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Jan 20, 2016
Written By Mad Monkey Hostels

Bangkok’s essential shopping guide – The markets and malls you must visit, day and night that offer the best shopping in Bangkok

 

Why do we need a Bangkok Shopping Guide? Well, did you know that Bangkok is one of the most awesome shopping meccas in Southeast Asia? Here, we give you our 12 picks of the best places to shop: from exciting bazaars to the most luxurious megamall. You’d be surprised with the variety of malls, rivaling in size and gimmick and architecture, and, of course, products. The floating market is not covered in this article as we intend to cover it later, but this guide will give you a complete overview of the main shopping malls in Bangkok center.

Find the mall best suited to your needs, there are a lot of choices as you will see.

1.    TERMINAL 21 – An international Bangkok shopping mall experience

How does “shopping around the world” sound like to you? Then step inside Terminal 21—nope, it’s not an airport; it’s a Bangkok shopping mall where each floor was designed to look like a famous city abroad, complete with iconic statues and symbols.

Shop in Tokyo, Paris, San Francisco, Istanbul, Rome, or London, or do your groceries in the Caribbean-themed supermarket. The entire mall has nine city-themed floors with around 600 shops and a Cineplex.

Opening Hours: 10am-10pm
Getting there: Subway: Asok exit 3

2.    CENTRALWORLD – The sixth largest shopping complex in the world, largest in Bangkok

One of the planet’s largest shopping malls, CentralWorld is eight storeys high, made up of two department stores, Zen and Isetan, and overall has more than 500 shops and 100 restaurants.

CentralWorld caters to all sorts of shoppers, and in the mall, you’ll find an ice rink, 15 movie houses, a food court, a learning center for kids, B2S, a giant bookstore, and an outdoor square for big events.

Opening Hours: 10 am-10pm
Getting there: Subway: Chit Lom exit 9 to Sky Walk, Siam exit 6 to Sky Walk

3.    CHATUCHAK WEEKEND MARKET – The shopaholic’s Bangkok Market paradise

Shopaholics rejoice! Bangkok’s largest market, the Chatuchak Weekend Market has more than 8,000 stalls selling a wide variety of goods: antiques, plants, ceramics, pets, furniture, clothes (brand new and used), fresh and dry food, home décor, books, handicrafts, collectibles,  snacks and drinks, in the market’s 27 sections.

Located in Kamphaeng Phet 2 Road, it is absolutely a must-visit for tourists, with over 200,000 visitors on a typical weekend. Perfect for bargain hunting!

Opening Hours: 9am-6pm Sat & Sun
Getting there: Metro: Chatuchak Park exit 1, Kamphaeng Phet exits 1 & 2; Subway: Mo Chit exit 1

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4.    SIAM PARAGON – Big, big, big! Best shopping in Bangkok

Siam Paragon looks like an urban park and carries an extensive selection of specialty stores. So giant this mall is (one of the biggest in Asia), you can find a multiplex theater inside that consists of 15 large-size movie houses—one of which is officially the record-breaking biggest one in the entire continent of Asia!

You can also find the Sea Life Ocean World, the largest underwater-world aquarium in Southeast Asia, a Thai art gallery, an open concert hall, karaoke center, exhibition hall, a big bowling alley…almost everything here is just colossal.

Opening Hours: 10am-10pm
Getting there: Subway: Siam exits 3 & 5

5.    MBK CENTER – The legendary Bangkok shopping mall

Also known as Mahbookrong, MBK is very popular among tourists and Bankok residents, with over 10,000 visitors every day, according to its management.

Eight storeys high, MBK Center includes the 4-story Tokyu Department Store—a leading department store in Japan. The whole of MBK has around 2,000 shops, restaurants, and service outlets, with the entire fourth floor devoted to tech gadgets; mobile phones, electronic goods, DVDs, CDs, game consoles—both brand new and second-hand.

Bargain fashion stores, a complex entertainment center perfect for families, a 3D Trick Art Museum, it’s more than just a mall, really.

Opening Hours: 10am-10pm
Getting there: Subway: National Stadium exit 4

6.    ASIATIQUE NIGHT MARKET – The Bangkok night market next to the river

Formerly an international trade port, Asiatique is an open-air riverfront night market and mall overlooking the Chao Praya River and Charoen Krung Road.

One of the most fun and entertaining shopping experiences in Bangkok, Asiatique has over 1,500 boutiques and 40 restaurants and bars—plus, they have nightly shows, like the famous Ladyboy cabaret, and recently, Thai puppet performances.

Asiatique is divided into four zones, which makes it easier for you to find what you’re looking for. And although Asiatique is more popular for fashion finds and gadgets (Apple store, included), you can buy just about anything here: from designer stuff to bargain goods. And feast your eyes on the charming storefronts!

Opening hours: 4-11pm
Getting there: Ferry: shuttle boat from Sathon/Central Pier

7.    EmQuartier – The futuristic Bangkok mall

Just opened in March 2015 in Phrom Phong, EmQuartier is a futuristic, trendy luxury mall, complete with the famous atrium garden and waterfall.

Rich with designer stores such as Louis Vuitton, Dolce & Gabbana, Prada, Gucci, Chanel, Dior, Jimmy Choo, Valentino, and Fendi. You will also find your favorite affordable stores, such as Zara, H&M, Gap, Uniqlo, and Super Dry.

Divided into three areas, “The Glass Quartier,” “The Helix Quartier” and “The Waterfall Quartier,” the mall also offers an impressive selection of restaurants, event halls, and even offices.

Opening Hours: 10am-10pm
Getting there: Subway: Phrom Phong exit 1

8. SIAM SQUARE – The fashionista’s hub, Bangkok’s main shopping area

The open-air shopping center that is the hub of cool clothes, from classic to hipster, and known for creating trends and inspiring the fashionable and creative youth. It is likened to Soho, Bond Street, and Fifth Avenue.

Also, it is the shopping square that connects them all; you can cross the sky bridge to other shopping centers, like the Siam Center, Siam Discover, Siam Paragon and MBK Center.

The latest mall to open in the square is the seven-story Siam Square One, also mostly dedicated to young fashionistas. They offer a wide variety of fashion items, from cheap ones to high-end designer brands. Definitely a clothing store paradise.

Opening hours: 11am-9pm
Getting there: Subway: Siam exits 2, 4 & 6

9.    ROD FAI MARKET 1 – Bangkok’s cool market baazar – vintage and hard-to-find products

If you’re a novelty or vintage item collector, then this is your place.

Rot Fai Market, or Train Market (it’s next to the train tracks), is another open-air night bazaar but with an edge: it sells hard-to-find items: from antiques to memorabilia of yesteryears, vintage leather jackets, French chandeliers,  iconic toy figures, Coca-cola collectibles, kitsch furniture, and Elvis mannequin, and other novelty items. Of course, they sell ordinary items as well, like your modern-day apparel,  electronic goods, and household items.

Divided into three sections: “Market Zone,” “Warehouse Zon,” and “Rod’s Antiques,” and littered with restaurants, bars, and snack stalls, make Rod Fai Market another favorite among tourists and locals alike.

Opening Hours: 5:00 pm – 12mn (Thurs-Sun)
Getting there: Taxi to Seacon Square

10.   PANTIP PLAZA – Where to shop for computers and electronics in Bangkok

A technophile’s paradise! Pantip Plaza is the famous IT and electronics mall operating for over 20 years in Bangkok, where you can find new and used computers and accessories at low, low prices—as well as repair shops. You can get computers, camera, toys, pirated movies, cellphones, and the like.

At Pantip Plaza, go crazy with the wild array of products: from genuine ones to the common counterfeit ones (almost all sales clerks tell you this, so rest assured it’s unlikely you will be deceived), and top-of-the-range models.
The nondescript five-story mall can be overwhelming and daunting, but this is a place to go for your IT and electronics needs.

Opening hours: 10am-10pm
Getting there: SkyTrain to N2 Phaya Thai Station (Sukhumvit Line)

11.    Chinatown Market – Bangkok’s Cultural Shopping Market

You can’t leave Bangkok without experiencing Chinatown shopping. Surrounded by stunning Chinese temples and Taoist places, weave through a labyrinth of stalls brimming with Chinese remedies, tea sets, fabric, accessories, toys, hardware, exotic vegetables imported from China, hair accessories for teens, cheap jewelry, shoes, religious paraphernalia, Chinese ceramics and lanterns, among plenty of other flea-market items.

Opening hours: 09:30am-4:00pm (closed on Sundays)
Getting there:  by metro if you are coming from Silom, Sukhumvit or Ratchadaphisek.

12.    Central Embassy Shopping Mall – The swanky megamall

An ultra-luxury lifestyle megamall in the heart of Bangkok’s retail district. Intimidatingly minimalist and stark white, this swanky mall is a mega collection of high-end designer shops and fine-dining restaurants, providing a whole new experience. Window-shopping is fascinating enough.

Vivienne Westwood stores, Michael Kors, Paul Smith, and then your regular high-street shops: Zara, Lacoste, Oakley, Fred Perry, among others.

Opening hours: 10 am – 10 pm every day
Getting there: direct links between both Phloen Chit and Chit Lom BTS

13.    Narai Phand  – Thailands handicraft market and best for souvenirs

Narai Phand - Thailands handicraft market and best for souvenirs

Image courtesy of www.naraiphand.com

Welcome to Thailand’s largest handicrafts center. The enormous air-conditioned government-run center carries all the high-quality Thai handicraft you can imagine. Over 75 years running, you can get ceramics, lacquerware, porcelain, stoneware, Celadon,  bamboo and grass items, Thai silk, among others. The prices are fixed, so if you hate haggling, then this is going to be a relaxing shopping experience. Great place to find gift and souvenir items.

Opening hours: 10am-8pm
Getting there: Subway: Chit Lom exit 7

Helpful articles and blog posts on Bangkok and the shopping experience!

We only recommend writers and blogs that we read regularly and believe will deliver substantial value to our readers. The following is our top picks of articles we think are worth reading for more reviews and information on Bangkok, as well as an additional guide to the city’s shopping areas.

And if you want to explore more of Bangkok, recommend these top 10 activities.

Do you have an awesome link to a relevant well-written article that should be included here? If so, hit us up on Twitter by following and messaging us the link.  Looking for the best budget stays in Bangkok? Check out our guide to Bangkok for further information.

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