Mahanakhon Skywalk: We tried Bangkok’s highest glass skywalk, and it’s a terrifying thrill

Photo: Coconuts Media
Photo: Coconuts Media

A glass skywalk that would make most of us squeal in terror has become the latest attraction of Bangkok. At 310 meters high, with glass flooring extending over the edge of King Power Mahanakhon, Thailand’s tallest building, the skywalk officially debuted last Friday and has already made headlines across the world.

We tried the walk, and we can confirm: This isn’t one for the faint of heart.

The experience truly lives up to its reputation — it is terrifying, but also a thrill. Aside from the glass tray, the new attraction at King Power Mahanakhon also includes an indoor observation deck, an outdoor rooftop bar, and “The Peak,” Bangkok’s highest viewpoint at 314 meters high.

Photo: Courtesy of King Power Mahanakhon
Photo: Courtesy of King Power Mahanakhon

Located in Bangkok’s financial district, King Power Mahanakhon is a mixed-use skyscraper built by PACE Development. Duty-free shopping giant King Power acquired the tower in April this year, nearly two years after Mahanakhon celebrated its completion with a lightshow

There are three levels to the Mahanakhon experience. After going through the ticket booth and security, you will proceed to the “Bangkok-themed” corridor, which plays different animated clips of everything that reminds you of Thailand: From durians, to traffic, and Thai massage. After that, you’re directed to the video-themed elevator that takes you up straight to the 74th floor, your first viewpoint.

 

Level 1: The Indoor Observatory on the 74th floor

The indoor observatory is the start of your experience. Spacious and air-conditioned, this level is considered a “comfort zone,” where visitors can take their time to go to all four sides of the glass windows and observe Bangkok’s landmarks from a bird’s eye view.

Photo: Prae Sakaowan/ Coconuts Media
Photo: Prae Sakaowan/ Coconuts Media
Photo: Prae Sakaowan/ Coconuts Media
Photo: Prae Sakaowan/ Coconuts Media

On a sunny Thursday morning, we got a good look of Bangkok’s Green Lung, AKA Bang Kachao, the island at the curve of Chao Phraya River. We were told by staff that when the sky is clear, you may be able to see beyond the Gulf of Thailand.

Photo: Prae Sakaowan/ Coconuts Media
Photo: Prae Sakaowan/ Coconuts Media

On this floor, there are traditional interactive screens to learn about Bangkok’s attractions, but the better option is to download the “Skywalk AR” app, which provides details of significant buildings as you look through your smartphone cameras.

Just like most observation decks, you can buy and send postcards from the indoor observatory. They come cheap, too, at THB40 (US$1.2) with a worldwide stamp — a good deal for such a “premium” attraction.

 

Level 2: The Glass Skywalk and rooftop bar

Now comes the terrifying bit.

Photo: Courtesy of King Power Mahanakhon
Photo: Courtesy of King Power Mahanakhon

Another glass elevator takes you to the rooftop floor, home to what is now Thailand’s highest bar and glass skywalk. The bar offers the usual selection of champagnes, wine, cocktails, and beers — just in case you need a dose of liquid courage before stepping on to that skywalk.

The glass tray is extended over the edge of the building. This is where the action happens —  visitors squealing in horror as they step on to the glass floor. That first step is where the heart of the thrill lies. Once your feet land on the glass and you realize that you’re not plummeting to your death, you’ll pretty much immediately feel comfortable lying and crawling on the glass and begin posing for those travel and built-for-social media shots.

Photo: Prae Sakaowan/ Coconuts Media
Photo: Prae Sakaowan/ Coconuts Media
Photo: Prae Sakaowan/ Coconuts Media
Photo: Prae Sakaowan/ Coconuts Media

A quick comparison to China’s famous glass-bottomed bridge in Zhangjiajie, the glass skywalk at King Power Mahanakhon feels much more transparent. Since it’s located over a busy capital, rather than a mountain, it does feel like you’re about to make a leap into the unknown as you step down and see the sprawling city beneath your feet.

Cameras or any equipment are, sadly, not allowed in the glass tray, and photos can only be taken from the outside. Visitors must wear provided slippers over their shoes before stepping in, just like at the Chinese attraction.

 

Level 3: 360-degree viewpoint at 314-meter height

And now, you’ve reached the top.

Photo: Prae Sakaowan/ Coconuts Media
Photo: Prae Sakaowan/ Coconuts Media

Located on the same rooftop floor with the glass skywalk, “The Peak” requires a few more steps up the stairs. The view from the top of King Power Mahanakhon is unlike anything you’ve seen from rooftop bars — this one feels truly panoramic and clear of distractions.

One thing to note: Once you’re on the rooftop, there is no shade or area to escape from the soaring sun, so be sure to come after 5pm, and stay for the sunset. (We ended up leaving the attraction all sweaty, around noon.)

Photo: Prae Sakaowan/ Coconuts Media
Photo: Prae Sakaowan/ Coconuts Media

As to be expected, visitors are forced to end the experience with a walk through a King Power duty-free shopping area before they can exit.

King Power Mahanakhon opens from 10am to midnight, with the last admission at 11pm. The access to all three levels will cost THB765 (US$23), until Jan. 31.

After this promotion period, admission to the indoor observatory will cost THB850 (US$25), while tickets that include access to the skywalk and The Peak will be priced at THB1,050 (US$31).

Photo: Prae Sakaowan/ Coconuts Media
Photo: Prae Sakaowan/ Coconuts Media
Photo: Courtesy of King Power Mahanakhon
Photo: Courtesy of King Power Mahanakhon


FIND IT:
King Power Mahanakhon, 114 Narathiwas Road, Bangkok, Thailand; 10500.
BTS Chong Nonsi, Exit 3

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