Septemer 19, 2011
I carefully assist my mom into her seat inside the small Thai paddle boat.
She grunts as she sits down.
“Her feet might still hurt.”, I said to my self.
I look towards the dock and I see the two fat guys we rode with on the long-tail boat.
Then in Visayan my mom said, “I hope those fat men won’t be in our boat!”. My thoughts exactly.
My mind wanders back a few minutes earlier when we were cruising around the canal area. The long-tail boat we were riding would sway precariously when either of them got excited and they would move around the boat to have their pictures taken. Not a pleasant feeling especially when you have a nervous mother sitting beside you.
Thankfully a Chinese family of four rides with us and we got paddled away by an old man around Damnoen Saduak Floating Market.
Haggling is a skill you will learn and use while shopping throughout the floating market.
FYI, the things that you will purchase here are expensive because it is a tourist destination.
The merchants here add as much as 200% on the regular price on an item. So when they hand you the calculator showing the price of an item, always make sure to slice it by 50% when you return the calculator back to them. They may not accept it at first, but they will eventually give in.
Let’s just say that I bought a souvenir for 200Bhat. It was originally priced at 400 Bhat. When I started walking around the market grounds after our paddle boat ride, I found the same souvenier at a store selling for 80 Bhat! I could have kicked myself right there and then because I knew I could have gotten it for 5o Bhat.
But then again I realized (maybe, just maybe.), that rent for stalls by the canals of the floating market are more expensive than those located on the market grounds.
Food is a staple around the market. There is no need to bargain to get it at a cheaper price because it is priced accordingly.
To get to Damnoen Saduak Floating Market you have to book a whole day or half day tour.
Your hotel or guest house can help you with this.
It costs around 800 Baht for a half day tour and around 1500 Baht for a whole day tour.
A half day tour will bring you to the Floating Market and the Elephant Camp. The prices stated above are exclusive of the paddle boat ride and the elephant ride.
A whole day tour will bring you to the Floating Market, the Elephant Camp, the Handicraft Center, the Rose Garden Show, the Elephant and Crocodile Show, and for the Cobra Show. The price stated above excludes the payments for the paddle boat ride around the floating market, the elephant ride, the entrance to the Cobra show and the entrance to the Rose Garden Show.
The paddle boat ride at the floating market : 150 Baht per person
The elephant ride : 600 Baht per person
The cobra show : around 200 Baht per person
The Rose Garden Show: 500 Baht per person.