We finally visited our favorite retro and antique market in its new location in Srinakarin Road! Previously Talad Rod Fai, or Night Train Market, was located at Kamphenpet Road but now it moved to the suburbs. This seems further away and more difficult to reach then it turned out to be.
The way from the city center (Sukhumvit or Silom) over the highway did not take much more than 20 minutes because usually in the evenings there aren’t any traffic jams anymore. Only the last part, at Sriniakrin Road might get a bit slow as it’s quite congested otherwise the travel is swift and quick. Just tell your taxi driver to bring you to Sriniakrain Soi 51 or to Seacon Square (the shopping mall located right in front of the maret) if he is not familiar with the market itself.
You will see a big ship-like sign, which marks the entrance of Srinakarin Soi 51 and this is where you should enter. Best is to get out of your taxi right away and walk inside as there are already some shops which are selling some pretty cool retro stuff. There is quite narrow walkway with warehouses on one side where the first shops are located as well as some bars with live music that fill up later in the night. The shops sell some European antiques and retro items.
Continue walking and you will reach the actual market. This section is very much like JJ with little shops and stalls in a roofed area. There are some shops with memorabilia, 60 and 70 retro items but less antiques. Also typical market fare is offered like t-shirts, apparel, toys and such.
Bars and restaurants are located further at the back of this area where groups of young people hang out. It is very lively and very local and has a bit of a beer garden atmosphere with local live music.
When you move from here towards the left (when walking towards the market in Soi 51) then you find something that seems to be designed to be the main entrance of the market. Two big golden sculptures of something that looks like Greek gods are framing the gate and in front of it stands one lonely train wagon, which seems to be the last memorabilia of the old Talaad Rod Fai and the lonely reminder of why this market has its name.
On the other side of this gate lies a big field which was once the Bangkok Racing Circuit and now houses the bigger out-door part of the market. Here stalls are standing in rows and lines selling more apparel, odds and ends, accessories and some such. Some sellers do have retro stuff but the majority of the stalls offer common fare. There is quite a number of nice bars where one can relax a bit and rest ones feet while having a drink.
A place not to be missed are the warehouses on the side of this area that is closer towards Srinakarin Road. Here some very nice furniture can be found, vintage cars and motorbikes, operation spots, barber chairs as well as such unlikely things like gas stations and much more.
At the far end of this open field with all its stalls more warehouses wait. Some house restaurants and bars, others small shops but many seem still empty. There are a few interesting shops however and its nice to stroll around here as it isn’t so crowded and you can browse and rummage through all the old stuff looking for hidden gems.
From here you can make a turn and walk back. If you have energy left you can explore the outdoor area otherwise you can strengthen yourself in one of the many restaurants or bars.
The new Talaad Rod Fai managed to keep its atmosphere to be more than a market but a great place to spend a weekend night. It is full with young and friendly people enjoying themselves. The stuff that is sold is not all entirely vintage or retro but you’re more likely to find something original here than at the generic tourist markets like Asiatique. So a visit is highly recommended!
We made a little map that might be of help with the orientation at the market:
Talaad Rod Fai – Night Train Market
Srinakarin Road Soi 51, Khwaeng Nong Bon, 10250 BKK
behind Seacon Square
opening hours: Friday, Saturday and Sunday 17:00 – 01:00
This story was originally published on the 27.1.2013 at http://www.crankylittlemonster.com/blog/talaad_rod_fai.html