Location & Map
The map at right shows the location of the Rainbow Hostel and Guest House. We are immediately across the street from Sawasdee Khaosan Inn, Gulliver's Tavern and Gazebo Night Club, all on Chakrapong road.
Our location is very convenient for those wishing to transfer via bus to other destinations in Thailand, Laos, and Cambodia. Most long distance buses leave only about 50 meters from our hostel, including buses to Phuket, Koh Pha Ngan, Koh Samui, Koh Chang, Vientiane Laos, Cambodia, etc. While we do not sell bus tickets, there are dozens of travel agencies only a few meters from our hostel that handle ticket sales. We suggest Lomprayah and Seatran if you are traveling to Koh Samui, Koh Phangan, or Koh Tao. Both Lomprayah & Seatran depart Bangkok a 5 minute walk from our Bangkok hostel. If you are on your way to the full moon party in Koh Pha Ngan, check out our friend's Fubar Koh Pha Ngan Hostel featuring resident DJ Kaonashi.
Furthermore, if you wish to travel by Train in Thailand the main Bangkok Hua Lumpong Train Station serving destinations in Thailand, Laos, and Malaysia is less than 10km from the Khaosan Area. It is easy to catch a cheap taxi or mini-bus from Khaosan to the train station. If you want to fly somewhere in Asia on the cheap, we suggest you look at Air Asia, which has new planes and cheap tickets. Nok Air and Bangkok Airways are also good for destinations around Thailand.
Getting to our hostel, you have many choices including Taxi, Airport Rail Link and Bus/Taxi, Bus, or Boat...Have fun and see you soon!
By Taxi (by far the easiest, but also most expensive)
You can take the taxi to our location from Suvarnabhumi Airport. There is only one authorized taxi stand in the airport, do not go with a tout who intends to cheat you and don't confuse it with the airport limo service, which costs much more. The driver is required to use the meter, so if he asks you (he will) just respond "meter" and say "highway" if you want him to take the elevated roads, which is much quicker. The passenger pays a 50THB surcharge for airport pickup, plus optional highway toll fees (about 100THB), plus the meter amount (about 300THB). Total will be about 450THB to our hostel.
By Airport Rail Link (ARL) and Bus/Taxi Combination:
The ARL does not directly come to Khaosan Road. But you can take the ARL to a location on the way, and then transfer to a bus that does come to Khaosan Road.
- Go to Makkasan Station on ARL, (35 baht), and outside the main wait for the 556 bus which will take you to Khaosan Road, (13 baht). Just tell the clippy and she will tell you when to get off. It is the stop just past Democracy Monument. Total 48 baht
- Go to Ratchaprarop Station on ARL, (40 baht), and then catch bus 183 to Khaosan Road, (instructions as above), for 13 baht. Total 53 baht.
- Go to Phraya Thai Station on ARL, (45 baht), then walk down to Rathcathewi Bts Station. Wait underneath the station, opposite the Asia Hotel, and catch the 79 bus to Khaosan Road, for 13 baht, (instructions as above). Total 58 baht. Alternatively, you can also catch a taxi from Phraya Thai Station to Khaosan Road, the meter will be about 80 baht. Note, in Bangkok the custom is to ask the taxi driver if he wants to go where you are going before you get in the taxi. If you say to him "Khaosan Road" and he nods his head yes, he has also just agreed to use the meter. If he responds with a price, or says no, then you know he wants to negotiate more. Generally if he starts negotiating instead of agreeing, just hail another taxi and ask the same question again. If he forgets to turn on the meter after you pull away from the curb, simply politely say meter, and he will turn it on.
The bus system in Bangkok is very complex, but as Khao San Road is not connected to the Skytrain, for some destinations you don't have a choice. Some useful bus lines for travel to/from Khao San Road include the following:
- Ordinary bus 2 goes from Sukhumvit Road to Sanam Luang, and passes Ratchdamnoen Klang Road on the way, which is very close to Khao San Road. The route is handy for connections to the Skytrain, the metro and the Eastern Bus Terminal (Ekkamai), and it passes Pratunam on the way. 6-7 baht.
- Ordinary and air-conditioned bus 3 goes to the Northern Bus Terminal (Mo Chit) and passes by Chakrabongse Road (at the western side of Khao San Road). The trip costs 7 baht and takes approximately 30 minutes.
- Ordinary bus 15 takes you from Ratchadamnoen Klang Road (near Khao San Road) to Siam Square.
- Ordinary bus 53 goes from Phra Athit Road near the express boat pier to Hualamphong Train Station, taking an interesting and convoluted route through Rattanakosin and Yaowarat. It costs 7 baht and takes 30 minutes or more depending on traffic.
- Air-conditioned bus 511 travels right across the city from the Eastern Bus Terminal (Ekkamai) via Sukhumvit and Ratchadamnoen Klang Road (near Khao San Road) to the Southern Bus Terminal (Sai Tai). Warning: Ordinary (non-express) buses pass by Ratchdamnoen Klang Road, but express buses (with yellow signs) do not!
- Air-conditioned bus 509 travels from Mor Chit Bus Terminal, passing through Victory Monument (BTS) and Ratchadamnoen Klang Road (near Khao San Road), terminating at Bang Khae (in Thonburi).
The Airport Express bus, including backpacker favourite AE2 to Khao San Road, stopped running in June 2011. Another, even cheaper (although more fiddly) option is to use a local bus to get to Khao San Road. From the airport, catch the shuttle bus for free outside door 5 (on both the upper and lower floors) to the Public Transport Interchange. From there, catch bus 556 (33 baht) which will drop you off about halfway between Khao San Road and the Democracy Monument. To get to the airport, catch bus 556 (again 33 baht), which departs from Ratchadamnoen Klang Road, about halfway between Khao San Road and the Democracy Monument (look for the half-torn airplane sign on the bus stop sign). It will drop you off at the Public Transport Interchange, where you can catch a free shuttle bus to the terminal. This bus may be local, but often it is just as fast as the tourist bus used to be. Of late, bus 556 no longer operate from the public transport interchange.The only option now is to take bus 551(actually a white van)from the public transport interchange to the victory monument. It cost 40 bahts. Arriving at victory monument,take public bus number 59 and drop off mid-way between democracy monument and khaosan road.From there, it is only a short walk to khaosan road.
The Chao Phraya Express Boat is the cheapest and most scenic way of getting to Khao San Road. If you're coming from the city centre, take the Skytrain to Saphan Taksin station, where you can transfer onto the express boat at Sathorn pier. Then ride the express boat all the way north to Phra Arthit pier, which takes about 35 minutes and costs 13 to 18 baht. Make sure to get either the orange flag line or the blue flag tourist boat, as the yellow flag line skips Phra Arthit pier completely.
If you're staying in Khao San Road, the express boat is the easiest way to get to Rattanakosin and Silom. It's only a short (but confusing) walk from Khao San Road to Phra Arthit pier. First walk to the police station side of Khao San Road, then take a right and immediately a left into Soi Rambuttri. Walk along the bend of the street and take a right into Soi Chana Songkhram. At the end, take a right into Phra Athit Road, cross the road, and look for the small sign to the express boat pier (it is near Navalai River Resort). Bring a good map, have a good sense of direction, or ask help from a local if you get lost.
The most important piers are Tha Chang (for the Grand Palace), Tha Tien (for Wat Pho) and Rachawongse (for Yaowarat). All lines attend Sathorn pier, where you can transfer onto the Skytrain. From here, you can go to Silom, Siam Square, Sukhumvit and Phahonyothin. The Chao Phraya Express Boat stops running around 18:00 or 19:00 depending on the day, so you'll have to rely on other forms of transport in the evening.
The quickest (though not the most comfortable) way to get from Khao San Road to Siam Square, Sukhumvit and Ramkhamhaeng is by Saen Saep Express Boat. The closest pier to Khao San Road is Panfa Leelard, which is near the Golden Mount and Wat Ratchanadda. There you can get on the Golden Mount Line, which is a direct boat service from Panfa Leelard to Pratunam. At that pier you can switch onto the NIDA Line, that runs from Pratunam all the way northeast to Wat Sriboonreung in Ramkhamhaeng. A single trip from Panfa Leelard to Pratunam takes about 20 minutes and costs 11 baht. On the trip, you will pass the stops Talat Bobae (for the garment market of the same name), Sapan Charoenpol, Baan Krua Nua (for Jim Thompson's House), Sapan Hua Chang (for Siam Square) and Pratunam (for Pratunam and Ratchaprasong).
Map on Right:
Above, sunset on Khaosan Road
Find our location on the map above by looking for the red star.
Click on it to download a high-res file.