Sample original Thai food at Somtam Nua, Bangkok near Siam Square – Bangkok’s best papaya salad?

Posted on April 9, 2015 by in TOP Travel Destinations

Please note: the information in this post is now outdated but have a read of our updated Bangkok Things to do Guide here.


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Air France Economy Class Review Paris (CDG) to Bangkok, Thailand (BKK), Asia – AF 166

Eat fabulous Bangkok street food at Soi 36 (near BTS Thong Lo) and Victory Monument

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In my quest to try a lot of original Thai food, I ventured to Somtam Nua near Siam Square in Bangkok for lunch during my week in the country in March 2015.

This little eatery specializes in northern Thai dishes (Isaan). As the post title suggests, Somtam Nua specializes in papaya salad and it is indeed delicious. The ingredients are as fresh as they can get and the sauce balances sweet and sour. You can order the salad in any spiciness you like. Papaya salad is often the most spicy item you can eat in Bangkok (so I usually order it a bit milder).

The atmosphere here is low-key and the place is clean and well-organized. It’s well-cooled inside, which is very welcoming (a big negative for me when enjoying Bangkok street food during lunch hours was the temperature – a sweltering 100+ degrees in the shade).

The menu features pictures, so the food items won’t be too lost in translation. I ordered just off the Foursquare pictures myself – my favorite way to order in a new restaurant.

It is also rather cheap here, at just about $3-$4 per item.

I went for the papaya salad (of course!) as well as the grilled fish and fried noodles.

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You can find Somtam Nua at:

989 Siam Center, 4th Floor, Rama 1 Road, Pathum Wan, Khet Pathum Wan, Bangkok, 10330, Thailand

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4 / 5 stars