Food Thailand Travel

One super hot day in Taling Chan floating market and boat tour

Taling Chan Floating Market

“Your nose is bleeding.”
“What?”

I’m not sure if I heard my Slovakian roommate correctly when he said this. I thought he was saying something about the blood cockles he was eating. He immediately took a tissue and was in the act of wiping the blood dripping from my nose when I came out of my confusion. So I checked my upper lip area and sure enough, I was bleeding into my Pad Thai. No wonder because it was such a sweltering day in Bangkok. We were bored in the hostel and decided to check out the weekend Taling Chan Floating Market.


Taling Chan Floating Market

taling chan entrance

Not far from the bustling city center is a floating market that you can reach via public transportation.

We took the BTS to Siam and waited for the bus 79 at the waiting shed/bus stop. We weren’t the only ones heading to the market on the bus and the conductor was kind enough to tell us where we need to get off.

You won’t miss the way because you only need to follow the people and the rows of stalls on the street until you reach a covered walkway filled with more rows of stalls selling plants, food, and other local products.

taling chan floating market

You’ll know you reached the floating market because the river will be visible and that you won’t be stepping on concrete anymore but wooden floorboards (careful, there are potholes and some are rickety).

You’ll also encounter the catfish frenzy on the way to the non-moving barge with dining tables and vendors on each side. When we got there, there were only a few boats selling food. They were selling mostly grilled meat and seafood, Pad Thai and other kinds of noodles, coconut pudding, and freshly made salads. You can order from them directly or choose from the vendors at the communal dining area.

There were also live animals like turtles, eels, and baby fishes. The food choices are very similar to what you’ll find on the streets of Bangkok. It’s also cheap, and filling.

Not really hungry at that time, I resorted to my ever favorite Pad Thai while my roommate dared to try the blood cockles. A few minutes after sitting down for lunch, the nosebleed happened. Good thing he had the wits to get a cup full of ice so I can apply it on my nose and head.

See, it wasn’t the first time I experienced this while on my Southeast Asia backpacking trip. The first one was while I was walking around in Kuala Lumpur where I thought that I suddenly had a runny nose. I never thought that I would be experiencing these nose bleeds since I came from a tropical country. But here I was, sweating more than the westerners and bleeding into my food. Hehe.

taling chan floating market lunch

After resting for a bit and taking our shots, we decided to check out what’s the schedule for the boat tour. It was interesting that the lady at the counter knew some Tagalog words so we chatted for a bit while she sales talked us into joining the next boat tour which is at 2:30 PM. With nothing better to do for the day, we agreed and paid 99 Baht each for the tour.

We still had less than an hour to kill so we walked around the walkway and sat near the fountains to cool ourselves. We also walked around for a bit up all the way to the railroad overlooking Taling Chan area.

Taling Chan Long Tail Boat Tour

This tour took us around the neighboring canals (klongs) which offered us a glimpse of the daily life of Thais living beside the river. The boat was full and luckily we were seated near the front. Turns out, the lady at the counter was our tour guide. So she kept greeting me as the girl from the Philippines. Haha.

We passed by a few temples and a few neighborhoods before arriving in Niyom Orchid Farm. It wasn’t a big farm so after 10 to 15 minutes, you’d be wanting to go back to the boat to get to the next destination. We also passed by a few wildlife like ducks and even a few monitor lizards, which the tour guide refers to as crocodile. Hehe.

A man selling coconut ice cream, fortunately, was passing by so almost everyone brought from him as a relief from the heat of the sun. We also stopped by a local temple and a few tourists took the time to offer their prayers, coins, and gold leaves. Walking around the temple, we also got to experience reading our future.

One of our last stops was feeding the “giant” catfishes. They were so plump and wild, it’s definitely a fish frenzy when someone throws them bread or crackers.

orchid farm bangkok boat tour

We got back to Taling Chan Pier more than an hour after sunset. Tired from the heat, me and my roommate separated ways after reaching the bus stop at Central World. He had a sunset to chase while I need a shower and bed.

What I liked about Taling Chan is that it wasn’t as crowded as I expected it to be for a weekend floating market. The locals still outnumbered the foreigners that was why I consider the experience still authentic. It’s a good way to pass the time if you’re spending a lot of days in Bangkok.

Next mission would have to be the train market!

taling chan boat tour

QUICK GUIDE: TALING CHAN FLOATING MARKET

Opening Hours : Saturday and Sunday from 07.00 hrs – 16.00 hrs

Address: 1, Khlong Chak Phra, Taling Chan, Bangkok 10170 Thailand

How to get there: Bus No.79, 507, 509, and 511


Have you tried going to a floating market in Bangkok?

How was your experience? 

Check out the other articles on BANGKOK.

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12 Comments

  • Reply
    Mags
    May 24, 2016 at 6:43 am

    I’m going to be traveling through Thailand in November for the first time and this post has me so excited! Bleeding into your pad Thai seems like a fair trade off for an amazing experience.

  • Reply
    Arzo Travels
    May 23, 2016 at 6:07 pm

    Oh, I love floating markets. Though I have not been to Thailand (except Bangkok) but exploring those markets would be on top of my list (though I hate seafood 🙂

  • Reply
    Jennifer @ Made all the Difference
    May 23, 2016 at 11:41 am

    I love exploring local markets and buying local food from locals. It is a great way to taste your way around the city as well as a great way to support the locals.

  • Reply
    Danielle Des
    May 23, 2016 at 8:23 am

    Are the vendors on the boats and shoppers on the wooden floor boards? If so — now that’s different!

  • Reply
    Mar
    May 22, 2016 at 6:30 pm

    Good to hear that it wasn’t full of tourists.some of the marjwts in Thailand feel like an awful Disneyland where tourists take photos of locals but it seems this was one of few genuine experiwnces left, I shall visit next time!

  • Reply
    Potpot Pinili
    May 22, 2016 at 10:51 am

    pretty pictures. clean & crisp.

    • Reply
      Darlene
      May 22, 2016 at 11:38 am

      Thanks Pot! 🙂 xx

  • Reply
    Jackie Sills-Dellegrazie
    May 22, 2016 at 6:37 am

    I didn’t make it to the floating market in Bangkok when I was there last year. It looks like a fun experience I’ll have to give a try next time. How was the food? Was it as good as the street food in Bangok?

    • Reply
      Darlene
      May 22, 2016 at 11:37 am

      The choices are actually almost the same that you see in the street food. Lots of grilled food, the usual Som Tam and Pad Thai. It was cheap and filling. 🙂

  • Reply
    RaW | Ramble and Wander
    May 22, 2016 at 1:21 am

    I’ve been to a couple of floating markets in Bangkok in two separate trips with a gap of some 15 years or so in between. Both times, I don’t remember the name of the markets because I was just following my friends, haha! And both times, I thought they were so-so, more like targeting the tourists rather than locals. Had a better experience in Hatyai though.

  • Reply
    jen
    May 21, 2016 at 6:08 pm

    I’ve skipped the floating markets because I also assumed they would be very busy and very touristy – sounds like I made a mistake. Next time I’ll be sure to visit. It looks like a lot of fun.

  • Reply
    Carly
    May 21, 2016 at 5:45 pm

    I missed out on the floating market when I was in Bangkok, but I desperately want to go back and see it! Love the photo’s.

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