across Bangkok including Pratu Phi, Sutthisan and Dadfa Lasalle (whilst all have coffee, we can’t guarantee they all have cute kittens).

Mother Roaster cafe Bangkok
Mother Roaster cafe Bangkok

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3. Rong Kuak Shrine

For us, one of the best temples in Bangkok is Rong Kuak Shrine – a place of solitude overlooking the river and away from the hustle and bustle of the city.

Rong Kuak Shrine talat Noi Bangkok

Built in the ancient hakka / Chinese style of architecture, Rong Kuak shrine serves Talat Noi well, the home to one of Bangkok’s oldest Chinese communities.

The Rong Kuak Shrine has a small tower looking out over the river and was built during the reign of King Rama V.

Inside, you’ll also see a large statue of Han Gao Zu, the first emperor of China’s Han dynasty.

Rong Kuak Shrine talat Noi Bangkok
Rong Kuak Shrine talat Noi Bangkok

The temple is close to a large ironworking community and it is said many horses used to be seen around the area as they were having horse-shoes fitted.

So pretty and photogenic, Rong Kuak Shrine was also used recently as a photoshoot location for a Thailand Tourism campaign.

This temple also features as part of the Go Bangkok Culture Cycling Guided Tour >

Rong Kuak Shrine talat Noi Bangkok
Rong Kuak Shrine talat Noi Bangkok

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4. Talat Noi Rusty Abandoned Car

Given Talad / Talat Noi’s industrial heritage and car parts enclave, it is no small wonder that you’ll see lots of chopped up or rusty cars in the area.

Talat Noi Bangkok Rusty car

That said, perhaps the most iconic car in Talat Noi is an abandoned automobile (a turtle car or some say a Fiat), that has rusted so much that it also fades into the background of the red brick warehouse and tree stump it has been abandoned by.

Every time we visit Talat Noi, there always seems to be some kind of photo shoot going on at the car, be it a professional photography shoot or just a general shot for the ‘gram.

One of the quirkiest things to do in Talat Noi, on our last visit we noticed a chocolate seller had set-up shop selling car themed chocolate next to the rusting vehicle – quite the entrepreneur!

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5. Hong Sieng Cafe and Gallery

Possibly the best known coffee shop in Talat Noi if not the whole of Chinatown, Hong Sieng Cafe and Gallery is a beautiful place to enjoy a coffee on the river or take tea in a traditional setting.

But it is also the victim of its own success. Such is its popularity, it has a system whereby you queue to enter and then order your drinks before sitting down.

Offering panoramic views of Bangkok and the Chao Phraya river, Hong Sieng Cafe and Gallery is best described as a vintage cafe with an array of antiquities and art to enjoy whilst you sip your drinks.

Boasting a prime riverside terrace and Chinese courtyard style interiors, Hong Sieng Cafe and Gallery is a nice way to escape the sun or enjoy a coffee with Chao Phraya chills – just don’t expect a sense of solitude or calm with your caffeine fix during peak season.

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6. Very Nice Bar

Bangkok is full of very nice bars but this Talat Noi izakaya style bar is literally called a ‘Very Nice Bar’.

Opened in late 2022 and now one of the most highly regarded drinking establishments in the area, Very Nice Bar in Talat Noi is a popular place for fried bites and big drinking nights.

Expect the unexpected like deep fried lotus root as bar snacks or yuzu flavoured craft beer. Very Nice Bar also does a fine line in sake and Japanese whiskeys.

Love all things Japan – check out our sister site Plan My Japan >

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7. 100-Bit Barcade

Game on! Ready for some retro, awesome arcade action? 100-Bit Barcade is billed as “…Thailand’s first-ever Barcade and retro gaming arcade”.

100-Bit Barcade bar Talat Noi Bangkok

A neon wonderland with over two floors of classic gaming machines and consoles, retro games include Alex Kidd, Mario Kart and Bloody Roar. Play games whilst you drink beer or order from the hearty bat menu.

How to find the 100-Bit Barcade in Talat Noi? Just look for the supercool pixelated Delorean and Back to the Future street art in an alley just off Charoen Krung Road.

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8. Sieng Gong

The Detroit of Bangkok, Sieng Gong (also known as Siang Kong) is the centre of Bangkok’s car autoparts and secondhand repairs industry, with dozens of garages and repair shops dotted along the area.

Talat Noi Bangkok

In fact, if you visit Sieng Going in Talat Noi during the day-time on a weekday, you’ll likely hear a constant barrage of clanging and banging, as mechanics and locals work hard to bang metal car parts into shape or buff up old parts to look like new.

As such, we found quite a few oily patches on the pavements around Sieng Gong so wear old trainers / sneakers whilst exploring here. Fascinating to watch and see, most garages are piled high with old car parts and hubcaps, all waiting to be sold on or repaired.

Talat Noi Bangkok
Talat Noi Bangkok

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9. Dragon Roundabout & Street Food Carts

One of the more curious things to do in Talat Noi, the busy roundabout area on Soi Wanit 2 (near to the Holy Rosary church) is home to dozens of small street food carts (and a Thailand 7-Eleven) plus a ‘dragon roundabout’ made from kitchen utensils and other gadgets and gizmos.

Talat Noi Bangkok Dragon Roundabout

On a recent revisit to the Dragon roundabout in Talat Noi in September 2023, we noticed that it is now also surrounding by a circle of hubcaps and car parts, a nod to the engineering and industrial history of Talat Noi.

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10. Bangkok Transformers Roundabout in Talat Noi

Transformers: Roundabouts in Disguise!

Whilst we are on the subject of unusual roundabouts, there is another equally curious traffic calming measure that has popped up in Talat Noi during the summer of 2023 – a Transformers robot (which we think might be Bumblee).

Talat Noi Bangkok Transformers Roundabout

The Talat Noi Transformers robot roundabout can be found on the northern end of Charoen Krung Road, near the intersection with Khao Lam Road towards Henryfry and the Very Nice Bar.

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11. Sol Heng Tai Mansion

A wooden old Chinese style Hokkien house in Talat Noi, Sol Heng Tai Mansion centres around a reflective pond and has a small cafe and terrace area to enjoy with the epic surroundings.

Over 200 years old, parts of the Sol Heng Tai Mansion are now starting to look a tad ruinous but the facade and entrance look magnificent, especially the red entrance door.

We’ve read it sometimes also doubles as a diving school where divers practise in the pond outside but we’ve alas never seen this on our visits.

Admission fee to the So Heng Tai mansion in Talat Noi is 50 THB (tours are available too) or free if you are buying food and drink from the cafe.

Talat Noi Bangkok Sol Heng Tai Mansion

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12. MotherBKK restaurant

Located next door to La Cabra Coffee Roasters on Charoenkrung,  MotherBKK is an opulent and elegant epicurean experience, offering the best of contemporary Thai cuisine near Chinatown in Talad Noi / Talat Noi.

Promising ‘prosperous eats’, Mother BKK is renowned for its tasting menus (the larger of which includes a sumptuous ten courses to taste and enjoy). Think tapa style dishes of duck, oysters, prawns and beef tartare.

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13. Henryfry

We stumbled across Henryfry Fried Chicken in Talat Noi quite by chance  – it is one of the best places in Bangkok for fried chicken and often sees huge queues snaking out the doors at the weekend. It must be mother clucking good chicken.

The main fried chicken menu at Henryfry is simple but effective – a choice of crispy chicken pieces like thigh, wing, breast or drumstick for around 60 THB a piece, along with add ons to buy separately like pickles, sauces and potato wedges.

They sometimes also offer an all day brunch where you can add pancakes and eggs to the mix. Tasty!

14. Citizen Tea Canteen

Time for Thai tea! A traditional Talat Noi tea-room (try saying that with a mouthful of tea!), Citizen Tea Canteen is a fine thing to do in Talat Noi.

Citizen Tea Canteen Talat Noi

Upon arrival, you might get a sense of deja vu when entering the tea room even if you haven’t been before – that is because the tiled entrance to Citizen Tea is very bling and often features on Instagram with wannabe models or selfie-stealers.

Try different blends of Thai tea or Kopi (coffee varietals) at Citizen Tea Canteen. Housed over two floors of a traditional Thai house and hidden down the back-streets of Talat Noi, Citizen Tea canteen also doubles as a artisanal shop and store selling local crafts including clothes and homeware items.

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15. Holy Rosary Church Bangkok

Also known as the Kalawar Church, the Holy Rosary Church was originally built in the 1780s.

The church as you see it today is the result of a third reconstruction in the 1890s, completed during the period of King Rama V in the Gothic revival style.

A catholic church in the heart of Talat Noi and close to River City shopping mall, the Holy Rosary Church is one of the most beautiful churches to visit in Bangkok; please ensure you respect the dress code.

Talat Noi Holy Rosary Church Bangkok

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16. Photohostel and PhotoCafe

If you want to stay in the heart of Talat Noi, Photohostel is the perfect place to stay, hidden among the narrow lanes and alleyways, and just a stone’s throw from the river’s edge.

Talat Noi Photohostel and PhotoCafe

Located in a traditional Thai house that is over 200 years old and has been lovingly restored, Photohostel and PhotoCafe is centred around a huge courtyard and cafe that is chock full of vintage camera equipment and prints.

It offers both private bedrooms plus hostel style dorms (all complete with air conditioning).

Even if you are just visiting Talat Noi for the day and aren’t planning on staying, this hostel is still worth a visit as it has a cute coffee shop inside plus an amazing gift store that sells really nice coffee table books and a huge array of pin badges and other quirky souvenirs.

Check out Talat Noi’s PhotoHostel Bangkok rates on >

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17. River City Bangkok

One of several riverside malls in Bangkok, River City is located on the edge of Talat Noi smack bang on the Chao Phraya River with several waterside bars and restaurants to enjoy on the ground level.

River City Mall Talat Noi Bangkok

This is also one of the best shopping malls in Bangkok for sunset views of the river. River City also has one of the most unique shops we can recall in Bangkok – Soul Salt is a shop space covered in sand with river views where you can paint your own canvas as a take home souvenir – how cool?

River City is owned by the nearby Mandarin Oriental Hotel and also has some smart temporary art exhibitions. Note that it can get crowded in the early evening as this is where many Bangkok evening dinner cruises depart from.

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18. Feng Zhu

We cannot recommend a visit to Feng Zhu dumplings enough – every time we visit Talat Noi and / or River City shopping mall, we cannot resist stopping by this hole-in-the-wall street-food stall that specialises in dumplings and noodles.

Feng Zhu dumplings Talat Noi Bangkok

Feng Zhu is a small eatery with just three or four outside benches located next door to the River City Coffee Club and close to the Si Phraya ferry port.

The menu is quite basic and limited. No English menus or ordering sheets are available so use Google translate or point at the picture menus at Feng Zhu.

We generally try the mix of their recommended five dumplings which includes spicy and umami flavours accompanied with toppings like melted cheese, spring onion or cod roe. Delicious and costs 100 THB for 5 dumplings as of September 2023.

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19. Owl Cha / Tea

With a tiny tea kiosk in Talat Noi, Owl Cha / Tea Silom is a chain of bubble tea kiosks across Bangkok (including Silom) which serves ice-cold coffee and bubble tea at very affordable prices.

Owl Talat Noi

We opted for a passionfruit soda (19 Baht) and a Thai tea (20 Baht) and both were very refreshing and ice-cold. We’ve also tried the mint green tea from here before (25 THB) and that was also tasty as!

Owl Cha Talat Noi has a small seating area next to the kiosk or you can take away your cold drink in a small bag to carry and slurp as you go.

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20. La Cabra Coffee Roasters

A little dollop of Denmark in Bangkok, Talot Noi is home to La Cabra Coffee Roasters.

Originally established in Aarhus in Denmark over 10 years ago in 2012, La Cabra now has locations in New York, Dubai and this, their first Bangkok coffee shop in Talat Noi.

A cute compact coffee shop with wooden interiors and a small outdoor area, La Cabra is a cool place to enjoy your caffeine.

La Cabra Talat Noi

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21. Cai Yong

This former steel shophouse turned Chinese style cafe and boutique hostel is elegantly decorated and a must visit when in the Talat Noi area.

The cafe serves a selection of beautiful looking Chinese teas and desserts, with highlights including Chui Xian Milk Tea (Chinese tea roasted with sugar toasted caramel and fresh milk), plum tea and lemon tea.

22. Soi Charoen Krung 22

As you are wondering through Charoen Krung, take a diversion up Soi Charoen Krung 22.

Not only will you see the street art around 100 Bit Barcade, but also a fascinating soi with several small restaurants and street food stalls aimed at local families and workers (plus quite a few cute cats).

Several of the restaurants and food stalls seemed to be run by very elderly ladies who really put pride into their dishes. This is also a very cheap area to eat in Talat Noi in authentic surroundings.

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23. Baan Rim Nahm

One of the more chilled out riverside cafes and restaurants in Talat Noi (the antithesis of Hong Sieng Cafe and Gallery), Baan Rim Nahm is one of the lesser known things to do in Talat Noi and all the more rewarding for it.

A tropical oasis with riverside terrace and a huge dragon ceiling structure as a centre-piece, Baan Rim Nahm has vintage vibes and also does a nice line in yoga and massages whereby soothing massages go hand in hand with the lapping sounds of the Chao Phraya waves.

Whether you are there for a quick coffee fix or the live music and sunset sessions in the evenings, get your groove on at Baan Rim Nahm.

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24. Marine Department Pier Viewpoint & Shrine

If you are visiting Rong Kuak Shrine, take a few steps along the riverbank to the Marine Department Pier area.

Talat Noi Marine Department Pier Viewpoint

Here you’ll see one of the oldest banyan trees in Bangkok plus the viewpoint upstairs next to the Buddha Lokutham Prachanath shrine is one of the best Bangkok riverside spots.

Just remember to take off your shoes before going up the steps to the Buddha Lokutham Prachanath shrine.

From here, you can also see the Phraya Visut Sakorn Raft / Barge on the water to the right of the pier which was historically used on the Chao Phraya by dignitaries for stately affairs.

Talat Noi Marine Department Pier tree
Talat Noi Marine Department Pier Viewpoint Bangkok

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25. Warehouse 30

On the edge of Talad Noi and close to River City shopping mall, Warehouse 30 is a creative space and cultural park that is home to a clutch of cool coffee shops and several art galleries. They often have pop-up exhibitions at Warehouse 30 too.

A big Bangrak arts and crafts space located between located between Soi Charoenkrung 30 and 32, Warehouse 30 opened in 2016 and converted this largely industrial and unloved space into something epic.

Flagship tenants include A Coffee Roaster by Li-Bra-Ry, Horse Unit & Woot Woot vintage store (best name ever!) and Sweet Pista cafe.

26. Bicycle Tours of Talat Noi

Talat Noi is easily accessible by foot and via river transport but if you fancy something a little different, there are several Bangkok bicycle tour companies that offer bicycle tours of Talat Noi and Chinatown.

We once explored Talat Noi by bicycle as part of the Go Bangkok Culture Cycling Guided Tour – this 4 hour cycling tour of Chinatown and surrounding areas is also included as part of the Go City Pass Bangkok.

This small group tour (maximum 6 people) takes you on an easy ride through the back-streets of Bangkok, through colourful areas and Talat Noi temples and along the Chao Phraya river.

Along the way, we saw sublime street art, fed temple turtles (snappy as!), had an incredible roti cooked fresh in front of our very eyes plus had some free time to explore the Bangkok flower market.

On our particular cycling tour, there was a nice mix of people including three South Korean girls and an elderly couple from the Netherlands. The cycling route lasted around 4.5 hours and was flat, around 15km in length.

Additional Bangkok bicycle tours are available including this night time cycling tour that includes Talat Noi.

27. Chow Sue Kong Shrine / Chow Sue Kong Talat Noi Shrine

Tucked away in Talat Noi and hidden in side streets close to Photohostel and Citizen Tea Canteen, Chow Sue Kong Shrine is a small shrine open during the day that has a large statue of local doctor Chow Sue Kong as its centrepiece.

Built in the early 1800s, it is hub of activity during the day with a constant stream of well-wishers.

Whilst not the most spectacular shrine in the Talat Noi area (we’ll leave that to Rong Kuak), the Chow Sue Kong Shrine is a peaceful place to visit.

Also look out for the beautiful and ornately decorated bell at Chow Sue Kong Shrine when you first enter, on the right hand side of the entrance.

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Our final thing to do in Talat Noi

28. Take a Tour of Talat Noi

If you are short on time and want someone else to show you the best things to do in Talat Noi, take a guided tour of Talat Noi. There are walking tours or even tours by scooter or bicycle.

Talat Noi’s top tours and activities in Bangkok include:

CK Travels bonus tip
For the best, free aerial views of Talad Noi, head across the Chao Phraya and visit the viewing platform at IconSiam shopping mall. Or visit the Starbucks Reserve roastery at IconSiam and enjoy Talad Noi views from their riverside terrace on the 7th floor.

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