Our ladies day out in Bangkok got very busy on Sunday. Khlong Lat Mayom floating markets and Chatuchak are open on weekends only. While Platinum Mall opens daily, it has longer operating hour on weekends. Inevitably, we had to pack everything into one day.
Khlong Lat Mayom, floating market or food market?
It didn’t take long for us to reach Khlong Lat Mayom by taking the Skytrain to Bangwa station. There’s slight problem in getting a taxi driver that understands us, so memorizing the name Khlong Lat Mayom is important. A taxi tried to charge us 100Bht which we declined. In the end, it doesn’t even matter because it’s only 30Bht different when we paid by meter.
I chose Khlong Lat Mayom not only because it’s easier to reach, it’s also rather untouched by outsiders. Majority of the visitors are locals (look at the bikes!) and Thai tourists, save for a few Caucasians who blend in very well.
Despite it’s name, Khlong Lat Mayom is not an actual floating market with very little traders on boat. Most of them are food traders who have a norm stalls that looks clean enough. Too bad we were pressing for time or the idea of eating a boat noodle and washing down with a Singha sounds really good.
The Boat Trip at Khlong Lat Mayom :
It took us a while to find the little “jetty” to rent the boat. As it was already late morning, the queue was long. I will give a little narration here, in case you’re planning to go there. There are 2 types of boat trip. One is the small single-handled boat which costs only 20Bht to go around the market area. It’s very hard to catch this one because of the limited supply plus each boat can accomodate six or lesser passangers. The other one is 50Bht per person that will take us out from the market area to the village and get to walk and visit a few open houses.
The most annoying part was the ticket seller for the second type of boat trip, he chased the small boats away to make way for his long boat and let his “customers” cut the queue!
We were confused on what is happening and here’s Wendy’s conversation with him:
WENDY : Excuse me, can we sit on this long boat?
ANNOYING GUY : No, reservation only.
We were befounded since we don’t see a reservation counter on our way there.
WENDY : Where can we make reservation?
ANNOYING GUY : Me! (while he continue brushed us aside, collecting money from others)
WENDY : We want to make reservation, then.
ANNOYING GUY : Wait!
It’s not even a reservation. He was just randomly asked people if they want to get on this boat and collect the money on the spot but he acted like he own the place!
The most annoying part is we had waited for 20 minutes and are finally at the front of the queue and he let people q-cutting us.
There’s another guy who asked him the same and guess what was his reply? “You want? Expensive. 50 Bht per person.”
In case you wonder, this is the guy. He looks just as annoying as his character.
Not wanting to spoil our holiday mood and the smaller boats were nowhere in sight, we decided to pay 50 Bht anyway.
Look at the floors! It’s clean and dry!
Chatuchak Market :
Next on our busy schedule was the Chatuchak. For those who don’t know Chatuchak (I doubt that!) it is the biggest weekend market in Thailand, selling extensive range of products – clothing, home furnishing, bags, shoes, pets, anything. The market was segregated into many sections and soi (“lane” in Thai) and they are important in order not to get lost in this maze.
I never enjoy Chatuchak back in Mar 2009. This time, the weather is better and I am getting better at navigating around maze. November is definitely the time to visit Bangkok!
And a little help from coconut ice cream that kept us cool, came at 30Bht each with 2 toppings of our choice and coconut water.
I was planning to buy a Thai settee but it was too big for hand carry and will probably get decapitated in cargo hold.
Ban Khun Mae Restaurant, Siam :
I didn’t managed to visit Ban Khun Mae for dinner in 2009 but this time we stumbled upon it in accident. It was just a stone throw away from Siam Skytrain Station. Unfortunately, the food was very unremarkable.
The Tom Yum Goong. Once we had finished the 6 medium sized prawn in it, we had little to go on.
Siakap steamed with Lemon Sauce. The lemon sauce is not lemon-y nor garlic-ky enough, hence the fish taste bland.
The only redeeming item was the Som Tam but who could go wrong with this?
The total bill came up to 1000 Bht which I think it’s not worth it. Maybe we are paying for the ambience? I doubt it, considering the toilet hygiene is rather sub-standard.
We took a walk around the evening market in Siam area yet could not find a single massage shop that is still open. Ultimately we traveled all the way to Sukhumvit for massage but even at Sukhumvit massage service that go past 11 pm are hard to come by. We managed to be the last customer in the shop.