At first glance, many Thai markets looks the same – a bunch of Thai people sitting on the sides of the roads selling their fruits, vegetables or clothes. This market however will surely keep you running – quite literally!
Maeklong Railway Market is situated on the sides of train tracks. Please do not assume that these are abandoned rail tracks; oh no! Trains run through the middle of the market eight times a day and even if scheduled, they are never on time.
Despite being only 300 m long, the market boasts fruits, vegetables, meat, seafood, snacks, clothing and flowers. Vendors have set up their stalls right along the tracks and their products stretch out to sometimes lay over the tracks as well. When a train is about to pass through the market, a three minute warning is given and let me assure you, a three minute warning is enough for all the vendors to pick up their shops and pull back their specially designed awnings to prevent any damage.
After the train passes, the small business owners rearrange their products and go back to proceed with their daily chores. Alasdair McLeod captures the moment perfectly in this video – it is a truly mesmerizing sight!
The most captivating thing about this market is the setting of it all. The awnings are only pulled as far back as necessary and the products are shifted only a little bit as to not be sliced by the train. Overall, the Maeklong Market is a truly unique experience allowing the tourist to be part of this mixture of Thai business, lifestyle and culture.
Featured image credits go to Rungroj Yongrit/EPA.
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