Getting the most from Phuket Markets
Markets are the heart and soul of local life in Phuket, and for anyone visiting for a vacation, are a chance to not only grab a bargain, but to immerse yourself in local culture away from the glitz and glamor of the clubs and bars.
The night markets are a riot of color, noise and odors that you will never forget, from the brightly colored clothing to the exotic street food, there is something to catch anyone’s eye at a Phuket Market. However, while they are tourist friendly, there are some things you can do that ensure you get the most out of the experience. Whether it’s a bargain you are after or just to soak in the experience, you want to enjoy every second of it, so here are the best markets to try on your stay in Phuket.
Phuket Weekend market
The largest night market in Phuket, it has the most choice, providing the widest range of products, everything from electronic gadgets of varying quality to lovely hand made toys, and everything in between. Located on Chao Fa West Road, you can get there by tuk-tuk in half an hour from Patong, and its open from 4pm to 10pm on both Saturday and Sunday.
It’s a real local experience, with everything you can think of to buy, including live animals, it’s a true glimpse into local culture, but it is perhaps the food that really stands out. Food stalls are all over, and you could just try something from every one of them, taking a gastronomic tour of Phuket as you walked if you really wanted. We always suggest the buttered corn is something every visitor should try though, if you need to choose just one.
Phuket Walking Street Market
You can find this market on Thalang Road on Sundays between 4pm and 10pm, and as a smaller market it has a less diverse choice of products than the Weekend Market. However, as it nestles between rows of houses that have color changing lighting on them, its still a visual treat.
Again, the food is outstanding, with a welcome option for cocktails along the way to wash down excellent Thai cuisine. A more intimate, less rushed experience that the larger market, the Walking Market is a slice of local life at a more manageable pace.
Chillva Night Market
One of the most popular night markets held in Phuket, this market is a little different in that its mostly full of local produced items, rather than the cheap branded offerings you find elsewhere. Held in the heart of Phuket Town itself, its open from 5pm to 11pm every Friday, Saturday and Sunday, and although the market is dressed out in lights to create a beautiful view, this is less of a
tourist venue, and more for the locals. That of course, makes it even more interesting for explorers, and with pubs, ice-cream shops and the ubiquitous food stalls, there is plenty to do and enjoy even if you don’t want to shop.
Indy Night Market
If you want to buy customized artisan products from locals, this is the place to go. Found on Limelight Avenue between 4pm and 10pm on Thursday and Friday, you can find everything from key rings to artist drawings of you while you wait.
There are also live bands and singers entertaining you as you shop, and a wide range of street food that maintains the high-quality food standards you find all over the island.
Malin Plaza Patong
An undercover market, this one hides underneath a huge metal roof, and is the islands shopping hub. Gifts bought here tend to be a little higher quality, and there are tailor shops and other retail options that you would not find anywhere else.
Again, food dominates the evening, with a wide range of meals and desserts that you will never forget, and you can find this market on Prachanukhro Road, Patong. Its open every day from 2pm to midnight, and it is a great place to end your day exploring Phuket.