Shopping is a game that we’re all too eager to play, especially in a shopping paradise like Bangkok, where the choices never seem to end.
In an attempt to be a good player (or should we say spender?), we’ve scoured through the various shopping hotspots available here, and guess what?
It turns out that shopping isn’t the only form of enjoyment available at these places!
We’re taking the usual shopping experiences up a notch with these 11 places – where the shopping game is made more entertaining than ever, with both great shopping and fun activities galore.
Just make sure to keep an eye on your wallet, if you don’t want to end up broke before going on all 10 rounds of shopping sprees.
Let the game begin!
1. Round 1, Get ahold of the latest fashion trends – Siam Square
This shopping complex is one of the favourite haunts of local Thai youth, and for good reason too.
This shopping area features streets full of little boutiques that showcase the trendiest Thai and Asian brands.
If you’re interested in knowing (and of course, owning) the hottest styles in Bangkok, don’t forget to include this place in your itinerary!
Siam Square is filled with various stores that each have their unique charm. From rocker-chic leather and studs at Pony Stone, to soft, pastel vintage – you won’t have to worry about this place not meeting your stylish needs (or demands heh).
The different sois (lanes) within the square feature different types of products. Soi 2 has a majority of accessories.
Photo by Itravelblog
While you’ll be able to enter shoe heaven at Soi 3.
Photo via irista brand, minikarats, intizintira
When you get a little too tired, head on to Soi 6, wherein lies the acclaimed massage parlour Chang Foot Massage.
Photo via blairsooa, mspearma
If you’re the artsy fartsy type (we’re not judging), you’ll definitely enjoy Good Little Space (in Soi 6), which is indeed a good little space in Siam Square. It celebrates creativity and entrepreneurship by renting out spaces to young Thais with big ideas.
Here, you can find interesting fashion, bags, accessories, and also enjoy live music by budding local bands.
What do you do after buying a bunch of flowy vintage clothing at Siam Square?
Of course… you put them on and enjoy a movie at a vintage theatre. Scala Cinema was built in 1967, and everything here seems as if it has stopped in time. Tickets are an unbelievable price of 100 Baht each (!!!), and the theatre retains its retro identity down to a T – even the tickets look as if they were printed some 50 years ago.
Photo by cece claus, mook ladyofthakrit
Since you’re in Bangkok, of course you’ll also have to visit one of its awesome themed cafes – Hello Kitty House, the home of our favourite mouthless British
cat (we mean, schoolgirl), a mere two minutes away from Siam Square.
Photo by Cinnamongal, ratchpronp, anitafigi
Challenge your humanity by biting into a cake the shape of Hello Kitty’s face and blind yourself with all the pink. We’re sure it will be a happy death.
If you’re feeling a little too stuffed from all the cafes and want to puke some out, we recommend the Human Body Museum. Just kidding – while the display of 14 dissected dead bodies isn’t really a sight that everyone can accept, this educational exhibit is actually family-friendly and educates you about how the human body works!
Photo via roshanowais, mel and the world
2. Round 2, Prepare to bust your budget – Platinum Fashion Mall
This is a must-go mall that every self-respecting fashion and shopping lover visits during their trip to Bangkok.
With more than 2,000 wholesale fashion and accessory shops gathered in one crazy place – this mall is the one that will deliver serious damage to your BP (Baht Points, not Battle Points).
What to conquer here:
Platinum Mall is a wholesale fashion mall, which means that retail therapy won’t break your bank account here (you can get clothes for around 100-250 Baht per piece).
BUT, that’s only if you buy three or more pieces from the same store, and stop yourself from going on a spree. With that in mind, it’s always better to make the trip with a friend or two.
Platinum Mall has three different zones – Zone 1 and 2 (in Building A) mostly focus on fashion and accessories.
Photo by 安雅, BrightLightsBigCityteam16
While there are a lot more bags and shoes in Zone 3, which is in Building B.
Photo by Mio Nino Marquez, welovethai.land, 安雅 via Anjapapago
The fashion style in Building B is mostly feminine, so if you’re looking for something more edgy, it may be a good choice to head to Zones 1 and 2 first! Building B also tends to have more choices when it comes to menswear.
Photo by Shasha Shahabudin
You don’t have to worry about getting lost in Platinum – all levels are specially catered towards a certain type of product, and these are all clearly labelled on the directory. For Zones 1 and 2, women’s fashion are found on the first and second floor, while bags, leather products and shoes can be found on the upper floors.
While Platinum Fashion Mall is a shopping haven, the area that it is in, Pratunam, is food heaven. One of the newest munchies on the block that you can’t miss is Demi Concept – have you ever eaten black charcoal soft serve?
Photo by daphannie921
And of course, while you’re here, you simply have to try the much raved about Sabx2 Wanton Mee on Soi 19. This establishment has earned the love of many a tourist, and sees long lines outside the shop even before it opens in the morning (but it’s worth it!).
Photo by elizacheang
If you’re up for a dining experience that’s a little more special, walk down to Once Upon a Time, a quirky restaurant that’s along Soi 17.
Photo via EDDYLCL, bumres
Sit out and have a romantic Thai dinner amongst the greenery in front of an aged house, or dine amongst vintage black and white photos inside – you can even explore the setting of a perfectly preserved old bedroom on the second floor!
3. Round 3, Get on the train towards poor-dom at the vintage train markets – Talad Rot Fai (Srinakarin) and Talad Rot Fai Ratchada
3-a) The bigger of the two – Talad Rot Fai Srinakarin
This is where trendy youngsters hang out at night for a chilled night of shopping or simply hanging out at the numerous nightlife spots available. Blending your usual flea market with a unique assortment of authentic vintage memorabilia that you can’t find elsewhere, is what gives Talad Rot Fai its unique identity.
What to conquer here:
The most important thing to conquer in Talad Rot Fai, is yourself. Right when you step into the night market, you’ll be greeted with a long corridor full of a diverse range of shops, from bars and eateries to fashion and even a hairdresser.
It’s ever important to remind yourself that you have to move on, or you’ll be losing out on experiencing the main part of the market, which is found further into the complex.
In the first warehouse area of the complex, you’ll find stores selling everything from second-hand vintage clothing to plushies and clocks. If you’re here on a weekend (which you really should be), moving on from this indoor area will take you to the outdoor market, which makes up the bulk of the market.
Here, you’ll find more fashion items and second-hand collectibles, and yes, plenty of yummy street food as well.
If you feel your stomach grumbling after a long day out shopping, you can always stuff yourself with Bamijompalung’s (literally “the powerful noodle”) renowned giant noodle bowls, at only 300Baht! As you can see, prices here are generally lower (thank God), and you are encouraged to bargain with the owner before making purchases.
Photo via jellysita
Let’s face it, we’re all here at Talad Rot Fai because we love all things vintage, and where else can you find olden cars, scooters, signs and telephones sitting neatly in a row, waiting for you to drool all over them and snap a million pictures? Rod’s Antique, that’s where.
And of course, with the many dozens of street food available on the premises, how could we miss out on the chance to stuff ourselves? One of the unique must-trys out of a sea of recognisable street food are the durian pizzas by Vava on Fire – baked on the spot into the perfect shade of gold.
Photo by tonumwaan
If you’re here too early for the market, or it somehow fails to entertain you (impossible), a 5-min walk down the same alley that the market is located on will have you at Makura Cat Cafe. Sit back at this little gem, have a drink and cuddle up with the lovely felines that live there.
Photo by Queenkrnt
You can also comfort yourself with a kitty hug if you’re spending way too much money on your vacation to Bangkok!
3-b. If you’ve the time, this is not to be missed too! – Talad Rot Fai Ratchada
Created in 2015 in response to the first train market’s overwhelming success, the second Talad Rot Fai can be found in Ratchada.
The smaller – and easier to access – version of its predecessor, that definitely offers almost as much as the first!
What to conquer here:
Talad Rot Fai Ratchada is by all accounts, similar to the original Train Market in terms of its laidback (ok fine, it’s definitely more laid back), hipster-ish vibe and the unique vintage items that it offers.
Photo via nehpyh
However, it is much smaller and does not have nearly as many choices at the previous market does.
The stalls are presented in straight lanes, and you’ll find your usual street food camping out at the sides, with fashion and vintage memorabilia in the middle. (There’s some really, really good food to be found here too!)
One thing we can say – your budget will definitely go a longer way here, not just because there are less things to buy, but also because this market is mostly frequented by the locals, so prices haven’t been jacked up yet.
Photo by Gordon Yeo, madzmanliclic, TripCanvas
This market is also far less remote than Talad Rot Fai Srinakarin, so if you’re wondering whether it’s worth it to travel for that, you can always visit this market for a taste of what it’s like.
For a fun day out before heading to the Ratchada market for some late night shopping, you can always stop by the market’s neighbouring mall – The Esplanade. This mall comes equipped with a 1,200 seater musical theatre, a bowling alley, karaoke and even an ice rink. Who says only shopping can keep you entertained?
Photo by eak10400
PS: There’s even a secret (or not) entrance to the Ratchada Market via The Esplanade Mall’s carpark!
4. Round 4, Go back to your rebellious school days – Siam Gypsy Junction
Once a part of the JJ Green Market, this vintage market has found its own home near w, right next to the railway.
Photo by wacab, daven 132002
Drop by for a less touristy shopping experience with some Wild West vibes, and pick up someone’s trash to make your treasure!
What to conquer here:
Fans of nostalgia will love this market, which specialises in secondhand goods from days long past. From defunct tapes and records to old typewriters, cars and even battered toys, a journey through this market feels like nothing short of time-travelling.
Photo by zaifukada, daven 132002
As it’s not nearly as accessible as other night markets (for the moment!), Siam Gypsy Junction still retains a mostly local clientele, which means what you think it means – all these antique treasures will barely make a dent in your budget.
The market is split into two main sections: the physical stores under the train track and little stalls along the other side of the road.
Photo by impeym, leungmanlai, kerrinelaw, jollibugg
The prices and value of things in the physical stores tend to be steeper than what you’ll find from the roadside stalls (think furniture and collectibles), and will probably appeal more to serious collectors (and a curious eyeball or two).
Just take note to wear comfy shoes, because this market is one long one-way road – you’ll have to walk back where you came from, and you won’t want to stick a plaster from the 1980s onto your bleeding toe.
If you feel like your legs are giving out on you from all the walking, you can always board the coolest school bus ever: Bangkok Bus.
Photo by pedalohm trooptower
This quirky bar is actually a platform built around one of those yellow school buses that we all know and love. You’ll get to enjoy a delicious ice cold beer, and a sparkling view of the market from the high vantage point.
5. Round 5, Stuff yourself and empty your wallet – Artbox Signature Bangkok Night Market
No, we are not introducing the Korean stationery brand. This container box night market is where hipster foodies gather for some of the prettiest food you’ll find in Bangkok, along with handmade crafts!
Photo by netanjaelisse
If you’re the type who’d prefer to have a sandwich in hand as you flip through shelves, this is the place for you.
What to conquer here:
Although Artbox’s focus is mainly on food, it still has a small section of stalls that sell blogshop-style clothing and funky items, including homeware and handmade accessories.
Photo via aceimage
Photo via hidyheidi, closetofourplanet, mandagabriellaa
You’ll be able to get everything you need for below 500 Baht here, so this market won’t hurt your wallet too much (unless you’re a glutton!).
That being said, Artbox probably won’t be too satisfying for you if you’re a hardcore, Chatuchak-style shopper – but if you just want to spend a casual night out at an atmospheric location… With live music in the background as you throw your money at some cheesy fries, Artbox will definitely do the job.
Photo via artbox th
PS: This night market is also located a short 8-min walk away from upscale shopping malls Emporium and EmQuartier, so if you have the money, why not spend Round 2.5 here before heading to Artbox at night?
Important: This night market is not a permanent fixture, so be sure to check for the next event dates on Artbox’s Facebook page!
You don’t have to sit around an empty space for the whole day while waiting for Artbox to open its doors in the evening – grab your little daredevils and head to the neighbouring Dinosaur Planet Theme Park. Your kids will love being chased down by a ferocious raptor (we think), and even ride on a dinosaur!
Photo via kitisak kappago, DobaKung, y nawinda, angela chia, kawaitang
For the active kids who love to have fun in the sun, enjoy a basketball match, rollerskate, play tennis and even swim at Benjasiri Park’s many sport facilities. Just remember to retain your energy for your nighttime shop-and-munch fest.
Photo by musinggypsy, visualita
6. Round 6, Wholesome family fun at the Children’s Museum and Butterfly Park – JJ Green Vintage Market
This up-and-coming vintage market is a must-go destination for bargain-hunting vintage lovers and friends – or tired shoppers from Chatuchak – looking for a chill place to hang out for the night!
Photo via James Vanas
What to conquer here:
JJ Green is the perfect place to go on round two of that shopping spree you started at Chatuchak Market in the day. With fashion items going for as low as 100 Baht, make sure to keep your eyes peeled – so that you don’t miss out on any chance to add some weight to your luggage!
Other than the usual fashion stalls, you’ll also find vintage collectibles and other handmade knick-knacks that you can use to spice up your home.
Photo via tonia kwok, itsejgamboa
The market can be split up into areas: scattered stalls lying on the ground (to the sides of the market) will be where shopping lovers should go – while hungry folks can make a beeline for the food stalls and bars towards the centre of the market.
All you can eat buffet for 199 Baht (approximately USD $5.7), Koong Tung Table Seafood at JJ Green
Make your own pancake at Pancake Maker (Photo via nooknik.ksw)
In a way, the JJ Green Market is just like what Talad Rot Fai used to be, before it became a (somewhat) mainstream tourist destination. Be sure to make a trip here soon if you don’t want to miss the fresh, hipster-ish vibe.
Heading towards JJ Green from a hectic morning at Chatuchak Weekend Market? Give yourself a breather and have a fun time at Children’s Discovery Museum, where the young’uns will get to try their hand at fun activities like archaeology and outdoor obstacle courses.
Photo by wi dus, zakkaart, siscamua, poumlamode
4 minutes away from JJ Green, Queen Sirikit Park is the perfect place to take in the mother nature’s beauty. This gigantic park houses more than 2,000 types of plants, including the Siam Ruby Lotus and the colour-changing Victoria Waterlily.
Photo by pommechan, khunaux, dianenamchai
Queen Sirikit Park is also right next door to Bangkok Butterfly Garden & Insectarium, where you can have intimate contact with some rare butterfly species – and learn more about these delicate creatures’ life cycles. It’s a little further away, but a great place to go if you are renting the 30 Baht bikes from the park!
Photo by godzi7, waipyow, rivas.andre
7. Round 7, Find your own style and snap a selfie with Einstein – Siam Discovery Centre
Tired of sweating your life out at outdoor flea markets?
Siam Discovery Centre offers the local experience, with the added benefit of being an air-conditioned mall. (In the famed Bangkok heat? YES PLEASE.)
After closing down in 2015 for a major revamp, the mall has returned with a newly rebranded concept that focuses on personal experimentation and creativity – this, you definitely want to check out.
What to conquer here:
This is where people who are looking for a more high-end shopping experience converge. The mall’s new concept was created by renowned Japanese design firm, Nendo – and presents the retail area as a “laboratory” where shoppers can experiment, and personalise items to create their very own style.
Photo via Thailandfans
Sounds interesting? The mall is now split into different “labs” representing various life experiences! Check out the latest female fashion items at “HER LAB”, get a snazzy new suit at “HIS LAB” or explore cutting-edge home decor at “CREATIVE LAB”.
With a few hundred Baht, you can get your face on a bag or T shirt @ Pinn Creative Space
While prices at Siam Discovery Centre are by no means cheap, the visual and shopping experience is not one to be missed.
Photo by applegu10, supatjan
If you’re a fan of pretty things, a trip to this new mall will definitely provide you with some eye candy (and really tempt you to break that piggy bank).
Speaking of eye-candy, you’ll even get to meet some of the greatest celebs ever on the 6th floor of the mall.
Photo by stevaniesh, jenny jook, dj vally, aldyleonardi
Not only is that star selfie now possible with Madame Tussauds Bangkok’s extremely life-like wax figures – the museum has even done the impossible and immortalised the likes of Einstein and Princess Diana! Now, that’s pretty cool.
8. Round 8, Immerse yourself in different cultures – Terminal 21
Terminal 21 is where you should go if you’re interested in having a unique shopping experience. Each level in this modern mall is themed according to a different country – and although prices here are generally higher, you’ll still be able to find bargains for as low as 150 Baht.
Photo by Reza Kabir, Haikal, Pictures of a pair of wandering travel mice
Friends who tag along sullenly on your shopping trips will also find this mall and its numerous insta-worthy spots infinitely more enjoyable than sweating it out at outdoor markets.
What to conquer here:
It’s pretty easy to find your way around Terminal 21 if you know what you want – every “country” has their own specialties. You’ll find regular imported brands such as ESPIRIT and Guess at Rome and Paris, while Tokyo features hip, locally designed fashion items.
Photo by ChihPing
Your poor husband/boyfriend will also get the chance to upgrade from shopping assistant to head shopper in London, where menswear of all shapes and sizes can be found. (If you’re not a fashion person, skip up to Istanbul, where you can have your pick from a selection of quirky accessories!)
Photo by ChihPing, Pictures of a pair of wandering travel mice
Terminal 21 is also known for the huge array of food available here, so don’t forget to stop by the top floors (San Francisco) and the Pier 21 food court for some wallet-friendly and mouth-watering munchies!
Photo by Han Cheng Tan
We weren’t kidding when we said that each level has a different theme. Marvel at Terminal 21’s intricately designed toilets, and feel no shame when you tell your friends that you’ve done “business” in Rome, London and even the Caribbean. Best of all, you get to do this for free.
Photo by Donald Timmerman, Bhakti Khade Rangoonwala
Six minutes away from Terminal 21 lies a completely different world. Step into the ancient Thai way of life at Kamthieng House Museum – a 160-year-old teak house showcasing preserved items that speak about a long gone lifestyle.
Photo by Floyd Sweeting, al qitt al aswad, sktwentysix, Ed
You can also give your body a rest and test your smarts at The Escape Hunt Experience Bangkok, where you’ll solve mysteries in the role of a tourist, detective, or even a government agent out to stop world destruction!
Photo by leelasaeng
(We reckon you’ll be even more motivated for the game, considering that you’ll be “escaping” to the world of shopping once you win.)
9. Round 9, take a boat ride and have a romantic date – Asiatique
Located within old warehouses once owned by the Dutch East Asiatic Company, Asiatique is a popular shopping destination with a contrasting charm.
Photo via jessicakirana
Although the offerings here aren’t as dirt-cheap as what you’ll find at roadside night markets, the large variety of goods, along with a shining reputation for yummy restaurants and cafes – makes this riverside haven the perfect place for couples who are looking to make some special memories.
Photo via dillysf
What to conquer here:
With more than 1,500 shops available (split into four different districts), Asiatique has everything from vintage fashion and wacky home decor, to handmade accessories (and even a fish spa).
Photo via Flip Nomad, gillianloves photography, gogo deetravels
Bag lovers will love the large array of local bag brands available, including the popular BKK Original.
Photo by go1buy1
Asiatique is also home to the only store that sells Cheetah Ciety’s quirky chain bags – if you’re looking for BKK Original-style bags with a dash of personality, here’s the place to get it!
Asiatique may be renowned as a shopping spot, but that’s far from the only thing you can do here. Also available is the Muay Thai Live show, an exciting – and educational – performance that follows the development of Thai Boxing from its birth till present day.
Photo by rafsgoes, muaythailive.bkk
If that’s still not enough to fire up your blood, you’ll be glad to know that the show has upgraded to include live Muay Thai matches, so you’ll be able to witness this traditional martial art in its full glory.
Photo by Lauren Tivey, Ravi Raj, Sreekanth Raveendran, Dato’ Professor Dr. Jamaludin Mohaiadin
For a taste of the other side of Bangkok, there’s also the Calypso Cabaret, a music and dance show that’s made special by its featuring cast of ladyboys (don’t worry, it’s family friendly).
And of course, since you’ve taken the pains of coming to the riverside, how can you miss out on the romantic dinner cruise offered by Siam River Cruise?
Photo by Siam River Cruise
Even if you’re a true shopaholic who’ll only quit shopping when your money and blood runs dry, we doubt you’ll be spared from aching legs after walking around for the whole day. Rest and be entertained at YMAX 4D cinema, where moving seats immerse you completely into the film experience.
Photo by byvannasiri
Shows only last for a short five minutes, so you’ll be able to give your feet a rest and get back to shopping in no time.
10. Round 10, The King of Night Markets – Suan Lum Night Bazaar
Last we heard, this night market may still be in the process of opening, but with it poised to become the world’s longest night market…
Photo by tarnrav
And with all the exciting stuff lined up – we think this would be the boss battle of Bangkok shopping.
What to conquer here:
This night bazaar is out to end all other night bazaars – the market includes a 1800-shop mall, and a night market that will go on for 1.5km. 1.5km of non-stop shopping, with over 2,500 stalls to choose from! That sounds like the happiest (or craziest) form of exercise for us.
Photo by ply.snt, hellofairy
For now, the market and its accompanying mall are still not fully open yet, so you’ll only see a basic flea market there, which sells fashion items, street food, jewellery, souvenirs and the like.
We can’t imagine what it will be like once things get on track, though. The bazaar has plans for a magic show, rooftop water park, world museum, and even a Muay Thai boxing gym – hey, we might even get distracted from all the shopping at this rate!
Photo by bossi beeraholic, saniii
The Playhouse Cabaret Ladyboy Show will also be opening in mid-June. The 1 hour and 15 min show promises the best of musical theatre, with “appearances” by bigwigs such as Michael Jackson and Christina Aguilera!
Photo by Playhouse Show