Over the past two decades, Bangkok’s formerly lush landscape has given way to a cityscape of glass and steel towers. However, one green oasis that remains is Lumphini Park, Bangkok’s answer to New York’s Central Park, a five-minute stroll from the Conrad Bangkok. Wander over to spy komodo dragons slinking through the grass or sweethearts floating in swan-shaped boats on the manmade lake inside this 142-acre natural haven. Lace up for a run or walk around the 1.5-mile jogging loop in the early morning, or jump in with the Spandex-clad crowds for a late afternoon aerobics session (in the park’s southwestern corner). No need to break a sweat to commune with nature though. Make like a local and picnic beneath a palm tree. As for provisions, head to the Central Food Hall for charcuterie and imported cheeses from expat favorite Central Chidlom. Or, walk down Wireless to Soi Polo for what many consider some of Bangkok’s best street food: minimally battered and double-deep-fried chicken in a wok with garlic. If in town on a Sunday in winter, settle in for the Bangkok Symphony Orchestra’s free weekly concert (tip: claim your patch of lawn near the pavilion by 5 p.m.).
Lumphini Park is an easy five-minute walk south of the Conrad Bangkok on Wireless. Central Chidlom is just across Phloen Chit Road, and Soi Polo is down Wireless on the same side of the street as the hotel.
LUMPHINI PARK: Rama IV Road between Ratchadamri and Wireless
CENTRAL CHIDLOM: 1027 Phloen Chit Rd.; +66-2793-7000; centralfoodhall.com
SOI POLO FRIED CHICKEN: 3 Soi Polo, off Wireless Road, across from Lumphini Park; +66-2252-2252
BANGKOK SYMPHONY ORCHESTRA: bangkoksymphony.org; Sundays at 6 p.m.; December through February; free