Apr 29 2011

Amulet market near the Grand Palace

Published by at 1:30 am under Sightseeing & activities


After pretty much just a few hours in Thailand, you will notice that Buddhist amulets are everywhere. People wear them around their necks, hang them from their rearview mirrors, keep them on desks, on tables, at home, at work, and everywhere in between.

Carrying an amulet on you is meant to invite good fortune, protect you from evil spirits and keep you strong against physical danger. Different amulets even offer protection as specific as guarding a vehicle from oncoming traffic. When a friend from overseas recently came to visit me in Bangkok she asked the all-important question: “Where do people buy these amulets?”

Everyone loves a bargain.

While street vendors sell amulets all over the city, the most comprehensive amulet market, known as Amulet Alley, sits impressively along the entire length of Prachan Road between Sanam Luang and the river. Only a 10-minute walk from the Grand Palace and Wat Phra Kaew, the market makes an excellent pit stop along the classic Grand Palace--Wat Pho--Wat Arun sightseeing tour.

Each vendor sits with a small table-top or storefront shop selling amulets, photographs and figurines costing a few baht up to a few thousand baht. The value of the amulets is based upon the detail and craftsmanship but also upon the the importance of the monk called upon to bless and consecrate it.

Dig in!

While the market is mostly frequented by monks, Buddhists and extreme collectors, it is a superb spot for people-watching or perusing through the endless trays of amulets in search of the perfect unique item. On a recent trip to the market I scored brightly coloured amulets and charms for under 100 baht each, which I have since made into a personalised necklace.

More affordable luck.

The market is bustling throughout the day with many of the vendors closing up shop around 17:00. Set in an auspicious place for religious purposes, which also happens to be a convenient place for touristic purposes, the market is a little-seen window into Thai Buddhism and a worthwhile detour, even if you don’t plan on making any purchases.

The market is an easy walk  from the Grand Palace. It sits on Prachan Road between Na Phra That and the river.

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7 Responses to “Amulet market near the Grand Palace” ...

  1. Chris Joneson 07 May 2011 at 8:24 am

    Not a well written article. Myabe you should have researched the subject in more detail as many of your assumptions are way off the mark.

  2. adminon 07 May 2011 at 8:54 am

    More than happy to hear how you think we’re off the mark.

    Cheers

  3. [...] across from the amulet market at Wat Mahathat is Siriraj Hospital and the Wang Lang market. Thousands of students from Thammasat [...]

  4. Chris Joneson 23 Aug 2011 at 1:56 pm

    About 95% of all amulets sold from this market are fake or reproductions, so its not a location frequented by extreme collectors and as such there are no bargains if you are looking to purchase a genuine amulet.

    Amulets sourced from this location are those that you would typically see being sold on ebay etc to the gullible.

  5. Sammyon 23 Mar 2012 at 6:45 pm

    I am very curious of the amulet i got from a street opposite the grand palace. My friend mentioned them sold on street to be second hand & owned before.. and aquire more power.. So not sure what to believe now as I have given the amulet away as intended but i like this article

  6. Ckon 31 Mar 2013 at 4:23 am

    So where do you suppose can I find authentic amulets?

  7. Joy Bon 12 Mar 2014 at 3:39 am

    The best place to buy Thai amulets is direct from the Buddhist temples in Thailand. The market referenced in this article tells a place where you can get replications mostly. There are shops inside the market that sell originals and you can see them in their air conditioned office with millions of Thai baht being exchanged. The fake amulets at this market can be bought between 20 and 100 Thai Baht and there is every variety!

    Most temples sell amulets themselves. I highly recommend to you visit these temples and buy direct. This way you know you have originals, and usually the temple blesses them before they sell them, so good too!

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