Entertaining the kids on the weekend needn’t feel like an arduous, wallet-emptying experience. This city has more options than most people realise. While Bangkok is limited for green space, it still offers an exciting array of physical activities that will raise the heart rate and put a smile on your face. From social sporting activities to learning through physical play, we have identified some of the best indoor and outdoor activities for families in Bangkok.
1. Bounce Bangkok – a massive, indoor trampoline park
What used to be dominated by grungy teenagers on skateboards, urban sports have evolved into Parkour, free-running and Ninja Warrior. Freestyle sports don’t just look cool; they are cool. For those budding acrobats who want to put their twists, turns and somersaults to the test, Bounce Bangkok is the perfect training ground. Their trampolines, padding and air bags create a joyously safe environment to develop and practice your freestyle skills.
Try out your first backflip into a Big Bag. Race your friends up the Warped Wall. Tackle obstacles like the Spider Climb and Wedge Run. BOUNCE is the perfect playground to learn the arts of Freestyle and Ninja Warrior.
The Street, Ratchada (MRT Thailand Cultural Centre), and EmQuartier (BTS Phrom Phong) are both easily accessible by public transport.
2. Bang Kachao. Put the rubber to the road in the green lung of Bangkok
Are you looking for an easy way to escape the hustle and bustle of the world’s most visited tourist destination? A short trip to the lung of Bangkok is probably the easiest way to do it. Bang Krachao is located to south of the city where the Chao Phraya River snakes around like a horseshoe. The moment you arrive on the island you’ll feel instantly revitalised. The area remains protected from any commercial development which means the sky-rise buildings and commercial factories are nowhere to be seen. The community feel is also different from the neighbourhoods in the city and you’ll have fun exploring the traditional markets and temples.
Bicycles provide the best mode for exploring this lush green area and are available for 50 baht for an hour to 100 baht for the whole day. Cycling in a group, you still have to be watch out for the occasional motorbike and car, but the family can enjoy being at one with nature as you whizz through the verdant canopy of trees. How to get there: a 30-minute taxi ride from the centre (traffic-depending of course), or ride the BTS Sukhumvit line to Bang Na station and cross the river on the ferry from Sanphawut Pier.
3. Exercise all 8 of your limbs at RSM Muay Thai Academy
The original home of Thai boxing (Muay Thai), Rajadamnern Stadium was the first of its kind in Thailand. With a long, rich history of hosting professional tournaments and championship title fights, the stadium has witnessed many of the country’s top athletes at the peak of their physical fitness. The RSM Academy offers a welcoming platform for enthusiasts of all ages and abilities to explore the art of Muay Thai. The sport is known as the Art of 8 Limbs because the movements incorporate the feet, knees, elbows and fists; the perfect all-body workout. In fact, the training methods are incredibly popular worldwide among fitness enthusiasts of all ages and abilities. Most never plan to set foot in the ring and see the circuit-training style exercise as the most enjoyable way to reach optimum fitness. The RSM gym is the perfect antidote to the modern-day, generic gym formula, replacing the impersonal approach to workouts with exercise that is both stimulating and holistic.
4. Create your fantasy world at Imaginia, Emporium
Imaginia is a magical kingdom, where fairy tales are told and fantasies come true, and the magic is conjured up by anyone who cares to dream. A different sort of exercise, Imaginia is an enchanting space where children’s brains and creativity receive a true workout. The entertainment caters to people of all shapes and sizes, young or old. But no doubt, the younger family members will be the ones running about the Kingdom between the zones. Each of the activities offers inspiring themes that enhance cognitive, physical, creative and socio-emotional development in different ways. From the Builder’s Studio to the Art Cabin, DJ Canopy and Knight’s Circle, there are so many zones for you to explore; you’ll discover new ways of thinking, and fuel your curiosity for learning.
5. Walking the walk in Lumpini Park
Regular walking is by far the easiest form of exercise to improve your overall health. With the family by your side, this social, low-intensity activity not only promotes physical fitness, but is an excellent opportunity to reconnect with nature, and each other, away from your digital screens. Just 30 minutes a day will help to improve your cardiovascular fitness and reduce the chance of developing health risks such as heart disease, osteoporosis, type 2 diabetes and even some cancers.
In the heart of Bangkok, Lumphini Park offers that rarest of all creatures in this concrete jungle: an open, green public space. Lumphini’s 2.5-km path around the circumference provides enough room for the walkers, joggers and cyclists who exercise at sunrise and sunset to avoid the heat of the day. The pathways that snake through the central attractions offer a different route to explore every time, including children’s playgrounds, beautiful flora and magnificent trees, boats on lakes, hundreds of birds and even monitor lizards.
6. Le Smash Club and Tennis Academy
With the popularity of tennis in Thailand on the rise, there are plenty of tennis clubs across the capital from which to choose. Le Smash Club pitches itself as a club with smiles and a great place for anyone to enjoy tennis in a friendly atmosphere. What sets it apart from other clubs is the opportunity for making and meeting friends through its group lessons and extensive social calendar. It’s a community meeting place for all ages – members, friends and families – who share a love for the racket sport.
Located to the south of the city next to the Chao Praya River, Le Smash is easy to access from Rama 3. The facilities include seven light-on plexipave courts, a pro-shop and a restaurant. The added advantage for Luma members is the 50% discount on membership fees, which provides a significant saving on the family budget – starting at just 3,500 baht for children for a whole year.
Photo Credit: https://ollivves.com/
7. Discover endless biking adventures at Peppermint Bike Park
In this car-crazed city, opportunities for safe cycling are few and far between. The Peppermint Bike Park was built to answer this problem by creating a fun, varied and challenging training environment for all abilities. The park rents out bikes and helmets and is a great starting point for newbies to learn the basics about bike selection and biking techniques, as well as to take part in mountain biking classes for beginners. For those who haven’t yet had yet had their fill when dusk falls, the bike park is equipped with spotlights so cyclists can enjoy themselves into the night.
As with Le Smash, Peppermint Bike Park provides sporting enthusiasts with a place to make friends and share experiences. They organise trips for the park’s regulars so you can escape the city and embark on biking adventures with expert guides to help elevate your skills. The bike park is located to the north of the city in Lat Phrao, off the Chalong Rat Expressway.
As you can see Bangkok has more hidden up it's sleeve than you might have thought. So, if you're stuck for ways to keep your kids fit and healthy, get yourself down to one of the fun-fuelled activities this weekend... you won't regret it!
For more inspiration on getting the kids out of the house, our friends at BKK Kids are never short on ideas.