Muay Thai in Bangkok – Where to Watch & Where to Train

Fight at Rajadamnern Stadium Bangkok copia  

Thailand’s fast-paced capital, Bangkok, is the perfect place to learn more about the country’s national sport of Muay Thai. Whether you’re interested in training Muay Thai at a gym in Bangkok or you just want the exciting experience of attending a Muay Thai fight – then this guide is for you! 

Also read

  • The 8 Best Muay Thai Training Gyms in Thailand If you’re looking for an overview of the best Muay Thai gyms across Thailand as well as some FAQs about training Muay Thai, read this article too!
  • Muay Thai HistoryIf you want to find out more about the fascinating 600-year-old history of Muay Thai and why it’s so significant in Thai culture, you’ll want to read this article.

Where to Watch Muay Thai in Bangkok

Best 3 Muay Thai Stadiums to Watch a Fight

1. Rajadamnern Stadium

Perfect for – Just a 20 minute walk from the backpacker hub of Khao San Road, Rajadamnern is perfect for the casual tourist interested in catching their first Muay Thai fight in a great atmosphere.

Rajadamnern Stadium, Muay Thai Stadium in Bangkok.
Rajadamnern Stadium in Bangkok.
  • When are fights held – Every Monday, Wednesday, Thursday and Sunday at 6.30pm – approx 10.30pm. 
  • How to get there – Located on Rachadamnoen Road, not far from Democracy Monument, Rajadamnern is just a 20 minute walk from the backpacker ghetto of Khao San Road. The stadium is not greatly served by public transport, with the closest BTS skytrain station being Ratchathewi station, about a 40 minute walk away. Sam Yot MRT (subway) station is about a 25 minute walk.
  • How much are tickets – 2000 THB (ringside seats) or 1500 THB (2nd class seats). 
  • Where to buy tickets – At the official website of Rajadamnern Stadium.
  • Tip – If you happen to be training at a Muay Thai Gym in Bangkok ask them if they can offer you any discount on tickets. Many gyms in the city have an affiliate scheme with the gym and so will be able to get you a few hundred baht off. If you ever get the chance to fight at the stadium, you will be granted a 2 year pass to watch fights for free! Pretty cool for the budding Muay Thai fighters who are reading this!

One of the two most famous and prestigious Muay Thai stadiums in the country, Rajadamnern Stadium (also spelt Rachadamnoen) is the real deal when it comes to getting an authentic Muay Thai experience. 

As the first Muay Thai stadium built in Thailand, Rajadamnern also has historical significance in the city. Although construction started in 1941, the stadium wasn’t finished until August 1945 due to World War II and the first ever fight was held in December of that same year.

At Rajadamnern Stadium, you can watch some of the biggest Muay Thai fighters in the country along with a bustling and at times boisterous crowd. While tourists are often sold expensive ringside seats, if you want a more ‘authentic’ local experience, grab yourself a ticket on the second or third level of seats where the true fans and gamblers prefer. (Warning – third level seats are the highest and can sometimes have an obstructed view which is why you can get them pretty cheap, from 500 THB.)

Two fighters competing at Rajadamnern Stadium
Two fighters competing at Rajadamnern Stadium, Bangkok.

Whilst gambling is illegal in Thailand, gambling on Muay Thai fights within the stadium is not illegal and takes place mostly on the second level. Watching the locals’ hand signals as they place bets is a cultural experience in itself! Sometimes it can get pretty heated, especially if a hand signal is misunderstood, and fights can break out. 

Over an evening of around four hours, you will usually watch an average of nine fights. (Sundays are more junior fighters.) Like football stadiums, some nights are busier than others, depending on which fighters are appearing. Championship fights are considered the most important and will draw in the biggest crowds.

Outside the stadium, there are plenty of street food stalls where you can stock up on tasty snacks to give you energy to watch more fights! (Food and drink from outside are not allowed inside the stadium.) 

Did you know? Unlike Bangkok’s other famous Muay Thai Stadium, Lumpinee (see below), it is possible to watch female fighters at Rajadamnern. Lumpinee Stadium is male only fighters!

Two women fight in the ring, Muay Thai
You can watch female Muay Thai fighters at Rajadamnern Stadium.

Photos courtesy of Rajadamnern.com.

2. Lumpinee Stadium

Perfect for – More difficult to reach than Rajadamnern, Lumpinee is usually frequented by hardcore Muay Thai fans only and those travellers wanting a real gritty local experience. 

Lumpinee Stadium, Bangkok.
Lumpinee Stadium, Bangkok.
  • When are fights held – Tuesdays, Fridays and Saturdays, with the biggest fighters usually appearing on Tuesdays. Fights start at 6.30pm during the week and 5pm on Saturdays. They finish around 10-11pm.
  • How to get there – Take the BTS skytrain to Mo Chit station and then either walk (not a very pleasant stroll!) or get a taxi from there. The cost from the station to the stadium, located on Ram Inthra Road, will be no more than 250 THB, which includes toll charges. 
  • How much are tickets – 2000 THB for ringside seats, with discounts for those training at local gyms around Bangkok. Standing seats sell as cheap as 200 THB and can result in a very boisterous affair!
  • Where to buy tickets – At the official website of Lumpinee Stadium.
  • Tip – Arrive early to avoid Bangkok traffic jams!

Another legendary Muay Thai Stadium, Lumpinee, has been hosting the world’s best Muay Thai fighters since 1956. Lumpinee Stadium used to be THE place to catch a Muay Thai fight for locals and foreigners alike until 2014, when the stadium was moved from its central downtown location to a new spot, outside of town, close to Don Muang Airport. The stadium is now officially known as ‘New Lumpinee Stadium’ though most people just call it Lumpinee.

The main problem with the new location is the lack of fast public transport to the stadium coupled with the fact that fights start at 6.30pm which coincide with the evening’s rush hour traffic. Go early to avoid sitting for hours in a ‘lot tit’ (traffic jam in Thai).

Despite the less than convenient location, and despite the complaints from hard core nostalgic fans, the new venue is much better in many ways. Living up to its name, the ‘New Lumpinee Stadium’ is super modern, clean and shiny and a far-cry from the old dilapidated stadium where a cat once famously fell through the roof during a fight!

Fight at Lumpinee Muay Thai Stadium
Lumpinee stadium attracts the big name fighters.

Some hardcore Muay Thai fans will tell you that Lumpinee fights are like nothing else and it’s definitely worth the journey to see big name fighters compete in such an exhilerating atmosphere. For the average backpacker, we’d usually recommend Rajadamnern due to easy access, however, if you’re a Muay Thai aficionado and you have spare days on your Bangkok itinerary then it’s definitely worth checking out! For those of you who would prefer to have your transport organised for you than navigate Bangkok’s public transport network, organised tours are available for around 3,000 THB. 

Did you know? The unusual thing about Lumpinee Stadium is that it is government owned and operated by the Thai Army. Profits on ticket sales go towards the Thai military who also take care of security at the venue. 

Photos courtesy of Lumpineemuaythai.com.

3. Channel 7 Stadium

Perfect for – The budget backpacker wanting to get a taste of Muay Thai without the price tag.

Channel 7 Muay Thai Stadium
Channel 7 Muay Thai Stadium.
  • When are fights held – Every Sunday starting at 2pm. (For audience members, it’s best to get there an hour before to get the best seats!)
  • How to get there – Channel 7 Stadium is located close to the famous weekend market, Chatuchak which makes it a popular post-shopping entertainment for tourists. It’s just a 15 minute walk from the market, which is located right next to the BTS station Mochit or the MRT stop, Chatuchak.
  • How much are tickets – The number one appeal of Channel 7 Stadium is that entrance is FREE! The downside is that this makes the venue very popular and prone to overcrowding.
  • Tip – Take a cushion! The benches at the stadium are impossibly hard and will give you a numb bum!

Channel 7 Stadium gets its name from the TV station, Channel 7 who air the fights every Sunday. Unlike the other stadiums on this list, the fights at Channel 7 start during the day-time rather than evening. 

The Channel 7 Stadium was once a well-kept secret amongst locals, and it’s only until recently that the cat has been let out of the bag about the stadium’s free, yes free, admission. This means that nowadays it’s not uncommon to see backpackers amongst the rather large crowds! (This is now one of the most popular places to watch Muay Thai in Bangkok.)

At Channel 7 Stadium, you’ll find the same enthusiastic fans and local gamblers as you can find at the other stadiums, with an equally electrifying atmosphere. The stadium attracts big-name fighters and the experience is no less authentic than at any of the other stadiums on this list. Therefore, if you’re intrigued about Thailand’s national sport, but you’re not so interested that you want to drop 2000 THB on a ticket, this is the best option for you!

Channel 7 Stadium TV
Channel 7 matches are televised.

As the fights appear on Thai national television, audience members (particularly foreigners who are prone to dressing scantily!) are encouraged to wear formal attire. Men must wear a collared shirt with closed shoes and ladies must cover their knees, shoulders and not wear open-toe shoes. For those of you who turn up in flip flops and a tank top, there’s the opportunity to buy cloth coverings outside the stadium, for an inflated price of course! A much better option would be to dress light during the day and pick up some evening wear at nearby Chatuchak Market before you get to the stadium!

For snacks and drinks, there’s a 7-11 (of course!) right outside the stadium.

Photos from MuayThai7.com.


Where to train Muay Thai in Bangkok

Top 3 Gyms for Muay Thai Training in Bangkok

If you want to get in on the action rather than be a mere spectator, then this section is for you! Muay Thai is becoming an increasingly popular sport for foreigners to learn when they come to Thailand. Not only is it a great way to get fit and tone, but it’s also a wonderful way to learn more about Thai culture and make some new friends! So, where are the best places to train Muay Thai in Bangkok?

1. Attachai Muay Thai Gym

Perfect for – Whether you’re an experienced Muay Thai fighter or just a beginner, Attachai Muay Thai Gym is a great place to train Muay Thai in a peaceful natural environment.

Attachai (centre) with students.
  • Location – On Nut 36. (The gym is in a tranquil setting with a big fish pond.)
  • Cost – $380 USD for one week training including food and accommodation.

Attachai Fairtex (AKA the Left Hand from God) is a former World Muay Thai Champion, as well as champion of the world-renowned Lumpinee Stadium (see above). After retiring at the age of 31 years old, Attachai set up his own gym in order to train the next generation of fighters and pass on his knowledge of the sport. The gym gets excellent reviews from experienced and novice fighters!

Attachai Fairtex in the Ring
Attachai Fairtex in his heyday.

Situated in a quiet street off On Nut 36, in South East Bangkok, Attachai Muay Thai Gym has a unique setting. Although in the heart of the city, you will feel like you are in nature as you train beside a large fishing pond and plenty of greenery. This is not a touristy part of town and so students can enjoy an authentic Thai way of life whilst they train, with plenty of local restaurants and shops nearby. It’s a great place for those who prefer a relaxed atmosphere rather than the hectic pace of the city. 

You can visit Attachai Muay Thai Gym for a day, a week, a month or more! Training packages include two Muay Thai training sessions per day, two meals and accommodation and are very reasonably priced. Morning and evening runs are optional, but encouraged! (You are here to get fit after all!) 

All in all, this is a great gym to get a taste of Muay Thai and meet people from all over the world! The laid-back atmosphere and delicious on-site Thai restaurant will make you feel right at home.

2. Khongsittha Muay Thai

Perfect for – Those wanting to train in a trendy local Thai area with plenty of bars, restaurants and cafes. A great all-round gym to train, meet people and immerse yourself in Bangkok culture.

Khongsittha Muay Thai Gym, Bangkok.
Khongsittha Muay Thai Gym, Bangkok.
  • Location – Lat Phrao, a local suburb of Bangkok, an upcoming hipster zone.
  • Cost – $380 USD for one week training including food and accommodation.

Khongsittha Gym is a modern and friendly gym located in the neighbourhood of Lat Phrao, Bangkok. The gym is popular with those who want to learn the real ancient art of Muay Thai but prefer modern and comfortable accommodation and facilities! As well as on-site accommodation, there’s also a restaurant on the grounds that serves great healthy food, with a mix of Thai and Western dishes.

They have packages to suit everyone, from a one month accommodation and training package to a one day experience. They also offer a free trial day for those who are interested in training long-term at the gym but want to try it out first. 

Khongsittha Muay Thai Gym is a great place to make friends!
Khongsittha Muay Thai Gym is a great place to make friends!

The gym is home to several world champion Muay Thai fighters who help students to develop their skills. The gym welcomes beginners who want to learn the basics, as well as experienced fighters who want to take their training to the next level. They even have special classes for children so this is a great gym for the whole family. Check out the reviews on Trip Advisor to hear from plenty of happy customers. 

3. Master Toddy’s Muay Thai

Perfect for – Those looking for an unforgettable Muay Thai experience!

The crew at Master Toddy Muay Thai Gym.
The crew at Master Toddy Muay Thai Gym.
  • Location – Lat Phrao, a local suburb of Bangkok, an upcoming hipster zone.
  • Cost – $380 USD for one week training including food and accommodation.

The owner of this gym, Master Toddy, is a bit of a legend having appeared in several famous films and TV series, both in Thailand and internationally. He even appeared in the Bond film, The Man With The Golden Gun in 1974 where he got “beat up, thrown out of a window and then smacked with a melon in the head” (in Master Toddy’s own words). 

Master Toddy has trained many male and female Muay Thai champions over his time including Gina Carano, who is a MMA star and actress/model. While many of the recent reviews of the gym are excellent, many suggest that the gym now simply uses the name of Master Toddy for added fame and he no longer has an influence on training students. However, even if the Grand Master is not present, there are still many professional and experienced trainers to guide your Muay Thau journey.

Professional Muay Thai Fighter, Wanheng Menayothin, hones his skills at Master Toddy's.
Professional Muay Thai Fighter, Wanheng Menayothin, hones his skills at Master Toddy’s.

The gym is located in the local Bang Na district of Bangkok and there are accommodation packages available for those who want to spend a few days or more training. Private one-to-one sessions are also available and special courses for those students wanting to master a particular move, like the roundhouse kick or push kick. 

Have you trained Muay Thai in Bangkok or seen a fight at a Muay Thai Stadium that we haven’t mentioned? Share your story!

Founder & Editor at South East Asia Backpacker | Author\'s Blog

Nikki Scott is the founder & editor of South East Asia Backpacker. A traveller-turned-entrepreneur, she left the UK in 2009 and after 6 months on the road, she started a bi-monthly print magazine about backpacking in Asia. South America Backpacker soon followed and today she runs her backpacking enterprise from her base in Spain. Her honest and fascinating book, Backpacker Business, tells the story of her success in the face of adversity.