Everyday from 10.00 AM to 6.00 PM with the last guided tour at 5.00 PM. The tours are provided in English, French, Japanese, Chinese and Thai.
Adult 200 baht, visitors under 22 years 100 baht (ID required), free entry for children under 10 years of age when accompanied by an adult.
Located in the center of Bangkok, Jim Thompson House Museum is conveniently reached by car, taxi, tuk tuk, and the BTS Sky Train(National Stadium station exit no.1)
Jim Thompson House Museum
6 Soi Kasemsan 2, Rama 1 Road. Bangkok 10330
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Visit The James H.W. Thompson Foundation’s Google Arts & Culture Page
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Bangkok's Jim Thompson House: The Complete Guide
The Story of Jim Thompson and How to Visit the Popular Museum in Bangkok
Fabrizio Vendramin / Getty Images
Jim Thompson House Museum
Built in 1959, the Jim Thompson House in Bangkok is a peaceful, half-acre respite in the busiest part of the city for tourists.
The location for the museum is perfect: it’s a convenient escape literally around the corner from the many megamalls in the area — perfect for when those crowds have begun to fray nerves and patience. The Jim Thompson House serves as an oasis of art and culture for travelers with accidental retail overload. The landscaped grounds and tranquil garden are in sharp contrast to Bangkok’s hectic heart.
The Story of Jim Thompson
Jim Thompson was an American entrepreneur credited with repairing the Thai silk industry. That doesn’t sound so exciting, but his story could be one straight out of Hollywood. The mysterious disappearance of a high-profile millionaire, the murder of his sister, CIA involvement—what more do you need? Conspiracy theories abound, but as of yet, the mystery of Jim Thompson’s disappearance in 1967 remains unsolved.
After beginning his career as an architect, Thompson quit and joined the Delaware National Guard. The lust for more excitement wasn’t too surprising given that his grandfather was James H. Wilson, the Union general whose men captured Confederate President Jefferson Davis.
During World War II, Jim Thompson was recruited to serve as an operative for the Office of Strategic Services—the predecessor of the modern-day CIA. He arrived in Japanese-occupied Thailand right after Japan’s surrender and set up the OSS office in Bangkok.
After leaving service, Thompson and his partner founded the Thai Silk Company Limited in 1948. The move was logical; Thompson’s father had been successful in the textile industry. The Thai Silk Company became very profitable as Jim Thompson traveled Southeast Asia extensively, building an intimate knowledge of the region. He also amassed artwork and rare antiques along the way, eventually constructing a mansion (now the Jim Thompson House in Bangkok) to showcase them.
On March 26, 1967, while staying in a bungalow in Malaysia’s Cameron Highlands , 61-year-old Jim Thompson went for a short Easter Sunday stroll and never returned. His behavior was reportedly strange; some accounts even claim he said “goodnight, sweethearts” to his friends as he was leaving that afternoon. A massive search and years of investigation produced neither a body nor explanation.
Adding to the mystery, Thompson’s older sister was murdered in her Pennsylvania home a few months after he disappeared. Although no one knows if the event is related, that case also remained unsolved.
Where to Find the Jim Thompson House
Conveniently, the Jim Thompson House is very centrally located in the heart of the action just off Rama I Road. There are plenty of options for eating and exploring before and after a tour of the museum.
The BTS Skytrain station nearest to the Jim Thompson House is National Stadium, although you can easily get there by walking 20 minutes from the main Siam BTS station.
Pretty well all tuk-tuk and taxi drivers will know the Jim Thompson House. You’ll have to fight for them to use the meter, or in the case of taking tuk-tuks , you’ll have to negotiate a better fare before agreeing to go.
The official address is:
Visiting the Jim Thompson House
Although you could look around the front part of the garden unaccompanied, you must take one of the guided tours to see the inside of the house.
Depending on how busy the museum is, you may be given a time to return for your tour; be back 10 minutes early. The last tours start at 6 p.m. and are available in Thai, English, French, Chinese, and Japanese.
Per Thai custom for entering a house or sacred place , you’ll be expected to remove your shoes at the start of the tour.
The Jim Thompson House is open seven days a week from 9 a.m. to 6 p.m.
To confirm the Jim Thompson House is open during big public holidays, call +66 2 216 7368.
- Adults: 200 baht
- Under 22 years old: 100 baht (you must show an ID)
- Children under 10: Free
What to See
The Jim Thompson House is one of Bangkok's top attractions for a number of reasons. Thompson was an architect and designer, so he purposefully constructed his house from wooden panels and walls taken from old structures throughout Thailand. The finished property represents multiple styles and regions.
While the design of the house itself is impressive, the real treasures await inside. During his travels in Southeast Asia , Jim Thompson collected antique Buddha statues and rare artwork including paintings and porcelain. Even much of the furniture is intricately carved and beautiful. Of course, you will also see displays of old looms and colorful silk.
Also in the Area
The Jim Thompson House is located very near to some of Bangkok’s biggest shopping malls along Rama I Road. MBK Center , Siam Discovery, and Siam Center are all only a 15-minute walk away. Numerous spas and massage shops are also in the area.
If you decide to walk Rama I Road, look for the busy Erawan Shrine on the sidewalk around a 25-minute walk from the Jim Thompson House.
Theories About Jim Thompson’s Disappearance
The most realistic of theories explaining Thompson’s disappearance is that he was accidentally killed in a hit-and-run accident by a local. Seeing that Thompson was a rich, well-known Westerner, the person driving may have covered up the accident for fear of harsh punishment by local authorities. Jim Thompson had left his cigarettes and other personal affects at home, possibly proving that he didn’t intend to be gone for long.
A more far-fetched theory is that Jim Thompson was contacted by the CIA for assistance during the Vietnam War. Given his notoriety, OSS background, and extensive knowledge of the region, the idea is plausible. Thailand was an ally and base of operations for the U.S. during the war. Laos was secretly home to Lima Site 6, a runway in the mountains used by the CIA’s Air America to fly covert missions. Thompson understood both countries well and had many contacts. Strangely, the CIA landing strip later became Vang Vieng, a tourist town and popular stop for partying on the backpacker trail !
If Thompson did participate in the Vietnam War, he would have had to do so covertly because of his high profile. If so, either things didn’t go as planned or he deliberately never returned.
Although a ransom was never requested, some believe that Jim Thompson had been kidnapped. Time magazine reported in 1967 that Thompson “knew many of Ho Chi Minh’s agents.” He may have been killed while trying to escape capture, or simply abducted (by either Chinese or Vietnamese agents) in a proactive measure to prevent him from aiding the U.S. during the war. A Malaysian woman interviewed during the investigation reported seeing a convoy of similar vehicles drive down the ordinarily sleepy road the day he went missing.
The last—and perhaps most romantic theory—is that Jim Thompson simply had enough and walked away from his empire. He was known to impulsively start anew when it struck his fancy. Although Thompson was wealthy and successful, he may have wanted to “retire” simply by living in secret with less notoriety. He had the resources, contacts, and knowledge of Asia to do so.
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Exploring Jim Thompson House and Thai Silk in Bangkok
If you find yourself wandering through the bustling streets of Bangkok, seeking a captivating blend of history, culture, and art, then the Jim Thompson House is an absolute must-visit. This enchanting museum is more than just a collection of artifacts; it is a living tribute to the legacy of Jim Thompson and the rich history of Thai silk. Let’s take a delightful journey through the captivating world of Thai silk and the man who played a pivotal role in its resurgence.
Who was Jim Thompson?
Before we delve into the wonders of the Jim Thompson House, it’s essential to understand the man behind this extraordinary place. Jim Thompson was an American entrepreneur who revitalized the Thai silk industry in the 1950s and 1960s. He fell in love with Thailand during his military service and decided to make it his home. Not only did he settle in Thailand, but he also made it his mission to preserve and promote the traditional art of Thai silk weaving.
- im Thompson: American businessman who revitalized Thai silk industry in 1950s-1960s.
- Born: March 21, 1906, Delaware, USA.
- Co-founder of Thai Silk Company Limited in 1947.
- Mysteriously disappeared on March 26, 1967, in Malaysia .
The House and Its Enigmatic Architecture
The Jim Thompson House itself is an architectural masterpiece, reflecting the allure of traditional Thai design. The compound comprises six authentic Thai teakwood houses, artfully connected by lush gardens and water features. Each house is a treasure trove of art and antiquities from various regions of Thailand, showcasing the diverse cultural heritage of the country.
The Jim Thompson House Museum is a fantastic experience for those interested in architecture, art, and history. Visitors are allowed to walk inside the six houses and look at all the art pieces. The museum has plans to build a big, new, and modern art building with a public rooftop garden and two art galleries
The significance of the art collection in Jim Thompson’s House
The art collection in Jim Thompson’s house is significant for several reasons:
- Preservation of Thai Art : Jim Thompson’s collection includes old Thai paintings, Buddhist sculptures, and traditional Thai art pieces. By showcasing these artworks in his house, Thompson contributed to the preservation and promotion of Thai art and culture.
- Promotion of Southeast Asian Art : Thompson also became a major collector of Southeast Asian art, which was not well known among Westerners at the time. His collection included historical Buddhist statues and traditional Thai paintings that depicted the life of Buddha and the legend of Vessantara Jataka. Through his collection, Thompson helped introduce and popularize Southeast Asian art to a wider audience.
- Cultural Exchange : Thompson’s art collection was diverse and included pieces from various countries, such as Chinese blue-and-white Ming pieces, Belgian glass, Cambodian carvings, Victorian chandeliers, Thai stone images, Burmese statues, and more. This eclectic mix of art reflects Thompson’s appreciation for different cultures and his desire to create a space that showcased the beauty of art from around the world.
- Historical Value : The art collection in Jim Thompson’s house holds historical value as it represents the artistic traditions and craftsmanship of different time periods 2 . The collection includes 19th-century houses that were dismantled and moved from Ayutthaya, as well as other historical artefacts. By preserving and displaying these artworks, Thompson contributed to the preservation of Thailand’s architectural and artistic heritage.
- Museum Establishment : After Jim Thompson’s mysterious disappearance in 1967, his extensive art collection led to the establishment of the Jim Thompson House Museum. The museum allows visitors to view and appreciate the valuable art pieces that Thompson collected during his lifetime. It serves as a cultural and historical landmark in Bangkok, attracting tourists and art enthusiasts from around the world.
Overall, the art collection in Jim Thompson’s house is significant for its contribution to the preservation and promotion of Thai and Southeast Asian art, its representation of diverse cultures, and its historical and cultural value.
A Glimpse into the Silk Industry
At the Jim Thompson House, you’ll have the opportunity to gain insights into the silk-making process, which has been kept alive for generations. The living silk farm on the premises demonstrates the intricate journey of silk production, from the nurturing of silkworms to the mesmerizing dyeing and weaving techniques. Witnessing this labor-intensive and delicate craftsmanship is a humbling experience that deepens one’s appreciation for Thai silk.
The Legend of the Disappearing Entrepreneur
The story of Jim Thompson takes an intriguing turn, making his house even more alluring to visitors. In 1967, while on a vacation in Malaysia, Jim Thompson mysteriously disappeared without a trace. Despite extensive searches, no one could unravel the enigma surrounding his vanishing. The legend of the “Thai Silk King” lives on, and visitors often find themselves captivated by the mystery during their visit.
Tips for Visiting
To make the most of your visit to the Jim Thompson House, here are some tips to keep in mind:
- Guided Tours : Consider opting for a guided tour to fully immerse yourself in the captivating stories behind the artifacts and the life of Jim Thompson.
- Timing : The museum can get crowded, so arriving early in the day or booking your tickets in advance is advisable.
- Photography : While photography is not allowed inside the houses, you are free to capture the mesmerizing gardens and the exterior of the teakwood houses.
- Shopping : The museum has an excellent gift shop where you can purchase high-quality Thai silk products and other traditional crafts as souvenirs.
Explore Further: External Resources on Jim Thompson House
- The Jim Thompson House Museum
- Sotheby’s: The Jim Thompson House
- A Brief History Of Jim Thompson
Jim Thompson House Conclusion
The Jim Thompson House stands as a living tribute to the legacy of a man who helped revive the Thai silk industry and promoted the nation’s cultural heritage. Its captivating architecture, rich history, and mysterious story make it an unmissable destination for travelers seeking an authentic and enchanting Thai experience.
Exploring the Jim Thompson House is not just a journey into the legacy of Thai silk but also an immersion into the diverse tapestry of traditional Thai crafts that continue to thrive in this vibrant and culturally-rich nation. So, next time you find yourself in the vibrant city of Bangkok , don’t forget to explore the Jim Thompson House and immerse yourself in the mesmerizing world of Thai silk!
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Thailand is one of the most popular holiday package destinations for South Africans, and with good reason. The shopping is unbeatab le, the food is delicious, the Thai people are the friendliest you’ll ever meet – and that’s just a taste of what to expect on a Thailand trip.
The ‘Land of Smiles’ offers a choice of absolutely beautiful beach destinations, some on charming little islands. Among the many tourist attractions, there are jungles and mountain retreats to visit, and glittering royal temples and ancient monasteries to explore. There are street markets and sophisticated city plazas, all brimming with fabulous items to buy. And did we mention that Thailand holiday packages are very reasonably priced?
Why we love Thailand holidays
- The choice of holidays is so varied. From jungle safaris to island resorts, city breaks to mountain retreats, Thailand has it all.
- It’s called ‘The Land of Smiles’ because the Thai people are so friendly and welcoming.
- It’s a cost-effective holiday destination for South Africans .
- The beaches are picture-perfect, with white sand lapped by azure seas.
- The Thai people love to celebrate, and there are endless festivals, cultural celebrations and religious ceremonies.
- Phuket has a rich cultural heritage, and visitors can explore this when visiting historic sites such as Old Phuket Town and Wat Chalong Temple.
- Nowhere else on earth offers such incredible massages, which you can even enjoy on the beach.
- The nightlife is unparalleled – in Thailand, life begins when the sun goes down!
- The food markets in Bangkok will leave you salivating.
The best time to visit Thailand is between the months of November and April. During this period it is generally the warmest and driest time to holiday in Thailand.
When you holiday in Thailand, there is always something new and exciting to discover. Whether you’re travelling on a romantic getaway or taking the family for some fun in the sun. Going solo or getting together with friends to enjoy the food and nightlife, Thailand is a destination to suit every type of traveller especially with every type of budget from luxury packages to cheap Thailand packages. Our Thailand holiday packages may include flights.
What to do in Thailand
Thailand is an exciting destination and having ‘ sanuk ’ ( fun in the Thai language), is what a holiday here is all about. No matter what type of package you choose in Thailand, you’ll be spoilt for choice when it comes to activities.
Whether you’re on a beach holiday in Phuket or one of the islands, exploring the countryside in Northern Thailand, or savouring city life in Bangkok. Each place you visit offers a multitude of things to do, but make sure to take time out to relax with a traditional Thai massage. Being indulged in this rejuvenating, and legendary pursuit is one of the joys of visiting Thailand. When the sun sets, there’s plenty to too, with lots of entertainment, from Thai dancing and nightclubs to shopping at traditional night markets.
Things to do in Thailand
- Go jet skiing, kayaking and sailing on Phuket’ s Patong Beach – or just laze in the sun.
- Learn to cook traditional Thai food in a lush mountain setting in Chiang Mai.
- Explore Bangkok ’s glittering Royal palaces, temples and traditional markets.
- Shop until you drop in shopping malls or street markets around Thailand.
- Stay at Elephant Hills, a luxury tented camp, where you can go on safari.
- Enjoy snorkelling in the stunning Similan Islands near Khao Lak.
- Explore Koh Phi Phi and the surrounding islands. Please note that Phi Phi Leh island's Maya Bay, where the movie The Beach was filmed, is closed for environmental reconstruction due to the number of visitors over the past decade. The opening date has not been released by the Thai Government.
- See Krabi’s magnificent natural wonders, such as Noppharat Thara Beach National Park.
- Go coral diving outside of Krabi to the surrounding islands, home to some of the most beautiful reefs on earth.
- Visit a hill tribe village in Mae Hong Son, Northern Thailand and discover the unique customs and cultures practised by one of the most popular hill tribes called the Karen Hill Tribe.
- Visit the Damnoen Saduak Floating Market to experience the oldest and traditional way of farmers selling food, fruit, flowers and many other local products from their boats.
- Sample some Thai street food in Bangkok, known to be the best city in the world for street food.
- Enjoy a fun ride in a tuk-tuk which is a cheaper way of exploring the cities – depending on your negotiation skills.
- Visit Wat Rong Khun, the picture-perfect White Temple in Chiang Rai.
- Explore the underwater world in Koh Tao, Thailand's most popular island for diving.
- Visit the Phuket Big Buddha, which is one of the tallest statues in the world and enjoy the best view of the island.
- Celebrate Thai New Year, also known as the Songkran Festival, where locals enjoy local entertainment and splash water on everyone. This is believed to bring good health, prosperity and longevity.
Everybody should experience a holiday in Thailand at least once in their lifetime. Chat to us about our 2024 packages to make your Thailand holiday dreams a reality and travel on a journey of delight to this exotic destination.
Know before you go...
When is the best time to visit?
- Thailand is an all-year-round destination. However, there are factors to consider when planning your holidays, such as seasonal weather and price s of flights and accommodation .
- Thailand has a tropical climate throughout the country, which means it is hot and humid year-round. The average temperature ranges from 18 to 38°C .
- March to May : High humidity and temperatures.
- November to February : Dry, c ool temperatures and low humidity , the best time to travel.
- May to October : Rainy season, generally sunny with quick showers in the late afternoon and evening.
Getting there & getting around
- There are regular flights from Johannesburg, Cap e Town and Durban to Bangkok, Phuket and Krabi .
- The flight duration varies depending on the airline selected.
- Bangkok transport includes BTS Skytrain, MRT subway, buses, taxis, motorbike taxis, tuk tuks , songthaews, express boats and Khlong boats.
Do I need a visa?
- South African passport holders do not require a visa for a stay of up to 30 days.
- Passports must be valid for at least 6 months after travel to Thailand.
- Make sure your passport has at least 2 unused pages for any required entry/exit stamps.
- On arrival in Thailand, you will be required to present a return ticket or onward travel arrangements.
What time is it?
- Thailand is 5 hours ahead of South Africa.
- Currency: Thai baht (THB).
- Major credit cards (Visa and Mastercard) are accepted in hotels, shops and large restaurants.
- You can exchange your currency into THB at any authorised money exchanger.
- Tipping is an accepted custom in Thailand. Tip restaurant staff, luggage porters, drivers and guides at your discretion.
Language & phrases
- Thai is the official language of Thailand.
- English is widely spoken in popular tourist areas.
Culture & religion
- Theravada Buddhism is Thailand’s main religion and a strong element of its culture.
- When visiting sacred sites and temples, dress conservatively. (See ‘What to pack’).
- Very important: In Buddhist culture, the head is the most sacred part of the body. Do not touch or pat people’s heads, not even children.
- It’s preferable to drink bottled water in Thailand. Bottled water is available everywhere.
- Check with your travel clinic about recommended vaccinations.
What must I pack?
- Depending on when and where you visit, lightweight clothing for summer, warmer layers for winter.
- Lightweight rain jacket.
- Dress modestly when visiting sacred sites – no shorts or tank tops. Legs & shoulders must be covered. Long, loose pants and long-sleeved cotton shirts are best.
- Comfortable walking shoes.
- Sunscreen, lip balm, hat and sunglasses for summer holidays.
- Mini first aid kit and regular prescription medication.
- Hand sanitiser and insect repellent.
- Travel adaptor. Power outlets in Thailand generally feature flat, two-pronged plugs, though some feature holes for round plug ends. Few outlets feature three holes (grounded outlets) so it is often necessary to have a three-to-two-prong adapter. Thailand operates on a 230V supply voltage and 50Hz.
What do I do in an emergency?
- If passports or valuables are stolen, report the theft to the hotel/police immediately.
- Contact the Thompsons Holidays 24-hour care line to assist.
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Jim Thompson House
Updated: December 23, 2022 by Michiel Bosch Location: Bangkok Type: Museum
The former house of a famous and inspiring American entrepreneur Jim Thompson is now a museum. He came to Thailand to work for the American army after World War II. He fell in love with the country, the people, and its art. He started a silk company and gave new life to the Thai silk business, making it famous throughout the world. His disappearance in 1967 still remains a mystery.
His art collection of porcelain, carvings, glassware, images and statues is now on display in his old house which is one of a few traditional Thai houses in central Bangkok.
Silk products under the Jim Thompson brand are available at the museum shop.
Visit Jim Thompson House on a Bangkok tour…
BKK Tours can organize the following private tours for you:
- Bangkok Explorer tour
About Michiel Bosch
Michiel Bosch and Photjaman 'Air' Reamsan founded BKK Tours in 2009. With the help of a carefully selected team of English speaking tour guides and professional drivers, they share their passion for Thailand by showing travellers the popular highlights and hidden gems. BKK Tours is a leading tour operator for private Bangkok tours and day trips, awarded with a Certificate of Excellence by TripAdvisor yearly since 2012, and received a Hall of Fame award which recognizes consistent excellent reviews from travellers.
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Image: Jim Thompson House
JIM THOMPSON HOUSE MUSEUM
Not far from Siam Square in Bangkok is you will find Thailand’s most famous house, the Jim Thompson House Museum. This is the place where you can learn a lot about Asian art, history and Thai culture. We found a visit to this unique place in the center of Bangkok very informative and especially fun!
Who was Jim Thompson?
In Thailand, Jim Thompson (actually named James H.W. Thompson = James Harrison Wilson Thompson) is a well-known person who made the silk industry flourish in the middle of the last century. Jim was born on March 21st 1906 in America where he grew up in Delaware. Jim’s father was a wealthy textile manufacturer, apparently the apple doesn’t fall far from the tree.
Image: Thailand Magazine
When Jim was in his twenties he started working as an architect where he designing houses for America’s elite. In 1941, Jim started working for the Office of Strategic Services. This was the forerunner of the CIA. After Jim Thompson served in the U.S. Army during World War II, he was based in Sri Lanka after the liberation of Europe. Here he offered help to Thailand on behalf of America. The goal was to liberate Thailand from the Japanese.
After the liberation of Thailand and the end of the Second World War, Jim left for Thailand in 1946 at the age of 39. Initially, he wanted to start a hotel together with a group of investors. In order to promote the emerging tourism in Thailand. But due to mutual disagreements, he stopped this and together with his good friend, George Barrie, he started the Thai Silk Company Limited in 1948.
Images: The Thai Silk Company
DID YOU KNOW? Jim Thompson was awarded the Order of the White Elephant. A Thai award given since 1861 to foreigners who have been extraordinarily meaningful to the Thai community.
Thai Silk Company Limited
The company’s mission was to put Thai fabric (silk) on the international map. Thai silk had to become a worthy and qualitative export product. The export of Thai silk had completely collapsed due to other bad production and industrialisation in the west. This made silk from the west much cheaper and of better quality than silk from Thailand. Jim Thompson improved the weaving and colouring process, among other things. In this way, silk products from Thailand became of high quality and affordable again. He also gave advice on which colour combinations would become fashionable.
The Thai Silk Company regularly sent samples of their fabrics to fashion houses in Europe and America. When in 1951 the silk fabrics of the Thai Silk Company were used for the famous musical The King and I, things went very fast. The demand for Thai silk increased enormously. Nowadays, Thai silk is seen as a quality product that is widely used in the fashion world. Also, the fabrics of the company are still used for upholstery of sofas and chairs.
Image: The Thai Silk Company
Image: jimthompson_official (Instagram)
Employment in the Thai silk industry
Jim Thompson and his company have helped thousands of Thai families generate income. Because Thai women could make the silk from their homes it was possible to combine it with their household. In this way many poor families got a chance for a better future. Today, many Thai women still work in the silk industry, partly thanks to the dedication and perseverance of Jim Thompson.
Image: Heinrich Pollmeier (Flickr)
Jim built his house in a place where he could live close to his weavers. That is why many weavers lived in the vicinity of the Jim Thompson House.
Unique collection of Asian art
Jim Thompson was a great lover and collector of Asian art. His collection of paintings, antique utensils, sculptures, carvings and other art objects was immense! Jim also had many unique Buddhist (art) works and other rare objects in his collection. In 1958, his collection was so large that he needed more space. Time for a new home he must have thought. And so Jim built a house were he could display his art collection and accomodate his friends. Nowadays, this house, the Jim Thompson House, one of the most beautiful museums of Bangkok.
Images: Thailand Magazine
DID YOU KNOW? Some items from Jim Thompson’s collection are almost 1,400 years old!
Image: lightmeister (Flickr)
Not one but six houses!
Put this way, all-rounder Jim started to crown his work in 1958. Building a new home / museum in Bangkok. No less than six different authentic teak Thai houses were bought from Ayutthaya and Bangkok. Some of these houses were over a century old. Of these six houses Jim Thompson wanted to use the materials to build one large house in Bangkok.
Image: yashima (Flickr)
During the construction of this architectural masterpiece, Jim also added his own creations and ideas. Jim also used various objects that he had collected over the years for decoration. It only took him 7 months to complete the construction of the house.
Image: Hakan Kavas (Flickr)
DID YOU KNOW? The living room of the Jim Thompson House is actually an old weaver’s house, ironically, isn’t it?
What’s also special about Jim Thompson House is that it’s a mix of different styles. There are western elements like marble from Italy and Belgium and the windows are typically Asian style again. The whole house is a true work of art to walk through! And in that very big work of art are all smaller works of art. If you are a lover of art and culture, then the Jim Thompson House Museum is a must to visit if you are in Bangkok .
Don’t forget the garden!
What we also really enjoyed is the beautiful garden on the grounds of the Jim Thompson House! It is a piece of nature and tranquility in the middle of busy Bangkok. In the garden are several small buildings where a part of Jim’s collection is exhibited. So don’t forget to take a walk through the garden of the Jim Thompson House.
PLEASE NOTE! In the garden, there is a vase with a biting fish that has bitten many visitors… No, not a piranha but a ruthless fish! You have been warned!
Jim Thompson House Museum in Bangkok
Today, the Jim Thompson House Museum is a real attraction for the many tourists in Bangkok. The house is easily accessible by public transport including the BTS (Sky Train) and via the Khlong Saen Saep Express Boat. The Jim Thompson House is located on the waterfront and in an alley. It is very quiet and serene, very special since you are in the middle of the busy center of Bangkok.
Video: Sven Petermann (YouTube)
During a visit to the Jim Thompson House you will get a guide (mandatory). This guide will tell you more about Jim’s life, the special collection and the house itself. The museum is open from 11:00 – 18:00 hr. Tours are available all day round with no fixed schedule. This with guides who will show you around in different languages such as English, Chinese, Japanese and French. The guide is included in the price of 200 baht. Children under the age of 10 can enter for free and youngsters under the age of 22 pay 100 baht.
Vanished in thin air since 26 March 1967
On Easter Sunday 26-03-1967, Jim Thompson was last seen. He was on a holiday in neighbouring Malaysia. To be precise on the Cameron Highlands about 150 km from the capital Kuala Lumpur. After attending mass in All Soul’s church, Jim and his company had a picnic in the countryside after which they returned to the Moonlight Bungalow, their holiday address. From here Jim started a walk he never came back from. He was last seen at 16:00 at the Lutheran Mission Bungalow in the Kamunting district. Since then, no one has ever seen him again…
The Moonlight Bungalow where Jim slept and the last place Jim was seen | Images: Wikipedia
Nowadays The Thai Silk Company still exists, including the Jim Thompson Farm. Then there is also the James H.W. Thompson Foundation. A foundation that manages the Jim Thompson House Museum and the Jim Thompson Art Center. There are also numerous restaurants and shops / boutiques that sell beautiful fabrics and fashion such as in Siam Paragon or ICONSIAM. Of course there is also an online store where people all over the world can buy beautiful silk products. It is nice to see that the company that James H.W. Thompson founded in 1951 still exists today! His nickname is not for nothing the king of silk.
Image: Kent MacElwee (Flickr)
Image: Ankur Panchbudhe (Flickr)
Image: sccart (Flickr)
Jim Thompson Fabrics
Thanks to Jim’s entrepreneurial spirit and unbridled commitment to the silk industry, silk is still a sought-after product today. It is therefore not surprising that there are several Jim Thompson stores in Thailand. For example in the Siam Paragon and ICONSIAM shopping malls. There is even a Jim Thompson Factory Outlet Store in Bangkok, which is a half hour drive from the museum. So if you are completely overwhelmed by the splendor of the silk, then you know where to go.
There is also a Jim Thompson webshop so people from all over the world can buy Jim Thompson’s products. The Jim Thompson Fabrics division can be divided into two companies. For example, there is the Jim Thompson Personal Goods division, which sells silk clothing and accessories. And Jim Thompson Home Furnishing, which sells products for the home.
Image: Jim Thompson Fabrics (Facebook)
Jim Thompson Farm
There is also a real Jim Thompson Farm. This farm is not located in Bangkok but in Takhop. The terrain is about four hours drive from Bangkok and is located near the Khao Yai National Park. This area was created to preserve the cultural heritage of Thailand. The main goal is to preserve the culture of the Isaan (region in northeastern Thailand).
The Jim Thompson Farm was established in 1988 as a production site for silkworms. Since 2001, it has been regularly open to visitors in order to learn more about the beautiful Thai nature. In 2007, The Thai Silk Company built an entire village from the Isaan on the site. A smart way to market cultural heritage and make sure it is not lost. Since 2012, there is a theme every year and everyone is welcome on the land of the Jim Thompson Farm.
Images: Jim Thompson Farm (Facebook)
The Jim Thompson Art Center
In addition to the Jim Thompson House, there is also an art center. The adjacent Jim Thompson Art Center was founded by the James H.W. Thompson Foundation. Its purpose is to support Bangkok’s local and international art and cultural communities. They do this for example by organizing exhibitions and lectures.
Images: The Jim Thompson Art Center (Facebook)
Jim Thompson – A Thai Restaurant
During Jim’s presence in Thailand, he was regularly visited by friends. Many of his friends were well-known writers or other famous people. Together they enjoyed the tasty Thai cuisine and that is why the Jim Thompson restaurants were created. In the Jim Thompson restaurants you can enjoy the authentic Thai cuisine in an atmospheric ambiance.
Images: Jim Thompson – A Thai Restaurant (Facebook)
Currently there are already two Jim Thompson restaurants, including those next to the Jim Thompson House Museum in Bangkok. During our visit to the Jim Thompson House in Bangkok we ended with a snack and a drink.
Is the Jim Thompson House Museum highly recommended?
YES, especially if you care about Asian culture, art and architecture. We found it a very nice and special visit to the house of the late Jim!
In memoriam James H.W. Thompson 21-03-1906 — xx-xx-xxxx
Image: The Thai Silk Company
What else to do in the area?
Actually, too much to mention! In the InfoBox you will find a number of good accommodations, places to eat and drink and other nice places. Discover and experience Bangkok!
Food & Beverages
Transportation, support us.
Jim Thompson House Museum 6 Kasem San 2 Alley, Wang Mai, Pathum Wan District, Bangkok 10330 Tel : +66 (0)6 218 7368
Website The James H.W. Thompson Foundation Website Jim Thompson Fabrics Website Jim Thompson Restaurants Website Jim Thompson Farm Website Jim Thompson Art Center
Great accommodaties in the area of Jim Thompson House Museum
- Lub d Bangkok Siam Hostel
- Kritthai Residence
- Ibis Bangkok Siam
- Holiday Inn Express Bangkok Siam
- Mercure Bangkok Siam
- Pathumwan Princess Hotel
- Grande Centre Point Ratchadamri
- Hotel Muse Bangkok Langsuan – MGallery
- Centara Grand at CentralWorld
- Courtyard by Marriott Bangkok
- The Okura Prestige Bangkok
- Siam Kempinski Hotel Bangkok
Good food and beverages near Jim Thompson House Museum
- ThaiTownBKK Nice and cozy restaurant with tasty dishes. Right next to BTS station Ratchathewi and a 10-minute walk from Jim Thompson House Museum.
- Kaizen Sushi & Hibachi For when you are looking for super tasty sushi, sashimi and other Japanese dishes. About 7 minutes walk from Jim Thompson House Museum.
- FEATLAB This is the place to be for snacking and a variety of craft beers! Try their famous Chicken & Waffle! Max 5 minutes walk from Jim Thompson House Museum.
- YELO Café Is it an art centre or a coffee shop? Both! And practically next door to Jim Thompson House Museum! Nice to combine.
- Skate Cafe, Bar and Restaurant This hip joint is right in the middle of the fun and bustling hotspot Coco Walk. Bring your skateboard because there is even a little mini ramp here! Just 10 minutes from Jim Thompson House Museum.
- Wink Bar At Wink Bar you can have a drink with the many Thai locals who like to visit. This bar is also located in the Coco Walk area, 10 minutes from Jim Thompson House Museum.
- Caturday Cat Café We already wrote about it in our article about Siam Square . This caé is a must visit for all cat and cat lovers. Less than 10 minutes from Jim Thompson House Museum.
- Finally, read our article about good eats in Siam Paragon . This modern shopping mall is about a 15 minutes walk from Jim Thompson House & Museum.
The most beautiful Sky Bars & Roof Top Bars of Bangkok Don’t leave Bangkok without visiting at least one sky bar, a wonderful night out for everyone with breathtaking views!
Also read about the amazing cinemas in Bangkok such as Siam Paragon near Jim Thompson House Museum.
- The shopping malls in Bangkok Shop till you drop in Bangkok’s mega malls
- The most beautiful temples of Bangkok You can’t actually leave Bangkok without visiting a temple.
- Parks in Bangkok Beautiful green parks in the middle of Bangkok, a green oasis to relax for a while.
- Markets in Bangkok Take a look into local life and look for bargains among the colourful market stalls.
- Museums in Bangkok Here you discover the cultural (art) treasures of Thailand
- Fun activities in Bangkok Alone or with children, there are so many fun things to do in Bangkok. Look at them here!
How to get to the Jim Thompson House Museum
Boat route to Jim Thompson House = 5 minute walk Route BTS Ratchathewi to Jim Thompson House = 8 minute walk Route BTS Siam to Jim Thomspon House = 14 minute walk
More information about public transportation in Bangkok in this article .
View our selection of impressive photos of destinations or special days in Thailand through our Picture This section .
You can support us by booking hotels and domestic trips via 12GoAsia via our links. It will cost you nothing extra but we get a small percentage of our partners like Booking.com , Agoda and 12GoAsia . And even if you decide to book another place to sleep than we mention, if you first click on our link it doesn’t matter. Therefore it doesn’t matter to us which hotel or hostel you choose, this way we are independent and can give you an honest and best advice.
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Jim Thompsons House and Suan Pakkard Palace Tour From Bangkok
Hidden within the bustling city of Bangkok lie two treasures that transport visitors to a world of elegance and grace.
Like a delicate brushstroke on a canvas, the Jim Thompson’s House and Suan Pakkard Palace tour unveils the intricate layers of Thailand’s cultural heritage.
Step into the past as the tour begins at Jim Thompson’s House, where the traditional Thai architecture and the captivating art collections create a tapestry of beauty.
As the journey continues to Suan Pakkard Palace, a realm of ancient artifacts and Thai antiquities, the reader is left yearning to uncover the hidden stories and secrets waiting to be discovered.
About Our Review: Please note that this is our review of this tour and we do not run, sell, or book tours from this site. If you want to book this tour please click the large button at the base of this page to go to the official listing on Viator.
Good To Know
- The tour includes air-conditioned vehicles, experienced drivers , and English-speaking licensed guides.
- Admission fees for the attractions mentioned in the program are included.
- Items of a personal nature, tips or gratuities , and hotel pickup outside the city center may have additional charges.
- The meeting point for the tour is at the office of Sun Leisure World Corporation, located at Level 29 The Offices at Central World in Bangkok.
It's also worth checking out some other tours and experiences nearby.
- Choose 5 Dishes: Half-Day Cooking Class in Sukhumvit With Market Tour
- Small Group Tour to Ayutthaya Temples From Bangkok With Lunch
- Bangkok Walking Food Tour With Secret Food Tours
- Old Siam Bangkok Food Tour With 15 Tastings
The tour highlights of Jim Thompson’s House and Suan Pakkard Palace from Bangkok offer visitors a unique opportunity to explore two iconic cultural landmarks in the city. The tour duration for this experience is approximately four hours, allowing participants to fully enjoy the rich history and architectural beauty of these sites.
Transportation options are provided, with air-conditioned vehicles and experienced drivers ensuring a comfortable and convenient journey. Visitors can relax and enjoy the scenic drive as they make their way to these renowned attractions.
This tour not only showcases the stunning architecture and cultural significance of Jim Thompson’s House and Suan Pakkard Palace but also offers a glimpse into Thailand’s past and its vibrant artistic heritage. It’s a must-do experience for those seeking to explore Bangkok’s cultural treasures.
Jim Thompson’s House
Continuing the exploration of Bangkok’s cultural treasures, the next stop on the tour is Jim Thompson’s House. This historic house, located in the heart of the city, is a testament to the rich history and architectural beauty of Thailand.
Here are five reasons why Jim Thompson’s House is a must-visit destination:
Immerse in history : Explore the house that belonged to Jim Thompson, an American entrepreneur who played a significant role in reviving the Thai silk industry. Learn about his life and his mysterious disappearance.
Architectural marvel : Marvel at the traditional Thai-style architecture of the house, with its intricate woodwork, stunning gardens , and tranquil ponds. It’s a perfect example of the elegance and craftsmanship of Thai design.
Silk collection : Admire the impressive collection of Thai silk art and textiles displayed throughout the house. From vibrant tapestries to delicate garments, the collection showcases the beauty and versatility of silk.
Serene atmosphere : Take a moment to relax in the peaceful surroundings of the house. The lush gardens and tranquil koi ponds provide a serene escape from the bustling city streets.
Cultural preservation : Appreciate the efforts made to preserve and showcase Thai culture through the preservation of this historic house. It serves as a reminder of the importance of preserving and celebrating cultural heritage.
Visiting Jim Thompson’s House is a unique opportunity to explore the history and architectural wonders of Thailand, providing a deeper understanding of the country’s rich cultural heritage.
Suan Pakkard Palace
Located just a short distance from Jim Thompson’s House, Suan Pakkard Palace offers visitors a fascinating glimpse into Thailand’s rich history and art. With its historical significance and architectural beauty, the palace is a must-visit destination for those interested in Thai culture.
Originally built as a private residence, Suan Pakkard Palace was later converted into a museum, showcasing a stunning collection of art, antiques , and artifacts. The palace complex consists of several traditional Thai houses, each displaying different aspects of Thai art and craftsmanship.
From intricate wood carvings to exquisite porcelain, visitors can admire the intricate details and craftsmanship that make Thai art so unique. Suan Pakkard Palace provides a serene and educational experience, allowing visitors to enjoy the beauty and history of Thailand.
The itinerary for the tour of Jim Thompson’s House and Suan Pakkard Palace in Bangkok includes a visit to both historical sites, providing a comprehensive experience of Thai culture and history.
The tour duration is approximately half a day, allowing visitors to explore these iconic landmarks without feeling rushed.
Transportation options for the tour include air-conditioned vehicles with experienced drivers, ensuring a comfortable and convenient journey.
With a knowledgeable English-speaking licensed guide, visitors can gain insights into the rich heritage and fascinating stories behind these attractions.
The itinerary also allows for ample time to admire the intricate architecture, lush gardens, and priceless art collections at both Jim Thompson’s House and Suan Pakkard Palace.
This tour offers a perfect blend of history, culture, and leisure , making it an ideal choice for travelers seeking a deeper understanding of Thailand’s heritage.
To provide a comprehensive experience of Thai culture and history, the inclusions for the tour of Jim Thompson’s House and Suan Pakkard Palace in Bangkok encompass:
- Air-conditioned vehicles with experienced drivers
- An English-speaking licensed guide
- All admission fees as mentioned in the program
This ensures that travelers have comfortable transportation and knowledgeable guidance throughout the tour. The air-conditioned vehicles with experienced drivers allow for a comfortable and convenient journey between the attractions.
The English-speaking licensed guide provides valuable insights and information about the historical significance and cultural significance of Jim Thompson’s House and Suan Pakkard Palace. Plus, all admission fees mentioned in the program are included, eliminating the need for travelers to worry about additional expenses.
These tour inclusions ensure that travelers have a hassle-free and enriching experience exploring these iconic landmarks in Bangkok.
Meeting and Pickup Details
Visitors participating in the tour of Jim Thompson’s House and Suan Pakkard Palace in Bangkok can expect convenient meeting and pickup arrangements for a hassle-free experience. Here are the pickup options and meeting points available:
Free Door to Door Pick up for CITY CENTER BANGKOK DISTRICT AREA within a 3 km radius, including popular areas like Sukhumvit, Pratunam , Silom , and Siam.
Join the tour at Bangkok Meeting Points, located at Sun Leisure World Corporation, Level 29 The Offices at Central World.
Additional surcharge for hotel pickup outside the 3-mile radius from the city center may apply and is payable on the day of the activity.
Specific areas like Sathorn, Surawongse , MBK , and Yawarat (China Town) can only be picked up at the meeting point, Royal Rattanakosin Hotel.
During join tours pick up, there may be a waiting time of up to 40 minutes due to traffic conditions or picking up other travelers.
With these pickup options and meeting points, visitors can easily start their tour and enjoy exploring these cultural attractions.
Traveler Reviews and Pricing
Travelers have praised the tour of Jim Thompson’s House and Suan Pakkard Palace in Bangkok, giving it a 5.0 overall rating based on reviews from Viator and Tripadvisor.
The reviews highlight positive traveler experiences , with visitors expressing their admiration for the beautiful architecture and cultural significance of both attractions. Many reviewers also appreciate the knowledgeable and friendly guides who provide insightful information during the tour.
In terms of pricing, the cost for the tour starts from $75.20 and may vary depending on the group size. This makes it a competitive option when compared to similar tours in the area.
Here's a few more nearby tours and experiences we think you'll like.
- Longtail Boat 2 Hrs – Bangkok Canal Tour
- From Bangkok: Floating Market and Ayutthaya Guided Day Tour
- Bangkok: Damnoen Saduak, Train Market & Mahanakhon Day Trip
- From Bangkok: Holy Tattoo Experience at Wat Bang Phra
- Bangkok: Blue Elephant Thai Cooking Class
- Bangkok: Hands-on Thai Cooking Class and Market Tour
Frequently Asked Questions
How Long Is the Jim Thompsons House and Suan Pakkard Palace Tour?
The duration of the Jim Thompson’s House and Suan Pakkard Palace tour varies depending on the tour schedule .
Are Meals Included in the Tour?
Yes, meals are included in the tour. Travelers with dietary restrictions should inform the guide in advance to accommodate their needs.
Is Hotel Pickup Available for Locations Outside the City Center?
Hotel pickup is available for locations outside the city center. Guests can request pickup or meet at the designated meeting points. Additional surcharges may apply for pickups beyond a 3-mile radius from the city center.
Can I Join the Tour if I Am Staying at a Hotel Outside the Designated Pickup Areas?
Join the tour from a non-designated hotel by selecting alternative pickup options . Head to the meeting point or request a pickup. Maximum of 10-12 persons per tour. Wait time may be up to 40 minutes.
What Happens if I Need to Cancel My Booking Less Than 24 Hours Before the Tour?
If a booking needs to be canceled less than 24 hours before the tour, the amount paid will not be refunded. The cancellation policy states that a full refund is only possible with at least 24 hours’ notice.
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To sum it up, the tour of Jim Thompson’s House and Suan Pakkard Palace from Bangkok offers visitors a unique opportunity to explore the rich history and cultural heritage of Thailand.
With its stunning traditional architecture and impressive art collections, Jim Thompson’s House provides a glimpse into the country’s past.
Suan Pakkard Palace, on the other hand, showcases a remarkable display of ancient artifacts and Thai antiquities.
This tour promises a memorable and immersive experience for those seeking to explore Thailand’s cultural treasures.
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