Chatuchak Weekend Market, Bangkok
Don't even think of buying anything in Bangkok until you come Chatuchak first. The largest outdoor market in the world, with close to 9000 stalls, the sheer size of this place will immediately overwhelm you. They sell everything, and I do mean EVERYTHING! But make sure you take a map of the place (seriously), select a meeting spot in case you get separated from your group, and be sure to drink lots of water and take plenty of breaks. This place will bring you to your knees!
What to buy: As a tourist, the main areas at Chatuchak that will likely interest you are the ones selling regional ethnic arts and crafts. Besides all the great Thai crafts, there are also several stalls that specialize in Hilltribe, Burmese, and Lao crafts. Chatuchak is a particularly good place to pick up lots of quality Thai and Lao silk textiles at incredibly cheap prices.
What to pay: Nothing should be too expensive, but you have to haggle hard. Haggling is an art and takes time to master if you're unaccustomed to it. Your first offer should usually be half the original price or even less. Never buy anything at the first offer. Just make sure you always haggle with a smile!
This is NOT a shop, NOT a mall, but the world's greatest maze of a flea market. I personally think it should be held responsible for introducing lots of crap to the world.
This is shopaholic PARADISE. Get your shopping orgasm here. Man, they sell EVERYTHING here. Furniture, arts and crafts, army gears, lingerie, T-shirts, pets (yes, pets), food....everything short of a space shuttle. Real stuff and fake couture exist side by side...basically satisfying both genuine goods hunter and fake goods connoisseurs. Structurally, the market is made up of concentric rings on the outer perimeter, and then broken down to grids in the interior. The centre of a market is a clock tower and is the one of the few spots in the market you actually could see sunshine (or rain for that the matter). It's a maze inside - people could probably go on & on without actually returning to the same spot again, so here's an advice: If you see something you like, bargain hard, buy it and be on your way. There is no certainty you will ever return to the same spot again.
It can get really stuffy and hot inside, especially the few hours after noon, so come prepared to be dehydrated. There are stalls selling coffee, tea, cold drinks etc inside so you are unlikely to thirst to death. I do know of folks who spend an entire day in this place: Shop, eat, shop. Till you drop. But you will probably smell really funny after a day in the maze.
I always tell friends that if a fire was to break out, (almost) everyone will die. There are no clear directions of escape, plenty of wood around and with pandemonium sets in, how do you rate YOUR survival chances?? But then again, that could be my own cynism coming through.
The market is open on the weekends from 6.00am onwards till about 6.00pm.
It is also open on Fridays for wholesalers, but from what I heard, they welcome you anyway too. No point getting cross with earnings right?
What to buy: Lots of crap - guys always go for the fake soccer jerseys (every major soccer club you can imagine) and fake branded jeans.
Ladies, practically everything else.
NOTE: For folks who really want to know how to navigate and survive JJ (the local name), there is a Nancy Chlandler's Map of Bangkok which contains a useful dissection of JJ which may make or break your shopping escapade.
What to pay: BARGAIN BARGAIN and BARGAIN HARD. If you don't, you're screwed.
Chatuchak....Who doesnt know Chatuchak? well i guess most of the shopaholics and fashionistas out there know where and what is chatuchak weekend market.
A huge open air market opened only during weekend. it caters to almost anything and everythign you can think of. bags, furnitures, shoes, clothes, souvenirs, pets, food etc etc.
most of the goods that they sell here are unique...you cannot find on other whole sale market.
Just have an eye for those nice and unique pieces :-)
Just one piece of advise..if you see something that you like, bargain..if you agreed on the price dont ever think twice and tell yoursel that i will just go back afterwards. worst scenario is that, you wont find the stall again :-)
So bargain and purchase!
Btw, dot forget to bring a hat or umbrella, eyeglasses and bottled water with you. Also, dont miss your sunscreen for a freckles and wrinkle free shopping!
Our first glimpse of Chatuchak is the view from the skytrain. Imagine seeing hundreds of roofed structures which is according to Rommel, who's been there is the shopping areas itself. It was soooo big! Lani & I panicked! How can we squeeze browsing through these shops in just half a day? Even us, shopaholics gave up after 5 straight hours of shopping.
What to buy: towels
What to pay: towels - 80 to 280 Bhat
belts - 80 Bhat
blouses/tops - 90 to 199 Bhat
sandals/slippers - 199 Bhat
earrings/accessories - 20 to
walking pants - 100 Bhat
Though not an Old World market by any means, you can still find live produce and reptiles along with hill tribe trinkets and Eastern-tinged T-shirts. It is a sprawling complex that could keep a person busy for a few days and since they have a nice assortment of snacks, meals and beverages, you can certainly make a day of it.
What to buy: You can pretty much find anything you are looking for here and since you’re likely to be flying home from Bangkok, it is a very convenient place to pick up the gifts you promised everyone back home as well as reminders for yourself of the great time you had in Thailand. We mostly enjoyed the food and spectacle of shoppers but D did pick up some spices for her Dad, knick knacks for her Mom and a tank top for herself and sister.
Chatuchak weekend market should not be missed. You can buy everything there from local crafts to clothing, jewellry, plants etc.
It is extremely hot at the market, so be prepared. As you can see in the picture my husband found a solution to this.
The market is huge. Maps are available at the entrance, make sure to get one or you might get lost.
My husband, who has spent more time in Thailand that me, advised that I make sure I know some of the Thai numbers and associated civilities for shopping purposes. This proved to be interesting for a few reasons - one, is that, if you approach with "tow ( as is towel) rye" (how much) - which is Anglified spelling - they may well assume you are Thai fluent - and abandon any English! Then, its a bit embarrassing!
AND - when you DO learn some Thai numbers, you will quickly learn that the numbers on the signs and the quoted prices to tourists are two to three times the prices for locals! I was a bit incensed the first time, but quickly realised that there is a marked difference between the Thai earnings and ours, etc., and we are still getting a bloody bargain!
ALSO - be aware that the bargaining success is seasonal - the old supply and demand principle - if you are there in high tourist season, expect less willingness to bargain! - except at Patpong, where the prices start at a highly ridiculous rate, and you are almost tackeled by the best Aussie footballer technique when you try to move away!
What to pay: Bargain hard - and try to get a price which is at least 20% of what you would expect to pay at home. Remember that an Average Thai earns an Average of US$15 per day. Please be respectful and accept that a few Baht extra will not break the bank for us.
Chatuchak Weekend Market
Chatuchak or Jatujak Weekend Market is located near to Mo Chit BTS Station. This is one of the largest weekend markets in the world. I like to be here every time i visit Bangkok.
First Photo: Chatuchak Weekend Market
Second photo: Chatuchak Weekend Market
Third photo: Chatuchak Weekend Market
Forth photo: BTS Skytrain station - Mo Chit
Fifth photo: The main road outside Chatuchak Weekend Market
What to buy: Find here: clothes, shoes, Thai silk, antiques, plants, food and more.....
(last date visited - Feb. 14, 2004)
Chatuchak is a weekend market (Sat & Sun) being visited by thousands of locals and foreigners. From your favorite handicrafts to livestocks, wholesale price to retail, raw material to finished products---this market is the place to visit but ready yourself 'coz it is really a huge market. Spend whole day and enjoy every stall you see.
What to pay: 1. elephant key chains (10 pcs) - THB 100
2. thai decor (2 pcs) - THB 20
3. sleeveless shirt (1 pc) - THB 100
4. fisherman's trouser (1 pc) - THB 49
5. polo shirt (2 pcs) - THB 190
6. shirts (2 pcs) - THB 130
7. sleepers - THB 80
8. tamarind (2 kilos) - THB 100
9. traditional shirt worn by tourist (4 pcs) - THB 320
What to buy:
Anything and Everything that one can think of buying at in Bangkok at the other shopping markets, street markets, Patpong MBK etc is probally available at Chatuchak and that too at half or even one third prices. Ive read somewhere it had close to 6000 stalls and is spread over an area not less than 36 Acres. They even provide you with the maps of the place free of charge at the entrance gates and these are quite useful. Just go and ask the guards. Thats what we did.
What one should do is arrive at this market early in the morning as in the afternoons it gets very hot and humid espically if it is or has been raining. Also remember to drink lots of water when at this place.
One thing that I dint like about this market are the wash rooms. They were stinking like hell. When when thousands of people come to this place everyday what can one expect.
Otherwise the market is great and another advise for shoppers is to first visit this market before shopping for anything else in Bangkok.
What to pay: Bargain Bargain and Bargain!!!
Also remember its always advisable to take some extra cash when going to Chatuchak as both times I went there I was out of cash and had to borrow some from my friends.
What to buy:
Whatever you're looking for, you can buy it here with cheap price. But you just might give up before you find it since its packed and its hot.
Anyway, you can find many shops selling clothes, bags, shoes, photo frames, chopsticks, books, paintings, antiques, home decors, plants, pets, ETC.
Open: Saturdays & Sundays, between 9am-6pm
What to pay: Always bargain. Try 25-50% off the given price.
A large open air market with so many people, so much heat, & so many things to see or buy! A shopper can choose from a large assortment of Thai crafts to take home as a souvenirs. You can find almost anything that you want here in WEEKEND MARKET.
What to buy: Thai silk, military surplus, Thai traditional handicrafts, furniture pieces, clothes, pets, plants, food, shoes, & more.
What to pay: Everything here is cheap but never forgets to ask for a discount!
i bought a dozen pairs of this slippers (shown in the photo) the design is really unique and often times being noticed and given credit because of its designs.
This stall is exclusive in chatuchak and ony one stall is selling it. The fitrst time i bought this slippers was year 2004 and fortunatley the stall hasnt closed yet :-) so when i went back last 2006 i bought dozen pairs of these ;-)
199THb but for whole sale it can be reduce to 130THB / pc
Being the largest open-air market in Asia, Chatuchat Weekend Market attracts tonnes of visitors every weekend. Locals, tourists, adults, kids..... you'll be drowned in a sea of people when you are there.
With more than 4,000 shops/stalls, the market is divided into different sections featuring various types of goods, such as antiques, second-hand clothes, shoes, hand bags, local crafts, local clothes, furniture, tattoos... .... even pets!!!
It's really a paradise for shopaholics! Even if you don't like shopping, you must go there to wander around and you will be impressed!
What to buy: Local stuff + second-hand jeans!
What to pay: No matter how much, don't forget to BARGAIN!!! Thai people are very friendly and normally you will be given some discounts.
This is the "divisoria" of Bangkok. With 15,000 stalls on 35 acres of land, it's probably the most frequented and biggest outdoor market in the world.
Maps are available to help the buyers find their way inside the "maze".
What to buy: You'll be surprised to find things you never expected to find in a Thai market - Clothes, accessories, old magazines, flowers, fake antiques, fish foods, wood carvings and more.