Is Ratchada Train Market the best night market in Bangkok?
If you haven’t checked out Ratchada Train Market yet then you’re missing out. Thailand is home to a multitude of night markets but this is one of Bangkok’s best! Is it in an actual train station? Well not really, the name actually comes from its original site at some railway sidings which have now been abandoned. Today it’s more about buzzing stalls than it is about disused trains, but it still retains its sense of history.
From above, the market is a sea of colorful awnings and the whole place vibrates with an energizing atmosphere. Stalls are packed with food, beer and clothes, and a mix of tourists and locals throng around looking for the best deals and a good time.
We head here on the Bangkok Pub Crawl sometimes, so be sure to check out our weekly schedule and plan your stay in Bangkok around that!
Some of the Best Street Food in Bangkok
Thai night markets are known for their unbeatable street food and Ratchada Train Market is no different. You can stuff yourself full here with everything from boat noodles to the freshest seafood to the most luscious desserts. It’s impossible to leave on an empty stomach!
If you’re in the mood for something special then check out the lobster tom yum soup at the Siaw Goong Rot Fai restaurant, at $50 it’s a luxury treat but great to share with friends. Or how about some sticky grilled ribs at Chef Tui Ranger? At $6 they’re a more affordable option to go alongside your beer. If you were feeling brave then fried insects are also an option but we’ll leave that one to you!
Cheap Cocktails, Live DJs and Drink Specials
You can buy anything from cocktails to fruit smoothies at Ratchada Market. There are loads of different bars dotted throughout the stalls offering cheap drinks and live music. The décor is often quirky and themed- think old shipping containers, recycled car parts and flashing neon signs.
Check out ‘Sorry, I’m Gay’ bar for some kickass cocktails or ‘Dot Box’ bar for eclectic beats and a dance later on in the evening. If live music is your thing then head to ‘The Speakerbox’, where local bands often rock the place.
Shop til’ you drop
We’ve gone this far without talking about shopping but it is a market after all, so you might want to buy a few things! Ratchada Train Market is packed full of places for you to spend your hard-earned cash. The stalls sell anything and everything from clothes, shoes, kitchenware, electronics and toys. If you’re after classy souvenirs for your family back home then Chatuchak might have more choice, but Ratchada has plenty to offer if you’re not after vintage antiques. As with everything in Thailand haggling is expected, so never take the first price as being set in stone!
How to Get to Ratchada Train Market
You’re going to want to arrange your diary to make sure you get to Ratchada, as the market only runs from Thursday to Sunday evenings. Festivities kick off at around 5pm and go on until midnight or later depending on the crowds.
Ask your taxi or tuk tuk driver to drop you at ‘Talat rot fai Ratchada’, remembering to check the price before you set off. If public transport is more your style then the closest MRT station is the Thailand Cultural Center, only a couple of minutes stroll from the market.
Ratchada Train Night Market is classic Bangkok
Ratchada is one of our absolute favorite night markets in Bangkok. It does everything well, from feeding you and serving you cold beer to entertaining you while you shop. Check it out for a quintessentially Thai evening experience!