Pah Khlong Talat Market is located only a few minutes walk away from the touristy heart of Bangkok, but it seems to largely avoid the crowds.
Selling fruit, vegetables, spices, and most famously, flowers, this market is an experience that will overwhelm the senses.
With the noise of the negotiations, the colours from the rows of produce, the smells of lime and lemongrass, what started off as a way to escape the mid day sun, finished into a truly authentic experience that blew us away.
Most blogs, guides and top ten lists for Bangkok will highlight the Flower Market as a go to destination at night, recommending you go at its peak between the hours of midnight and dawn. allowing you to capture pictures of the hustle of fresh deliveries, sleeping Thais and rows of pretty flowers or fruits. We however discovered this market in the middle of the day and it was still a thriving hub of energy, noise and colour.
What starts as tiny alleys leading you into a labyrinth of dark corners and tucked away units, actually ends up being a large arena space, with stalls as far as the eye can see. Each of these stalls is dedicated to a specific flower, fruit, vegetable or spice in vast quantities all being prepared by hand. There are no general stalls here, these people sell in bulk!
Mopeds, men with large baskets on their backs and bicycles weave their way around pedestrians, forcing you to breathe in tightly as they go past. Small birds flew around our heads avoiding the cats that were poised on empty boxes and mats, picking up the scraps of flowers or vegetation discarded by the stall holders.
As it was lunchtime, many of the stall holders were relaxing in-between the rush of the morning trade and the upcoming evening tasks. Either sleeping, playing the latest game on their phones or grabbing a bite to eat the place with alive with every day tasks and it was fascinating to watch, be part of and more importantly enjoy.
So if you’re looking for some a bit different on your visit to central Bangkok, why not plan in a couple of hours to take in the fantastic Pak Khlong Talat market. It’s an experience you’re unlikely to forget in a hurry.