From the vibrant flower market to hip cafes, restaurants and bars, this blooming part of the Old Town is packed with suprises.
Centered around Pak Klong Talad, this blooming part of the Old Town runs at its own pace. In the early hours, the flower market is jam-packed with customers from every part of the city, while by 11am a completely different crowd descends, hungry to explore the area’s hip cafes, restaurants and bars.
Coffee & Breakfast
Have breakfast like a local at the 80-year-old On Lok Yun (eggs, bacon, sausage, ham and Chinese sausage; B95) before fueling up on Valentines (hot latte topped with edible gold dust; B140) at minimalist cafe Varen. Take in the view of the Chao Phraya at Woodbrook with an iced Black Yuzu Americano (B150) and spicy bacon spaghetti (B240), then finish on a sweet note with lemon poppy seed cake and raspberry rose pound cake (both B160) at flower shop-turned-cafe Floral Cafe at Napasorn, or a scoop of gelato (B70) at the cozy Farm to Table.
Lunch & Dinner
Pay a visit to the uber-cool former garage, Rongros, for their gaeng kiaw wan kai (chicken green curry served with roti; B260). Right next door, Supanniga Eating Room doles out southern-meets-eastern Thai dishes like Surat Thani crab meat stir-fried with yellow chili paste (B642), while you can enjoy more prime Wat Arun views from Above Riva’s alfresco terrace as you much on tom yum goong fettucini (B621). Head to Mayrai Padthai, where Le Du’s chef Ton nails the restaurant’s namesake street dish (from B79), or book a seat upstairs to indulge in authentic Thai flavors (B1,900 for 12-course tasting menu) at the intimate Nusara.
If you wish to bar-hop, you’ll need to branch out a little. Warm up your engine with a cocktail at riverside Barbon before waltzing your way to neon-drenched Shuu Shuu for some umeshu (from B100). Catch an express boat to Tha Tien to score a seat with riverside scenery at Long Tian (Sandport Beer, B260), or amp it up at Sao Chingcha’s laid-back rooftop Swing Bar with a Phranakorn Swing (B180), a refreshing mix of black Polish vodka and watermelon. Before you pass out, hit up the secretive Ku Bar for cocktails (from B350) and natural wine.
MRT Sanam Chai is a four-minute walk away.
If you’re into history, Museum Siam is the place to go. Want to shop? Visit The Old Siam Plaza—it’s like Siam Paragon for old-timers. Embracing that slow life? Head to Sunflower for a good old chinwag with the cordial owners over a cold brew. Aspiring photographers will strike gold at the raw-looking Saphan Phut, close to the recently opened Chao Phraya Skypark. And, of course, stop by the Flower Market for a vibrant assault on the senses.
Apartment and condo rentals in this area are hard to find, so you’ll have to rely on the slew of hip hostels instead. B920/night will land you a private room with a double bed at Hostel Urby, while the aesthetically-pleasing rooms at neighboring Pieces Cafe and Bed run from B1,600/night. The Onion Hostel offers a family room with two double beds for B917/night. Over at Elefin Bed and Breakfast, a single room with a private bathroom starts from B897/night.
Why do you love Pak Klong Talad?
Sompong Petchdee, owner of Leelawadee Florist
I’ve been living here since I was 17; life was better before the market was [made-over, but] you can still find a perfect book, beautiful flowers and cheap fresh fruit.
Jiraporn Thiangchum, manager of Farm to Table
It’s undeniable that the true charm of Pak Klong Talad is the flower market, but the people in the neighborhood are even more charming.
Supattharachai Chuethamasorn and Papitcha Thanasomboon, founders of Sunflower
It’s like we’re in a different time zone than everyone; the flower market gets really busy between 4 and 5am, so we get to live at a slower pace for the rest of the day.