This is the most venerated place in the entire kingdom as well as the top tourist attraction in Bangkok. The Grand Palace and Temple of the Emerald Buddha, Wat Phra Khaew in Thai, located inside its grounds are the “must see” sights in town, absolutely packed with tour buses and foreigners every day. But do remember that this a holy and highly sacred place to Thais, and they come out in droves on the weekend to make merit as well. There is a strict dress code in place here, with no shorts, singlets, skirts, bare feet (meaning socks must be worn), or revealing clothing allowed, so dress appropriately (although they do have some funky coverings for rent for those who forget), and respect all the signs and rules that are up all around the grounds.
The Grand Palace dates from 1782, and was formerly home to the Thai king, as well as the center of the defense and state departments. The exquisite architecture, both European influenced and Thai, chedis, stupas, and just sheer amount of gold here are mind-boggling, and make sure to bring your camera, as the photo ops here are stunning.