Floating Market & Wat Trimitir Samphanthawong Temple ~ Bangkok ~ Thailand

When in Bangkok one of the most raved about and culturally unique activity is hands down taking a cruise at the Floating Market.This has been on my bucket list for awhile now and it was thrilling to experience authentic local culture in an epic long tailed boat.The reason we chose Damnoen Saduak floating market was due to convenience despite that the traffic contributes to an almost 2 hour journey (110 km)from the main city of Bangkok to Damnoen Saduak which is located in the Ratchaburi Province. I do not mind a long drive as it allows me to get a glimpse of local culture and practices and what makes the city so unique. To avoid traffic both on land and in the canal I would suggest you leave early in the morning.






Now was soon as we stepped off our van we were greeted by a strong smell of incense and jasmine. Immediately various groups providing packages shall pounce on you and you need to be extremely careful whilst dealing with them. As the prices mentioned are going to be way higher, it is necessary to bargain or they can easily rip you off. I believe we had to pay much more for a private tour of 5 around floating market, elephant tour & Wat Na Phra Men temple. So its best to talk to some locals and do some research before heading there.
Cost : 10,000 Thai Bhat ($301.65)
Opening Hours : 8:00 am - 12:00 pm

The flora is astounding and elegantly decorated as you cruise through the river


I have never been on such a low boat it was incredibly close to the mangrove roots

It wouldn't be appropriate to expect crystal clear water such as in Venice in Bangkok's river canal. I believe I have read several comments on the water being dirty or smelly. From my understanding Thailand is still a developing nation and it is necessary to appreciate their effort in catering to tourists and keeping the area decently clean. I for one did not sense any odour form the water and the boatman glided the bloat elegantly across the river whilst a soft breeze cooled us from the heat.

The mangrove trees were fascinating 


Floating Market


The opening entrance to floating market


We arrived through a delightful little opening to a sudden buzz of people as boat traffic was very heavy in the market itself. It was quite interesting to see several vendors selling souvenirs, food and various other handicrafts

This stall had several dresses and artefacts which I feel are much cheaper in the city themselves.


I couldn't resist myself and ended up buying one of those cone shaped hats as a souvenir 

Several people hop off to enjoy lunch and explore. You can also grab some drinks and food without leaving the boat.


Variety of tropical fruits are presented fresh to enjoy in the warm weather.

I cannot emphasise how delicious this coconut ice cream tasted in the heat topped up with nuts and pomegranate seeds.


Wat Na Phra Men
Our next stop was an intricately designed temple called the Wat Na Phra Men temple. It was situated a little further down the floating market and wasn't crowded. This gave us the opportunity to wander around the area taking in the beautiful art like structures which represent authentic Thai designs. Several parts of the temple were made from gold including the idols which were glistening with gold. 


These cute sculptures of monks were asking for donations for the upkeep of the temple.




This temple was closed and located right behind the Wat Na Phra Men temple it had similar intricate design in gold.

The intricate detail within the architecture is incredible. This is a close up and I did not edit this pic in anyway.
The idols are worshipped by several locals and tourists with strong incense sticks.
Elephant Tour

The traffic was minimal in this area and we truly enjoyed our journey to the elephant walk.

We crossed several traditional homes and the designs were intricate even the bridge seemed to tell a story.

This was genuinely the best part of the trip. Cruising around in a low boat with the sound of crickets truly gives you the chills.

With the heat going up towards the afternoon this thirst quencher juice found on the way to the elephant ride was delish.

These elephants seemed rather small so I wasn't too happy about that.

Once we got on the elephant I genuinely felt revolted as I am a huge animal lover and this did not sit well with me, so I left the ride.
I honestly could not stand the elephant ride because I did not feel they were being kept well. The standards were poor and the elephants were too small, I believe they need to be much bigger to take more than one person around. Although the path seemed quite simple I do not advise anyone to take this tour.

Wat Trimitir Samphanthawong Temple

After the entire tour we were tired out and enjoyed a comfortable journey back to the main city. We decided to see another famous temple before calling it off for the day. Since on our previous visit to Thailand we had seen the huge sleeping Buddha statue. This time we decided to see another popular Buddha statue that sits upright and is entirely made from gold.


The moment you enter the premises you can hear chanting from prayers held inside and yet again a strong sense of incense greets you. The premises are open to public and you can walk up the stairs to view the Buddha inside. The temples are yet again adorned with traditional decor and exquisite designs.The Gold sculpture takes centre stage and is difficult to miss as you reach the entrance of the temple.



That sums up our 2nd day in Bangkok. Although I believe quite a bit of time was spent travelling it is always enticing to watch the locals go about with their own activities. We learnt a great deal about Thai culture from our guide who was quite informative and had a beautiful day of exploration. The next blog shall cover another must see attraction in Bangkok and of course THAI food which is just as exquisite as its architecture.

Cheers!!

Comments

  1. How cool! A floating market! I love the photos, looks so beautiful and interesting.

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  2. I totally understand what you mean about the elephants...there's quite a few places in Thailand that have questionable practices when it comes to keeping animals for tourism, unfortunately. Maybe you'll find this piece interesting: https://writtenfrom.com/a-view-on-viewing-animals

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    Replies
    1. Yeah its really sad I wish I could do something about it. Sure shall check it out :D

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  3. One of my biggest regret was not to have gone to a floating market when in Thailand! Thanks for showing me a bit of it!

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  4. I absolutely loved visiting the floating markets. I visited a few in SE Asia. I found some were more touristy than others but in general I found them to be a great experience

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    1. Yes its an absolute must go to at least once!

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  5. This looks like a one of a kind floating market! I have visited one in Vietnam myself but it was only for fruits and vegetables. It was an amazing experience though! :)

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    1. Yes this was an unique experience 😊

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  6. That is something, not every tourist is exposed to. Always find it interesting how locals do businesses and markets tell a lot about the culture.

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    Replies
    1. Yes it is intriguing and lovely to learn about new cultures!

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  7. We loved visiting floating markets in south-east Asia. Your article really brings the experience to life, and I love the photos. Thank you for sharing!

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  8. I would love to visit the floating market, besides shopping, there is so much to see from the river. It gives a great perspective!

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