Every Sunday, from 4pm until midnight, one of Chiang Mai’s great weekly events takes place. Walking Street Market starts at Thapae Gate and runs along the length of Ratchadamnoen Road through the heart of the Old City and has become a Chiang Mai institution. The street, which is closed entirely to traffic, is a focal point for local people to meet, browse, socialise, haggle and enjoy. There numbers are considerably swelled by both Thai and foreign visitors to Chiang Mai and the whole area buzzes with the kind of excitement that can only be generated by a large number of people at leisure.
Walking Street Market is also known as the Weekend or Sunday market and is a real showcase of the art and craftsmanship of Northern Thailand. Many of the stallholders have personally made the items they sell and the many hand crafted objects are a testimony to the skills and inventiveness of local people.
The goods available are made from an incredible array of materials including: wood, metals, ceramics, fabrics, paper, coconuts and much more besides. The products are truly authentic and original and are the perfect place to find gifts or beautiful things to decorate your home. If you are purchasing, don’t forget to bargain. Any item that is not marked with a fixed price is open for negotiation and is all part of the fun. The stall holders, many of whom have other jobs and only trade at the market, love banter and as long as you smile and barter in a good natured way you will have a great experience.
Food and drink is also available in glorious abundance at the Sunday Market. There are a number of temples along Rachadamnoen Road and their grounds are open to vendors, many of whom sellsfabulous local treats fresh cooked before your eyes.
The Sunday Market is the best place in Chiang Mai to see genuine Thai style street entertainment. Right along the length of the Ratchadamoen Road are pavement artists of all descriptions, traditional musicians, Thai dancers, living statues, puppet shows and rock bands. This all adds to the festive nature of the market and makes it an unmissable event.