DIY guide to Damnoen Saduak Floating Market, Bangkok Thailand [UPDATED VERSION 2015]

21:31 Jia Ying 7 Comments

I went to Bangkok for a short break in June. This trip was just spontaneous.
I bought the flight tickets one month before the trip, and later start to plan the trip in 1 month.
The most important thing to do for an independent traveler before a trip will be doing research before depart.
For Bangkok, it's consider easy to discover it by yourself. Information available online are quite sufficient .It doesn't necessary to follow a tour or having a tour guide.

Floating market is one of the unique attractions in Thailand.
This floating market is one of the hardest research that I ever made.
It is hard as most of the travelers mentioned about scam pier in Floating market and how commercialize the floating market is.
To be honest, when I saw so many negative feedbacks and scams about Damnoen Saduak floating market, I'm a little bit distract from going.
I should try once, at least once to see how this floating market is packed with tourists.
I would like to go without following the tour with gang of tourists.

I found that the information provided to get in to floating market are mostly not updated.
Therefore, I decided to compile and update the information on the simple way to get in to Damnoen Saduak Floating Market independently without following the tour.

How to go??
Considering as budget fare as possible, there are 2 ways you can go,
- By Bus no.78. You have to wake up very early and make your way to the Southern Bus Terminal(or Sai Thai) . The 1st bus at 6am depart to the Damnoen Saduak. The single trip fare per person is 73 baht
- By Mini Bus ( aka van) . The mini bus depart from Victory Monument, which is nearer to city centre compare to Southern Bus Terminal. The single trip fare per person is 90 baht. Personally, I strongly recommend taking this mini van rather than the bus. The departure location is nearer to the city centre.

It's about 2 hours ride from Bangkok city centre to the floating market.

The driver will turn into a pier and let you get off. You will meet some people approach and ask you to take their boats. They will say it is impossible to walk in. Just ignore them. Why?? It's just a scam which charge you a higher price on boat going to the floating market.


The truth is the distance to the heart of floating market is walkable. Now what you can do is either walk to the floating market or taking a local "yellow" bus.  Actually, it looks more like a mix between mini van and lorry. The fare for yellow bus is 10baht.

For trip back to Bangkok from floating market, you have to take this yellow bus to the main road ( You may refer to the drawing above), then later take bus no.78 to Bangkok.

Here is the entrance of floating market

and of course for first timer to floating market, I strongly recommend you to take a boat ride within the market. After some bargain, I managed to get a 45 mins boat ride for 300 baht for 3 people. I believe it's a good deal . Remember to do some bargain for all the thing you would like to buy in floating market.

I enjoyed the boat ride, saw the locals preparing and selling the food on the boat. The boat ride will stop if you wanna buy something on the way.
The boat ride is enjoyable, a bit annoying when encounter the motor boat, which disturb the silent of the market. Here I strongly recommend paddle boat instead of motor boat. Motor boat travel fast but it's just spoil the whole environment.

As floating market is one of the very famous tourist attraction, the price might go a little higher. You may buy some of the food, such as coconut ice-cream and fruit .
Besides the boat ride, it is possible to discover the floating market by walk. There are different sections of the market are connected with bridges and walkways.

Why you should DIY and go to floating market without following tour?
1. It's cost saving. If you following some tour agency, the whole jouney will cost you at least 1000baht. If you DIY, you can save up to 70% of the fares.
2. You can avoid the crowd in floating market. Normally the floating market will be crowded after 9am. If you take a boat ride in a crowd, your boat will get stuck and wasting time.
3. You have freedom!!! You can decide when to go and leave the market. You will have time to discover some hidden treasure in the floating market.

It's not as difficult as you thought to DIY a trip. Just try and you will like it.

You may read this blog about DIY to Damnoen Saduak Floating Market. I found it useful and help me a lot during the trip.

All prices listed as accurate on my visit to the floating market on June 24, 2015.

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VyingVanity said...

Hi Jia Ying,
How do you go back to bangkok from damnoen saduak?

Jia Ying said...

I took the local yellow bus from market to the main road. ( You may refer to the picture I showed in the post). Then, wait the bus no.78. You may ask the local, just telling them you want to go back to Bangkok.

liong said...

Hi Jia Ying, may I know how we identify which van is heading to Damnoen Saduak in Victory Monument? Through asking? I worry the people there cant understand English.
Thank you in advance.

victor said...

Hey Jia Ying, I just got back from my ride boat in Damnoen Saduak, it wouldn't have been as enjoyable and cheap without your help. I would like to highlight a couple of things with all due respect, I went to victory monument looking for the mini bus and I was told that the service was not available anymore, however what I could find out was that there is a bus number 515 which takes you to the southern bus terminal for free, yes believe it or not I didn't pay anything for both ways. Once you arrive you will find the service to the floating market by mini bus which costs just 80 Baths one way.

Honestly when I got to the place where i was dropped off, all what I read the night before came through my mind, people approaching you selling such silly expensive tours, also saying that you can not walk, even they get grumpy with you once you ignore them and walk out. I won't give much detail but the first offer was 2000 Baths and then dropped to 500 Baths, I couldn't believe it!!!!!
Anyway I did it literally as you mentioned it on your blog and took me a few minutes to get to the main place.
I did a bit of walking first and then i went on a boat ride for 45 minutes which costed me 200 Baths.

I really appreciate your comments about doing this sort of things by yourself and wanted to contribute a bit for some other people who might find it useful.

Jia Ying said...

Hi, Victor!!

Thanks for your update. I'm glad that my blog post help you in your trip to the floating market. Really appreciate :)

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Ryan Jeffery said...

I think Thailand's floating market is one of the most popular activities in Thailand. Here you will visit one of the most famous and famous floating market in Southeast Asia. Anyone have suggest about things to do in Bangkok?

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