I did not know what to expect when I was walking towards the Taling Chan Floating market in Bangkok. I was still very tired. I had taken a class till 1.30 pm the previous day. Then I took a flight at 11.30 pm the same day from IGI Delhi. As usual in the flight I watched back to back movies (Monsters University and the Bourne Ultimatum). That makes me very tired on landing. The visa on arrival at Bangkok was a breeze though. The good folks at the Tourism Authority of Thailand had given us the day off. Only we went sight seeing without catching up on sleep. I anyway never manage to sleep early at night. So, when I started walking towards Taling Chan Floating Market, I was a little disoriented.
Taling Chan Floating Market, Bangkok
However as soon as entered the market, this was the first shot I took. The lady and her boat were so beautiful! I took this picture in a daze. But my feet were moving now. I was willing to explore more. Sleep was pushed away to some corner. I mean look at her display! How fresh, colorful and symmetrical it looked.
Our English speaking guides were Pat and Tim and they told bought us these candies. They are bean based, mildly sweet and so colorful. I wanted to buy some for Chhavi but Tim advised me against it. She said unless I kept them refrigerated they would spoil. As this was the beginning of the trip there was no way I could keep them in a fridge. So I had to be content with a picture. The market is a weekend market.
Orchids, Taling Chan Floating Market, Bangkok
Orchids grow in every corner in Thailand. They were displayed in the market too. In the homes they are grown on coconut trees in the coconut shell. No fancy pots for them. Lotus and water lily also grow like weed. There was a display of orchids in one stall which had red, yellow, purple and white orchids.
Dragon Fruit, Taling Chan Floating Market, Bangkok
I had my first encounter with dragon fruit this time in Bangkok. Before that I had only seen them in my daughter’s picture books. It is a fleshly, mildly flavorful fruit that I liked. I saw it growing by the banks of the Chao Phraya river on cactus like plants. They were always present in breakfast or fruit platters that are commonly served in Thailand and Cambodia as desert. I ate the white ones though, I saw the red one only in the Taling Chan floating market.
Food at Taling Chan Floating Market, Bangkok
If you are a non-vegetarian you will have a feast at this market and elsewhere in Bangkok. If you are a vegetarian there are enough Thai dishes that are rice and coconut based. I feel a lot of Indians don’t like to experiment with food. But what is the point of thinking of Indian food in a different land? I would say give a try to the Thai delicacies.
Owl Shaped Flower Pots, Taling Chan Floating Market, Bangkok
Owls and elephants are very common Thai symbols. You will find jewelry depicting owl and elephants as well. Bargaining is a way of life in these markets. We tried to bargain for these pots but we could not settle for a price. In the end I had to be happy by clicking a picture only. The way I did my packing in the end (bags bursting at the seams) it was a good thing in the end!
It was my first encounter with the Mangosteen fruit too. If you are familiar with litchi they taste somewhat similar but they have no seeds. I saw them for the first two days at the hotel breakfast but never after them. I tried buying them at the airport but by the time I could find them, I had spent all the Thai Bhats!
Pitcher Plant, Taling Chan Floating Market, Bangkok
Talking of exotic things, there were pitcher plants for sale in the market too. It was difficult to decide which are more exotic, orchids or pitcher plants?
Yellow Orchids, Taling Chan Floaing Market, Bangkok
And that is why I have put the pitcher plant and the orchids side by side, you decide which one looks more exotic! And that brings me to the last picture from the market. But I can easily add ten more.
Preparing Food in a Boat, Taling Chan Floating Market, Bangkok
The market has much more non-vegetarian food than vegetarian food. I am not so keen on even photographing it. But this boat was so colorful that I stopped and did overcoming my aversion.
Other than the Taling Chan Floating Market, I visited the Friendship Border Market at Aranyaprathet on the Thailand Cambodia border and the Night Market in Cambodia. So stay tuned for more market posts and photos. Aren’t they colorful?
Sawasdee from Thailand. I have had a great time here till now. But being on the road for most of time meant no blog post. Today I am the Thailand Cambodia border of Aranyaprathet on the Thai side. So here I go, top ten things that I can say off my head about Thailand.
Sticky Rice Mango Desert
10. You will get a lot of food in the local market even if you are a vegetarian. Thai people eat a lot of rice, vegetables and rice based sweet dishes. If you just give up looking for home food (who wants Indian food anyway in another country) you would do fine. If you are a non-vegetarian you will find a lot of awesome food everywhere. Sticky rice and brown rice are a must try.
Chao Phraya Abhaibhubate Building- Next to it We had the Thai Massage
9. The traditional Thai massage is awesome. We had it at a traditional herbal health clinic attached to the hospital by the same name- Chao Phraya Abhaibhubate. The building above was constructed for King Rama V and now has been converted into a museum.
Chao Phraya River and the Bangkok City
8. Bangkok has a lot of waterways. You can enjoy ferry rides in the city. Take the local ferry it costs only 3 Bhat. The ferry connects various points on the Chao Phraya River.
Wat Arun, Bangkok
7. I have not seen Wat Arun at Sunrise but it is an awesome temple anytime of the day. Climb up its steep stairs to get a beautiful view of the Bangkok city.
Wat Pho Complex, Bangkok
6. Wat Pho or the temple of the Reclining Buddha is equally awesome. Don’t go out after seeing the Buddha, the entire complex is beautiful. It will also take time to explore them.
5. The fruits in Thailand are exotic. It was my first time for Dragon Fruit and Mangosteen. They also have an awesome variety of raw mango which they serve with red chilli, sweet and salt mixture.
The Four Seasons, Bangkok
4. It was the first time I went to the Four Seasons at Bangkok. They have a dress code too! The hotel where I stayed at, Dushit Thani was also grand.
Krayasart- A Traditional Sweet Dish
3. I ate at least half a kilo of Krayasart (a local sweet dish) at Ban Dong KrathongYam village where the entire village got out to greet us!
The Border Market, Aranyaprathet
2. The Friendship Border Market at Aranyaprathet is a great place to steal a bargain, to take a stroll or to do street photography.
Taling Chan Floating Market, Bangkok
1. The floating market at Taling Chan, Bangkok is a little out of the way. But it is worth the trouble. It is a beauty. It is colorful and awesome. Do give it a try.
I started my India travel blog, Travel Tales from India in 2005. In 2016 I realized Travel Tales from India and Abroad better reflected my writings. I love to walk and ride in metros around the world. I have not been everywhere, I am not even close, but it is on my list. I also quite my job as a professor in 2015, it was a happening year! I did a Ph.D. from IIT Kanpur ages ago!
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