Photo: Breath.

Bangkok is so big, we’ve split it up into areas, select one of the below for detailed accommodation and food listings in that area. Sights and general overviews for Bangkok as a whole can be found via the icons above. Don’t know where to start? Read an overview of Bangkok’s different areas.


Mahachai

Our rating:

Mahachai in Samut Sakhon province is one of the largest fishing centres in a country boasting one of the world’s highest levels of seafood production. Accessible by a leisurely train ride from Bangkok, it’s a good place to smell fish, eat fish, watch fish being unloaded, take a ferry to look at some temples and then sit by the sea while you eat more fish.





Located 40 kilometres southwest of Bangkok and just north of where the Tha Jeen River flows into the Gulf of Thailand, Mahachai’s countless fishing boat piers melt into a tangle of roofed markets and narrow lanes around the eponymous train station. All of it is stuffed with a breathtaking (literally, due to the smell) array of fish, crab, prawn, squid, eel, shells and other critters of the sea, much of it still wriggling around.

Imagine having to tie them all up? Photo taken in or around Mahachai, Bangkok, Thailand by David Luekens.

Imagine having to tie them all up? Photo: David Luekens

Arrive early to watch wiry fishers unload bucket after bucket of seafood bound for woks, grills and steamers throughout Thailand and beyond. Among the overwhelming number of market stalls you’ll also spot all sorts of dried seafood products along with mounds of kapi (shrimp paste), a specialty of Samut Sakhon.

Many of the fishers, porters and factory workers who keep Mahachai—and indeed Thailand’s seafood industry in general—buzzing along are migrants from Cambodia and Burma. Investigations in recent years have shown that many toil for below minimum wage pay in inhumane conditions, and some have been trafficked into indentured servitude or slavery. It’s important to keep these issues in mind when visiting big Thai fishing centres like Mahachai.

There is fresh seafood ... Photo taken in or around Mahachai, Bangkok, Thailand by David Luekens.

There is fresh seafood ... Photo: David Luekens

Dozens of shops sell Burmese-language newspapers and other goods from Burma around Mahachai Railway Station, located a few blocks inland from the piers. Hang around and you can watch one of the old trains roll into the station as vendors frantically move their baskets of fish and produce in a spectacle that’s similar to the “folding umbrella market” down in Mae Khlong, which can be hit on the same day ... please log in to read the rest of this story.


Don’t miss the boat!

Please subscribe to Travelfish.org to read the rest of this article, or log in here.


Subscribing to Travelfish costs A$35 per year and it gets you access to more than 200 downloadable guides to specific destinations, fabulous discount coupons and 50% off our personalised travel planning service. Sign up here.


By





How to get there
To take the train, catch the BTS Skytrain to Wongwian Yai BTS Station, leave the station through exit 1 and then hang a right on Somdet Prachao Taksin Rd, crossing the street when possible. Keep walking for about a half km and then take a left on Rim Thang Rotfai Rd, and you’ll see Wongwian Yai Railway Station about 100 m up on the right. Trains depart at least once every hour from 05:30 into the evening, returning frequently from 04:30 to 19:00.

You can also reach Mahachai by minibus from Bangkok’s Sai Tai Mai (Southern) Terminal; they depart hourly from 05:00 to 19:00 for 75 baht and drop off next to the seafood markets. If you’re not up for the second leg of the train journey, these minibuses continue from Mahachai down to Mae Khlong, where they turn around and return to Bangkok. Mahachai can also be reached direct by minibus from Mae Khlong, which in turn can be reached from Phetchaburi and Hua Hin.

Location map for Mahachai

Book a flight, train, bus, taxi or ferry in Thailand with 12Go Asia
From:
To:     


Start planning your holiday today

Sent every Monday, our newsletter is full of travel advice, news & special deals. Read past issues.

   

Popular attractions in Bangkok

A selection of some of our favourite sights and activities around Bangkok.



Best places to stay in Bangkok

A selection of some of our favourite places to stay in Bangkok.


What next?

 Browse our independent reviews of places to stay in and around Bangkok.
 Check prices, availability & reviews on Agoda or Booking
 Check out our listings of things to do in and around Bangkok.
 Read up on how to get to Bangkok, or book your transport online with 12Go Asia.
 Do you have travel insurance yet? If not, find out why you need it.
 Planning on riding a scooter in Bangkok? Please read this.
 Buy a SIM card for Thailand—pick it up at the airport when you arrive.
 Browse the web securely while travelling with TunnelBear. Try with a 7–day free trial.


See below for more sights and activities in Bangkok that are listed on Travelfish.org.


Top of page


Where to next?

Where are you planning on heading to after Bangkok? Here are some spots commonly visited from here, or click here to see a full destination list for Thailand.


Top of page