In the past the areas adjacent to the rivers were the first to be populated. Thus most communities of Thailand were built on the sides of rivers. The waterways served as means of transportation and the centre of economic activity as well. Boats were mainly used for both local and regional trade, bringing goods from those that produced to those that could barter and trade. Such ways of life of the riverside communities, especially in the River Basin increased the number of floating markets.
Floating markets became the hubs of the communities in the central plain of Thailand for centuries.
In the Ayutthaya Period (1350–1767), due to the existence of several adjoining canals which were suitable for trading, they helped to gain popularity for this type of market.
Items of daily need such fruits, vegetables, flowers, coconut, ice-cream etc. are sold by vendors plying on boats. The sides are lined with shops selling all kind of trinkets and, clothes, cloth and garments. On the whole it is a bee hive of intense commercial activity that provides livelihood to so many of the citizens of Thailand.
Another very fascinating experience and a sight to see. Although similar markets exist in India where vendors sell fruits, vegetables etc near the railway tracks - there is nothing that can compare with the train market that we saw. This is the Maeklong railway market which we saw in the way to the floating market. What is fascinating that all along the length of the railway track vendors are happily selling their goods in close proximity to the movement of the locomotive and the carriages as if the train did not exist. Life goes on and what a wonderful experience We missed the train and the next one would have taken a few hours so had to get out of the place. Otherwise would have taken a picture of the loco steaming into the market. That would have been a great sight.
Fascinating experience indeed. This album presents photographs of what we saw around the train market as well as in the course of the ride over the water way in the floating market for over an hour.