The Chatuchak Market at Mo Chit in Bangkok Thailand is a good old-fashioned flee market that has been operating for around 65 years. It is the largest of all Bangkok markets and apparently one of the largest in the world. The site which was once just a popular place where traders and wholesalers would meet, has established itself to become one of the most noted landmarks in Bangkok.
My Thai wife first brought me here in 2010 and I was amazed at the selection of merchandise on sale. I returned again in January 2014 and little had changed from my first visit as this is still a great market to buy gifts for friends and family before returning home.
Chatuchak is a genuine Thai market and not just a tourist trap pretending to be a market. Subsequently, the prices here are representative of local Thai prices and most of the merchandise comes from Thai factories and outlets and not only from China.
In fact Chatuchak Market is said to be the idea of a former Thailand prime minister, the late Field Marshal Plaek Phibun Songkram who is credited with coming up with the idea of establishing flee markets across Thailand back in the 1940s.
If you like to shop till you drop then you wont find a bigger market anywhere else, as the Chatuchak Weekend Market is set out over a 35 acre site and has over 8,000 stalls within 27 sections.
These sections include plants and flowers, clothes, and pets, souvenirs and wood carvings, and textiles. These products are sourced from all over Thailand so there are plenty of Thai made products such as wood carvings and Thai silk for sale.
Due to the size of Chatuchak Market be prepared to stay all day if you want to have a good look at everything on offer but it does get hot and some of the stalls provide little shade so remember to wear a hat.
You can find just about everything here including fresh fruit and vegetables, take away food, drinks,
handicrafts, fresh flowers, furniture, pets (including dogs, chickens, birds and fish), clothes, toys, shoes, handbags, jewelry, cosmetics just
to name several of the more sought after items. The prices are quite
reasonable here and you can haggle over the price with the stall owners
in order to secure that bargain.
FOOD AND DRINK
There are plenty of street stalls selling food and drinks along the main road where you enter and exit the market, selling sticky rice and grilled pork on the skew. Inside the market there are several restaurants located along the periphery, and there is a small mall attached to Chatuchak called 'JJs' so you never have to walk very far to satisfy your thirst and hunger.
Chatuchak Market is extremely popular with both Thai and overseas shoppers and receives around 200,000 visitors over a normal weekend, and approximately 10% of the visitors are probably tourists from my observations.
to the crowds this location has apparently become a popular haunt for pick
pockets so just be careful with your wallets and handbags and you won't
have any problems in this respect.
The best way to travel to the Chatuchak Market is by subway or the BTS Skytrain. The market is located at Mo Chit adjacent to the MRT Kamphaeng Phet Station (i.e. subway) and the Mo Chit BTS Skytrain Station on the Sukhumvit line.
There are signs at the Mo Chit BTS Station pointing the way to the market when you walk down the stairs so when you exit the station you simply walk across the foot bridge over pass (see image below, market is on the left).
The market opens on Saturday and Sunday between the hours of 8AM and 6 PM.