Bangkok is a consumer’s paradise. Whether you’re looking for a thrifty bargain in the heat of an outdoor market, or high end items at a posh air-conditioned mall, leave room in your suitcase.
I’m not much of a mall shopper, I prefer to buy local at mom and pop’s. However, I heard that Bangkok malls are something to experience and Terminal 21 sounded like a hoot. Plus getting out of the heat after walking around at nearby Benjakiti Park and a free bathroom sounded phenomenal! We’ll get back to the bathrooms later. You can easily access this mall from the Asok BTS (aka skytrain) station – right outside. The mall is enormous and meant to look like an airport, the ladies at the information desk are even wearing stewardess uniforms. I’ve never seen so many floors.
Each floor has a motif dedicated to beloved cities such as London, San Francisco, Istanbul, and Tokyo.
I didn’t need to buy a thing to get a kick out of this place, the traveler in me smiling as I recognized icons from places I have enjoyed.
The food court is packed mostly with locals, but a few tourists mixed in, and they have some intriguing options.
From local Thai food to hot pot and conveyer-belt sushi there are over 50 restaurants, plus if you pick a stall with a window you’ll get a nice view up quite a few levels.
Upstairs there is movie theater and video games. Downstairs is a shiny bright and clean food market where you can pick up some interesting local snacks. And back to the bathrooms. The entrance way to the bathrooms are decorated well, just like the rest of the floors. In Rome they have the Bocca della Verita and in London they have the Tube. That’s not what is interesting, though. I’ve seen some of the most intense bathrooms traveling around the country – holes in the ground with makeshift cardboard walls, and just a bucket of water with a cup to flush. At Terminal 21 there are bidets, which may not be such a focal point to certain regional travelers, but most Americans have never experienced one!
Oh yeah and as the shopping goes? Non-chain unique clothes that you won’t find in your country and the brand name stores. Fun fact – this mall has the longest escalators in Thailand at 118 feet!