Travel bucket list idea:
Chatuchak Weekend Market
Bangkok, Central Thailand, Thailand|www.chatuchakmarket.org|
Whether you’re after a salad bowl or a pair of vintage sneakers, you’re almost guaranteed to find it at the Chatuchak Weekend Market – in ten different colours and sizes. This is the world’s largest weekend market, and even the most determined pathfinders are bound to get lost in its labyrinth of clothing shops, massage joints, souvenir stalls and coffee corners.
While most shops lining its main path specialise in tourist tat, the thousands of stalls beyond them sell everything from antique furnishing to quirky fashion by homegrown designers.
Getting there & doing it
Chatuchak is easily accessible by public transport, either via BTS (disembark at the Mo Chit station) or the underground MRT (stop at MRT Kamphaeng Phet). From there, just follow the signs to the entrance.
Don’t expect to easily backtrack to that shop you saw an hour earlier – Chatuchak’s labyrin-thine alleys all look the same and are only spo-radically signposted. When you see something you like, you’re better off buying it on the spot – prices between stops rarely vary much any-way. While bargaining is no longer as common as it once was, you’ll still be able to lower the – often inflated – price with a friendly smile and joke or two.
Arrive with an empty stomach. Chatuchak is home to hundreds of street stalls selling every-thing from spicy papaya salad to top-notch pad thai.
While it’s generally safe, pickpockets are known to target unsuspecting tourists, so keep an eye on your valuables at all times.
When to do it
Open on Friday nights, Saturdays and Sundays. Stalls set up at different times in the morning, so arriving around 10am will ensure that you’ll find most shops open. Crowds thin out in the late afternoon.
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