Bangkoks “Little Arabia”

Over the past 10 years, there have been more and more Arabs travelling to Thailand and Bangkok in particular. The area near The Grace Hotel, used to be a popular spot with Russian tourists. These days, you will see mostly Arabs in this area.

One of the positive things about all the Arabs in this area, is the opening of several great restaurants in this new Arabic district. I recommend that anyone travelling to Bangkok should make a point of visiting this area and sampling some of the wonderful Arabic food. The restaurants in this district are open 24 hrs per day, so it a great place to go after a night out, although they do not serve alcohol.

The Arabic district is located at the corner of Sukhumvit Soi 3 and Sukhumvit Road, (where Soi 3 meets Soi 4). There is an small soi that goes in a “L” shape, with an entrance on Soi 3, and another on Sukhumvit Road. There are Arabic restaurants on either side of the street, with shiny silver railings, they are very decorative inside and out. If you have every been to the Sukhumvit area in Bangkok, you will probably remember that the streets are filthy, and many of the restaurants are also very dirty. The Arabic restaurants in this area are amazingly very clean and spotless inside and out.

There is a Kebab stand selling fresh Kebab in pita at the entrance on Soi 3. The fresh Kebab meat in pita with your choice of sauce is very affordable, and it tastes fantastic. Normally the Kebab stand has both beef and chicken freshly sliced from the rotisserie. The cost of a Kebab is only 50THB(less than 2USD). The owner of the Kebab stand prides himself on maintaining a clean environment where he cooks, you will see this in the photo.

One of the main attractions at any of the restaurants in this disrtict are the Shisha Pipes. The Shisha Pipe, is basically a water pipe that is used to smoke flavored tobacco. The health risks involved in smoking from the Shisha (Hooka) Pipe, are widely debated. Some say it is safer than regular tobacco, and others say it is more dangerous. I can only say, it certainly tastes and smells a lot better than cigarettes.


There are a wide variety of Arabic foods available, including seafood, Kebabs, breads and anything else you can imagine. The menu at one of these restaurants may look like an encyclopedia. The prices of food in Bangkok can be a little on the high side, and the restaurants in this district are no exception, however the food is truly authentic, and you can not find this in most places in Thailand. One of my favourite dishes is the “mixed vegetables stuffed with minced lamb”. Most dishes will cost approximately 150-300THB(5-10USD).


 

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