Friday, 26 December 2014

Bangkok - Maeklong Railway Market - 20 Dec 2014

Thanks to many tour magazines and social media, Maeklong Railway Market is the most sought after wet market by photographers and tourists in Thailand. It's easily accessible, about 75 km from Bangkok, which is less than 1 1/2 hours by car. To make things more adventure-like, we went on a weekend, so we could take in the dramatic vibes to the fullest. The wet market looked like a typical wet market in Thailand, selling fresh local produce, spices, seafood, meat, knick knacks, etc. Only difference is that the local people and spectators like us walked around the market on a real railway track. Passenger trains pass by this market about 8 times a day, and the market occupies about 300 metres of the railway track. The  market is tightly-packed with people especially on weekends and they just wanna shop till the last minute the train comes!!

The vendors were not aggressive. No hard selling at all. They're rather passive and waited for customers to approach them. The locals told us that they're contented with their simple living. Despite the huge number of tour buses plying the market, there's very few souvenir stalls.

Small-pea eggplants!

Famous "Pla-thu" (or short mackerel) fish in bamboo baskets. It's a very important fish in Thai cuisine and they believe that the pla-thu here is the best. In December, the Thai celebrates a 10-day "Pla-thu Festival" where they will cook the fish in different styles and recipe. It tastes something like our ikan kembung.

Hazardous market with busy traffic everywhere.

The signboard here is the only indication that this is a railway station.

The vendors are so used to the timing of the trains. They're already getting ready to clear the track from the oncoming train. This was like a cue to all the visitors to get ready their cameras.  

Oblivious to the danger and hazards around, the train is now the highlight of the tourists.

So surreal

 The view from inside one of the stalls.

Passing train - Jin clearly stood out from the crowd.

Crazily close!!

After the train, it's business as usual....

A spiky local fruit. We saw the actual plant bearing the fruit and it turns chilly red when it's ripe.

More street food....

A barber doing his business right smack in the middle of all the actions.

A distant marker that's almost hidden in the market.

 Colourful local snacks.

The train stops at the opposite of the market, providing more photo opportunities while waiting for the next trip.

Known also as the 'folding umbrella market'. It really lives up to its reputation, to be one-of-a-kind  entertaining market in every 'sense'.

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