I love to travel and get to taste for different kind of foods around the world. Thailand is a place well known for having world class delicious and exotic dishes. Thai foods are known for intense flavor that became the world’s favorite cuisine and there are plenty of them available in Thailand. I live and work in Bangkok so I get a chance to try a variety of Thai dishes throughout the city. If you are a traveler, it would be hard to find the top notch restaurant and vendor with authentic Thai taste in the city from hundred of stores even if you search on TripAdvisor. The smart way is to get someone who is a local showing you around and bring you to the right stop. I would suggest joining a food tour.
Food tour does sell experience and interesting culture behind the foods and not only tasting them. I did join several food tours with various companies since the past two years. It was a worthwhile experience. I will summarize from my personal experiences with these companies listed below;
Based in Bangkok and owned by a local company who has the passion in Thai foods. There are 3 tour options available from the time that I am writing this article. There are tour in Chinatown, Love Village (Bangrak district) and a lite version of Chinatown mainly in backstreet alley. They are all walking tours.
I signed up for “Chinatown Adventure” and “Love Village Adventure”. The Chinatown package offer 8-10 different kind of foods and beverages to taste. The meeting point is located near the railway station ‘Hua Lumphong’ just at the exist of the MRT station. It is easy to find, right in front of an orange bank called “Thanachat”. I met the guide at 6PM sharp, we began the tour by walking all the way from “Hua Lumphong” to Chinatown and back to the meeting point at the end. I will write about my experience with the Chinatown Adventure, as for Love Village was quite similar experience to other food tour companies.
I tried most of the dishes, there are satay, fruit, spicy basil chicken, beers, desserts and much more which I have never see before ever since I moved to Thailand. I really enjoying tasting all the dishes, the flavors of the foods are so balance to one another that tickle my tastebuds. Beside of the foods, the guide brought us through the backstreet and several alleys to experience the local lifestyle. The guide provide me with informative about the local and useful detail for traveling around Bangkok.
Guide speak perfect English. He does know the places so well and very knowledgeable with all the foods and places. The tour is organized so well that you get to eat and walk a few blocks to taste another dish. I am sure Food Adventure has its core tour in Chinatown since the company began and doing the tour there for more than 2 years.
Discount code: BKKFT10
- A variety of delicious foods
- Nice location with insight of the local history
- Professional Guide
- Too many foods
- Many roads to cross
- Minimum 2 pax
Customer Experience: 9/10
Customer Value: 9/10
The company is owned by Essor Ltd which based in United Kingdom. They have a network of tour in 30 cities around the world. Unfortunately, this company only offer one route in Bangkok. The route and itinerary is similar and shorter version of Chinatown Adventure offered by Food Adventure. The entire tour took place in Chinatown which well known for Bangkok best street food. There are a total of 8 tasting menu with a beer and some water. If you want something alcoholic at the end of the tour, you can add a purchase of the ‘drink upgrade’ as an option.
The guide met us with an orange umbrella as a sign for easy spotting. The point is outside the MRT station exist No.3 right underneath the huge sign “Hong Kong Noodle”. The guide has a mediocre level of English and quite understandable, I had no trouble communicating with her.
Discount code: FT10
- Good amount of foods with beer
- Foods are delicious and variety
- The guide doesn’t eat with us
- A lot of roads to cross
- Crowded place
Customer Experience: 8/10
Customer Value: 8/10
This food tours owned by SCJ Limited run by a group of American entrepreneur. This company operated food tours for many years, there are 6 tour options for you to choose. The most popular tour is Village of Love food tour. This tour has a day and night options, I booked for the day tour. The entire route take place at Bangrak district which known as Bangkok’s village of love, the tour began at Saphan Taksin BTS station and end at a nice restaurant near Surasak BTS station.
Food shops are mostly located on the main street and small street scattered throughout the area. The walking distance is quite far to the finishing point, if you hate the heat. I didn’t get to see much around the neighborhood and had no idea what the village is all about, the guide only brought us to the food vendor and visited some shops. Foods are decent for me but not as good as I thought to be and the location isn’t interesting enough for me to go back the second time.
I met the guide under the BTS station at Saphan Taksin. The guide wore an orange shirt with the company logo so it is easy to spot her. She speak a decent level of English, I have no problem talking and asking question except that it was hard to catch some of the things she said.
- A variety of decent foods
- Stops aren’t far in between
- Enthusiastic guide
- Poor walking distance to the end
- Not so much historic insight of the village
- You can find these dishes easily on your own
Customer Experience: 8/10
Customer Value: 7/10
The company behind this food tours is Navatas Travel. The website attracted my attention with its fancy design that I decided to sign up two of their tours out of 12 options. I signed up for the Village of Love in Bangrak district and Tuk Tuk Food Tours. I won’t talk about Village of Love since my experience was similar to other tours. I will talk about my tuk tuk experience with this company.
The meeting point is located at Chumchuri Square, the guide wore a green shirt, she met me outside a department store near MRT station. Our group was a big group of 12 pax, we walked a few distance around the corner to get to the Tuk Tuk. The route was travelling around central Bangkok. There are a total of 4 dishes to taste, a few Thai northern dishes to share among the group, a stirred fried chicken noodle that took approximate 30 minutes for it to arrive, we visited the flower market and Wat Pho. Finally a cocktail at the end at a rooftop bar near the Chao Praya river with a beautiful scenary of the Arun temple.
The total experience wasn’t as I expected to be. I can just hire a Tuk Tuk or a motorbike to visit these places but it can be fun to travel as a group sometimes.
- Get to ride a tuk tuk to non-tourisy area
- Enthusiastic guide
- Very organize
- Less foods and no beer
- Finishing late at 1am
Customer Experience: 7/10
Customer Value: 6/10