One of the most iconic images of tourism in Thailand is that of the Damnoen Saduak Floating Market near Bangkok. There, the boat vendors sell fresh farm produce and serve delectable Thai food cooked fresh in a boat right in front of you. A visitor to the market gets a glimpse in to the lives of ordinary people of a bygone era. Despite being touristy, Damnoen Saduak Floating Market is still one of the major attractions of Bangkok. Yet, my guess is that many of the visitors who come to Thailand on their own (i.e. without taking any package from a travel agent) do not visit this attraction. There is a reason. Though this floating market is said to be near Bangkok, it is not easy go there on your own. Let us read the directions to get there: “Take Rama 2 Road (Highway No. 35 until reaching 63km and take an overpass to the right reaching to Highway No.325. Go further for 12 kilometers, the market entrance will be on the left before reaching Thanarat Bridge”. These directions are given by the Tourism Authority of Thailand and if they were trying to scare tourists away from this attraction, they could not have done a better job. A “private sector” tourist website says that the best way to visit Damnoen Saduak is by joining a tour. They are right.
Damnoen Saduak Floating Market
The market opens everyday from 6.00 am to 12.00 noon and hence most conducted tours for this attraction are half day (6 hour) tours. The tour operators usually pickup tourists from their hotels before 7.00am. The price that you pay for this tour usually includes pick-up/drop from/to the hotel, the service of an English speaking tour guide, a boat ride, a food stop, and a visit to some (expensive) handicraft shop. The 6-hour tour actually means that you will be back in your hotel within 6 hours of leaving in the morning.
Cost of the Floating Market Tour and How To Book
The best option usually is to ask your hotel’s staff about it. I once stayed at a hostel in Silom Bangkok (Take A Nap), and they were offering a half day tour of Damnoen Saduak Floating Market at just 550 THB per person including two-way transfers. I think that would be the cheapest price for this tour. I searched online and found one for 867 THB per person (conducted by ‘Travstore Travel Management’). There was another at the price of 1110 THB. TakeMeTour, the so-called ‘personalised Bangkok tours’ had a tour costing 1780 THB but that 8-hour tour included private car transfers, Umbrella Train Market and some Giant Stupa too. For perhaps the best tour deals in Thailand, you can check the ‘hotels2thailand’ website. But there is no standard pricing. How much you finally pay is going to depend on where and how you book the tour. My guess is that a reasonably good quality tour for this attraction should cost under 700 THB per person. Whether you must visit this attraction? Just see how much time you have in Bangkok.