Results 11-20of 22 Reviews
January 7, 2006
From journal Chatuchak Market
December 6, 2005
Chatuchak is a charming place for shopping galore and great bargains. Touted as the world's largest open-air weekend flea market, this place is not for the faint-hearted. The easiest way to reach Chatuchak market is via the Skytrain. Drop by Mo Chit station and follow the streaming crowd to the entrance.
For Chartuchak virgins, you are highly recommended to brave yourself for mad bargaining, rubbing with sweaty bodies and exhilarating discovery. The best way to beat the heat is to arrive in early morning, when the heat is still bearable and the throbbing crowd has not yet arrived. Shoppers are encouraged to dress in shorts and sleeveless tops to get around the lack of changing rooms. Chatuchak is segmented into different areas, in theory at least: fashion and apparel, housing, vintage, pets, etc. In practice, it is probably hard to maneuver from spot to spot, and the best bet is to bargain for your best buy rather than with the hope that you can go back and find the same shop.
Most items are negotiable, and as a start, slash the price in half and bargain your way slowly up. Most owners are armed with doses of conversational English, but the calculator will prove to be your universal language. My advice is to bring a electronic portable fan and water bottle and enjoy the endless haggling. There are 199 baht items everywhere, but do not be overwhelmed by the good price your exchange rate fetches you initially. I was overwhelmed by the 25 baht earrings and 150 baht top I've acquired, but I soon learned that even 100 baht for a T-shirt can be bargained down further. Most items quoted are negotiable, even with big display signs. The trick is to buy in bulk and leave the shop without hesitation if you do not fetch the price you fancy. If the owner stops you with a discounted price, that's probably a good price you have fetched. If not, the quoted price is probably too low for profit margins. Go with a pack of fellow shoppers and buy in bulk and you will get a good price. Otherwise, threaten to leave. It's either we buy 10 or 0.
Shops close in the evening, so do make full use of your time there to haggle after cheap buys. Beware, though, Bangkok has a fascination with pirated goods. All things can be duplicated here, and there's no such thing as an original at weekend markets.
From journal Bangkok - Cultural & Shopping Melting Pot
November 9, 2005
From journal Bangkok Shopping
Broadbeach Waters, Australia
August 22, 2005
This is one of the largest weekend markets in the world and it is huge, steamy hot and very disorientating but still fantastic.
Everything you can think of is here, where to start? It is divided into sections which is a great theory but when you start wandering within it’s internal maze you will soon find that you won’t end up where you were hoping you would.
Loads of clothing outlets are here with all the International brand names such as Polo but all copies of course
If you are squeamish, make sure you avoid the fresh food sections, where all types of bits and pieces with the stench to match are enough to turn any stomach.
Likewise, the pet section can be upsetting, but on the whole, most of the animals for sale we saw were well looked-after, albeit a little stressed from the heat. I am glad that we didn’t stumble onto the protected/rare species section, as it would have been too much. There are signs up all over this section prohibiting photography, so there has obviously been criticism in the past. One of the funniest sights we saw was a cockatoo having a blow wave. He was sitting on a perch, looking bedraggled and scrawny and dripping wet whilst the store owner was blow-drying him with a hairdryer, and he was loving it.
For us, the aquarium supplies were the main find, with all sorts of bits and pieces at a miniscule fraction of what we pay at home, and we bought so much that we had to buy a bag to bring it home. Spoilt fishes.
The homeware section will also tempt you with everything from lamps, shades, soft furnishings but unfortunately we just couldn't carry anything more.
This market is well worth visiting to take a look.
From journal Shop-over in Bangkok
San Luis Obispo, California
July 28, 2005
From journal Thailand... sanuk!
February 25, 2005
All those tales about raw meat, fighting cocks, clothes, fried pig skin, baskets, and anything else you can imagine are correct. The smell was pretty overpowering at times, but it was a fabulous experience and would be great fun for a shopper, particularly someone who likes to go to flea markets and other places where you never know what you will find. About 1 hour after getting there, I had to take a taxi home. I was feeling dizzy, with my stomach was hurting. I have read from other travelers that this is not uncommon on the first day or two. The rest of the family stayed on, bargaining for souvenirs.
From journal Thailand - November 2003
December 30, 2002
We decided to be a little adventurous and take the sky train to the Chatuchuk market. The sky train was very cheap and hardly anyone was on it. Rich and I were surprised at how clean it was, and it was air-conditioned and quicker than a cab. I have no idea why more people do not use it.
The market is incredible. It is about the size of a stadium market, but has four times as much stuff crammed in it. People say if you can’t find it in the market, then it doesn’t exist in Thailand. We found very good deals on things, but you MUST bargain. If you do not like the price, then you walk away. Nine times out of ten, they call you back and tell you "for you discount" and give it to you for the price you wanted. We left for lunch since we did not trust the vendors at the market. There were inadequate washing facilities and the open trench sewers ran near the vendor booths. The place was incredibly stinky. Every 10 feet, a new smell would assault your nose. The market was dirty, crowded, and hot--a perfect recipe for a migraine, but we did okay.
Lesson Learned: Go EARLY in the morning. Bring some snacks and plenty of water. Protect your valualbles from pickpockets (99% of Thai people are courteous, honest, polite, and hardworking . . . but there are a few pickpockets in every country). Remember that there are cultural differences, and try not to openly gawk or stare at things you find odd or repugnant. Yes, some Thai people eat insects (a delicacy), but we eat things that are much worse for you healthwise (Twinkies, bacon, etc.).
From journal Bangkok Thailand
New Delhi, India
November 26, 2002
Anyway, to get to the basics. The easiest way to get to Chatuchak is to take the Sky Train to Mo Chit terminal (which is what we did)- the market begins just below the terminal; all you do is walk down from the terminal.
Chatuchak’s huge, colourful, noisy- and consists of large bright shops, glittering goods, narrow aisles. In the first few rows, the stalls sell clothes- mainly jeans, T-shirts, shirts and sarongs- jewellery and trinkets, bags, shoes, hats; souvenirs (basketry, ceramic, handmade paper, woodwork, metalware and things like that) and a massive range of odds and ends. Past that, the stalls in the middle rows sell upholstery, lampshades, glassware, artificial flowers, wrapping paper, floral decorations crafted from paper and plastic; and- well, anything else you could possibly want, including mundane things like cheese-graters, paper-cutters, cushion covers and tiny models of tuk-tuks. Right at the back of the market are stalls which sell pets- rabbits, birds, puppies, fish- along with cages, fish bowls, artificial waterplants and things like that. Also around the same area are a few shops that sell food- especially dried seafood (the somewhat overpowering stench nearly made us faint!). Despite that, Chatuchak’s a must-visit: save your shopping for here! One last bit of advice, though: bargain like mad!
From journal City of Angels- Fallen and Otherwise
Nottingham, United Kingdom
July 23, 2002
It is divided into several different sections, including: clothing (jewellery and accessories), household goods (mainly decorative goods), food, pets, and several others which are more appropriate for a resident of Bangkok. We began in the clothes sections, and were quickly disheartened, because so many of the clothes were highly desireable, and yet so few fit us. Basically, a good rule of thumb is to measure yourself against an average-size Thai lady and if you're much bigger than her in any way, it is unlikely you will find many clothes which will fit you. We were really disappointed about that, but we soon cheered up as we saw all the beautiful accessories, jewellery, picture frames, crockery etc etc. A good tip here is to find out if you can leave goods you have purchased at your guesthouse. If Bangkok is not your last destination in Thailand, this is a good idea because then you are free to make purchases which you wouldn't ordinarily be able to carry. Also, take plenty of water, as the market is extremely hot. The facilities for food and drink are reasonable in price and quality, but it can be so hot that you need to drink water almost continuously.
There are some wonderful bargains to be found, many without even really trying! We bought herbs and spices very cheaply in the food section, mulberry paper (a Thai speciality) in the household section, as well as some lovely crackle-glazed pottery which seems quite expensive but is really still only a third of the English price. Handbags and silk were also good purchases, with a huge range of choices, and the same goes for vases, photoframes, candles in all manner of shapes and sizes and other decorative items. The pets section is slightly less salubrious, housing endangered species and household pets alike, all in small cages looking pretty scared (we wanted to liberate the baby rabbits, but were scared they'd be eaten by the crocodile!). The pets section was actually quite upsetting, although it as interesting, but dont go if you're faint-hearted.
A few final tips:
- If you are in a group expect to get split up at some point and arrange a specific place and time to meet.
- Expect to get lost, a lot, try to get hold of a map before you go.
- Change money before you go - cheaper, no queues.
- Give yourself a lot of time, the market really is huge.
- Be selective, don't buy more than you can take back home!
From journal A Month in Thailand
June 22, 2002
The market is segragated into clothing areas, household items, candles and incense, food, animals, plants, and lots more for easier shopping. Lots of beautiful things can be found which would make great gifts when you get home. However, be sure not to get lost because it's so big a place that it's hard to go back to where you came from. If you like something, it's best to purchase it on the spot because chances are you won't be able to find your way around if you want to return. And if you're doing lots of shopping, bring big bags, or better still, luggage, to avoid lugging numerous plastics bags around which can become quite a handful after a while. And if you're setting up a business,most of the shops have name cards that will be of help in the near future. Most importantly,drink lots of water to avoid dehydration.
From journal Sizzling Bangkok