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Chinatown Bangkok or Yaowarat was started when King Rama I decided in 1782 to establish the capital on the eastern bank of the Chao Phraya River. The Chinese immigrants who were originally settled in what is now the Grand Palace had to move out to a strip of land two km. down the river. Over the years the settlement grew. Today Chinatown Bangkok or Yaowarat covers a square bounded by Phadung Krung Kasem Canal to the east, the Ong Ang Canal to the west, Luang Road to the north and the Chao Phraya River to the south, an area of about 2 sq km.