Occupying approximately 14.61 hectares, (35 acres) of land, with close to 15,000 outlets to choose from, this is a wonderful way to spend a day for both bargain hunters and those shopping for their weekly supplies. Despite its name, the Chatuchak Weekend Market opens from Wednesday to Sunday just beside Bangkok's Chatuchak Public Park on Thanon Phaholyothin. It provides locals with the opportunity to display and sell a wide range of products. You can find exotic fresh flowers, fruit and vegetables, handicrafts, paintings, ceramics, furniture, toys, utensils, plants, antique reproductions and even pets. Whether you are on a shopping spree or simply want to soak in the local scene, this is definitely a place to explore.
Jim Thompson on Surawong Road is the main outlet for Jim Thompson's Thai silks and cotton. It is housed in a mock Thai style house and a spacious well-lit interior keeps shopping relatively hassle free despite the flocks of tourists who descend here every day. On the ground floor are scarves, ties, purses and gifts. Upstairs, they have ready-made clothes, cards, handbags, silks, cottons and a café. One can also find household fabrics, cushions, linens, and furniture. For premium cotton and silk products, this is definitely the place to come to.
TUBA is a designer furniture shop and gallery where young and budding artists show-case their talent. There is a rich collection antique furnishings from the bygone era as well. If shopping is not on your mind then you can surely enjoy the local delicacies served here as this space doubles up as restaurant. You can gorge on the Thai dishes flavored with authentic herbs and spices. Not in the mood to either shop or eat? Simply relax and sip the cool cocktails and other beverages served here. TUBA surely is a place that has something for everyone.
Initially known as the World Trade Center, CentralWorld is one of Bangkok's largest downtown malls, containing a massive variety of trendy shops. The flagship department stores of Zen and Isetan can be found here, but the core is a labyrinth of shops, restaurants and entertainment facilities, including cinemas and an ice-skating rink. Located on the seventh floor is the Thailand Duty Free Shop, which is the one of the only government-operated, downtown duty-free shop in the country. Much more than just your average shopping mall, CentralWorld also has an entire luxury hotel and a fully-equipped convention center within its premises.
Street food lovers are in for a treat along the Sukhumvit Soi 38 in Bangkok. While the Sukhumvit area is actually lined by some of the best restaurants in town, this particular road is even more popular for the stalls along the road which serve some of the most delicious local cuisine at pocket-friendly prices. From pad thai and seafood noodles to grilled pork and soi-dogs, which are a vegetarian version of hot dogs, the variety here will suit even the most picky eater.
Wang Lang Market is one of the most bustling and lively markets in Bangkok. Famous for the exhaustive variety of street food stalls located here, a trip to this market more often than not takes up half the day! Wander around the crowded maze of alleys and browse through the local products being hawked at every turn. This flea market is a popular shopping spot not just for tourists but also primarily for locals, who you can see going about their daily tasks and stopping to enjoy a delicious meal before rushing off again. Even if shopping is not for you, make sure you visit Wang Lang to get a glimpse into the lives of the locals and enjoy some seriously good and cheap food. Look out for stalls selling muu daeng yang (roasted pork) and phad sataw muu tawt (stink beans with crispy pork belly) and finally end your food expedition with desserts like kanom krok (Thai cupcakes) and kanom buang maprow (wafers stuffed with meringue and sweet coconut or sometimes dried shrimp).
Located across from the Silom City hotel, in the heart of the city's business district, the Café De Famille is a locally-owned cafe. The cafe specializes in serving up delicious pastry creations with an Asian twist. Favorites include pandan cake, delicious layers of vanilla sponge sandwiched with an aromatic pandan cream; fancy royal cake in multi-colored tiers; strawberry crepe cake; and a rich coconut cake with fluffy frosting. The seating is limited; if you're lucky enough to get a table you can settle in with a tall glass of chilled Thai coffee, and try one of their delicious pastries.
A walk along Silom Road from Sala Daeng BTS station to Silom Village encapsulates a microcosm of Bangkok life. Traffic noise, fumes, food smells, crowds and color accost the senses. Stalls selling t-shirts, cushion covers, masks, scarves, watches and souvenirs line the pavement, while shopping malls jostle for attention with spas, massage parlors, banks, tailors, travel agents and food outlets of all kinds. Here office workers mingle with tourists, and diners eat at noodle stalls, Mexican restaurants, British pubs or five star hotels according to taste. Silom Village is worth a stop if you still have the energy at the end of the walk.
Diamonds are every lady's weakness and Jubilee Diamond knows all about it! They offer exquisite designs and high quality diamonds. With branches all across Thailand, the shop has the perfect stone for every occasion. Their eclectic collection features unique designs and their friendly staff will be more than happy to guide you.
The Baan Kwan Thai Desserts Boutique specializes in crafting traditional Thai sweets. With over 25 years of experience, the shop has made a name for its intricate culinary creations. Especially popular at weddings and other momentous occasions, these sweet treats are carefully-crafted and infused with cultural meaning. For instance, the Jah Mongkut, a crown-shaped dessert signifies triumph, while the rose-shaped Khanom Chan signifies success. This shop is a must visit to sample traditional Thai sweets.
For years together now, Ama Bakery has been treating Bang Rak residents to delicious, freshly baked delights. Their flavorsome Thai bread custard is a favorite among returning customers. They also offer stuffed bread, pizza bread, cheese and ham filled bread and sausage bread. Highly popular with the locals, this bakery is definitely worth a visit if you are looking for authenticity.
MaxValu Tanjai is the perfect place for an emergency grocery run in the middle of the night. Open late into the night, this supermarket has all the essentials you could possibly need. Fresh, seasonal fruits, tinned sandwich spreads and jams, packaged drinking water, cookies and soda are only a few of the items found here. You can also grab a quick bite of any of their snacks and baked goods which are kept in their small deli section.