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Thailand Shopping

Pratunam Market, Bangkok

Overview :
Pratunam Market, BangkokIf you are looking for bargains on just about anything you could think of , this enormous market maze is the place to go. About 400,000 visitors flock here to satisfy their shopping needs. Everyone seems to love a bargain and there are plenty to be had at Chatuchak Weekend Market, a happening that occurs in Bangkok every Saturday and Sunday .To say that Chatuchak is enormous is an understatement. There are 15,000 stalls on 35 acres of land and approximately 200,000 visitors a day, making it one of the biggest outdoor markets in the world.

Here is the Deal :
To get the best prices, you will have to bargain, a process many initially find disconcerting. However, the more you do it, the easier it will become and after a few tries, you will find that you have developed your own style. About the only generalization that can be made is that smiles seem to work better than scowls.
Changing money or using one of the ATM's on the periphery of Chatuchak can be a bit of a hassle so be sure to stock up on cash before arriving.

Treasures Galore :
Thai handicraftsChatuchak is an excellent place to find traditional Thai handicrafts and the prices are usually low because of the quantity available and the intense competition among vendors. In addition to traditional handicrafts, there is also a wide range of attractive contemporary items. Hand-crafted stainless steel cutlery, for example, is currently at the top of tourist popularity charts and lots of it can be found in the market. Candles, ceramics, contemporary paintings and other items for the home are also a good buy.

One of the amazing things about Chatuchak is that virtually everyone ends up fascinated with something they never expected to find in a Thai market. Many people spend hours looking through stacks of old magazines and books that have somehow made their way from the United States and Europe to Thailand.

The central area of Chatuchak is devoted to clothing and accessories, much of which has been copied from designer items sold in fashion capitals around the world. It is probably safe to say that most of these items appeal primarily to Thais in their late teens or early twenties. Foreigners often seem to prefer the unique, locally designed items that frequently incorporate traditional Thai textiles into their designs.

Fashion Statements :
Fashion Statements When you are told something at Chatuchak is an antique, assume that it is a fake. Antiques are few and far between and it is frequently difficult to tell the difference between the bogus and the authentic. If the price is right and an item appeals to you, buy it because you like it, not because it is purported to be an antique. In the long run this is probably best anyway as real antiques require a permit to be taken out of the country, a process that can be both time consuming and frustrating.

Some Useful Tips :
Chatuchak is hot and crowded, so shorts and a t-shirt best suit the occasion. Dehydration is a danger, so be sure to relax and have a few cool drinks along the way in the ample food section, or in the large park next door. Keep an eye on your wallet -- Chatuchak is a pickpocket's paradise. There are international access ATMs and an exchange booth and some stalls accept credit cards.

If you have made numerous purchases and have lots of bags to carry, you might want to take a taxi back to your hotel. To ease communication problems, be sure you have a card from your hotel with directions in Thai that you can show the taxi driver.

Conclusion :
The Weekend Market at Chatuchak is a shoppers paradise that appeals to both Thais and visitors from abroad. The authenticity of the place, the selection of merchandise available and fascinating things to see make it a never to be forgotten experience for the majority of people who visit it.

Chatuchak Market, Bangkok

Chatuchak Market, BangkokIt would be no exaggeration to say that hardly any especially Bangkok doesn't know Chatuchak Market. This is The Worlds Biggest Weekend Market selling practically everything under the sun, from the smallest nails, to foods, trendy fashions, antiques intricate wooden carvings, masks from far-off lands, adorable fluffy dogs, colorful fish of every hue and singing birds. You can find all this and more at amazing Chatuchak market. Once inside the market, you will be catch up in a world of bursting crowds and stalls stretching as far as the eye can see.

If you are thinking of decorating your home, searching for that perfect piece of furniture or decoration, be it antique, modern, Thai or Western? Or perhaps a lovinly created ethnic handicraft to brighten up your space? Ceramic products, whether they be tea cups, coffee mugs, pots, traditional Thai Benjarong or ceramic dolls. Wellcome to Chatuchak Market and chances are you won't go home empty-handed.

Chiang Mai Night Bazaar

Over the years the Chiang Mai Night bazaar in central Chiang Mai has grown and grown. Every night, the market opens with a range of hilltribe and northern Thai handicrafts, jewellery and other items. There are lots of places to eat and drink or simply watch the world go by. Good for shopaholics. The stalls have grandiose names, like Harrods (with the familiar logo), and most carry Bangkok-produced counterfeits of international name-brand clothing, watches, and luggage. There are thousands of pirated audiotapes and videodiscs, acres of burnished brown "bone" objects, masks, wood carvings, opium pipes, opium weights, you name it.

Inside the Night Bazaar building itself are primarily modern, mass-manufactured goods, with an occasional stand selling wonderful tribal tchotchkes. They range from pretty good, low-cost Thai fashions to typical souvenirs. The top floor has booths selling locally produced handicrafts, some "antiques," and some decorative arts. At the end one can draw the conclusion that it is truly a shopaholics paradise.

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