Thailand Floating Markets: The Venice of Thailand
Floating markets can be described as a marketplace where goods are sold on boats. These types of markets have existed since the time when water transportation had a major role in regular life. Furthermore, these places have become a tourist attraction and are found in countries like Vietnam, Thailand, and Indonesia.
Amphawa, Damnoen Sadauk, Khlong lat Mayon, Taling Chan and Bang Nam Phueng are few of the popular floating markets in Thailand. Moreover, the major purpose of these markets is to enable international and domestic visitors to experience the culture associated with riverside type of shopping.
History of Floating Markets of Thailand
Earlier, the areas located near the rivers were the first to be populated so most of the communities were built around it. The waterways were served as a means of transportation and were also used for economic activities. Boats were used for local and regional trade. Moreover, goods were brought from the manufacturer and were bartered in near these areas. Furthermore, this kind of lifestyle of the communities living near waterways led to the emergence of floating markets, especially near Chao Phraya river basin.
For centuries these types of markets have become the hub of people especially in the Central Plain of Thailand.
As soon as regions in Bangkok began to popularize the roads and railway networks were constructed people began to travel through land instead of waterways. This led to the decline in the popularity of the floating markets. However, some were renovated, some whereas some were closed permanently. Furthermore, presently these types of markets do exist reminding you of the trading methods of your ancestors.
Steps to reach a floating market in Thailand
The following are the steps to reach a floating market like Damnoen Saduak in Thailand:
- It is ideal to reach most of the floating market is as early as by 7 am.
- As after 9 am it tends of get more crowded and the boat traffic jams takes place.
- Take a taxi to southern bus terminal in Bangkok from there you can take bus no 78.
- The bus starts at 6 am and it takes at least 45 minutes to reach the market.
- The bus drops 1 km away from the destination from there taking a taxi or a motor bike taxi which will cost 100 baht.
- After reaching the market, negotiate the boat owner to lessen the cost of touring the market.
Products which are popular in the floating markets of Thailand
The following are the products which are popular in the floating markets of Thailand:
- A very famous marketplace is located 100kms from Bangkok.
- Souvenirs like wooden frog song maker, ceramics, traditional massage services and species which are sold near the canal area.
- Tropical fruits, flowers and other fresh produce, creating an exuberant and vividly colorful scene.
- It’s best to take a trip early in the morning to see the market at its busiest and most colorful.
- Second most popular floating market about 50kms from Bangkok located on the Mae Khlong river canal.
- It is packed with drinks like o-liang and food products like sweets, sea food and noodles.
- There are wooden houses alongside the market which sells T-shirts, souvenirs, decorative items and handmade stuffs.
- The main attraction is eating seafood which is cooked live on the wooden boats around the popular central bridge. Moreover, these menu includes shellfish, huge pawns and squid.
Khlong Lat Mayom
- Among the three floating markets which is located near Bangkok.
- Dishes like pad thai kanom jeen and hoi tod is sold here.
- One part of this market sells fresh vegetables and fruits like papaya, large green or ripe mangoes, chompoo and sapodillas and massive grapefruits.
- Cheap clothes, house decorative, accessories, toys, flowers and plants.
- Wide variety of roasted sea food like crab legs, huge roasted pawns and roasted snake head fish.
- Thai traditional food & sweets ( Very traditional food can be found as well )
- Local souvenirs such as clay pots, glasses, and more in Thai traditional style
- Refreshing local drinks
Bang Nam Phueng
- Bang Nam Phueng Marketplace can be described as local yet not a conventional kind of place.
- This place is situated in the outskirts of Bangkok city.
- Products which are sold here includes trendy t-shirts, potted plants, and many other such things.
- Gac fruit which is uncommon in Bangkok is a popular selling product of this marketplace.
- There are many vendors here who sell organic and specialized products.
- Many snacks and goods with a fancy and nicer packaging are sold here.
Economic benefits of Floating Market
Floating market play a very important role in the tourism industry. Floating markets help in the promotion of the heritage and the cultural characteristics of these marketplaces, which have existed since centuries. The increasing number of tourists has led to the development of infrastructure and public utilities like water supply and electricity. Furthermore, it offers convenient life for the local people and these marketplaces have also given employment opportunities leading to better standard of living for the local people.
Whenever you visit Thailand visit these places to experience the hustle and bustle of these floating markets.
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