Night markets in Thailand offer an unforgettable holiday experience, as well as a fantastic opportunity for some discount shopping. Every market throughout the country features an amazing selection of local street snacks and meals, unique handcrafted items, cheerful vendors and, of course, a wide array of fake designer goods.

    Each of the best night markets in Thailand offers something different, whether it’s a special kind of goods, exceptionally low prices, special cultural shows or amazing food. The best night markets in Thailand in our list below allows you to observe the local life and find one-of-a-kind souvenirs without wasting a beach day or sweltering under the midday sun. It's justifiably listed as one of the must-try experiences in the Land of Smiles.

    There are 2 Rot Fai Markets in Bangkok, but the biggest and best is found just behind Seacon Square Shopping Mall, on Srinakarin Soi 51. It's divided into 3 sections: Market Zone, Warehouse Zone and Rod’s Antiques. The Market Zone is what you would traditionally think of as a night market in Thailand, only bigger, with over 2,000 stalls selling anything from fashion to homeware. The Warehouse Zone and Rod’s Antiques are the really interesting parts, selling unique second-hand goods, hobbyist items like old cameras and bikes, collectables and memorabilia.

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    Location: 51 Srinagarindra Road, Nong Bon, Prawet, Bangkok 10250, Thailand

    Open: Thursday–Sunday from 5pm to 1am (closed from Mondays to Wednesdays)

    Phone: +66 (0)8 1827 5885

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    2

    Rong Kluea Market

    Aranyaprathet

    Rong Kluea Market, also known as the Friendship Border Market, this massive swath of stalls and shops is not technically a night market as it remains open during the day. However, being among the biggest and busiest retail areas in Thailand, it's impossible not to mention it. 

    Situated right alongside the Poipet Border Crossing into Cambodia (about 255 km east of Bangkok), it spans a huge area with thousands of vendors, many of them travelling from neighbouring countries to offer new and interesting items. With so much choice in one place, prices for common goods (T-shirts, fake designer goods, and cheap electronics) are rock bottom, while the chances of finding some unique and special souvenirs are very high. 

    Location: 58 Rd Suwannason, Aranyaprathet, Sa Kaeo 27120, Thailand

    Open: Daily from 8am to midnight

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    3

    Fisherman’s Village Walking Street

    Koh Samui

    The Fisherman’s Village Walking Street is one of the most popular weekly markets on Koh Samui. The delightful old part of Bophut is a charming backdrop to a lively market, with food vendors, dancers, artists and, naturally, an impressive variety of goods on sale at excellent prices. This includes anything from unique craftworks to knock-off designer items, with lots of interesting options in between.

    Location: Bophut Beach Road, Bophut, Koh Samui, Surat Thani 84320, Thailand

    Open: Monday, Wednesday and Fridays from 5pm to late

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    4

    Tha Pae Sunday Walking Street

    Chiang Mai

    The Tha Pae Sunday Walking Street extends across the majority of Chiang Mai's Old City, from the eastern gate to the entrance of Wat Phra Singh – a length of a little over 1 km. Calling it a “walking street” is a slight inaccuracy because, being so popular, it’s practically impossible to get up to any speed higher than a slow shuffle in places. You'll find a mix of street snacks, clothes and handicrafts, as well as a very friendly atmosphere along the length of Ratchadamneon Road.

    Location: Rachadamnoen Rd, Si Phum, Muang, Chiang Mai 50200, Thailand

    Open: Sunday from 5pm to 10.30pm

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    photo by Takeaway (CC BY-SA 4.0) modified

    5

    Chiang Rai Night Bazaar

    Chiang Rai

    The Chiang Rai Night Bazaar covers 4 city blocks, presenting among the most remarkable range of cultural and local crafts. What you'll find here is a range of hill-tribe crafts, such as knitted scarves, embroidered bags, silver jewellery, bedspreads, wallets, fashion accessories and artworks, along with the usual choice of T-shirts, electronics and knock-off designer goods. It also has 2 outdoor stages for cultural performances and a beer garden/food court, where you can grab a quick snack or a sit-down meal. Vendors start to set up their stalls at around sunset, but it doesn’t get busy until after 7pm.

    Location: Wiang, Muang, Chiang Rai 57000, Thailand

    Open: Daily from 6.30pm to 11pm

    Map

    The Phuket Weekend Market is the largest on the island and contains a massive selection of wares, from second-hand goods, curios, pirated items and a hefty amount of great local foods. Mostly covered by a corrugated metal roof, it stays dry in the rainy season, but can get a little stuffy when it gets busy (which is any time after 7pm). This night market is known locally as Naka Market or Talad Tai Rot.

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    Location: 7 Wirat Hong Yok Rd, Phuket Town, Muang, Phuket 83000, Thailand

    Open: Saturday–Sunday from 4pm to 11pm

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    Phuket Walking Street remains one of the best because of its beautiful setting, right in the heart of Phuket Old Town. The colourful buildings of Thalang Road provide a backdrop to the even more colourful performers and vendors, with traditional music alongside contemporary dance and stunt acts. While it's one of the smallest walking street night markets in Thailand, it’s a great place for buying unique souvenirs and street snacks at low prices.

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    Location: Thalang Rd, Talat Yai, Muang, Phuket 83000, Thailand

    Open: Sunday from 4pm to 10pm

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    8

    Krabi Town Walking Street

    Krabi

    Krabi Town Walking Street spreads along Soi Maharaj 8 and across the 2,000-square-metre plaza right behind Vogue Department Store in downtown Krabi. With around 50 stalls selling a wide range of products and street food, it draws an incredibly large crowd for such a small area.

    This weekly event is most notable for the wide variety of wares available, from the usual T-shirts and elephant pants to handmade leather handbags, gardening tools and pearl jewellery. It allows you to get a glimpse into southern Thailand life and discover local artisans, who often come here to present their products.

    Location: Soi Maharaj 8, Pak Nam, Muang, Krabi 81000, Thailand

    Open: Friday–Sunday from 5.30pm to 10pm

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    9

    Cicada Market

    Hua Hin

    Cicada Market is all about art, handmade crafts and good times in Hua Hin. With an open-air market concept, it brings together the towns artistic talents and those who wear ‘freedom of expression’ on their sleeves. Besides the crafts market, you’ll also find an art gallery, beer garden and live music. The night market is packed on weekends, usually with visitors from Bangkok. It's located on Phetkasem Road, about halfway between Hua Hin town and Khao Takiab.

    Location: 83/159 Soi Hua Thanon 21, Nong Kae, Hua Hin, Prachuap Khiri Khan 77110, Thailand

    Open: Tuesday from 4pm to 12.30am, Friday–Monday from 4pm to 11pm (closed on Wednesdays and Thursdays)

    Map

    photo by Heiko S (CC BY 2.0) modified

    Ben Reeves | Compulsive Traveller

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