Bangkok is a heaven for you if you love to shop. It is one of the best places to get amazing things at delightful bargains. You can buy everything from clothes to accessories, and quirky souvenirs. Bangkok is a great destination for both first-time visitors as well as repeat tourists. You will want to go return time and again just to shop till you drop in this shoppers’ paradise. If you are visiting Bangkok for the first time, then you must know where to go to get the best shopping experience.
Bangkok is an amazing place to shop, and you can find shops selling virtually anything under the sun. If you look carefully you can see some very bizarre items indeed. You can find both luxury shopping malls with international brands as well as small shops selling local products. Remember to bargain well as the local shopkeepers can charge extra from tourists.
Here is a guide to the best places to shop in Bangkok to help you with your spending experience in this vibrant city.
If you are looking for high-end retail therapy in Bangkok, then this is the perfect place for you. It is an extremely popular shopping mall in Bangkok. Thousands of shoppers throng the floors of this mall every day to splurge on the luxury brands available here. You can find high-end names like Tiffany & Co, Louis Vuitton, Burberry, and Versace in this mall. You can get designer clothes, shoes, makeup, and much more.
It is easily accessible by the BTS (Bangkok’s famous sky train). Even if you do not have the budget to splurge on designer brands, then also this mall is worth a visit. The shop windows have attractive display installations. It is a great place to take selfies with attractive decorations. Siam Paragon Mall is home to Southeast Asia’s largest aquarium, Sea Life Bangkok.
It is a great place for both kids and adults. There is a shark walk, an enclosure where you can see penguins, and many other marine creatures. You can learn about the different marine species as you walk along the aquarium inside the mall. You can buy the tickets in advance or on reaching the mall. However, if you are not interested in expensive designer shopping, then you can give this a miss.
Patpong Night Market
This is one of the unique shopping experiences for anyone visiting Bangkok. It is a must-do activity whether you want to shop or not. The shops are brightly lit, and the shopkeepers call out to the customers in their sing-song Thai dialect. It is a quintessential destination for all avid shoppers. This place is also famous for its go-go bars and raunchy pubs. All of it adds to the allure and character of this place.
You must visit the Patpong Night Market to get a taste of the unique nightlife of Bangkok. It is a favorite haunt for foreign travelers. Patpong is the famous and notorious place of Bangkok known for its nightlife and bars. However, the market gives this place a festive atmosphere and you can enjoy an evening of shopping and looking around. You can also snack on the local food from the stalls in the market.
Patpong Night Market is situated in the Silom area and it is easily accessible by the BTS. You can take the Sky Train to the nearest station (Sala Daeng) and walk for about five minutes before you reach the market. You will see vendors lining the footpath with makeshift stalls and soon you will reach the built-up area where the main market is. Remember to bargain well and not settle for what the sellers quote first.
Chatuchak Weekend Market
Chatuchak Weekend Market is one of the biggest markets in the world. You can browse through over fifteen thousand stalls selling everything from souvenirs to live animals. This market happens every weekend, which is on Saturdays and Sundays. You can find both tourists as well as local Thai people shopping in this buzzing marketplace. You have so many options to look at, that you must visit with ample time in hand.
This market is huge, and you must have the patience to explore its different sections. There are twenty-seven sections in Chatuchak selling a variety of items. You can buy quirky souvenirs, cheap clothes, accessories, electronics, and so much more. It is the best place to buy gifts for friends and family as you can get the best deals and bargains here. This market is quite chaotic and is very crowded.
You can see thousands of shoppers packed in the different stalls haggling with the vendors or checking out the wares on sale. Be mindful of where you want to go as it is easy to lose your way within this enormous marketplace. You can try to get a map of the market from your hotel to ensure that you go to the right sections. It is impossible not to shop at the Chatuchak Weekend Market as everything is so bright and attractive. Just remember to bargain.
Platinum Fashion Mall
If you love shopping for clothes and accessories, then this is a must-visit for you. The Platinum Fashion Mall is chockablock full of shops selling fantastic clothes and accessories. All the clothes are of the latest trend and made by Asian brands hence reasonably priced. It is extremely difficult to restrain yourself from splurging everything at this mall. It is a dream come true for you if you love to shop in bulk.
The shops here offer great deals in buying in large quantities. Therefore, you can see many people buying clothes and accessories in bulk from here. It is popular among visitors in Bangkok due to its proximity to the city center and its cheap prices. Platinum Fashion Mall is easily accessible by the BTS. The nearest station is Chidlom. You can get off here and walk to the mall.
Platinum Mall is fairly big and has stores selling a varied range of clothes such as t-shirts, shorts, dresses, shoes, and so on. You can also find different types of accessories such as hairbands, bracelets, rings, earrings, and so on. You will also find other items such as keychains, pens, notebooks, and souvenirs. Just remember to grab what catches your eye as many shoppers are looking at the same things.
Chinatown (Sampeng Lane)
If you want a more authentic Thai and traditional shopping experience, then you must head to Bangkok’s Chinatown. It is in sharp contrast to the glittering and sanitized malls of Bangkok. You can feel the lively old-world charm as you walk the streets of Chinatown market. It is the place where you can get the cheapest souvenirs in all of Bangkok. However, you will need to bargain till your voice is hoarse.
Apart from the shopping, you can also soak in the great ambiance of this place as you walk around. There are Chinese temples here where you can see the local people worshipping their gods. You can also see shops selling traditional Chinese medicines. You must visit Pahurat where you will find a treasure trove of souvenirs, clothes, and accessories. You will find the quirkiest items being sold in the makeshift stalls of Chinatown.
It is like a huge flea market where you can find all kinds of textiles, mobile covers, fruits, and vegetables, and about anything you can think of. You can also buy cheap shoes and flip flops. If you feel hungry, then you can help yourself to the delicious snacks from the stalls lining the streets. Remember to carry water and sunglasses or a hat as it can get extremely hot and sweaty. The best way to get to Chinatown is to use the Chao Phraya River Express.
Damnoen Floating Market
Damnoen Floating Market is over an hour’s drive from Bangkok. This market is not within Bangkok city. However, it is one of the most popular shopping destination for visitors to Bangkok. Thousands of tourists take day excursions to the Damnoen Floating Market to see the unique style of selling on boats. It is a great way to experience the traditional life of the Thais before the rapid modernization took over. It is also a great place to take pictures. It can feel a bit overcrowded, but it is worth it.
There are many tours available for this excursion and you can book yourself in one such tour. This market can get very crowded as it is one of the most famous sightseeing spots in Bangkok. Both foreign tourists, as well as Indians, visit this market throughout the year. It is best to go to the floating market as early in the day as possible. This is because as the day progresses, it becomes hotter and more crowded and you will not be able to enjoy properly.
See the vendors and buyers floating on the river in boats interacting with each other and peddling their wares. You can also board a long-tail boat and take a cruise down the river and see the traditional way of life on the banks of the river. You can deboard and browse through the vibrant stalls selling t-shirts and souvenirs. There are also stalls selling delicious food that you must try. You can find tasty noodles, sweet pancakes, hearty broths, and so much more.
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This is an amazing market in Bangkok selling clothes, accessories, and shoes at unbelievable wholesale prices. You can bargain to your heart’s content and get the best deals on fashionable clothes, shoes, and trendy jewelry. You can easily reach Pratunam Market using the Sukhumvit Line of the Bangkok BTS. You must get off at Ratchathewi station and walk towards the narrow lanes of Pratunam.
Tiny shops offering clothes for retail prices fill this wholesale market. This means you can get great deals on single pieces that you will not find anywhere else. This is also a great place to experience the local culture of Bangkok. Food stalls are selling tasty snacks. You can munch on these if you get tired from all the bargaining and walking around. You can find all kinds of clothes here from formal wear to casuals. You can also find fancy dresses and costumes in this exciting marketplace.
You can see vendors go about their work and enticing the customers to come and shop in their stalls. There is good-humored bargaining going on in most of the shops as the customers try to get the best deals. As you walk deeper into the market, you can find different types of accessories, shoes, and other knick-knacks. Some parts of the market are also air-conditioned where you can escape the heat when you get exhausted.
If you want to buy some cheap electronics items, then you must head to Pantip Plaza in Bangkok. This is a huge IT mall situated in the center of the city. If you are a computer nerd, then this is the perfect place for you. You can find all kinds of software and hardware at cheap prices in Pantip Plaza. You can buy new gadgets and updated software at this mall for reasonable prices.
You need to beware of fakes as it is possible to get one. You can buy anything from laptops to printers, batteries, software, games, mp3 players, and even hoverboards. Most of the shops here offer similar products at similar prices. One of the ways that you can know which shop is selling genuine products is to see where the locals go. You must negotiate well to get the best deal.
You must get off at the Ratchathewi BTS station to reach the Pantip Plaza. You can also get off at Chidlom. The mall is situated at walking distance from both the stations. Be prepared to walk a lot as the plaza is quite big and you will want to explore all the shops. Be careful of your belongings and especially your cash as the place gets very crowded and pickpockets are common.
Shop till You Drop
Bangkok is a shopper’s paradise and you will have a hard time not spending all your money buying clothes, accessories, and souvenirs during your stay. Depending on what kind of shopping you like, you can choose where you want to go. For more authentic experience you must head to Chinatown. If you want cheap and trendy clothes you can go to Platinum Mall or Pratunam Market. For IT geeks there is Pantip Plaza, and for a unique experience head out to the Damnoen Floating Market. Don’t forget to bargain your heart out to get the best deals and return home with a suitcase full of exciting shopping for yourself and your loved ones.