How do you start a weekend in Bangkok? Chatuchak Market of course. Located closely to Chatuchak Park and along Kamphaeng Phet 2 Road, holding close to 15,000 stalls, spreading over 35 acres with 27 different sections to shop from, you will surely be leaving with an item or two from your leisurely day there.
Chatuchak market also known as JJ Market has been in operation since 1942, it offers all small goods imaginable to men. It has been divided into 11 categories:
Clothing & Accessories (sections 2-6, 10-26)
- Handicrafts (sections 8-11)
- Ceramics (sections 11, 13, 15, 17, 19, 25)
- Furniture and Home Decoration (sections 1,3,4,7,8)
- Food and Beverage (sections 2, 3, 4, 23, 24, 26, 27)
- Plants and Gardening tools (sections 3, 4)
- Art and Gallery (section 7)
- Pets and Pet Accessories (sections 8, 9, 11, 13)
- Books (sections 1, 27)
- Antiques and Collectibles (sections 1, 26)
- Miscellaneous and Used Clothing (sections 2, 3, 4, 5, 6, 22, 25, 26)
Tips and tricks for your trip to Chatuchak Market:
- Get a map from the Information kiosks
- Do plan your trip early in the morning, to avoid the afternoon heat and crowds
- Pack your money and priced possessions safely in your bags, there may be pickpockets
- Cash is king. The vendors at the Chatuchak market mostly accept baht cash, no dollar
- Bring a bottle of water, though there are food market stalls dotted throughout the markets
- Bring extra eco bags, to avoid using their plastic bags, also saves you from plastic rips or tearing
- Safeguard against the sun, put sunscreen, glasses and a hat
- Wear practical clothing, not the best place to wear your Sunday’s best, be comfortable wear loose shorts and a t-shirt
- Wear comfortable footwear, you’ll be walking continuously all day
It was advised on the website that we initiate our trip to Chatuchak Market as early as possible to avoid the heat in the afternoon and the crowd. Lucky we took that advice because by around 3 pm the crowd was unavoidable at each and every turn, good thing there was also snack stops to power us up along the way.
It is not your ordinary market, it boasts 15,000 stalls selling everything in the Thailand Kingdom. The entrance is tight with almost 200,000 visitors each weekend, you’d think they’d double the entrance walk-way and not place it along stalls, where people will stop to buy things while people are trying to reach the end of the entrance. It is clean, and a street foodies dream, where stalls are located every 5-minute walk.
Well since this place is mostly opened during weekends, you’ll need to do this activity on a Saturday or a Sunday. Good time to stroll with your partner, eating your way through Chatuchak Market, might be too stressful for families with small children, not much available seats to rest and facilities are below par. A trip here may also be appropriate for groups of friends.
The salespersons at the stalls were informative about their products and acknowledge bargaining even if we were foreigners. Though I am sure if I was a local, I’d get it for less, that’s what you get for being a tourist.
Entrance to Chatuchak Market is free, expenses you will need to pay for are your personal purchases and food. The pricing for items area reasonable, even at their given price it is affordable. Do double-check your items, because their damaged state can be overlooked, and cannot be returned. And most stalls only accept baht cash, no card or dollars.
Address: 587/10 Kamphaeng Phet 2 Rd, Khwaeng Chatuchak, Khet Chatuchak, Krung Thep Maha Nakhon 10900, Thailand
Saturdays and Sundays, 09:00 – 18:00
Fridays 18:00 – 24:00
Wednesdays and Thursdays, from 07:00 – 18:00 (Plant section only)
If you’re thinking twice about coming here because of the crowds, don’t fret. The delicious food stalls will relief your attention from the sea of people, also who doesn’t like a bargain or two. From our trip there we got to get uniquely designed shirts, funky sunglasses, modern make-up bags and lots of freshly cooked Thai street food. Even if all I did was eat there, that itself would be worth the trip.
Visited on: 4th November 2017
Entrance to Chatuchak Markets
Famous novelty bath soaps
Natural soaps and lotions
Things you can buy at Chatuchak Market
Fresh coconut juice
Coconut ice-cream with red bean and nuts
Guava, mango with chilli-shrimp and sugar paste
Favourite part of Chatuchak market, young hip area
Delicious fried food
Pad thai from the back alley of nowhere
Ubiquitous motorcycles of Asia
Center of Chatuchak Market