With more than 8,000 stalls spread across 35 acres, Chatuchak Weekend Market is one of Bangkok’s most bustling tourist destinations. The largest market in Asia is a sensory overload, with vibrant colors all over the place, delicious scents from the food stalls, and a combination of dance and techno music blaring from high-end stalls to entice tourists in for a browse. A visit to Chatuchak Market is more of an experience than a shopping trip, so if you’re planning a visit, here are a few things you should keep in mind.
Before heading straight to a stall to make a purchase, begin your experience at Chatuchak Market by simply wandering around and taking in the experience. You can buy so much at the market that it would be futile to list everything here, but stalls sell everything from souvenirs, jewelry, and trinkets, to clothing, artwork, and even pet accessories. With so much to see and buy, getting your bearings before making a purchase will give you an idea of the quality of produce on offer.
While it’s disrespectful to force a vendor to sell you a product for an extremely low price, haggling is an essential part of any trip to Chatuchak Market. You should always be able to negotiate a few Thai Baht off every purchase, so be sure to barter with stallholders if something takes your eye. You can ask a seller “Thao Rai?” (how much), and your haggling can start from there. As long as you keep it polite and good-natured, bartering can make your trip to Chatuchak Market an enjoyable experience.
It wouldn’t be amiss to say that the food available at the Chatuchak market is exceptional. You can enjoy mouth-watering Thai dishes like fried octopus, honey roasted pork, or even a traditional pad Thai from the multitude of vendors around the food courts. Many of the dishes can be ordered in small quantities, meaning you can try various dishes and not go away feeling too full! The market is also known for its insatiable desserts and ice cream selection, so be sure to try a delicious coconut ice cream or the local delicacy of Tub Tim Grob, a sweet, ice-cold dessert. Whatever food you sample at Chatuchak Market, you won’t be disappointed.
Visiting Chatuchak Market is relatively straightforward on Bangkok’s public transport system. If you’re traveling by Skytrain, you should exit at Mo Chit Station, and if you’re traveling by Subway, you should get off at Chatuchak Park Station. People in Bangkok are generally friendly towards tourists, so if you’re not sure exactly how to find the market, you can always ask a local for directions and advice. Also, the best time to visit the market is at the weekend, as this is when most stallholders are there. That being said, if you visit during the week, there will still be many stallholders there; there just won’t be as much choice.
Whatever you do at Chatuchak Market, you will be sure of an incredible experience, and you can come away with some souvenirs and gifts for your loved ones back home.
Directions: BTS Station Mo Chit
Address: Kamphaeng Phet 2 Rd, Chatuchak, Bangkok 10900, Thailand
Opening hours: Weekend 9:00-18:00
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