Mukdahan Night Market

Mukdahan Night Markets (47)

I love Mukdahan, it’s a small quiet city bordering Laos on the Mekong.  As I’ve said before there really isn’t much to do in this sleepy little town but the locals will always have a smile for you and the night market has some of the best food Issan has to offer.

Mukdahan Night Markets (44)Just off the main promenade on the Mekong is a small street called Song Nang Sathit Rd,  you’ll know you are in the right place when you see the sign that spans the road that says in English Food Safety Street.

Every night at 5pm the street closes to traffic and the night market begins. Your senses will be assailed before you even step foot on the street. The sights, sounds and smells are a mixture of China, Laos, Vietnam, Cambodia and Thailand all rolled into one. The phrase ” having eyes bigger than your stomach”  had to have been coined by someone that visited Mukdahan’s night market

You can spend the day walking through Mukdahan and not see more than a few handfuls of people, but spend the night at the food market and you’ll see most of Mukdahan. It’s not just a place to buy food and clothes. it’s a place where the community comes together and shares a smile and a laugh with their stories while eating the delicious food on offer and buying their other needs.

Mukdahan Night Markets (25)One of my favorite dishes at the market is also a dish that Mukdahan is known for which is Kanom Tuay, roasted pork with balls of sticky rice. Another favorite dish is made from a freshly baked baguette stuffed with spicy minced pork. Just about everything I’ve eaten at the night market becomes a favorite dish and I head back to the village a few pounds heavier. One thing is for sure, for 20-50 baht you can buy more food than is humanly possible to eat in one sitting and have one of the best views to people watch while doing it.

Mukdahan Night Markets (83)Not too far away from the night market is another little known market to the tourist trade, the wholesale night market. Most of the shops at the wholesale market open their doors around 2am and are closed by 10am. They sell the bulk of the vegetables, meats, fruits and cooking supplies to the rest of the community.

The parking lot is packed while open and the hustle and bustle of the merchants and buyers can be heard well through the night. I wandered around the shops one day before closing and was greeted just as warmly by the merchants and shopper alike. It was cool to see where the fresh foods start their day before winding up at the restaurants, shops and, of course, the night market.

If you are ever near Mukdahan make time for a day trip and make sure to include the night market, you’ll be very glad you did,  although your scale might not show you the same love the next morning.

You can find many more pictures of both markets in the Gallery Mukdahan Night Market

sig1 Mukdahan Night Market
Related Posts with Thumbnails

If you enjoyed this post, make sure you subscribe to my RSS feed!
8 Responses to Mukdahan Night Market
  1. Catherine
    November 5, 2009 | 7:43 pm

    Hi Talen. I’ve never experienced Kanom Tuay, but on your suggestion I’ll try at the local Issan restaurant across the street (if it’s on the menu, that is).
    Catherine´s last blog ..Thai Language Thai Culture: What’s There “to Know”? My ComLuv Profile

  2. Talen
    November 5, 2009 | 8:49 pm

    Cat, it is very very good but may be hard to find unless your local Issan restaurant is a 4 cat restaurant. Now I’m hungry again…that’s twice you’ve done this to me today!

  3. Catherine
    November 5, 2009 | 9:12 pm

    Good point. My local is a one cat restaurant, but that could be due to the owners. They have a spiffy antique shop on the grounds, and might be running off anything that does not contribute to the aimed for atmosphere.

  4. Mike
    November 6, 2009 | 1:21 am

    I had to laugh at the sign “food safety street” clearly a health and safety man or woman has been doing the rounds!!

    Mukdahan looks a great little place, one of those Thai towns that are always worth exploring I fancy.
    Mike´s last blog ..Thai Women and Marriage My ComLuv Profile

  5. Hypnotic Blogger
    November 6, 2009 | 4:29 am

    I’ve been to Thailand 5x since 1994 but have not heard of this particular market. But well, Thailand IS pretty big and I guess 5x is not enough to cover all the best places.

    I love Chatuchak but I always get lost in there. MBK is fantastic but I rather much prefer the bazaars than the modern shopping malls.

    Favourite shopping places are Haatyai, Patpong, the bazaars along PhiPhi…I know I know these are too commercialized and more pricey but heck, i just love the people. Indeed, Land of Smiles. Beautiful.
    Hypnotic Blogger´s last blog ..Tiger Woods – His Visualization Story My ComLuv Profile

    • Talen
      November 8, 2009 | 6:54 pm

      I don’t think it matters where you shop in Thailand because it is always an experience to remember.

  6. Martyn
    November 7, 2009 | 6:20 pm

    Talen you are right about the markets being great to people watch. These night markets are the real social event of Isaan life. The plastic bars and clubs of the western world play host to the social needs of us money laden souls who use them to take a short restbite from seeking something better, bigger, faster, more beautiful than what we already have in our lives.

    The Thai’s are happy to meet family or friends at the markets and for 50 or 100 baht have a great social night. I people watch these folk one hell of a lot and happiness is what I see in most and at little cost. Smiles and gentle manners compared to the loud laughter and abuse of the western city night life.

    I love the markets but the all night till morning one would be way past my bed time.
    Martyn´s last blog ..Thailand Blogs – October 09 Review My ComLuv Profile

  7. Talen
    November 8, 2009 | 6:55 pm

    Martyn, the markets really are a community affair that most westerners aren’t used to seeing. I think that’s why I love them so much.

    The wholesale market is pretty cool and easy to see around 9-10 am before they close for the day.

Leave a Reply

Wanting to leave an <em>phasis on your comment?

Trackback URL