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“Royal Barge Museum-Nov 2013” 2 of 5 stars
Review of Royal Barges National Museum

Royal Barges National Museum
Soi Arun Amarin 24 | Bangkok Noi, Bangkok 10700, Thailand
02b 424 0004
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Ranked #104 of 259 attractions in Bangkok
Type: History Museums, Museums, Specialty Museums, Ships
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Attraction Details
Owner description: The museum is home to the ornately decorated boats used in State ceremonies.
Toronto, Canada
20 reviews 20 reviews
17 attraction reviews
Reviews in 5 cities Reviews in 5 cities
6 helpful votes 6 helpful votes
“Royal Barge Museum-Nov 2013”
2 of 5 stars Reviewed November 16, 2013

The museum was closed for renovations but I could see they just had a few barges to see. The river was high. The barges were surrounded by 6-8 inches of water so going in was not a good idea any way. The place is very small. To get there you have to follow a winding path through what I would politely call a "blighted area". It was not worth the time and effort to go there.

Visited November 2013
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Bang Tao Beach, Thailand
Top Contributor
59 reviews 59 reviews
26 attraction reviews
Reviews in 27 cities Reviews in 27 cities
39 helpful votes 39 helpful votes
5 of 5 stars Reviewed October 23, 2013

Having seen the magnificent royal barges on Thai television we managed to track down where they are housed at the Royal Barges National Museum. The easiest wasy to visit is via a river taxi but we took a tuk tuk as we were already close by.

Don't be put off if you arrive by road as it is a winding route which seems to pass through people's back yards but eventually you arrive at the museum. There is a modest additional charge to take photographs but its well worth it. We were lucky to arrive before the tours which come via the river so we had 30 minutes to walk around and admired the beautifully ornate barges. There is plenty of information describing on each barge plus lots of background detail.

Visited February 2013
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This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Cave Creek, Arizona
Top Contributor
119 reviews 119 reviews
20 attraction reviews
Reviews in 54 cities Reviews in 54 cities
57 helpful votes 57 helpful votes
“Visiting living antiquity”
5 of 5 stars Reviewed October 21, 2013

The reason for indicating "living antiquity" is that these barges are actually used (now) for regal/royal events! On a previous visit to Bangkok, in preparation for celebrating the King's birthday, we witnessed a dress rehearsal...all the museum's barges oared by a couple of thousand, in unison chanting sailors, in formation, "paddeling" down the river. A spectacular sight!

The question for you now is: Is it worthwhile for you to visit the museum? The answer is: If you want to see mint condition, historical, ceremonial, colorful, intricately carved barges...then do go see.

There are many web sites describing what is in the museum; visit them to help make your decision. We were on a private tour, so getting there/cost was included in a larger scope tour.

Personally, we recommend visiting the museum!

Visited April 2013
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This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
London, United Kingdom
Top Contributor
159 reviews 159 reviews
111 attraction reviews
Reviews in 31 cities Reviews in 31 cities
181 helpful votes 181 helpful votes
“A mixed review and some important tips”
2 of 5 stars Reviewed October 14, 2013

Well you have read the other reviews haven't you?

If you come hear by boat you will be heavily overcharged for the return journey. If you come by Chao Phraya ferry you will find the Thonburi railway station ferry pier shut as a major redevelopment including a new hospital and office block development are under way. Otherwise you could have walked it from there. Admittedly it would have taken 25 minutes but much cheaper than the water boatmen that want to charge upto a 1000 Baht for the journey back to accessible landfall.

Here is how you can reach the barges museum cheaply. The buses 19, 57, 81, 91, 124 and 127 will take you to the north side of the bridge over the route coming in either direction allows you to stop on the north side of the bridge over the Khlong Bangkok Noi. You will need a map to make sense of this but the 91 goes from the north end of the Imperial Palace.

Back to the north side of the bridge on Thanon (road) Arun over the Khlong ~Bangkok Noi. Walk back to the river and under the bridge ramparts to the East side of the bridge and then continue back north for approximately 80 yards and you will see a brown sign (white writing) on a post directing you down a narrow concrete alley. It starts under a metal single ridge canopy (corrugated iron) and looks like it is just going to a house but no. Follow the path for about 5 minutes, twisting and turning through shanty town but you should be safe here. Eventually you will cross a short pedestrian bridge over a side 'canal' and you do an immediate right then left and the next right is another short footbridge over another 'canal'. Follow this for just 2 more minutes and you come to the Barges Museum. (~Actually back on the main bridge I talked about earlier I walked over this bridge and you can see the museum next to the water police station if you look towards the Chao Phraya.

Of course the boats are beautiful but smaller and narrower than expected. Your best sights are the photographs here on Trip Advisor.

BEWARE THE MUSEUM IS CLOSED FOR THE WHOLE MONTH OF OCTOBER 2013. However you get 3 photo opportunities to see inside ... one approaching the back of the boathouse along the path I mentioned.
One from the entrance gate near the river which is actually only 2 metres from the boathouse entrance and you can see the front of most of the boats. There are 7 berths and 6 were occupied when I visited. One photo stop is on the way to the pier serving the boathouse from where you get a 'front end' photo opportunity.

Bearing in mind the difficulty accessing this place an the fact that it is just a 'shed' on water with no fancy artefacts put this down to the bottom of your 'must see' list. If you like medieval pageant boats then this place is a must for you but I think the place is small and totally overrated.

If this was an attraction based in Europe it would have been combined with more memorabilia to make it worthwhile but remember in the land of smiles the concern of the nation is to offer full employment to as many as possible.

However you arrive do not forget the slum dweller on the path inward. Give them a blessing in some form. Expect the charge to increase from 100 bhat when the museum reopens.

If you do a full day tour through a travel agent in Bangkok you might be able to arrange for a water stop here for 30 minutes which is enough time.

There is a tiny café just by the front entrance but I did not use it so cannot comment. The site is not really for wheelchair users.



Visited September 2013
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This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Sydney, Australia
Senior Reviewer
9 reviews 9 reviews
5 attraction reviews
Reviews in 6 cities Reviews in 6 cities
“Royal Barges”
5 of 5 stars Reviewed October 13, 2013

A long boat trip to the Royal Barge Museum, is an exciting, unique thing to do on a trip to Bangkok. Viewing the barges is a trip to another world, the size of the barges and the ornate, intricate designs are fascinating and the longboat ride on the main river and canals is very interesting and exciting.

Visited March 2013
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This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.

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