Thailand isn’t just renowned for its stunning landscapes and rich culture; it’s also a paradise for shopaholics from around the world. From bustling markets infused with local flavours to upscale boutiques and modern malls that cater to every budget, Thailand offers an unparalleled shopping experience. With that being said, explore the fun world of shopping in Thailand, which has a myriad of exciting places. In this guide, we’ll delve deeper into what to buy in Thailand, different places to shop in Thailand, and additional shopping tips so that you can sail smoothly before going on a shopping spree.
What to Shop in Thailand?
Thai Silk: One of the best items to buy in Thailand is Thai silk. The tradition of making and wearing Thai silk is around 3,000 years old. Thai silk has a unique shine and feels lustrous to the touch. There are four kinds of Thai silk: brocaded, dupioni, mudmee, and plain weave. The traditional Thai silk is generally hand-spun and expensive. From shopping malls to dedicated areas like Chinatown (Bangkok), you can find Thai silk to match your taste.
Silver Jewellery: Thailand is known as one of the best places to buy high-quality, inexpensive wholesale silver owing to the fact that it has silver mines. Hence, the silver used in making jewellery is of premium quality. You may also want to take a look at sterling silver jewellery designs, which are crafted from silver and other precious gemstones.
Thai Arts and Handicrafts: These include remarkable paintings imbued with Thai motifs and bamboo and rattan, which are used to make storage boxes, bags, baskets, chairs, trays, etc. You can carry one for your home decor. The artistry and skill of the craftsmen are impeccable and have been handed down from one generation to another.
Thai Pottery and Ceramics: Thai pottery and ceramics draw their influences from their Chinese and Burmese counterparts, right down to the shape and moulding techniques. However, the use of colours, design, motifs, and symbols weaves a visual tapestry of “Thainess”. Thai pottery ware has a smooth and lustrous feel with a dark brown glaze finish. Sukhothai Ware is the most popular Thai ceramic type and is also exported worldwide.
Gemstones: For all those shoppers who have an eye for precious stones, gemstone shopping and exploration are a must. Whether it’s sapphire, rubies, emeralds, topaz, or amethyst, you will have every kind of gemstone. Bangkok is the best place to buy gemstones in Thailand.
Clothing, footwear, and accessories: Thailand is a shopper’s paradise for affordable clothing, footwear, and accessories. There are a myriad of markets and department stores selling discontinued product lines at heavily discounted prices. Do not hesitate to haggle to bring down the prices.
Electronic Items: The capital city of Bangkok, Thailand, is also good for digital cameras, TVs, and computer equipment, depending on where you buy electronic items from. Pratunam and MBK are often hailed as the best shopping points for electronics
Food Items: While on your Thailand trip, don’t forget to buy authentic Thai chilli, spices, and sauces, Thai noodles and snacks, and special Thai chocolates for your friends and family.
Coconut items: Coconuts hold importance in Thailand’s culture. Thai coconuts have a unique quality to them and are very sweet in taste. Coconut items like coconut water, creams, and extra virgin olive oil are the most popular and can be found in both weekend markets and high-end stores.
Spa items: You took a relaxing spa session in Thailand and now want to recreate the same aromatic experience back at home. Pick up some scented candles, soaps, body scrubs, herbal packs, and essential oils on your way. You can easily find them in markets, department stores, and malls.
Wooden Carvings and Showpieces: Thai wooden carvings and showpieces are good options to gift someone or take home as souvenirs. One such example of Thai carving is the Sanctuary of Truth in Pattaya, whose interiors are entirely carved, forming a visual tapestry. You will find many such souvenirs in Bangkok and Chiang Mai.
Thailand Best Sellers
Shopping In Bangkok
Bangkok, the modern capital city, stands out as one of Thailand’s best shopping destinations. It offers a range of shopping experiences to cater to types of shoppers. Whether you’re into exploring street markets or looking for budget shopping centres and high-end malls, Bangkok has something for every budget. This diversity solidifies its reputation as the shopping hub in Asia.
For those who love luxury brands, Bangkok is home to some of the largest malls in Asia. On the other hand, if you’re more inclined towards finding deals on a variety of items, the city’s weekend markets are perfect for you. The options are endless; just pick up your bags and get ready to shop till you drop. Enjoy the shopping spree!
What to Shop in Bangkok?
Bangkok offers some phenomenal shopping for gemstones, apparel, handicrafts, Thai alcohol, Thai handicrafts, trinkets, cosmetics, skincare products, and chocolates.
Where to Shop in Bangkok?
1. Siam Paragon: It is considered one of the best malls in Bangkok due to its grand presence and abundance of both local and international brands. Often hailed as one of the biggest shopping malls in Asia, Siam Paragon attracts millions of shoppers every year. There are around 5 stories in the mall, and each floor or level is dedicated to themed shopping experiences. Every floor is dedicated to luxury, leisure shopping, technology, restaurants, and entertainment. Overall, the Siam Paragon encompasses world-class entertainment, an exquisite shopping experience, and a delightful dining experience. Going to Siam Paragon is one of the best things to do on a rainy day in Bangkok.
Address: 991 Rama I Rd, Pathum Wan, Bangkok 10330, Thailand
Opening hours: 10 AM to 10 PM
2. Jodd Fairs night market in Bangkok: The Jodd Fairs night market is one of the best markets in Bangkok. It has over 500 stalls selling different types of food, clothing, bags, shoes, showpieces, and other souvenirs. Open-air bars and live music performances all elevate the vibe of this place. There are stalls selling Thai skewers, Korean food, Chinese food, and Middle Eastern food as well. If you are vegetarian, there are stalls to provide you with vegetarian food options. Overall, this market is well organised and worth exploring on your Bangkok trip. Do carry cash and coins, as most stalls accept cash.
The market opens at 4 PM till 12 PM. The market area becomes crowded and busy as it is typically filled with tourists and local travellers. Reaching this market is an absolute breeze, as it is located just a short walk away from the Phra Ram 9 MRT Station.
Address: Rama IX Rd, Huai Khwang, Bangkok 10310, Thailand
Timings: Opens from 4 PM to 12 AM
3. Chatuchak Weekend Markets in Bangkok: The Chatuchak Weekend Market is one of the largest markets in the world and brings to light the colourful and vibrant culture of Thailand. This market is laced with thousands of stalls and remains packed with tourists and locals alike from Wednesdays to Sundays. It also serves as a place to satisfy your taste buds with the delicious street food of Thailand.
What to buy at Chatuchak Market: Ceramics, handicrafts, and souvenirs are readily available in the shops in this market. However, the prices might differ from shop to shop, so make sure you visit a couple of shops before deciding on one.
Wednesdays and Thursdays: 7:00 AM – 6:00 PM
Fridays: 6:00 PM – 12:00 AM
Saturdays and Sundays: 9:00 AM – 6:00 PM
4. Indra Square: Indra Square is an indoor market, which provides much relief from the heat and chaos of other markets as it is air conditioned and comparatively less crowded. You will find a diverse array of accessories, clothes, and handbags. On the first floor, you will find fast food corners and shops selling fashion products, fashion wear, and Thai silk. On the second floor, you will find more products that include toys, mobile phones, and arts and crafts. Make sure to bargain enough before buying a product. It also has some of the best discounts and prices to offer.
Location: 120/126 Ratchaprarop Rd, Ratchathewi, Bangkok 10110, Thailand
Address: Opens daily from 10am to 9pm
5. MBK: MBK is a multi-storey shopping centre with over 2000 shops that houses everything you need to shop. From fashion, luggage, leather bags, mobile phones, and good-quality shoes and furniture. The market is particularly buzzing with tourists on weekends. This shopping complex boasts the presence of not just fast fashion and food outlets but also karaoke rooms, entertainment zones, and the famous Trick Eye 3D museum. It is a perfect place to spend time here on a hot day in Bangkok. Oh, and like most shopping experiences, do spend time exploring first, then pick what you like and bargain before settling for the final price. Reaching here is as easy as the name of the place. Just hail a cab or a tuk tuk, and they will drop you off at MBK with ease.
Address: 444 Phayathai Road, Wang Mai, Pathum Wan, Bangkok 10330, Thailand
Open: Daily from 10 am to 10 pm
6. Pratunam Market: Last but not least, Pratunam market is also one of the shopping destinations in Bangkok that you can check out. All the items in this market, from apparel, shoes, bags and fashion accessories, are available at wholesale prices. Since prices are already cheap, bargaining is totally up to you. You should know certain things: there is no refund or exchange and no trying of the items you buy. So only buy something when you are delighted. Overall, the Pratunam market is best for people looking for cheap places to shop in Thailand.
What to buy from Pratunam?: Accessories such as hair pins, t-shirts, pyjamas and flip flops.
Shopping in Pattaya
Pattaya isn’t just limited to the glory of its walking street. It has a lot of fun and cool places to shop and explore. The variety of items and prices are impressive, but the catch is you have to haggle the costs down. Below are the best places to shop in Pattaya – from malls to night markets to the famous floating market.
Where to Shop in Pattaya?
1. Central Festival: Central Festival is one of Pattaya’s best and biggest malls. It was established in 2009. It is also one of the most prominent malls in the area, which attracts a large number of both local and international shoppers. With a beachfront facade and one of Pattaya’s tallest structures, it houses around 300 retail stores! You will find a fantastic collection of all the fast fashion brands such as Zara, Mango, H&M, Marks and Spencer and Adidas. Along with shopping, you can also try and relish various cuisines at different restaurants and go to a wellness spa.
Address: 333/99 Moo 9, Pattaya Beach Road, next to Soi 9
Opening hours: 11 AM to 11 PM
2. Thepprasit Night Market: Often hailed as the ‘Kankheha Thepprasit Market’, this Pattaya market is a must-visit destination for shoppers who want to soak in the local vibe of the city. It’s a weekend night market, so plan your travel accordingly. Around 400-500 colourful stalls will be selling clothes, shoes, bags, electronics, accessories, skincare and makeup products, toys, plants, showpieces, glasses and Thai souvenirs. Having such a wide range of collections, it draws in many local and global tourists, which makes the market a bit crowded and sometimes even chaotic. There are enough food stalls selling ice creams, desserts, pizzas, and hot and spicy Thai foods to satisfy your cravings.
Location: Thepprasit Road, Jomtien, Pattaya
Opening Hours: Friday to Sunday – 5:00 AM to 11:00 PM
3. Pattaya Floating Market: The Pattaya Floating Market offers an unparalleled shopping experience in Thailand, where many vendors come and sell an array of items that are locally produced and manufactured from their boats on the water. The market is segregated into four sections – North, South, Central and North-East. Each section showcases and sells items that present a unique aspect of Thai culture and life.
Tourists are welcome to rent out a boat with a driver and explore this unique experience of shopping and exploring. In contrast, their boat glides over the water. One can buy souvenirs, fruits, veggies and showpieces. One can enjoy local arts and painting displays beside the typical souvenirs. This place is also one of the best places in Pattaya to gobble on some delicious local cuisine of Thailand.
Address: Muang Pattaya, Bang Lamung District, Chon Buri
Timings: Every day from 9:00 a.m. to 7:00 p.m.
4. Pattaya Night Bazaar: Don’t get misled by its name; it runs from 11 a.m. to 11 p.m. The best thing about this market is that it is fully air-conditioned, so you can easily shop here on a hot and humid day. It is also known as the “Made in Thailand” market. And even though the prices might be higher, you can always bargain to get the best price for the products you’re buying. You can find items like cosmetics, jewellery, clothing, Thai spices, snacks, sauces, carved showpieces, coconut-based items, alcoholic beverages, and much more!
Address: 519/106, Moo 10, Bang Lamung District, Chon Buri 20150, Pattaya
Opening Hours: 11:00 a.m. to 11:00 p.m. (Daily)
What to Shop in Pattaya?
While shopping in Pattaya, you can pick up ceramic figurines, wooden carved showpieces, organisers, small storage boxes, leather goods, tea and clothing.
Shopping in Phuket
Travelling to Phuket and thinking about where to shop in Phuket?
Well, thankfully, this paradisiacal island isn’t just about beaches and natural beauty. Phuket is home to some of the most happening malls in Thailand, floating markets, and night bazaars. Let’s dive into the best shopping spots in Phuket for buyers.
1. Central Phuket: Central Phuket is one the best malls in Phuket to satisfy your hunger to shop. It’s a modern and stunning multi-level mall offering a wide variety of retail stores and a food court. If you ever visit Phuket during the rainy season or off-season, spending time in establishments like Central Phuket is the best way to make the best of your time. The ground floor hosts displays and exhibitions of commercial items, especially on weekends. Different floors have different retail stores such as fashion, cosmetics, electronics, central food hall etc.
Address: Vichitsongkram Road, Wichit, Mueang Phuket District, Phuket 83000
Timing: 10:30 AM to 10 PM
2. Phuket Walking Street: No trip to Phuket is complete without visiting Phuket Walking Street. It is one of the bustling market areas in the old Phuket town. It is also known as the Lard Yai Market. The market takes place every Sunday from 4 PM onwards. What’s interesting about this market is that it is segregated into four distinct zones: souvenir zone, activity zone, food distribution zone and student zone. Such division makes the market less chaotic and easier to navigate. The whole vibe of this street is lively and warm. You can pick up some great souvenirs and wooden carvings from here. And while you are there, remember to taste some delightful street food while enjoying live performances by buskers.
Address: Bangla Road, Pa Tong, Kathu District, Phuket 83150
Timings: Every Sunday, 4:00 PM onwards
3. Chillva Market: Chillva Market is regarded as the young and energetic night market of Phuket. The market permeates with a cool, relaxed and a hip vibe. Different stores are covered with all-white canvas selling all kinds of items that one would expect from a street market at reasonable prices. You can try and bargain to bring down the costs. Make sure to gobble on Thai Barbeque, chicken skewers, banana pancakes and pad Thai.
Address: Ratsada, Mueang Phuket District, Phuket 83000, ThailandTimings: Everyday from 5 PM to 11 PM
What to buy in Phuket
If you are thinking about what to shop for in Phuket, then there are a variety of items such as spa products, candles, Phuket pearls, paintings, apparel, and fashion accessories.
Shopping in Krabi
If you are an avid shopper visiting Thailand and have only clung to Bangkok and Pattaya for shopping, then you’re in for a surprise. Check out Krabi, the lesser-known gem in Thailand, for shopping. Krabi has an eclectic mix of walking streets, bazaars, shopping complexes, and a floating market that will keep you hooked on buying and bragging about your new finds. To know the answer to where to shop in Krabi, keep reading below.
Krabi Walking Street: Krabi Walking Street is also known as Krabi Night Market, located on Maharat Road. It is one of the most visited places in Krabi and attracts tourists to delve into a delightful shopping experience. The highlight of this market is delicious Thai food and local Thai products. The Krabi night market occurs every Friday, Saturday, and Sunday afternoon from 5 pm to 10 pm. So make sure to add it to your Krabi itinerary and Immerse yourself in the vibe of Krabi walking on the street.
Ao Nang Walking Street: Another famous Krabi market that one should visit to buy cheap clothes. You will find restaurants serving Thai and International cuisine in this L-shaped lane market. Vegetarians can rejoice as there are many Indian restaurants as well.
Vogue Shopping Centre: Vogue Shopping Centre is a three-storied building in Krabi town centre. It is one of the best spots to shop in Krabi, as you may find different products under one roof. Visiting the Vogue Shopping Centre is ideal for tourists who might be running thin on time. The shopping centre opens from 9 am to 9 pm.
What to shop in Krabi?
Krabi town is great for shopping for coconut items, Thai spices and sauces, packed pad Thai, noodles, handicrafts, essential oils, and bags.
Shopping in Chiang Mai
Chiang Mai is the best spot in Thailand to shop for handicrafts, wooden carved showpieces and furniture. This mountainous Thai province has some of the most beautiful night markets and walking streets that bustle with tourists. The first and foremost is the Pae Sunday Walking Street. It is a great way to immerse yourself in the local culture of Chiang Mai. Enjoy the vibrant spectrum of art, crafts, music and food – primarily handmade quality instead of mass-produced goods. Stroll down the jam-packed streets and experience a wealth of traditional and modern Chiang Mai culture in one visit.
The Chiang Mai Night Bazaar is one of the main shopping venues in northern Thailand. It is simply a can’t-miss part of the whole Chiang Mai experience. It features street-side stalls mainly selling clothing and handicrafts and a host of shopping plazas where you can find more unique crafts and jewellery.
What to shop in Chiang Mai?
Chaing Mai is famous for its paper umbrellas, triangle cushions, lanterns, tea, soaps and wooden carvings. Make sure to carry at least one item back home as a souvenir.
- Bargaining is expected and acceptable in Thai Markets. So, haggle down the prices of items before you buy them.
- Be careful of fake items being sold as originals, and only purchase them if you’re satisfied with their authenticity and quality.
- Some markets do not allow trial and return/ exchange. Therefore, thoroughly inspect the clothes before buying them.
- If you want to purchase a branded item, buy them from designated stores.
- Always carry cash, coins and small notes, as digital payments or cards might only be acceptable in some places.
Frequently Asked Questions
Q1. What is the best thing to buy in Thailand?
Thailand provides an array of diverse shopping opportunities for all kinds of buyers. The best things to shop for in Thailand are Thai silk, traditional handicrafts, and local Thai products. Ceramics, handwoven textiles, cosmetics, clothing, and Thai spices and sauces are also popular choices for tourists.
Q2. Is Thailand cheap for shopping for clothes?
Thailand is well known for its affordable shopping options when it comes to clothes. There are many markets and shopping complexes that offer a wide variety of clothing items without burning holes in your pockets. Besides, bargaining is a common practice, so you can always haggle down the prices.
Q3. Are branded items cheaper in Thailand?
Certain branded items might be cheaper in Thailand when compared to other Western countries. For example, a discontinued Nike or Adidas product line might be available at heavily discounted prices. However, always ensure the authenticity and quality of the product before making any final purchases. As far as luxury brands are concerned, there is a vast difference in the pricing.
Q4. Which items are cheaper in Thailand than India?
Items like electronic gadgets, TVs, cameras, Korean skincare and makeup are cheaper in Thailand than India. Other items which are comparatively cheaper in Thailand are clothes, bags, shoes, accessories and sunglasses.
Q5. Which Indian brand is famous in Thailand?
TATA group is one of the famous Indian brands in Thailand among many others.
Q6. What can Indians buy in Thailand?
Indians visiting Thailand can consider purchasing Thai silk, gemstones, local Thai snacks, scented candles, clothing, and footwear.
Q7. What is the most famous market in Thailand?
Chatuchak Weekend Market is one of the most famous markets in Thailand.
Q8. Which is the best floating market in Thailand?
Damnoen Saduak Floating Market in Bangkok, Thailand, is among the best floating markets. You can buy souvenirs, showpieces, candles, and elephant figurines at extremely cheap prices.
Q9. If I had only one place to visit in Thailand for shopping, what would it be?
If you have only one place in Thailand for shopping, you may visit Bangkok, as the capital city has everything from malls to shopping complexes to weekend markets and floating markets.
Q10. Which are the best malls in Bangkok?
Bangkok is renowned for its phenomenal malls. These malls offer a good mix of both affordable and international brands to shoppers. Some of the best shopping malls in Bangkok are MBK, Siam Paragon, and ICONSiam.