RU  UK  EN
Articles  >  Imagine  >  Boat instead of shopping basket: Famous floating markets

Boat instead of shopping basket: Famous floating markets

Author: 01.03.2018 | traditions, culture
Stores, shopping malls, markets - all these places are an integral part of daily goings-on of almost every person on our planet. It would seem there is nothing special about them: they are all alike, just goods and prices vary depending on country or city. In fact, it is not quite true since some markets are only accessible via waterways. Our today’s story is about them.

Floating markets is one of the main attributes of traditional Asian life. This region with its majestic rivers flowing out during rainy season, cosy tributaries and extensive network of canals, is considered the birthplace of such trade places. Now no historian is sure when they emerged, it seems that such markets existed always. Therefore, local residents treat them the same as the majority of people treats a neighbourhood retailer. For tourists, of course, a visit, or rather a boat trip to such authentic bazaars is a novelty form of entertainment and memorable emotions for a lifetime.Photo k38.kn3.net

Damnoen Saduak, Thailand

Situated 100 kilometres away from Bangkok, in the Ratchaburi province, this market is a real Mecca for travellers. By 9 a.m., when trade is already thriving, sightseeing buses take surprised tourists to the docks. Guests experience a powerful wow moment not only due to impressive flavour of Asian market, but also due to countless boats-counters sailing before their eyes. Agile Thais studied this business for centuries, so they do not pay much attention to foreigners, sometimes do not even notice them, because now the most important thing is to sell more expensive, to buy cheaper.Photo static.trip101.com

If you do not have your own boat, it is not a problem at all, boats are rented out everywhere at the berths. So, everyone can touch the ancient Asian tradition of trade on water. Of course, even if you do not intend to purchase and just want to be soaked into the atmosphere, do not flatter yourself, no one is able to go or to sail away from the Damnoen floating market empty-handed: fruit, vegetables, amazing street food, spices and souvenirs - everything finds its buyer quickly due to unusual environment. To get a closer look at interesting goods, it is enough to wave to the vendor and his floating stall in a second will moor nearby, deftly manoeuvring and avoiding boat jams.Photo turako.ru

Curiously, this market is far from being the largest and cheapest in Thailand, but it is the most promoted in the mass media. Since the 70s Hollywood movies are being constantly filmed there, the most famous of which is the series about James Bond. Thus, do not be surprised that nearby boats carry more cameras than merchandise, it means that the Damnoen will be on screens again.

See also: Everything on sale: Worlds's best markets and bazaars

Vegetable market, India

Popular in the whole region, vegetable market which operates in the city of Srinagar, is famous not only for its giant size, but also for a huge range of farm-fresh vegetables. It is surrounded by magnificently beautiful floating gardens of lotus flowers. The bazaar opens at five in the morning, but in order to be in time for the opening, you need to sail out about half an hour in advance. Local boats called shikara are very comfortable and especially for "early" tourists are equipped with cosy blanket, because in the morning by the water it feels chill and fresh. While shikara boatman rows to the commercial area, passengers can take a nap.Photo oddviser.com

Arriving at the epicentre of the commodity-money relations, you immediately notice the main difference from the Thai market - in India exclusively males are engaged into this business. Perhaps, that is why emotions and cries are less, but everything is shrouded in smoke - both sellers and buyers are smoking all kinds of pipes, cigars, home made cigarettes. They immediately recognize tourists and do not hesitate to earn on them by selling their merchandise at exorbitant prices. Another advantage of this market is that after you have bought everything you need, you can sail through the canal to the "water" quarter of the ancient city and see first-hand the Indian Venice.Photo amazingpictureblog.com

Cai Rang, Vietnam

Our next stop is the main floating market in the Mekong Delta. The waters of this great river every morning are disturbed by hordes of boats and scooters flooding the delta. This market does not specialize in something specific, it is some kind of a shopping centre, because in addition to the merchandise, it offers a variety of services: hairdressing, repairs, there are also floating restaurants that serve food on the go. In general, this site is lush with vibrant life as any city centre.

For marketing purposes, every boat installs a high pole topped with goods that can be purchased from the owner. Therefore, at first glance there is a surreal view: as if everyone is baking something in the sun, or there is a competition whose mast is higher.Photo gid.travel

Interestingly, paper money are not used in Vietnam, local currency is made of a material similar to polyethylene - specifically because of floating markets which are numerous in the country and wet bills are perishable. The most tradable goods are pineapples, nowhere else you can buy the same tasty and cheap fruit, especially if you add the fact that you can indulge this yummy delicacies right there, contemplating the surrounding environment which is chaotic, but at the same time very streamlined by its rules.Photo dreamguides.edreams.fr

Blumenmarkt, the Netherlands

One of a kind, this European market appeared in Amsterdam in the 18th century. And though the city canals are often overfilled, and the Dutch literally fight with water for every meter of their land territory, reasons for opening Blummenmarkt are much more prosaic, and have nothing to do with trade traditions. The fact is that more than three centuries ago local flower merchants did not want to pay the city for the rental of retail space, so they decided to move on water. Ever since they have not left the barges, and even though the market has long been firmly anchored at the shore, these glass pavilions nowadays are still called "floating". It is advisable to come in the morning, because in the afternoon the market is already closed.Photo mytravelbook.org

Iwama, Myanmar

Residents of the Iwama village about once every five days ship their wealth, among which there is seafood, fruit, wooden crafts and souvenirs, in the boat and go to the Inle Lake. Surrounded by high mountains, seventeen villages and small towns, the location turns into a real market and public space, where it is a custom not only to trade but also to exchange news, make friends and even arrange marriages.Photo k38.kn3.net

Boaters are not afraid of water buffalos that live here: it seems they even add some flavour. Although the place is picturesque, in addition to natural beauty, people did their best and built right in the middle of the lake on stilts a wondrous Jumping Cats Monastery. The best time to visit is September-October, when the three-week vibrant Paung Daw U Festival is held: the area is illuminated with lights, thus creating even more fantastic atmosphere.

Cover photo orientalescape.com

It will be interesting:
On the Move. Street food from around the world. Part 2
Do you happen to get hungry? That is great as we go on with our story about the most popular street food from around the world. It’s freshly cooked - fall to, you guys!
Azerbaijan inside out: Henna Nights
We continue publishing author’s column of Sabina Safarova on traditions of Azerbaijan.We have already learned about the matchmaking and the engagement, and now OUTLOOK proposes to plunge into the traditions of rituals and xinayaxdi – henna nights ceremonies which precedes the wedding itself.
On the Move. Street food from around the world
Experienced tourists believe that one of the best sure-fire ways to quickly tune into the beat of another culture is to try local food. In order not to be at a loss when choosing dishes and save precious time for spiritual food, Outlook gives you selective advice on street gastronomy from seven spots of the globe.
Desperate Futurism: Japan. Part 1
OUTLOOK journalist Elena Rasenko came back from Japan and launches a special series of articles devoted to this country. Warning for very sensitive readers: Beware! After reading, you will get a keen desire to break away, buy a ticket and fly to such a marvelous and fascinating Land of the Rising Sun!
Video: Craft of Uzbekistan. Golden-stitched embroidery
OUTLOOK was lucky to visit hospitable Uzbekistan and get better acquainted with crafts of this amazing country. Today we'll tell you about art of golden-stitched embroidery that has long been considered the art of the nobility. We will tell you about mediums artisans use, secrets and unique distinctives of this craft. Feel the world with us!
SPECIAL PROJECT: The Ambassadors tell about New Year's and Christmas traditions
All over the world, winter brings bright celebrations to people's homes, the traditions of how to celebrate them are born. The customs of one state differes from the other but people from different corners of the planet are equally waiting for miracles, pleasant surprises and a good fairy tale. On the eve of the New Year holidays, we decided to ask the diplomats about the peculiarities of New Year and Christmas celebrations in their countries.
Tea empire of the world
Few of us, while our favourite tea is steeping, are scrutinizing about the way this drink went through to get into our mug. Of course, stereotypically, we know that most likely it came from India or China, but in fact origin can vary. In the world there are about 30 countries which are very seriously engaged in tea business, and within this community a very clear hierarchy emerges, headed by the so-called Big Tea Seven.
Amazons from tribe moco: conservation of feminism in the shadow of Himalayas
Composers of antiutopias predict hundreds of sorrows to the people of the future who are from times to times forbidden to celebrate weddings, however, it seems, everything is not so terrible. In Chinese province Yun Nan near the foot of Himalayas the matriarch tribe moco resides that is not familiar with the concept of marriage at all. In their language there are no words like 'husband' and 'wife', in the same time they do not know what it is to be 'jealous', stay in state of 'war' or experience 'betrayal', and they do not complain of their destiny.
Our first anniversary: OUTLOOK WORLD CULTURE FESTIVAL 2018. Part 2
Every people’s culture is unique, full of riddles, mysteries, traditions, customs and stories. We are exorbitantly happy that within the framework of the festival of cultures of peoples of the world OUTLOOK WORLD CULTURE FESTIVAL our team creates a venue to exchange the most interesting among different countries and peoples.
Our first anniversary: OUTLOOK WORLD CULTURE FESTIVAL 2018
Every people’s culture is unique, full of riddles, mysteries, traditions, customs and stories. We are exorbitantly happy that within the framework of the festival of cultures of peoples of the world OUTLOOK WORLD CULTURE FESTIVAL our team creates a venue to exchange the most interesting among different countries and peoples.
Azerbaijan inside out: Small and big matchmaking
A Ukrainian woman with Azerbaijani blood Sabina Safarova respects her family roots and, being a member of the Union of Azerbaijani Youth in Ukraine, popularizes the culture of her country. Today, the story of a girl about one of the most interesting traditions of Azerbaijan - matchmaking, we are launching her author's blog, which will be filled with cognitive facts and subtleties of manners.
Gagauzians: Ethnos of white rooster
"A poor peasant lived in a remote Gagauzian village, and wealth of his was his three sons ..." so begins one of the folk tales composed by the Gagauz people. This Turkic people really lived a not wealthy life, roamed the villages, feed sheep... When a family gathered together to have some rest, old and young composed legends in their own way explaining the phenomena of nature noted by a curious and observant eye: why crows are afraid of people, why geese gabble, why an ant has thin waist, and what happens when you put fox and wolf in one harness.
VIDEO: Majestic heritage of Uzbekistan
Thanks to the Embassy of Uzbekistan in Ukraine and personally Ambassador extraordinary and Plenipotentiary Alisher Abdualiev OUTLOOK was lucky enough to visit this hospitable country. And today we will tell about a unique place - the Mausoleum of the prominent military leader and political figure of Amir Temur.
What do they eat: Rome’s cuisine
Outlook often tells about the kitchens of the peoples around the world, but when it comes to Italy, writing about the country should be a crime. Each of its twenty regions has its own culinary world with the subtleties and specialties. Let the title of gastronomic capital of Italy be Bologna, its official capital - Rome, too, has something to boast about. We are telling you what is remarkable about Roman cuisine and what dishes are worth trying in the Eternal City.
Crafts of Uzbekistan. Straw Items
OUTLOOK was lucky to visit hospitable Uzbekistan and get better acquainted with crafts of this amazing country. Today we tell you about art of straw work, about materials that craftsmen use and what secrets and unique features of this craft are. Feel the world with us!
Everything on sale: Worlds's best markets and bazaars
In this day and age, it is difficult to surprise anyone, especially an urban resident, with some large department store or market, since nowadays one can buy everything from a humble convenience store next door. However, the iconic bazaars and flea markets are still operating across the globe, they are famous in legends and described with delight. Well-known is that they turn shopping into a cultural exchange and are much more than just a commercial place for the sale of goods.
Eastern music of Sufi: Qawali
‘Love evolves when one looks in the eyes of the person beloved seeing there God’, in such a way the lines of some Arabian song called Qawali is translated. The authorship of this chant is ascribed to Eastern strangers Sufi who tending to find the sense of existence strolled around the half an Earth bare-footed. In the travels they composed songs where they told narration describing what they had to endure.
Thorny path of flower
Traditional Japanese kabuki theatre has always been a mystery to the European mentality: only an expert on the culture of the Land of the Rising Sun can understand a play without guide’s tips.
Fight like a woman. The fight club of flying cholit
The free fight has not feminine face. The good girl could smile in a pretty way and care colorful dress but not strike out wildly. But in the fierce Ands such gentle flowers do not grow. The true Bolivian cholit will be quick on the uptake, and it is able to fill in if necessary. But on Sunday, having gathered the starched skirts, she will desperately go to fight
Tasty Japan: Give the country a try
Ice cream with a taste of horse meat, pickled insects, fish with deadly venom, etc – Japanese cuisine has things to surprise, amaze and shock you with. And truth be told, enumeration of these dishes doesn’t help my appetite at all. But we are not after exotic stuff. True culinary tourism is an attempt to comprehend mindset and feel national distinctive color through traditional cuisine – not try most exotic dishes. Parts of people’s souls, its history and culture are actually concentrated in national dainties.
Close
Outlook facebook page