Living in Bangkok | Berkeley International School

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Living in Bangkok

Bangkok is one of Southeast Asia’s most vibrant and stylish cities where visitors are constantly immersed in both the contemporary and historical. The modern skyline of towering skyscrapers and world class public transportation systems is dotted with beautiful temples and palaces. This eclectic mix of the traditional and contemporary attracts people from every corner of the globe who are eager to experience life in this bustling metropolis. From top class 5 star hotels, with rooftop pools, to on the street food stalls with all manner of dishes on offer, Bangkok’s intense energy never stops and the city really enforces a 24/7 mentality for those who have lived here for some time.

If you are inexperienced with Southeast Asia, living and working in Bangkok will be something completely different; and should you so wish, every day can be an adventure. Expats are always intrigued by the friendliness and genuine smiles of the local Thais. Working at Berkeley will allow you to experience this cosmopolitan, dynamic and exciting environment, while always having a friendly pool of fellow teachers to share your experiences with.

Bangkok is Thailand’s cultural, political and financial centre, and the city is one of Asia’s busiest and most-connected hubs, especially when it comes to air travel. Home to a diverse population of Thais, Mon and other Asian ethnic groups, the cultural hearth of people built up here over time is immense. Add the immigrants and expats from Europe, Australia, Americas and other parts of the world to find the mix complete. Surrounding the Chao Phraya River, the city vibrates with endless traffic jams, markets and festivals.

The new Metro and BTS Skytrain lines have become an integral part of getting around Bangkok, with new lines being built to connect more districts to the central core by 2029. Most of the main destinations are close to a BTS station, meaning that cars are unnecessary, and that getting around the city is easy, convenient and affordable. Berkeley is close to Udomsuk BTS station, and the extension of the line will see a station close to the school in the coming years.

The gorgeous beaches of southern Thailand are favourite getaways, particularly the resort town of Hua Hin which is in easy reach of the capital some 200km south of Bangkok on the Gulf of Thailand. Phuket island is also another firm favorite, about 850km south on the Andaman Sea, with its clear waters, beautiful scenery and exciting nightlife.

The temple-filled city of Chiang Mai, capital of the ancient Lanna kingdom of northern Thailand, is also a popular destination about 600km north of the city near the Burmese border. It is surrounded by green mountains, hilltop temples, bubbling hot springs and rice fields. Elephants are also to be observed in great quantities in and outside of the city.

Bangkok is serviced by Suvarnabhumi International Airport, which sees mostly international flights, and the older Don Mueang International Airport, which handles domestic, regional and low-cost carriers. Flights to Chiang Mai are a little more than an hour, Singapore and Hong Kong are about a two-and-a-half hour flight away, while flights to Shanghai and Beijing will take about four hours.