Yada's Silk - Silk, silk and silk!: The Best Buy
There are many tailors and silk shops, but we found this the best. Probably the products are the same in all shops but here the seller was a nice and polite lady with no pushing! We bought 5 different colors of silk, the prices were from 700 paths to 1000 paths per meter. And in few days she made a good looking and tidy sleeveless top for 2500 paths (about 60 euros).
Fish on Market: Local Markets
Take a look to Ao Nang markets. It's located some 2 or 3 kilometers from village center and you can find anything to make good Thai Yum spirit of food.
Here is local fishes, it was quite amazing, no smell of fish at all. Temperature some 38+ and time about 3:00PM.
What to buy: Spices and fast food (if you have spent some days or week already on the area).
What to pay: On western standards the prices are quite low, we spen about 250 path (5 euros) for a quite large mixture of different spices (I add list of those later)
Milano Collection: Quality Tailor
Custom tailoring is big (BIG) in Thailand and there are many shops in Ao Nang along the main beach road and side streets. A friend passed one shop and remarked that there was a nice suit jacket in the window, the shopkeeper overheard and it was all downhill from there *hehe* Just kidding. Thai hospitality is wonderful.
Milana Collection stocks linen, wool, Thai silks, Chinese silks, wool, cashmere, and cotton fabrics all of which can be turned into specifically tailored suits, jackets, pants, and shirts. Oh, even ties and scarves...and don't forget the dresses!
What to buy: When in Thailand, you should check into purchasing Thai silk. The silk is perfect for dress shirts for men or ladies. I also had a couple linen tunics custom-made with a solid color fabric with Chinese silk trim. I still get compliments on the design!
I wouldn't recommend purchasing these packages that tailors advertise a suit, shirts, ties, etc for a set price because you will rarely get good quality materials. A lot of the time the material is leftover, last in stock, or maybe not a very popular design. That's not saying you can't get lucky and find something nice but most times you will start upgrading the materials to something better and end up paying more.
What to pay: The cost of the items is quite reasonable considering that you are purchasing something tailored to your body. Each of my Thai silk shirts cost 1500THB and the tunics were around the same. I thought about buying silk shirts back home in the US and I figure that I got a great deal.
The best spices: Local Markets
If you cook at home, take a good cooking book, search suitable spices, translate them to thai and go to shopping. We bought some 20 different products and the prices were, of course, low.
What to buy: There were for example the following spices in our suitcase: zam pla, zod dang, chamin, see you dum, ta-krai, phrik-thai-awn, ma-krut, maprao khao, mantan pip and phong- kgri. Without soe of those it's impossible to make Tom Kha Kai.
Chicken on Market: Should we be aware of deseaces
Here is local way to sell chicken. No sign of any flues or anything. I think we Europeans have over allocated the whole threat of pandemics and bird flues.