About Bangkok's Famous Floating MarketMany around the world are familiar with the famous photos of wooden boats, full of fruits and vegetables, with women selling merchandise, wearing straw circular hats. Here, early in the morning, dozens of vendors arrive to sell their merchandise on small boats, as they wear dark clothes, and on their heads traditional straw hats, showing off their products.
Floating markets are definitely an impressive sight, they are fun to visit, as well as to take a photo with. Almost all tourists who arrive in Thailand visit a floating market, mostly for the first time in their lives.
In the canal system that surrounds Bangkok, there are a few floating markets, or by their Thai names, Thalat Nam. These markets are usually very colorful, full of life, have great energies, and delicious fruits and vegetables that are grown close by.
The most famous floating market in Thailand and maybe the world is the Damnoen Saduak. Although it is one market or many in Thailand, it is an all-time tourist favorite. Here you can walk on food near the boats, or ride on a canoe between the boats filled with fruits and food. From the boats you can smell, taste, buy, and enjoy tastes and scenes that will never end - all while riding in a relaxing canoe. This is a real Thai experience.
The market is located about 100 kilometers south of the center of Bangkok. The way here is a nice ride through rural Thailand, very different than the urban capital.
History of the MarketThe Damnoen Saduak Market is located in an area full of canals dug by local villages in 1866. Digging these canals was done by direct order of King Rama IV, who was advised to connect the two large rivers in the area.
There are about 200 canals, that were a big part of carrying the water. On these canals are a few floating markets, only some of these are for outsiders, some are only for the residents of a certain village.
If you rent a boat in the market, try going to one of the side canals in the area. This way you can discover the special lifestyles of the residents who leave near the water. If before you saw the wonderful agricultural produce, here you can see the origins of what is sold in the markets, and how they are grown in such fertile soil.
TipsCome here early - if you arrive before 10:00 am, you won't suffer from the massive amounts of tourists that come here.
Bargain, vendors here mean business. Prices here are usually higher, for the tourists. If you couldn't get the price you wanted, move on to another stall.
You can get here by minibus that leaves from Khao San. You can buy tickets at travel agencies around the city.