The capital city of Thailand, Bangkok is one of the most popular tourist destinations in the world and famously known for four things: Traffic jams, nightlife, street food, and shopping. Thousands of shops are scattered across Bangkok from high-end malls to galleries and clothing stalls on the sidewalk providing people of all income level a chance to enjoy shopping. As such shopping ranks high on the list of things to do in Bangkok and is popular with locals and tourists alike. If you are interested to know the places to buy specific products in Bangkok city, then keep reading.
You can find most cooking spices and herbs at the regular supermarket (Big C, Tesco Lotus). The rarer spices such as ground cardamom, onion powder, and ground fennel can be found at Villa Market. As a matter of fact, you would be able to find many imported food products at Villa Market. Villa has many branches in Bangkok but the main branch is near Prom Pong sky train station. Aside from spices and herbs, Villa Market sells grains that Thai people don’t normally eat such as millet, amaranth, buckwheat, and quinoa. These grains are usually not sold at the regular supermarket. Prices at Villa Market may vary depending on the product. Some things are very expensive but some things are about the same price as a regular supermarket (or even cheaper). Beside Villa Market, Gourmet Market at Siam Paragon (Siam sky train station) and Central Food Hall at Central World (Siam/Chidlom sky train station) are other places that sell rarer imported cooking ingredients and spices. Some of the floating markets in Bangkok also boast a nice selection of exotic spices in particular Damonen Saduak floating market.
Shopping in Bangkok wouldn’t be complete if you did not go clothes shopping. Well, that’s not entirely true but it’s hard not to buy any clothes when on a shopping spree in Bangkok. There are numerous clothing shops from side street stalls to department stores. Chatuchak weekend market (Mo-Chit sky train station) sells assorted fashions from cowboy leather pants to casual office wear. You might have to do a bit of bargaining when you come here because some shops increase the prices when selling to foreigners. Another good place to shop for clothes that are not too expensive is at Platinum Fashion Mall which is about a ten-minute walk from Central World (near Siam and Chidlom sky train stations). Platinum sells mainly clothes and female accessories. Platinum offers wholesale and retail prices, so the more you buy the cheaper the price. Let’s say one shirt costs 200 Baht. If you buy one shirt you will pay 200 Baht. However, if you buy three (or two) shirts, each shirt will be reduced to 150 Baht each. That means if you buy one shirt you would pay 200 Baht, but if you buy three shirts you would pay 450 Baht total.
If you are looking for high-quality aromatherapy products such as pure essential oil, organic soap, paraben-free moisturizer and so forth, there are couple places you could find them. At Siam Paragon on the 4th floor and at Emporium (Prom Pong sky train station) on the 5th floor, there will be a section called ‘Exotic Thai’ which have a good selection of spa and aromatherapy products as well as Thai handicrafts. Aroma and spa products are also sold at individual counters inside Central World and Isetan. These two buildings are connected to one another. MBK shopping complex near the National Stadium sky train station also has many shops that sell the aromatherapy products. Try the Lemongrass House on the 3rd floor of MBK which has a wide selection of natural soaps, essential oil, body scrubs, and scented candles.
Skincare and beauty products are sold in every department stores. You could find them at the cosmetics counters inside the shopping mall, or you may find some cheaper makeup and skincare products at Boots and Watsons. Eveandboy (read as ‘eve and boy’) is another great store to find skincare and beauty items for lower price than the regular department store. The store is located near the National Stadium sky train next to the old Scala movie theater.