Hundreds of markets invade the streets of villages and towns in Thailand but what occurs when the stalls take over a stretch of railway track? What happens when the train pulls into town?
Mae Klong is a town southwest of Bangkok where the railway and the Siang Tai local market coexist, giving rise to curious situation that attracts numerous tourists.
Arrival at Mae Klong railway station:
08h30 – 11h10 – 14h30 – 17h40
Departure time from Mae Klong railway station:
06h20 – 08h50 – 11h30 – 15h30
Update timetable here.
If you leave Bangkok by train it will take a long time to travel the distance, so it is not recommended as a means of transport to Mae Klong, it is better to take a minivan.
Due to its nearby location, the excursion to this market is usually combined with the Damnoen Saduak floating market on the same morning. In this case, it is better to join other travellers who visit the markets or in a private vehicle.
How to get to Mae Klong by train:
The Wong Wian Yai railway station, next to King Taksin square in the Thonburi district, has a line that heads southwest to the coastal towns of Samut Songkhram, about 40 km from the capital. However, the train we are interested in does not leave from this station but rather from the nearby Ban Laem railway station and to get to it you have to cross the Ta Chin River.
This train takes a slow route and the interesting part of the trip is at the very end. Along the last stretch of the line, the Mae Klong market takes over the railway track. When the train approaches the station stallholders have to quickly gather up their wares to let it pass by.
A few seconds later it’s back to business as usual… as if nothing at all has happened.
The result is a paradoxical, quirky scene. One of the most humble trains in Thailand is received like a film star, with everyone making way for its grand entrée.
From a position below it is also curious to see. The sellers’ stalls are set up so that they can be dismantled in a flash just before the convoy.