When you arrive at Suvarnabhumi Airport in Bangkok, Thailand you may be wondering, “Where Can I Buy Thai Amulets in Bangkok?” Here are some best practices…
Why Buy Thai Amulets at a Temple in Thailand?
Thai Buddhist (Theravada) pendants are highly sought after and many visitors want to pick up a Buddha or other amulet, pendant, or charm while they are in the county. Sacred Buddhist pendants are made only at a Buddhist temple, so it makes sense that the best place you could possibly purchase one – is at a Buddhist temple somewhere in the country!
Basically, there are two types of amulets
Those made at and commissioned by Buddhist temples, and other pendants made by jewelers, craftsmen, and swindlers who try to pass off their fake jewelry as genuine – fooling visitors and even local Thais alike.
When purchasing your pendants DIRECT at a Buddhist temple, you can be sure that you are getting the real article. Buddhist temples don’t sell fake pendants – they sell only the pendants they created themselves, or that they commissioned to be created for them by approved Buddhist craftsmen.
Our solid white jade Somdej Buddha pendant from Wat Larn Kuat in Sisaket is a good example of very unique pendant created by a Buddhist craftsman at the temple. The monks had a number of chunks of valuable white jade left from the creation of their life-sized solid white jade Buddha statue, so they had Somdej Buddha pendants made from these same jade chips. The monks blessed the pendants hundreds of times, and the result was a batch of very rare pendants that only a few can enjoy.
If you’re looking for fake Buddhist pendants – then any of the Bangkok pendant markets – and any clown standing on the street selling them – will suffice. Keep in mind, we’re not disparaging all pendant sellers – there are some genuine pendants in the millions of pendants you can find for sale on the streets of Bangkok. However, how in the world are you going to find those few genuine pendants amidst millions of inauthentic amulets? Right – there is just no way.
Many people think they can rely on the pendant sellers in Bangkok to be honest with them as they attempt to choose an amulet. We have a bridge in Somalia that we are considering selling. Send us your offer!
Where are the Bangkok Amulet Markets?
CHATUCHAK MARKET – this is a huge market that is sort of like Amazon.com under hot tents on concrete. It’s filled with every sort of Thai and Chinese item – junk to nice items – including fake and probably some real Buddhist pendants and paraphernalia.
Is Chatuchak Where You Should Buy Your Thai Amulet?
No! If you’re already in Bangkok, just go directly to one of the major Buddhist temples and make your purchases there. You will be so much happier, and safer, than you would be spending your money on what will probably end up being absolute junk at Chatuchak.
TALAAD PHRA JAHN or TALAAD PHRA CHAN MARKET – this is a smaller market that occupies a couple of streets adjacent to Bangkok’s Grand Palace temple, and Thammasart University. There probably a couple hundred street stalls with vendors selling pendants of all sorts. They are open every day except royal holidays. During the weekend they are more active, meaning, more vendors come out to sell what they have.
Click Phra Chan Market map above to enlarge at Google Maps.
Should You Buy Your Thai Amulet at Tum Ajahn Market?
No! Really, unless you just want some cheap (20 Thai Baht) pendants to wear as costume jewelry, don’t bother buying your pendants at a market.
If you want to buy pendant necklaces or ropes, or something that need not be authentic, then yes – these markets are a great place to buy these items. You can find nice deals. If you’re looking for genuine Buddhist items – please just go the temple and give the monks your money, not anyone else.
Bangkok’s Weekend Amulet Market on the Chao Phraya River – this is a massive pendant market that is filled with every sort of fake pendant you could possibly imagine. If you are looking for artificial pendants – stop here if you happen to be around on the weekend. There are hundreds of stalls setup for people to sell their metal, clay, plastic, wooden, ivory, bone, tooth, waterproof, and other amulets. This location has the widest selection by far.
So, if you are already in Bangkok, or you are coming soon – just plan a trip to visit one of the major Buddhist temples like these and purchase your pendants there directly from monks and magee (maji) – Buddhist nuns:
GRAND PALACE TEMPLE – ornately decorated and a great way to spend a couple of hours shooting photos and gawking – this temple is one of the iconic five in Bangkok. This is located close to the Tum Ajahn market, so, if you’re here you have a choice. Buy $30 to $2,000 pendants at this temple which you KNOW are authentic, or, walk across the street to Talaad Phra Chan and buy 20 THB (60 cents) to 65,000 THB ($2,000) pendants at the market and try your luck at getting something worth more than its weight in fruit. Up to you.
WAT PHRA KAEW – Temple of the Emerald Buddha. This is where the sacred Emerald Buddha – a green crystal Buddha is located. This is the temple where the royal ceremonies are held each year for the change of seasons. Highly recommended, and connected to the Grand Palace – so see both at the same time.
Shop for your Thai pendants at one of these temples and you really cannot go wrong.
WAT PHO – Temple of the Reclining Buddha. A very old and traditionally styled temple modeled after a temple in India where Siddhartha Buddha was said to have stayed for a time. Buy your pendants direct from Wat Pho and you won’t have a bad experience.
WAT ARUN – perhaps the most famous temple in Bangkok, it sits on the river on the Thonburi side of Bangkok and is visited by over 1 million people per year. If you are close by, stop in and buy your Thai pendants here at the temple and you will surely be as happy as can be.
Have You Already Left Bangkok, and You Want to Buy Authentic Thai Amulets?
That’s what we do. We sell authentic Thai Buddhist pendants bought directly from the temples in our area. If you missed out on your chance to walk into a temple and buy an pendant that fits you, use our Online Amulet Shop and you can be assured that you are getting the real pendants from Buddhist temples.