Dec 26 2011
If you’ve come to Thailand for the food (and let’s be honest: if you haven’t, you’ve made a mistake,) visits to local markets are key. Bangkok’s markets are varied — some gigantic, some tiny — but all are a cacophony of striving for the best food at the best price. Participation in this ritual is one of the most enjoyable aspects of life here. Food breaks down into two catagories: aroi or mai aroi. Delicious or not — the decision making is left open to everyone and much discussion is expected. If you don’t speak Thai, vigorous nodding is an acceptable substitute. Obviously there are personal preferences, but it is fun to be able to dive in and discover the difference between the aroi and mai aroi by simply ordering a bowl of noodles.
Bangkok Noi market isn’t on most people’s tour itineraries in Bangkok but it is a great market and a great opportunity to visit Bangkok’s Brooklyn: Thonburi. Located next to Thonburi railway station, Bangkok Noi market is the place to stock up on fruit and snacks before taking the train out to Kanchanaburi, for a great breakfast on your way to Khlong Bangkok Noi floating market, or to wander over to after having a look at the vintage errata at Wang Lang Pier.
Come to snack on kanom krok, grilled coconut fritters, or kanom khai nok krata fried yam dumplings, or take away prepared curries — kaeng paa (jungle curry) and kaeng som (fiery sour southern style curry) are great options to have a meal by the river (Phra Athit Park is a nice place for a picnic lunch.)
To get to Bangkok Noi market, take the Chao Phraya express ferry and get off at Wang Lang Pier. Walk up Phran Nok Road (and while walking notice the large hospital on the right — that’s where the King currently resides). Turn right at the intersection with Arun Ammarin. At the next road, turn left and the market starts about 100 metres in on your right side.
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