There are countless floating markets throughout the country, the most famous survivor is Damnoen Saduak (ดำเนินสะดวก) in Ratchaburi province, about two hours drive from Bangkok. The Damnoen Saduak Floating Market is a very attractive place for tourists to see the old style and traditional way of selling and buying fruits, vegetables, etc. from small boats. Totally chaotic, small 'klongs' or canals are filled with small flat boats jockeying for position, expertly paddled by mature ladies ready to stop and bargain at a moment's notice. You will also see traditional Thai houses, the way they live and travel by boats. The tour includes a visit to Nakorn Pathom, site of the highest Chedi in Thailand called “Phra Patom Chedi” which is the largest pagoda in Southeast Asia.

According to history around 1866, King Rama IV ordered that a 32 kms long canal be dug at Damnoen Saduak. The canal would connect the Mae Klong River with the Tacheen River. The canal was dug by the military men and the people of Rajburi, Samutsakorn and Samutsongkram Province directed by Phayasrisuriyawong, the minister of Defence. The excellent quality soil beside the canal is very fertile and suitable for growing many kinds of frutis and vegetables. The area is famous for Malacca grape, Chinese grapefruit, mangoes,bananas, and coconut.

The actual Floating Market started in 1967 and today thrives with hordes of tourists from all over the world.

   
   

LocationFloating Market at Damnoen Saduak
Travel from Bangkok via Thonburi-Paktoh Highway to Samut Songkhram Town. Follow the sign to Damnoen Saduak (Highway No. 325). Situated about 80 km west of Bangkok.

Or take a bus from the Southern Bus Terminal to Samut Sangkhram Ratchaburi province, 80 km southwest of Bangkok. You can then walk along the passageway to the market, or take a boat to the market pier.

We book a private tour, which took us to and fro including some other site seeing locations and it cost about THB3,000 for a mini-bus load. We went to Shang Boat Pier (081-8581071, 081-8585836) where our boat ride begins and includes a temple tour.

Opening hours is about 8 a.m. to about 11 a.m. daily.

Information correct as of February 2011.