There are a number of floating markets outside Bangkok but Damnoen Saduak is the most famous of them all. Booking a half day tour here would cost you more, of course, so I decided to make a DIY trip.
Most booking offices offer this for about 1,100 (4-8 pax)-1,900 (2-3 pax). The cheapest I could find was around 550 for a joined tour. Inclusions are licensed English speaking guide, pick up and drop off from your hotel by a van, long tail boat to floating market and entrance fees. If you are alone and don’t mind following schedules, I advise you to take the joined tour. You will be with other people who booked the joined tour. However, if you are a group and you want time freedom, you may follow this DIY trip to the floating market.
Here’s how I did it.
Starting point really depends on where you stay. We stayed near Lumphini MRT Station so we took the train going to Sukhumvit. We changed to BTS going to Victory Monument (N3). From there, you may walk to the minibus terminal. You will have to wait until there are enough passengers before you leave although it doesn’t take too long. Pay at the booth and wait for the driver’s signal.
Travel time to the Ratchaburi province is approximately 1 hour and 30 minutes. Tell the driver you are going to Damnoen Saduak Floating market. Upon arrival, you will be greeted by a lady asking how many hours you want to spend. Cost is 1,500 baht for an hour and 2,000 baht for 2 hours. We were offered 1,000 for an hour and we took it.
There were a lot of vendors with different products from food to souvenirs. I was not into souvenirs so I tried the local food. Cost of everything is quite steep considering their quality but what impressed me was the coconut ice cream. It’s delicious and very pleasing to the eyes. It was served in a small coconut shell with pearls, peanuts and coconut meat. Yum! I didn’t regret paying 50 baht for that. Also, the coconut pancake was epic but they look like tacos though.
It could get crowded when boats flock near the center of the market but maneuvering the boat was easy for our driver.
More souvenirs to choose from. You can haggle for the prices of the souvenirs but not with food.
Boat rides were really cool.
After an hour we headed back to the station where more tourists await.
There are restaurants outside and a coffee shop.
You may take a motorcycle from there to the minibus station or walk for 30 minutes or you may book at the coffee shop for 150 baht (because I wanted to be comfy). Drop off at Victory Monument terminal.
So there you have it. If you want a hassle-free trip going here whether you’re a group or alone, I’d recommend booking a tour if you don’t mind shelling out extra bahts for comfort.
Anyway, here is my summary of expenses excluding food trip, shopping and lunch.
|Lumphini MRT-Asok BTS||21|
|Boat (1,000/2)||500||(the bigger your group is the cheaper or you can ask other tourists if you can chip in)|