Damnoen Saduak Floating Market

We woke up early at 4.30 am, getting things ready and went to the reception lobby to ask our breakfast that we requested to be taken away at 5 am:p And yes the staff has prepared it for us: tuna sandwiches, orange juice, fruits and mineral water:) Wow the Bangkok Loft Inn is increadible, I have to say it outloud: don't stay elsewhere in Bangkok, choose Bangkok Loft Inn!

Than we asked the staff to write down some sentences in Thai on a piece of paper, also she helped us getting a cab. That morning we plan to go to Southern Bus Terminal or Sai Tai Mai, take the first bus number 78 at 6 am, than go to Damnoen Saduak floating market. The taxi was metered, it cost 109 baht from Bangkok Loft Inn to Southern Bus Terminal and was about a 15 minutes ride.

Arriving at the Southern Bus terminal (at 5.30 am and still dark), we alight in front of the lobby, which is a small shopping center, the buses park on the left side of it. We look for bus number 78, and asked a guy holding a handy talky. Thought he must be one of the in charge person:p He was so kind that he walked us to the bus stop where the bus 78 will be stopping. Oohh Thai people are sooo nice:) We hopped into the bus, and at 6 am sharp the bus left the terminal. We paid 64 baht per person, very cheap as the distance is quiet far, 110 km.

When I googling, I also read that if we take taxi from Bangkok, it will cost approx 1,500 baht a return way, and the taxi will be waiting their guest at Damnoen, and drive back to Bangkok. The price depends on how good we are at bargaining. But they will refuse using their meter. So as an easy traveller, I choose to take the bus, as it is easy and cheap:)

We arrived at Damnoen Saduak at 7.45, and the bus stopped at one of the boat service. Before getting out of the bus I remind myself not to get into any tourist trap. A lady approach us saying the boat tour is 300 baht per person. My itinerary warns me not to take boat from where the bus stop, as it will be so expensive. So we left the lady and walk outside. It was the four of us: I and Rene, and other couple who are Thai coming from Surat Thani. The lady approach us to the exit, saying that she'll give us discount 150 baht per person. We continue walking, and she asked how do you go to the market without the boat? I answered we'll find our way!

From the exit, we thought that we should go back to the market we have just passed and take a yellow minivan (songthaw) to Damnoen Saduak, cost only 8 baht per person. So we exit and turn right, while the Thai couple turn left. After a minute, they called us and said that we went to the wrong direction. Ok than we walk with them to the floating market and hoped there is going to be a songthaw passing by. On the street, there were many boat tour service. We passed another two boat services. The first one asked 100 baht per person, we continue walking. After about 10 minutes walking and getting know each other, we ended up taking a paddle boat, 60 baht per person. Of course Auttachai, our Thai friend, who did the bargain for us. Auttachai wanted the price 50 baht per person. But the boat man didn't give him that price. So we agreed to pay 60 baht per person to have a max 1,5 hours tour with a paddle boat.

From the main street we walked to the aisle, and saw the boat. An old lady will drive the boat for the four of us, amazing. Auttachai said he's not going to stop on the same place where we took the boat, they will get off the market and take songthaw to the bus terminal. We will just follow him:p

Our boat trip begins, it was very bumpy indeed and I was affraid that the water will get into our boat. Thank God it didn't. When a machine boat came approaching, they will stop the machine, so the water will not fill into our boat. First we saw beautiful boat houses, than we started seeing the boat shops selling food and souvenirs. What a wonderful scene and experience! We stopped by one place where everybody has to get out, it was a souvenir shop. We didn't buy anything, I had a toilet break instead.

We got into our boat again, and approach one food vendor selling coconut sugar which is a snack. We have also food like this in Indonesia, the taste is very similar to Serabi Solo:p More tourists are coming, suddenly it became very crowded. Our boat is hitting another boat and vice versa. But the old lady is really a good boat driver. We stopped at the end of the canal, gave the lady tip of 50 baht, and this time we'll enjoy the market from the canal's walking side. It was 9.15 am, and became very crowded.

We didn't try other food as we were not sure whether they are halal or not. But I am telling you the soup noodle looks and smell very good. Hehee.. After the taking picture session, we found our way back to bangkok on our own, as we were already separated from our Thai friend. We asked a lady to which way we shall take the Songthaw, she said that take the one heading to the north. I can't tell where north is, but from my experience just say that you are going to Bangkok, and people will tell you the direction. We waited only 5 minutes, and saw a Songthaw approaching. It was full with Thais friendly people.

So we went on the same road where we walked with our friend to the floating market, and alight at the boat service where we first alight from the bus. We get off and approach the driver to give him money, and confirm him whether we can take bus to bangkok from there. He said NO, and asked us to get in again. Ok, we got in again, and people inside asking us where we are going. We said we are going to Bangkok. And they discuss in Thai where we should alight, and a nice boy from his gestures told everyone that he is going to take us to the bus terminal. They were all talking in Thai, but I keep on guessing:p

When we were at the market, they told us to alight. And the boy asked us to go with him. Oh my goodness, we are surrounded by nice people! Alhamdulillah. Than yes we saw bus 78, Rene gave him money, he refused it. But we insisted him to receive it. We can't never thank him enough.

We waited until 10.00 and the bus left the terminal heading to Bangkok. At the first bus stop we saw our Thai friend again, and they were surprised that we were inside the bus. The journey back to Bangkok took 2,5 hours as there were traffic jam on some roads.

Actually I also read on the internet that taking bus back to Bangkok is not at the same place where we alight bus 78. We have copied the info to our itinerary, but did not really sure where to go. So my tip is, just take Songthaw to the market (first market we meet after Damnoen Saduak), tell the driver that you are going to Bangkok, he will let you know where to stop. Don't take the initiative to alight before the driver told you to (just like what we did). And one more thing, I don't know how frequent is the bus going back to Bangkok. So be aware of it, or just follow us taking 10 am bus back to Bangkok.

The plan to visit floating market was so confusing. We didn't sure whether to go there or not as it will take a half day. But all the review said that going to the floating market is a really Thai thing, and is a must. By going there we will not have time to visit Chatuchak, because we prefer visiting Grand Palace after Damnoen Saduak. After we decide that Floating Market will be on our list, Rene had an idea to visit Amphawa floating market. So I search on the net again which market to visit. As Amphawa opens in the late afternoon while Damnoen Saduak opens in the morning, we made two plans, meaning two itinerary as well. After visiting the Damnoen Saduak floating market, I must say that I enjoy the trip so much. Maybe if there is a chance to visit Bangkok again, we will go to Amphawa:)

written on May 14, 2011


  1. thank you for your helpful advice!

  2. Hai, thanks for reading our blog:)

  3. hai, aku mau tanya, untuk ogkos menggunakan shongtaw di tahi itu approximately berapa ya? thannks yaa. incase i dont read your answers, please email me on dessy.revita.nasution@gmail.com.

    thaaanks, dan salam kenal. :)

    1. Hai Dessy, sorry banget aku udah lupa, tapi murah kok. Sorry I can't help you.

    2. hai, thanks info-nya ya. mau tanya lagi dong, jadi kalo mau murah boatnya, kita harus keluar pasar dulu ya? lalu belok ke arah kiri?
      dapet harga murah bangeet boatnya ;D

    3. Hai Dessy, bukan ke luar ke arah pasar..jadi setelah turun bus, kita keluar dulu dari terminal bus ke kiri. Nah sepanjang jalan itu banyak banget yg nawarin. Kalo pas turun bus langsung naik kapal, dia harganya mahal euy.