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Bangkok River & Canal tours / Floating Markets

For those who want to be amid the peaceful atmosphere and observe the traditional ways of life by the water, Bangkok has quite a lot to offer. The easiest way is taking a Chao Phraya River express boat. There are also several canal routes by long-tail boat which offer more charming scenery with stops at old temples which are scattered along all canals.

Canal (Khlong) Tours

1. Trip along Khlong Bangkok Noi & Khlong Bang Yai

A boat service for this relaxing route departs from Tha Chang Pier many times daily. It takes about an hour to reach Bang Yai, a district in Nonthaburi. The following are some leading attractions along Bangkok Noi canal mostly comprise old temples.

royal barges museum royal barges museum royal barges museum

The Royal Barges Museum is a dockyard for royal barges used in ceremonial processions. Among the most magnificent are the Suphannahong and the Narayana Songsuban.

Wat (temple) Suwannaram is an ancient temple erected in the Ayutthaya period. It is noted for its magnificent murals painted in the reign of King Rama III.

Wat Sisudaram is a temple where Sunthon Phu, a famous Thai poet who was designated by UNESCO as a classic poet of the world, used to stay in his childhood. Besides the monument to the poet, the multipurpose hall built in the Ayutthaya period is still well-preserved.

Wat Nairong boasts murals depicting episodes of the ten previous lives of the Lord Buddha on the walls of its ordination hall.

Wat Phaowana Phirataram The highlight of the temple, erected in the reign of King Rama V, is its multipurpose hall built in the traditional Thai style.

Related Tour Program
boat trip bangkok
Bangkok tour program code S-03
Take a long-tail boat trip along the river and canals of Bangkok to see magnificent temples and ways of life of the Thais.
Half Day

2. Trip along Khlong Dao Khanong - Khlong Bangkok Yai - Khlong Bang Chuak Nang

Visitors who want to explore this route can rent a boat from Tha Chang Pier. Some attractions along this route are: Wat Sai Floating Market, Snake Farm, Wat Pak Nam, Wat Ko and Taling Chan Floating Market. There are tour programs to other small canals on Thon Buri side, but they are not regular routes and you need to hire a long-tail boat at one of the pier. The standard fare is 400 baht per hour. Prices can be negotiated (before travelling). The major piers for hired boats are Tha Chang, Tha Saphan Phut (Memorial Bridge Pier), Tha Si Phraya and River City.

Chao Phraya River Express Boat Trip (Bangkok - Nonthaburi)
The easiest and cheapest way to observe the way of life along the Chao Phraya River is by boarding a Chao Phraya River express boat. The route starts at Wat Ratchasingkhon Pier near Krungthep Bridge and ends at the pier of Nonthaburi (a province north of Bangkok).
river boat in bangkok
river boat in bangkok
river boat in bangkok
river boat in bangkok

Major landing piers are Sathon, Si Phraya, Chang, and Wang Lang piers. While travelling along the Chao Phraya River, you will see many splendid temples and attractive buildings, for example, the Royal Thai Navy Dockyard, the Thai Maritime Navigation Company, the Old Customs House, the Temple of Dawn, the Grand Palace, and Wat Rakhang.

Trip along the Chao Phraya River to Ayutthaya
A number of cruise companies in Bangkok operate trips to Ayutthaya along the Chao Phraya River. As most companies are affiliated with riverside hotels, the boats depart from the hotels' piers. Normally the trips include visits to the Royal Folk Arts and Handicrafts Center in Bang Sai and Bang Pa-in Palace. There are also express boats sailing to Ayutthaya from Tha Maharat and Tha Chang piers near the Grand Palace every Sunday.

Floating Markets
There are several floating markets on various canals in Bangkok and other nearby provinces, of which the most well-known ones are:

1. Damnoen Saduak Floating Market

Damnoen Saduak Floating Market
Damnoen Saduak Floating Market
Damnoen Saduak Floating Market
Damnoen Saduak Floating Market

This large and popular floating market is about 80 km southwest of Bangkok in Ratchaburi province. Photos of this vibrant market featuring many small boats laden with colourful fruits and vegetables and paddled by Thai women wearing bamboo hats, are among the most often published in travel magazines and brochures of Thailand. The Damnoen Saduak canal was ordered to be built in 1866 by King Rama IV of the Chakri Dynasty to facilitate waterborne travels between Ratchaburi and Samutsakhon Provinces. It was finished and opened to the public in 1868.

More about Damnoen Saduak Floating Market

Related Tour Programme
floating market

Tour programme code S-06
Coconut Sugar Farm, a long-tail boat trip to Damnoen Saduak Floating Market, Royal Thai Handicraft Centre

Half Day

2. Taling Chan Floating Market

Taling Chan Floating Market possesses its endless attraction to Thais and foreigners alike. The life of the residents by the Chakphra Canal still retains the atmosphere and style of true nature reflecting the attachment to the river of the capital dwellers.

taling chan floating market
taling chan floating market
taling chan floating market
taling chan floating market

This market, which operates on Saturdays and Sundays 09.00 -17.00 only, is located in front of the Taling Chan District Office in the west of Bangkok. The market is accessible by air-con bus No. 79. After visiting the market, long-tail boat trips along the canals are available.

3. Wat Sai Floating Market

This place in the southwest of Bangkok used to be famous, but now most of the boats have been replaced by shops on the banks of the canal. To get there, hire a long-tail boat that leaves the Oriental Pier, Tha Chang Pier, Rachini Pier or Saphan Phut Pier. (06.00-14.00 hrs.) The fare must be agreed before departure.

Note : It is advisable to join a package tour for your convenience.

Quick Links to Bangkok Tours

Best Bangkok Sightseeing Tours
Palaces & Heritage Buildings
Cultural Shows
Thai Temples
Do-it-yourself Tours
Kid/Family Activities & Zoos
Museums & Arts
View Points
Thai Boxing
Bangkok Cabarets

Popular Tours around Bangkok

South & West of Bangkok
Sampran Riverside
Samphran Crocodile & Elephant Show
Thai Human Imagery Museum
Floating Market (Damnoen Saduak)
Amphawa Floating Market
Rom Hub Market (Folding Umbrella Mraket)
Samut Songkhram Homestay
King Rama II Memorial Park

River Kwai Bridge (Death Railway)

East of Bangkok
Samutprakan Crocodile Farm & Zoo
The Erawan Museum
Ancient City or Muang Boran

North of Bangkok
Bang Pa-in Palace
Ancient Ruins of Ayutthaya
Chokchai Farm Boutique Camping
Dream World