After the sun sets, Thailand’s infamous night markets come alive and the city streets turn into a carnival-like spectacle teeming with delicious food stalls, locally crafted items, live music and, of course, good bargains! Be a part of the local nightlife with our guide to some of our favourite night markets throughout this country that knows how to have fun long after dusk.
Rot Fai Market, Bangkok
In the bustling and somewhat hectic streets of Thailand’s capital, the colourful Rot Fai Market at Srinakarin is a unique and expansive market so big it’s split into different sections. On the outskirts at the Warehouse Zone you’ll find retro collectibles, leather jackets, old-school cameras and vintage cars. Venturing on you’ll be tempted by the wafting smells of Pad Thai, the dexterousness of vendors rolling fried ice-cream into delectable tubes and the spicy soups on display. There are also dozens of lively bars and plenty of haggling for sunglasses, shoes and shirts, so even if you don’t buy a thing, your evening at this trendy hangout will still be incredibly entertaining.
Where to Stay: Banyan Tree Bangkok
Why: For its rooftop Moon Bar with breathtaking sky-high views and classy mini suites soaring above Sathorn Road right in the heart of the city.
Phuket Walking Street
Set in Phuket’s Old Town, this large weekly market is definitely one for Instagram. Every Sunday evening, the usually quiet Thalong Road lined with gorgeous historical buildings transforms into a vibrant and creative hub bustling with quirky vendors, arty corners and young street performers – expect everything from linocut flip flops and handmade soap carvings to plenty of local treats to sample. Make sure you barter down your prices, but don’t forget to give back to the Thai locals – a small amount makes a large difference to the young performers.
Where to Stay: Akyra Beach Club Phuket
Why: We love the chic vibe and friendly service at this chilled out 5 star resort along the Andaman Coast as well as the beachfront massage salas, Club akyra for DJ-fuelled afternoons and surrounding natural beauty waiting to be explored.
Chiang Rai Night Bazaar
What it lacks in size it makes up for in liveliness and deliciousness. Chiang Rai’s Night Bazaar in the town centre is the definition of atmospheric and makes for an excellent evening mooch – the area is entirely pedestrian-only. Most people come here for the post-dinner snacks, artisan shopping with products crafted by hill tribes and Thai dance performances.
Fisherman’s Village Walking Street, Koh Samui
Attracting both foreigners and locals, Bophut Road is the place welcoming everyone on Friday nights with market stall-filled streets. On top of the usual clothing and knick-knacks, Fisherman’s Village Walking Street defines itself as one of the more popular night markets of Koh Samui with premium local fabrics, unique jewellery pieces, personalised handicrafts and musical instruments as well as beat boxing, Thai dance and Muay Thai demonstrations in front of the pier.
Where to Stay: SALA Samui Choengmon Beach
Why: For its close proximity to Fisherman’s Village Walking Street – only a short drive away! Its secluded and stylish accommodations create your own uninterrupted spa-like paradise and there is a selection of sea, jungle and mountain activities available from zip lining through the canopy to private island tours.
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