Steals, deals, chills for night owls at Bangkok’s best offbeat markets
THAILAND is a kingdom of treasures. With its many golden shrines and temples, spoilt-for-choice array of food and exciting shopping steals and deals, it’s a country that has something for everyone.
The perennial hunt for good eats and the best bargains is a pretty essential part of Thai culture and something every local, expat, and tourist hold dear to their hearts.
But aside from the wildly popular Chatuchak (JJ) Market, the Thai capital of Bangkok is packed with all kinds of night markets where you can stay out (almost) all night bingeing on yummylicious food, taking Insta-worthy pictures, browsing steals and deals, and shopping to your heart’s content.
Here are some of the city’s best offbeat night markets worth penciling into your itinerary if you’re heading over for a visit:
JJ Green Market (Vintage Market)
Located next to the world-famous Chatuchak (JJ) Weekend Market, the JJ Green Market is the next must-stop for shoppers once the former closes at 6pm.
Unlike its popular neighbor, the quirky JJ Green is relatively quieter and set up as a flea and vintage market, catering to a younger crowd.
Visitors will enjoy finding everything from graphic tees to accessories, antique cameras and retro Nintendos, and even cacti and license plates.
There’s something different for everyone here, whether you’re a newbie traveler, an avid collector, or a bonafide hipster.
And even if you’re not, go for the experience, then grab a beer and chill out while enjoying the live music performed by locals.
- Opening hours: 5pm – 2am, Thursdays – Sundays.
- Getting there: Chatuchak by MRT, Mo Chit by BTS.
- Address: 1 Kamphaeng Phet 3, Chatuchak, Bangkok.
Located on the other side of the river at Thonburi district, Indy Market is bit of a newcomer to Bangkok’s bustling night market scene.
Although still relatively new, it already has about 500 stalls selling everything from fashion to crafts, to stationery and food.
Visitors love it for its ambience and its cheaper-than-usual prices, as you can get most things for less than THB100 (US$3.20) a pop.
So don’t forget to bring a bag/backpack with ample space to stuff all your bargain buys.
And after you’re done lugging all your goodies around, raid the food stalls for crepes, chicken wings, cartoon character-themed buns, then wash it all down with a large watermelon smoothie.
- Opening hours: 6pm – midnight, daily.
- Getting there: Best to go by cab.
- Address: Thanon Suk Sawat, Khwaeng Chom Thong, Dao Khanong, Thonburi.
Rot Fai Night Market (Train Market)
More commonly known as the Train Market, Rot Fai Night Market is easily recognizable from its vividly colorful tents.
The name originated from the original Rot Fai, which was located right next to train tracks in Srinakarin, a suburb on the outskirts of Bangkok.
Although the new market located in the Ratchada area of the city is not as big as the original branch, it has just as much character.
Rummaging through its many stalls will likely land you some unique items such as vintage clothes, homewares, and home-deco-worthy antique items.
If you’re craving a little late night cocktail after sampling the food stalls, head on over to one of the cute VW camper mobile bars to grab a drink.
- Opening hours: 6pm – midnight, Thursdays – Sundays.
- Getting there. National Cultural Centre by MRT.
- Address: Ratchadaphisek Road, Bangkok.
Even in a quieter Bangkok neighborhood, there’s a place for vintage treasure hunters to go to.
And because the Owl Market in the Nonthaburi province is extremely non-touristy, you won’t have to rub elbows with a throng of travelers.
That also means things are cheaper than what you may find in the city.
So grab dinner for a fraction of the price that you would pay in the Thai capital, arm yourself with a colorful soda drink, and check out what’s in store.
At the market, you’ll be able to find clothes, trinkets, and even the more bizarre products such as stereos, and what looks like random used car and computer parts.
Even if you’re not planning on getting anything, it’s still an experience like no other being out in the boondocks.
- Opening hours: 3pm – midnight, daily.
- Getting there: Yaek Nonthaburi 1 by MRT.
- Address: Phra Chedi Nonthaburi 14/87 Moo 1, Nonthaburi.
ChangChui Market (Plane Night Market)
Two words: creative market. Art lovers are going to enjoy strolling around the huge space known as ChangChui Market.
Why? Because for starters, it’s near impossible to miss the massive old airplane plonked right smack in the middle of the market, which also functions as a bar.
Aside from stalls selling apparel and cute crafts, and food trucks dishing out some of the best Northern Thai eats, ChangChui Market is also home to a handful of really good coffee shops and teahouses, and likely one of the only vintage cinemas in the country.
Thinking of visiting ChangChui Market? Prepare to fork out some moolah for the admission fee – just a small price to pay for the awesome vibe.
- Admission: THB100 (US$3.20).
- Opening hours: 4pm – 11pm, Tuesdays – Sundays.
- Getting there: Details here.
- Address: 460/8 Sirindhorn Road, Bang Phlat District, Bangkok.