“Slow train coming…” Our Maeklong Railway Market Experience

Train arriving

My renovations are coming to their end – kitchen installation is in the process! Paint spots are peeled off the plinths, manicure is done, and my back, affected by pulling the furniture and heavy bags, is cured by Thai massage. The story about the repairs is waiting for its turn, and here is my throwback to June photo tour with my friend Yana to Maeklong Railway Market – the Market on Rails!

I’d dreamt of travelling to that market for a very long time, but couldn’t find the company. At last Buddha heard my wish and sent me Yana as a fellow traveler. Hooray!

Maeklong Railway Market is the only market – if not in the world, but definitely in Asia – where the commodity is literally placed on both sides of the single-track rails. The train travels along them several times a day and it turns into a real show! All this is in the photos with my comments.

Here I only add some facts:

1.The Maeklong railway runs 67 kilometers between Wongwian Yai (Bangkok outskirts) and Samut Sonkhram (central Thailand). It’s been in operation since 1904!

2.The Market on Rails is just a small part of a big Maeklong Market with a huge choice of goods at very nice prices.

3.The Market on Rails is also called “Umbrella Market” of “Awning Market” – after looking at the photos you’ll understand why

4.To get to the market from Bangkok now you need to go to the Southern Bus Terminal instead of Victory Monument (online information has outdated). At the Terminal kind people will show you to the counter where the tickets to Maeklong Market are sold, and it’ll take you around an hour to get there by minivan. There is a famous AMPHAWA Floating Market near the Market on Rails which is highly recommended to take a visit! But Maeklong Railway Market is our first destination though!

 

Goods – placed both on the ground and stalls – right next to the rails!

There are awnings over all commodities, covering them from sun and rain; due to them the market has its second name – “Umbrella or Awning Market”

There are a lot of tourists from all over the world. They are walking on the sleepers and taking thousands of photos waiting for the train coming. The sellers look like celebrities who are satiated with the fame.

15 minutes before the train coming it started raining cats and dogs! That was all right – it brought us some awesome photos!

Of course the train doesn’t come out of the blue. A voice on the loudspeaker announces its arrival 10 minutes prior its appearance, and the sellers start to fold the awnings over the rails.

Everything is ready for the train arrival, and everyone froze, waiting! And here it is, appeared from around the turn, slowly, on the prowl!

Closer, closer… The air is getting hot of excitement

It’s almost here!! The goods are still on the ground, near rails, but the train wheels don’t damage them

Here it is – just a couple of steps away from me! So breathtaking!

And it is passing me by at last… I’ve never been so close to a moving train! It’s a real excitement!

As soon as the last carriage passes by the sellers unfold their awnings – their business goes on! Usually there no other photos about this unique market, but what happens “behind the scene”, after train has passed through the market?

The train crosses the road and stops at the railway station. There is also market here, mostly clothes are sold, but not very close to the train. And this is the place for photo shoots!

It’s even a lot of rush here – everyone wants to take a photo before the train leaves the station

People take pictures inside the train

Kids enjoy themselves here a lot!

The station looks like it stuck somewhere in the 50th of the last century – a plank platform, plain carriages. But the train never leaves the station without passengers

All railway station announcements are made via the loudspeaker, but  – just in case! – the railway brass bell is always polished!

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About Me

Hi. I am Elena. Welcome to Blondiary.com! In 2010 I quit my job as a university lecturer in Russia and moved to the Land of Smiles. This blog is a combination of useful information and amazing stories about Thailand with my “non-package tour” experiences. Hope you’ll like it here!

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