List of basketball courts and leagues in Bangkok

Temple basketball

Basketball has never been hugely popular in Bangkok or Thailand, but nevertheless there are a fair amount of options for ballers and most schools here have a court or a hoop.

Thai and Asian players often make handy guards due to their explosive speed and power, but their general lack of size means that westerners will usually have a big size and height advantage. That hasn’t stopped the Filipinos from making basketball their national sport though.

The courts here tend to be mostly Thai with some westerners and Filipinos thrown in too. As usual, the Thais are a friendly bunch and will usually incorporate you into the game if you ask nicely. However, in some of the busy courts it can be hard to squeeze in so it’s best to make a team of 5 and then assert yourself onto the court when given an opportunity.

Thais don’t like sunlight, so you’ll find that these courts are usually quiet in the daytime, busy in the evening when it gets cooler and darker.

Here’s a pretty comprehensive list of basketball courts in Bangkok and what they’re like to play at. Click on the link for a Google map of how to get there. Nearest Skytrain and MRT stations are noted. Please let me know if there are any I’ve missed out.

These courts and other points of interest can be viewed on our Bangkok Fitness Map

Benjasiri Park  Phrom Phong BTS, Sukhumvit MRT

Probably the best located public court in Bangkok, this court is situated in the park right next to Emporium shopping centre (Phrom Phong BTS). The surface is not perfect but playable and the rings are good. It gets busy in the evenings so try and get there nice and early to establish yourself.

Lot Fai Park (Train Park) Morchit BTS, Phahon Yothin MRT

One of my favourite courts in Bangkok. It’s a little out the way from the centre but easy to get to by MRT and BTS. There are two high standard courts that have games that go on into the evening. Courts are floodlit and there are also futsal and tennis courts in this great all-round area for sport.

Lumphini Park  Saladaeng BTS, LumphiniMRT

This is an indoor court that’s near the Lumphini MRT station. I haven’t played here much but they have games every evening and on the weekend too. A good quality court and I’ve been told a good standard of play.

Red Bull X-Park in Bangkok

Red Bull X-Park Saladaeng BTS, Lumphini MRT

Sadly I’ve never been here but I’ve been told that it has one of the best basketball courts in Bangkok. Built by Red Bull (which is co-owned by a Thai), Red Bull X-Park is situated in the middle of Bangkok’s business district. This sports facility has two floodlit basketball courts that are open until late and a high standard of play.

NIST International School  Asoke BTS, Sukhumvit MRT

The New International School of Thailand on Sukhumvit soi 15 has some of the best sports facilities in Bangkok. Their huge gymnasium is available for rent but the only pick up session that I know of is the long-running ‘NIST Hoops’ crew. Almost exclusively expat, this Tuesday night run out starts at 7.00pm and runs for 1-2 hours. It’s usually pretty lively and a great place to meet people. Contact at: nist_hoops@yahoogroups.com

Chulalongkorn University  National Stadium BTS, San Yan MRT

This university complex near the well-known MBK shopping centre has many sports facilities including an indoor basketball court. I haven’t played midweek but Saturday mornings is a good time to go and find a game. There is a minimal entrance fee (30 baht, I think) and the players are mostly young Thais. Walking from MBK it is on your right hand side. It’s a little tricky to find

Huamark Stadium and ABAC

Bangkok Top Flight League

A little tricky to get too as there are no MRT or BTS stops nearby. There are 4 outdoor courts at the front of Huamark Stadium with welcoming Thais playing friendly games, and there’s a better court at ABAC university about 5 minutes walk away. There is also an indoor court inside Huamark Stadium but it’s not always available.

Romaaneenart Park

This park in the Phra Nakhon district of Bangkok has a public basketball court. I’ve not played here so I can’t comment on the standard.

Suan Luang Park

This park is miles away from the centre, but if you live in the Prawet area of Bangkok or nearby, this might be good for you.

Kasetsart University

Kaset University in North Bangkok has some good basketball courts and the students and players here are happy to accommodate new players.

Sathorn Pier

I’ve not played at this court but I’ve been told that it’s located under a bridge on the Thonburi side of Sathorn pier, where the skytrain crosses the river. It is located directly left of the ferry station and is under a bridge so it’s good to play there all day. There are basketball or Takraw courts. If anyone has any more infomation about this one I’d love to hear it.

Muang Thong Thani

Thailand’s biggest arena/concert venue has a lot of sports facilities nearby that include basketball courts. Again, a little out the way for most expats but if you’re in North Bangkok it might work for you.

Any University!

Almost all schools have a basketball court but they may not be cool with people just strolling in and shooting some hoops. Universities, on the other hand, should generally bit more welcome. Just get chatting to some sporty looking students.

Top Flight Men’s Basketball League

An ex-NBA basketball player who now runs a basketball academy at many of Bangkok’s international schools has set up the city’s first true expat basketball league, the only one previous was a Filipino league that didn’t have many foreigners.

Top Flight Basketball Men’s League

Ike Nwanko has set up the league of 8 teams and they’ve had a very successful first season which will provide a good foundation for the league to grow. With this expansion they’re keen on growing the number of teams and players so if you want to get involved contact him at his site:

Top Flight Basketball

The league is played at NIST on Sukhumvit 15 on Sundays and follows an NBA-style league then playoff format. There are some very competitive players in the league but it’s good-natured overall. Their new season should be starting soon so get in touch!

When I first moved here it took me ages to find a game, so I hope this guide to basketball in Bangkok helps you get a game in the city.

Let me know if there are any great courts I’ve missed out on!

If you’d like to improve your sports conditioning, check out our range of group classes at BASE.

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Football pitches and football clubs in Bangkok, Thailand

Football is huge in Thailand. Thais love watching it, playing it and it’s a guaranteed conversation starter with taxi drivers – “David Beckham, velly good!” seemingly being their favourite ice breaker. I’ve even met Thais who’ve named their kids Torres, Owen and, rather worryingly, Rooney.

Bangkok also has a huge expat community from football-loving countries all over the world, so put this together and you’ve got loads of places to play football all over Bangkok, from the centre right out to the suburbs.

Football is a great way to stay fit and meet people in Bangkok. There are regular friendly games and some competitive leagues as well. If you wanted to, you could play football every day of the week.

Listed below are some of the main football pitches in Bangkok. The times given are just a guideline and can be subject to change by the organizer – please contact me for the latest info. Please click the title link for a Google map to the location:

NIST, Sukhumvit soi 15

An A-grade full size artificial grass pitch that cost fortunes to build and plays like a dream. The facilities in this international school are next level. There is a full 11-a-side pitch that also splits into two 7-a-side pitches that play across. Without doubt the best artifical pitch in Bangkok, and in a great location.

Casual games are organized throughout the week but are subject to change. Contact bkkcosmosfc@gmail.com or myself for info if you’re interested in playing.

Arsenal Soccer School

Amusingly surrounded by old billboards of past Arsenal players who’ve now become hate figures (Adebayor, A.Cole et al), this well-located facility consists of five 5-a-side artificial grass pitches, one 9-a-side grass pitch and one 11-a-side full size grass pitch. Rental is 1,500 baht an hour and there are usually free pitches except for 8.00-9.00pm on weekdays when it can be very busy. Pitch quality is not quite that of NIST but still decent.

Currently games are organized by Adam on Sundays – please contact adam_cj@hotmail.com for more ingo. Other casual games are organized by people everyday of the week.

S-One

No website, and the map given above is as close as I could get. S-One is another quality facility with big, wide 7-a-side pitches of artificial grass. It gets pretty busy in the evenings and is open late. Pitch rental is approx 2,000 baht an hour. They can even film your games and give you a DVD at the end so you can analyse your performance and improve, which is a very cool feature! It is, however, a little difficult to get to for some Bangkok expats that live centrally as traffic can get bad on the Bang-na road.

Arena 10

Situated in the Thong Lor district of Bangkok, Arena 10 is quite bizarrely situated amongst a couple of Bangkok’s most popular nightclubs for Thais. Ask any Bangkok Thai or Taxi driver where “Fun-keee” is and they should know (the Google map is to the club next door). Arena 10 is another top-notch artificial grass pitch that costs between 1,500-2,000 baht an hour depending on time of day. Pitches are 7-a-side but slightly smaller than S-One. Nice aircon changing rooms and good showers, which are much needed after playing football in Bangkok’s 40 degree heat!

Royal Bangkok Sports Club

A full-size 11-a-side pitch bang smack in the middle of Bangkok, right next to Ratchadamri BTS station. Probably the best located public grass pitch in central Bangkok.

Ram Intra

Ram Intra is actually an area of Bangkok not a pitch, but it’s an area FULL of football pitches. They are all over Nuan Chan, Ram Intra and the surrounding areas. They are predominantly Thai but it’s worth bearing in mind if you live in north Bangkok and want to organize a game or play with the locals. The map above links to one pitch I used to play at on Nuan Chan soi 56, called NJ Soccer.

Futsal

There are loads of futsal pitches in Bangkok which the Thais are more suited to and good at. They are more Thai-oriented but westerners are welcome, too. Just smile and ask if you can play (len duay dai mai krub?, in Thai) They often play with tiny little goals to work on footwork and accuracy. Three areas are – next to MBK centre (National Stadium BTS), Huai Kwang sports area (Huai Kwang BTS) and in the park next to Chatuchak park (Mor-chit BTS), but you will see Thais playing futsal all over the city and country.

Two incredible Takraw players in SE Asia

Takraw

If you haven’t tried this cross between football and volleyball, give it a go. The Thais are so skillful and agile though it’s almost impossible to keep up with them. I love the photo to the left which won sports photography awards and really highlights how athletic and flexible these guys are. There’s no need to detail where to play because you’ll see Thais playing Takraw EVERYWHERE in Thailand!

So, those are some of the main pitches where expats play but there are many more around Bangkok. If you start at these places you will meet many people who are involved in football all over the city.

Bangkok Football Leagues

Now onto the leagues of Bangkok. Here are the some of the main leagues in the city with links to their websites.

Bangkok Casuals League

The longest running, biggest and most well-known expat league in Bangkok with two divisions and a mix of people from all over the world, as well as Thais. Rules state no more than 5 Thai players on the pitch at any one time though, which keeps it expat focused. Games are played on Saturday and Sunday at Pattana school Sukhumvit 105 and also at Arsenal Soccer School. Many bars, pubs and clubs have teams and it’s a fantastic place to meet people in Bangkok. Click on the link for details on how to contact the teams and find the right one for you.

S-One League

Run by Kevin Watts (click above to contact through his site), this Wednesday night league follows a league format followed by an end-of-season cup. Some bars have teams and no slide tackles are allowed which is good if you’re worried about injuries.

Arsenal Soccer School League

Played on Tuesday nights on the 5-a-side pitches. Contact Arsenal Soccer School for more information.

Vets League

The Vets League is for over-35s in Bangkok. A good-natured league that, again, is a great place to meet people and extend your network in Bangkok. Matches are mostly played at Pattana, the same venue as the Casuals League.

Arena 10 Weekend League

A weekend league that’s mostly made up of Thai and Asian expat teams, with a few westerners thrown in. It runs all day Saturday. They don’t have a website or system of registration so best to ask around or visit the grounds if you want to play.

So that should be enough for even the most football-crazy expat to be getting on with. I will update this post with new football events as many one-off tournaments are held throughout the year, and new leagues are always starting up.

To improve your sports performance, check out BASE‘s Group Class and Personal Training programs.

Enjoy your football guys!