Whether you are looking into buying a bouquet of flowers to impress that girl you just met or getting a hundred garlands of jasmine to appeal to the spirits of Thai folklore and Buddhism to grant your request, this is the place to go to buy the cheapest flowers from various provinces of Thailand. The Bangkok flower market is a booming market filled with sensory experiences because of all the colors and scents that you would find in its stalls.
Pak Khlong Talat, which means “market at the mouth of the canal” in Thai was once a floating market in the 18th century. Later, in the 19th century, due to its riverside location, it turned into a fish market. When the local authorities grew tired of the smell of fish in Central Bangkok, they decided to turn it into its present incarnation as the Bangkok Flower Market.
Is it really worth the visit?
Flowers play a significant role in Thai culture. Not only do they serve as the usual tokens of affection for special someones and special occasions, like Mothers’ Day or Valentines’ Day, they also play a big role in their religion. From the lotus flowers, jasmine and chrysanthemum garlands and the uniquely shaped flower arrangements that you might have glimpsed at temples, flowers serve as religious offerings to their revered gods and ancestral spirits.
A walk through the market shows you a glimpse of this significant element in Thai culture as you will be able to witness the painstaking task of completing Phuang Malai garlands in person. This intriguing way of threading tiny buds with a needle until a shape worthy to become an offering is created is an ancient Thai art can be quite mesmerizing to watch as the artisan’s nifty and nimble fingers move to create its masterpiece.
As you move around, you will also spot the influence of Hinduism in Thailand in the form of the Baisri, a cone-shaped flower offering that is created by wrapping chrysanthemum and other buds in banana and pandan leaves. This represents the center of the universe in Hinduism.
Aside from the unique flower arrangements and the fragrance of the market, the Bangkok Flower Market is a beautiful way to observe the local’s way of life.
Best time to go
Although Bangkok’s flower market is open 24/7, and you can head there anytime, it’s at its peak during the early hours before the break of dawn. At midnight, you will spot trucks delivering the flowers and see the vendors preparing their wares for the customers who will be coming in at 3 to 4 AM to buy their wares. It could be a fragrant and colorful way to end a night out. At other times, the flower market seems a bit sleepy and empty. However, you can still get a good glimpse of the stalls with their floral arrangements.
How to get there?
Just a few blocks away from the Memorial Bridge, Wat Pho, and Yaowarat, you can easily include Bangkok’s flower market in your sightseeing trip. As it is the most scenic way to get there, taking the Chao Phraya Express to Yodpiman Pier for around 15THB would be the most ideal way to get there. If you are already in Wat Pho or Yaowarat, you might as well walk to the market. And, if you are planning on heading to the market late at night, you might need to get on a taxi, Uber, or tuk-tuk.
Is there food?
Within the flower market, you will also find stalls of Thai street food like satay skewers, noodle soups, curries, and fried rice. So, if you are feeling a bit peckish, as you wander around Bangkok’s flower market, you know that these food vendors got you covered with their tasty, authentic tasting dishes.
Have you been to the flower market?
Share us your experience. Was it worth the trip?