Night markets are everywhere in Thailand, but one of the best and considered to be one of the most popular on the island of Koh Samui is the Bophut Night Market, or more famously known as The Fisherman’s Village Walking Street.
The night market is called a walking street because it is closed to vehicle traffic on Friday nights, from 5 pm to about 10 or 11 pm. People just walk on the 860-meter narrow road, where both sides of the street are packed and lined with stalls and stalls of vendors selling everything under the sun, or stars, rather, from 100 baht T-shirts to rare handicrafts and souvenirs, to questionable branded items and electronics.
A favorite of both locals and tourists, The Fisherman’s Village Walking Street is a market not to be missed if you happen to be on Thailand’s second biggest island.
Where is the Night Market Located?
The Fisherman’s Village Walking Street is located on Bophut Beach, which is on the northern coast of Koh Samui. It is 15 minutes from the airport if you ride a taxi or bus. Bophut Beach is a 2-km white sand beach with its epicenter being the charming and rustic Fisherman’s Village, which used to be an actual community of fishers but has become a major tourist spot.
What once was a sleepy and quiet fisherman’s village was gradually filled with hotels, boutiques, shops, and cafes, due to its stunning location facing Koh Phangan. On any regular day, visitors can head up to the narrow street and sit on the cafes sipping coffee or drinking tea with beautiful sea views right in front of them. On Friday nights, however, this seemingly peaceful part of the island becomes vibrant.
What to Expect
The market is fundamentally similar to other night markets on the island and across the country. Here, you can find items of every kind imaginable, from clothes to souvenirs, to art pieces, paintings, jewelry, fake branded fashions, counterfeit electronics at dirt low prices, and of course, some of Thailand’s most tasty street foods. Pad Thais and fresh spring rolls can be had for 50 baht or less, and can even be haggled. If you want to sit down and absorb all the happenings, you can sit by the dozens of cocktail bars that sell drinks as low as 60 baht, and enjoy live music and street performers.
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Muay Thai demonstrations are a common sight, as well as fire dancers, beatboxing, and even traditional Thai dances are just some of the entertainment options on offer for the night.
Although there are bars in the area, there are no go-go or girlie bars nearby, making it a family-friendly excursion that every family member can enjoy.
Tips Before Going to the Night Market
Though there are ATMs on the beach, it is best that you bring cash with you, especially in small denominations so that shopping will be a breeze. Haggling is recommended, but if you have large bills, vendors can just quickly tell you they don’t have change, and you’re forced to buy their wares at a higher price.
The streets can be crowded because the night market is the most popular on the island, so you have to be patient when looking to shop here. However, because there are so many vendors if you happen to like an item at one stall, but there are too many people, you’ll most likely find the very same item at another stall ahead.
It’s best that you don’t buy the first thing that you see. Go around the stalls and find the best quality items at the best prices.
You must also wear comfortable shoes, such as sneakers or slippers as there’ll be plenty of walking around. Wear comfortable clothing, such as cotton and shorts. Even though you’re shopping at night and the temperature is lower compared to during the day, it can get pretty warm due to the number of people being cramped between the stalls.
The Fisherman’s Village Walking Street is a Friday night must-do in Koh Samui. Once you’re done shopping trinkets, essentials, and souvenirs, restos and bars are open til late, and entertainment and performances abound, making your Koh Samui Friday nights the quintessential way to enjoy Koh Samui.