Jul 092013
 

Chatuchak market is a very popular weekend market in the Northern Bangkok. It is also known as Jatujak or J.J. by locals. Spread over about 27 sections with more than 8000 stalls, this weekend market is a best place to get some unique items at very good prices in Bangkok. These shops are selling fabrics, furniture, foods, plants, ceramics, flowers, drinks, toys, books, antiques, household items to everything, even live animal, whatever you can imagine to use in your routine life. This is the main reason of its equal popularity among the locals as well as the tourists.

How to Reach from Khao San Road?

By Ferry Plus BTS: This is what I used to reach there. This market is located near Chatuchak Park, just 100 meters away from the Skytrain Station (BTS) Mo Chit. I stayed at a guest house in Khao San Road area, so walked for 10 minutes upto Phra Arthit pier of Chao Phraya Express. From there, I took an Express Ferry to Sathorn/Central Pier (15 THB). At Sathorn/Central Pier, there is a BTS station known as Taksin/Central Pier. This green line BTS (Ticket 40 THB) directly goes to Mo Chit BTS that is the last station of the green line and very closed to the Chatuchak Market. Everyone leaving the train at Mo Chit generally walks to Chatuchak Market from Exit No.1. Exiting from the right side, you can able to see the huge crowd gathered around the market from the BTS station itself.

Road Leading to Chatuchak Market

Road Leading to Chatuchak Market from Metro Station

This may not be the best way to reach Chatuchak Market, but it always keep you away from the choking traffic of Bangkok. You never stuck in the traffic neither on the river ferry, nor on the BTS Train and it is also very cheap (55 THB total) to reach Chatuchak Market from Khao San Road. This whole trip takes about 45 minutes.

By Taxi plus MRT: From Khao San Road , catch a taxi to Hua Lamphong Station (55 THB). From there take an underground MRT to Chatuchak Park Station or Kamphaen Station. Chatuchak market is situated between Chatuchak Park and Kamphaen Station, so leaving MRT at either of the station serves the purpose. This is a more costlier, but still good option, but you can stuck in the road traffic for some time while traveling from Khao San Road to Hua Lamphong Station.

By Cab: You can take private cabs to Chatuchak Market, which is of-course an expensive way (about 100 THB) in compare to the others. At the weekend, it can take hours to reach there from Khao San Road due to the traffic.

By Public Buses: Cheapest way to reach there is by using Public Buses. Bus No. 524 and Bus No. 3 ply between Khao San Road Area and Mo Chit Bus Terminus. If there is no traffic jam, it takes only 30 minutes to reach there, but in traffic it can take hours. Bus fare is only 13 THB. In fact, on Saturday, when I was coming from Mo Chit Bus Terminus to Phra Sumen near Khao San Road by an ordinary bus No. 3, they did not ask for the fare. Fellow travelers informed that the bus journey was free that day !

Opening Hours: The weekend market is open  for General Public on Saturdays and Sundays from 9:00 AM to 6:00 PM. After 6:00 PM, the shopping stalls started shutting down, however complete shutdown takes place around 8:00 PM. The market also remains open on Fridays for wholesale business. Similarly, Plant sections are also open on Wednesdays and Thursdays from 7:00 AM to 6:00 PM.

Map of Chatuchak Weekend Market, Bangkok

Map of Chatuchak Weekend Market, Bangkok

Things to Keep in Mind While Visiting Chatuchak Market:

1. Arrive as Early as Possible: This market is really huge, spreading in 27-sections of the stalls and about 65 small lanes between those sections. If you wish to explore the entire market, then it requires a full day time. Always better to arrive as early as possible, preferably in the first half of the day, because in the evening, this market  is thronged by the hell of crowd.

@Chatuchak Market

@Chatuchak Market

2. Wear Comfortable Clothes: Wear Comfortable clothes to explore this market for such a long duration. If possible, avoid sleepers and go there in comfortable shoes. Your sleepers may come out in that crowd.

T-Shirt Stall@Chatuchak Market

T-Shirt Stall@Chatuchak Market

3. Beware of Pickpocketing: In this market, where the crowd moves neck to neck in the peak hours, there are high chances of theft and pickpocketing. So, always be cautious about your belongings, money and electronic gadgets.

Another Stall@Chatuchak Market

Another Stall@Chatuchak Market

4. No need to Carry Water: This market has many stalls selling juices, soft drinks and water. There is no need to carry them from your hotel. You can always buy them in the market and without any inflation. Its better to keep your hands free from water bottle and concentrate on other things.

Coconut Water and Cold Drinks@Chatuchak Market

Coconut Water and Cold Drinks@Chatuchak Market

5. Have a Fair Idea of the Market Map and Sections: This market is really huge to explore in a single day. It requires more time and even more energy. It is always better to get a copy of the market map from the entrance gates and chose the relevant section wisely for your exploration. As per the market website, some of the relevant sections are: Section 1: Amulets, books, collectibles, food shops, cafe, Section 2 to 4: Collectibles, home décor, paintings, terra cotta Section 5 to 6 : Clothes, adornments, miscellaneous products Section 7 to 9: Antiques, furniture, ceramics, handicrafts Section 10 to 24: Clothes, consumer products, adornments, household appliances, pets Section 17 to 19: Ceramics, fresh and dry food Section 22 to 26: Antiques, furniture, handicrafts Section 27: Books, food and dessert shops, collectibles

Cute Dog Toys@Chatuchak Market

Cute Dog Toys@Chatuchak Market

Sunglasses Stall@Chatuchak Market

Sunglasses Stall@Chatuchak Market

Lovely Toys@Chatuchak Market

Lovely Toys@Chatuchak Market

6. If you like something, buy that immediately: If you like an item in the market, then buy that immediately. Don’t think that you will check the price at another shop and come back again to buy from the first shop at a better deal. If you pass onwards from one shop, chances are very less that you will again reach to that shop and find the same item. It is also a wastage of time. So, if you like something at any stall, bargain and buy that at first go.

Flower Stall@Chatuchak Market

Flower Stall@Chatuchak Market

Shop selling Wall Clocks@Chatuchak Market

Shop selling Wall Clocks@Chatuchak Market

7. Bargain Hard: Like any other street market, bargain hard and harder at Chahtuchak Market. Some items are available only at the fixed price, but mostly there is a good chance of huge bargain on almost every product. Normally, you should start from the 50% of the quoted price, if you don’t have a fair idea of the price.

Ladies Wear Shop@Chatuchak Market

Ladies Wear Shop@Chatuchak Market

Travel-Themed Carry Bag@Chatuchak Market

Travel-Themed Carry Bag@Chatuchak Market

8. Buy Some Antique Items: This market is an excellent place to buy some antique vintage items ranging from decade old jeans to jackets and vintage tees to skirts. There are many stalls in section 7 to 9 selling some of the unique vintage pieces, those are unavailable elsewhere.

Photo Frame@Chatuchak Market

Photo Frame Stall@Chatuchak Market

10. Food:This market is home to more than 500 food stalls selling varieties of items from street foods to delicious continental as well sea foods. If you tired and hungry after a long walk around the market, you can happily throw yourself inside any food stall to enjoy the mouth-watering foods.

Thai Food Stall@Chatuchak Market

Thai Food Stall@Chatuchak Market

Another Food Stall@Chatuchak Market

Another Food Stall@Chatuchak Market

9. Avoid this market during the rain: During the rainy season, this market can be turned into a hell. There are not much covered space around the stalls and there are no other place to hide you during the rain. Huge Crowd in the search of a shelter during the rain makes it impossible to accommodate everyone under the sheds. It is better to avoid this market during the rain and better to enjoy shopping at many glittering shopping malls scattered all around in Bangkok.

11. Toilets: There are some toilets available in the market, generally near the entry/exit gates. They are usually chargeable and fee is 2 THB.

Exploring one of the biggest weekend market can be a wonderful experience of lifetime. So, if you are in Bangkok, try to spend a day at Chatuchak Market exploring the multiple shopping options, local cuisines, interacting with local people and enjoying the multitude of colors. This market is surely a worth visit.

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  13 Responses to “How to Enjoy Chatuchak Weekend Market in Bangkok?”

  1. Hi,

    i am new to bangkok and i am going next month in october for a 4 days 3 night trip. Just asking if you have a rough idea how much to bought to be sufficient for the whole trip?

    Planning to go to;
    -Platinum Mall
    -Pratunam Market
    -Chatuchak Market
    -Central World at Naraya
    -Floating market and tiger temple (seriously don’t have any idea on the boats and travelling cost)

  2. hi!

    What is the best and fastest way going to JJ market from Suvarnabhumi Airport? I am arriving around 8 in the morning and my flight to Chiang Mai is 4 in the afternoon. So I am thinking to pass by JJ market first for a little shopping.

    Thanks!

    • Hi,

      Catch the Airport Rail Link to Phaya Thai BTS Train Station (Last Station on the Airport Line). From there a BTS Skytrain to Mo Chit. JJ Market is 5 minutes walk from Mo Chit BTS Station. This complete trip from the Airport to Mo Chit takes around 50 minutes.

      Have a nice trip.

  3. Nice writeup, i have also listed my experience in my blog, do read it http://www.thinkcept.com/blog/featured/bangkok-chatuchak-weekend-market/

  4. HI!!! We are going for a vacation to Thailand on Jan. 30 this year…Is it safe for us to continue our planed vacation to thailand???? pls advice…..tnx

    • Hi, Since an emergency is declared in Thailand today, I think its the right time to answer your question. I faced the same dilemma during my trip to Egypt, but I went ahead. Cairo doesn’t mean all Egypt. Similarly, Bangkok doesn’t represent whole Thailand. Protests are going on in Bangkok, but the other areas like Chiang Mai, Chiang Rai in Northern Thailand and Phuket, Krabi in Southern Thailand is still peaceful and away from those protests. So, I will suggest you to go ahead with your Thailand Trip. Go to Bangkok also, but avoid the areas of demonstrations and remain vigilant. If you don’t feel comfortable in Bangkok, move towards Northern or Southern Part of the country and enjoy your vacations. and never believe on government travel advisories. Its better to follow local forums at TripAdvisor or twitter. Have A Great Trip :-)

  5. wowww a lovely post and am planning to visit bangkok in nov ,so this post is a great help :D :D i love shopping :)

  6. What a beautifully done piece. I wish I had read it before going there last year. :)

  7. Nce about Bangkok Chathchak Market.How to address my query to you.or how to contact you.

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