4 women students wearing Thai dress posing with May the founder after a cooking class in Bangkok, Thailand.
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Thai Culture and Cooking

Cooking, market trip, temple visit, dance and traditional dress

Class program and schedule

Thai Culture and Cooking


Class includes a market trip as well as a temple visit and brief walking tour of old Bangkok. Students will experience Bangkok streets rarely visited by foreigners. Optionally, a few students in each class will have the opportunity to wear traditional Thai dress.

Note: This class is offered by advanced booking only.

2021-22 Promotional Offer: Make one booking, receive a second booking for free. All registered students may bring a friend or family member for free.

Taught in Bangkok

Students posing for a photo wearing traditional Thai dress while their instructor holds a vegan Pad Thai noodle dish they made during the cooking instruction portion of the Thai culture and cooking class.

Meeting Point

9am - 9:15am
Meet at the Giant Swing

The class meeting point is the Giant Swing, one of the most famous landmarks in Bangkok. All taxi drivers and hotel staff know the Giant Swing, making your transportation to the meeting point easy. In Thai the Giant Swing is called Sao Ching Cha. You can also show the photo on the right to any local and he or she will know exactly where you want to go.

Brief Introduction

Students are given a brief introduction and have a few minutes to meet each other. Optionally students may wear traditional Thai clothing (available to the first four students who request it).

The Giant Swing in Bangkok, Thailand, constructed in 1784 during the reign of King Rama I. The swing frame is dark red in color and stands over 30 meters high.
9:15am - 9:30am
Visit nearby temple

Visit a Buddhist temple important to the local neighborhood, one that is infrequently visited by tourists and dates in close age to the Giant Swing. In contrast to visiting the popular temples alone, during this visit you will see how local residents of this Bangkok neighborhood begin their day at the temple and a practicing Buddhist will provide an explanation of the various activities inside.

Inside temple

Students are able to visit the temple complex (commonly known as a "Wat") including the center interior where the majority of ceremonies are conducted, and primarily where local visitors spend their time while paying their respects.

Students wearing traditional Thai dress and costume, standing outside a temple surrounded by statues with their instructor holding a purple parasol.
9:30am - 9:45am
Observe Temple Ceremony

Once inside the temple you will be able to see monks and staff prepare for the morning ceremonies. The experience is one of the best practical introductions to the daily routines centered around Theravada Buddhism in Thailand.

Brief Meditation

After observing the start to the day, students may sit in a moment of silence or quiet meditation. Afterward, spend a moment taking in the inspiring high ceilings with masterfully painted wall murals depicting Buddhist narratives. The atmosphere sets the perfect tone for starting the day with a tranquil positivity prior to setting out for the market.

Four students wearing traditional thai dress and an instructor seated on a red carpet inside the temple in front of a giant golden Buddha statue with flowers in front of it. A purple parasol sits in the foreground.
9:45am - 10:15am
Market Visit

Students will visit a local market seldom visited by foreigners. The tour of the market will begin with an introduction to a variety of popular Thai fruits and vegetables such as green papaya, mango, pomelo, and lychee, as well as lesser known ones including salak and longan. Students may optionally sample produce that has arrived from farms often less than one day prior to being made available at the market.

Students and instructor sampling the tropical fruit known as salak as a fruit vendor wearing a blue apron looks on. There is a matching blue pushcart with a large pile of salak fruit sitting on top, an abundance Thai vegan nourishment.
10:15am - 10:30am
Market Visit (continued)

The market visit continues for another 15 minutes as students are introduced to additional interesting and infrequently seen food ingredients and snacks including sticky rice and banana wrapped in banana leaves, custards, puddings and dried fruit.

Students wearing traditional Thai dress huddle around a vendor's table at the local open air market, examining items like sticky rice wrapped in banana leaves and coconut custard.
10:30am - 12:00pm
Cooking Instruction

Based on the recipe set from our popular Thai cooking class, students experience hands-on instruction with a full recipe set.

  • Tom Yum Soup
  • Tom Kha Soup
  • Pad Thai
  • Masaman Curry
A row of students wearing light green aprons and headscarves  cooking in the classroom with stainless steel woks and spatulas on gas burners. Students are cooking Thai vegan recipes from May Kaidee's popular Thai cooking recipe set.
12:00pm - 12:15pm
Traditional Thai Dancing

Students are taught the basic steps of traditional Thai dancing, providing an enjoyable closing chapter to the class. The dance instruction is set to music from different provinces in Thailand.

Traditional Thai dancing has its roots in dance forms that were refined during the Ayutthaya period from 1350–1767 AD, having been previously influenced by Indian, Mon and Khmer dance styles.

Students standing in a row being led by the instructor learning the beginning steps of traditional Thai dance. The instructor is wearing a traditional style Thai crown and belt.
12:15pm - 1:00pm
Closing Remarks

The instructor makes closing remarks and can answer any remaining student questions at this time.

Group Photos

Students have the opportunity to take group photos at the end of the class.

Instructor standing next to students, some wearing green aprons while others wear traditional Thai dress, seated in rows on the steps of the cooking school positioning their hands in gestures used during Thai dancing.