Expats and International residents tend to congregate around the center of downtown Bangkok where access to the highlights of city living are ubiquitous.
The three major downtown areas are Sukhumvit, Silom and Sathorn. The main attractions of living in these areas are the quality high rise apartments and proximity to modern public transport.
These provide a wealth of activities that are only a short journey away and in some cases a short walk. However for the expat family it can be a suffocating experience to be living in such a densely packed environment and for these people a closer look at the suburbs where larger properties are available, and quality of living can be executed more normally.
Nonthaburi is adjacent to the Northern end of Bangkok and is one of its largest suburbs. In many respects it has its own economic ecosystem and there are many jobs and positions available in the area.
The main drawback of Nonthaburi is access to downtown Bangkok as the traffic can be grueling. Nonthaburi’s proximity to Muang Thong Thani makes it ideal for sports lovers and regular concert goers.
It’s kind of like the Wembley Stadium area of Thailand. The shopping and food in Nonthaburi is as good as anything in central Bangkok. One of the main attractions of Nonthaburi are the people.
Bangkok suburbs tend to be populated with Thais who are less driven by superficiality and like to make real connections with any international residents. This is much harder to achieve in downtown Bangkok.
Technically Nonthaburi is a province but it feels like it is still in Bangkok, though the cost of living is noticeably less expensive though for the high level expat position, a car and/or driver is desirable for the commute.
Again Samut Prakarn is its own entity and a small densely packed city in its own right, and also it’s the name of the province which lies to the south of Bangkok and provides access to the sea.
Samut means Ocean or Sea and Prakarn means Fortress. Samut Prakan is the mouth of the Chaophraya River that flows into Bangkok and on the Western side agriculture is still a mainstay of local business with prawn and rice fields.
The Eastern side is the commercial and urban district and is now seamless with, and considered part of greater Bangkok. Seafood is very popular in this area because of its location by the gulf of Thailand.
This is one of the most underrated Suburbs of Bangkok. Technically it’s very much part of the metropolis but once over the Chaophraya River you will find the people and pace of life here, is a distinct flavor of its own.
The prices for living in this area are somewhat lower than downtown Bangkok but the closer you can live to the river, the more flavorsome you will find the living experience.
The Bangkok Metro is expanding in the Southern part of the city so the suburban commute to the center is less of an issue than before. We highly recommend this Thonburi for its distinct people and character.