Bangkok Flower Market - Pak Klong Talad
Bangkok Flower Market is #11 on Bangkok Map
The Bangkok Flower Market or Pak Klong Talad is located near the riverside, not far from Wat Pho and the Grand Palace. People often talk about it, but in fact not so many actually went there. For three reasons, and even after living in Bangkok for months, it took me a while to stop and explore it.
First, as far as I saw, Thailand doesn't have a huge range of flowers. Sure the ones available are beautiful, but it rotates a lot around orchids, lotus, roses and these famous yellow flowers used at temple, so my expectations were limited.
Second, I was often told that the market is best visited at night or very very early morning... so as I'm certainly not an early bird, I kept postponing the visit.
And third, every time I drove by the flower market area the traffic on Chak Phet Road was always mad and parking was nowhere to be found, even on a motorbike!
But one day on my way back from the Chao Phraya west bank, I happened to spot a free parking space and made an impulsive stop. Let's see this flower market in the mid afternoon and at least I'll know something about it.
Each side of the busy walkways is crammed with flowers shops and flower cart and the entire walkway is sheltered by a sea of umbrellas and awnings and this on both sides of the road. And flowers, millions of flowers are just absolutely everywhere. Not only the expected orchids, lotus and roses, but jasmine, chrysanthemum, gerberas ginger flowers, beautiful Heliconias and flowers I wouldn't be able to name.
Sure there is less variety than in the temperate countries I visited in the past, but nevertheless I was in awe. I'm not really knowledgeable about flowers but as a photographer, colors and lights irresistibly attract me so I was a kid in a toyshop. Wandering along the walkway took me to the flower market itself and despite being in the afternoon, the place was buzzing activity, young and old people confectioning bouquets and crowns for all kinds of events and ceremonies. And the place was big, just the way I like those Thai markets, an organized mess of mazes, each intersection revealing more surprises.
There should be no need to write lengthily about the flower market, just go there and walk around; it's such a pleasure. If you are as curious as me allow extra time as the flower market connects to a huge veggie market on one side and a humongous fresh market on the other. Took me hours to see it all and I had an absolutely fabulous and unexpected afternoon.
Located on Chak Phet Road near Saphan Phut or the Memorial Bridge
Open 24 hours, but best seems to be after midnight, preferably around 3 to 4 am (Duh, I still have to try that!)