Phahurat Market (Little India)
Many visitors to Bangkok spend their time visiting Buddhist sites, but in fact, the city is quite multi-cultural, and this can be seen at the Phahurat Market. As well as Sikhs, there are Hindu and Muslim Indians too. Although not a big market, it is quite dense, and the range of Indian fabrics and clothing is good. If your tastebuds need a break from spicy Thai food, switch things up with some spicy Indian food instead. Also check out the gold-domed Sri Guru Singh Sabah Temple, one of the largest Sikh gurudwaras outside India.
Phahurat Market is near Chinatown, so a walking tour or independent wander is a great way to explore this crowded and vibrant part of the city. Many Bangkok sightseeing itineraries include Phahurat Market. Travelers interested in culture and religion can join a tour that focuses on the different ethnic neighborhoods of the city, while keen shoppers will enjoy a tour of several of Bangkok’s markets.
Things to know before you go
- As with anywhere in Bangkok, keep your valuables close as the market can get quite crowded.
- Although it’s looking a little worse for wear these days, the four-story India Emporium is a landmark mall that’s been here for decades and is worth browsing.
- Apart from food ordered from a printed menu in a restaurant, bargain for everything you might buy at the market. Keep things friendly and respectful.
How to get there
The market is behind Phahurat Road, in the Phra Nakhon district. The easiest way to get there is to catch the Skytrain to Saphan Taksin station, and then take an express boat to the Rajawongse Pier. The nearest MRT station is Hua Lamphong, but it isn’t very near and will require a taxi or tuk-tuk, which could get stuck in traffic.
When to get there
It’s advisable to go to the market as early as possible, to avoid the heat. Stalls are set up early and stay open until mid-afternoon. In keeping with Sikh traditions, the gurudwara serves free vegetarian breakfasts every morning on the second floor.
Visit the Chatuchak Market
For a very different market experience, head to the enormous Chatuchak Market on the weekend. The 15,000 stalls sell everything from street food to aromatherapy oils, silk scarves to tooled leather belts. It’s popular and crowded, but for good reason, and is a must-visit place for shopping and browsing if you’re in Bangkok on a Saturday or Sunday.
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- Sampeng Market
- Pak Klong Talad Flower Market (Pak Khlong Talat)
- Wat Suthat Thepwararam
- Giant Swing (Sao Ching Cha)
- Temple of the Reclining Buddha (Wat Pho)
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- Princess Mother Memorial Park (Suan Somdet Ya)
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