Floating Markets In Thailand
When deliberating things to do during your trip in Thailand, visiting a floating market needs to be at the top of your list. The Talat Nam (that’s water and market to you and me) has been the centre of traditional Thai communities for hundreds of years. Taking advantage of the large river network surrounding the country, water transport has always been an important part of everyday life.
The floating markets are an example of Far East tradition at its finest. They also make an excellent sensory experience. Peruse sellers’ wares from the water’s edge or charter a boat and point your driver in the right direction. There’s plenty of freshly cooked Thai delicacies cooked inside the merchant boats to choose from. As fragrant herbs and fresh seafood smells fill the air, it’s impossible not to feel hungry. Each floating market has its own quirks and some are busier than others, so make sure you pick somewhere that suits you.
Regardless of your preferred floating market, Thailand has plenty of choices. We recommend trying Khlong Lat Mayom or Bang Nam Pheung. These lively markets are perfect for stocking up on local spices, clothing, or a variety of intricately handcrafted souvenirs. The benefit of staying local? If you want to, you can try more than one on the same day.
If you’re willing to travel, there are some little gems waiting to be discovered. Right in the heart of Samut Songkhram Province, you’ll find the district of Amphawa. Located slightly inland at the south-western tip of the Bay of Bangkok, Amphawa has fewer tourists than some of the other alternatives. This gives a laid-back feel compared to the energetic pace of the Bangkok floating markets.
Covering a 30-mile stretch along a canal in the Mae Klong river, Amphawa markets leave you spoilt for choice from endless local produce and goods. As a small coconut town, Amphawa has many exotic sweet treats for you to try. There’s also Damnoen Saduak if you’re looking for something bigger. Getting to the province is straightforward. If you prefer buses over a songthaew, make your way to Victory Monument on the Bangkok transport system (BTS). You’ll find yourself on a large circular walkway which will lead you to the bus station. From here, it’s one straight bus straight to the market of your choice.
If you really want to venture off the beaten track, head further afield to the Tha Kha floating market. Following tiny jungle roads, you can really appreciate the natural beauty of the province. You’ll be in awe as you weave in and out of luscious shades of green from the local fauna. Keep a sharp eye out as the entrance road appears from almost nowhere. If you’re looking for somewhere with the ultimate ‘Sabai Sabai’ (relaxed/peaceful) vibe, then Tha Kha is for you. One of the smaller, undiscovered floating markets Thailand provides you with a charm of its own.