Bpac Review Kwan Riam


Review Kwan Riam floating Markets

we revisited in Sept 2016:  updated photos and videos to main page 

changes: it's bigger and better - well done 

Bpac report 23/09/2012

Kwan Riam Floating Market (ตลาดน้ำขวัญเรียม) opened 30 June 2012.  

Thai bis achiever
 "the best mix tourism and culture".

The name: Kwan Riam is an epic love story of a young boy and girl in a local village that were not allowed to be together which became a box office hit movie in Thailand, more below.

Location:  at temple (Wat) Bunpen or Bamphen, 25kms from Siam Square
temples on both sides of canal thus the names Bunpen Tai (South) and Bunpen Nuea (North)

Links: map, photos, video, website below

Open: The market open only Sat-Sun from 7.00am - 8.00pm.  map and photo link below. 


Why does this Floating Market (talaad naam) rate so well?

3 good reasons 

1. It's new and got a trendy feel.  A big budget spend with a vision. 
Modern materials are evident, a wheelchair lift service at the touristy (photo spot) walkover bridge, and the attention to detail flows through the markets, stalls and shops.

2. Exceptionally well priced; it does NOT have a high tourism prices.

3. not far; approx 25kms from Siam Square

Cultural: whilst it's touristy they included the essentials (and it's not pricy)!  
Novel canal tours 30mins (10bt), several designated photo spots along the Saen Saep canal with Iconic features to compliment your photos. Buy bread and feed the compliant fish that are always abundant at temples (why is that?), enjoy the cultural dance performances which can be viewed from either side of the 30mtr wide canal. 
Jump aboard one of many floating restaurants for a delicious meal.

Make Merit. Around 7am the monks visit in their designated junket and trawl along the canal where you can offer your gifts.

This is quite a special occasion, don't be afraid to join in, everyone is welcome, it's a special moment and one to be shared.  I'm not sure when I will have the chance as that particular time does not exist on my clock (haa haa).

Dinning: Thai and Western. Stalls / Picnic style or dine in floating boats.

There are many stalls and producing tasty snacks, comfortable shaded seating along the canal or if you seek more adventure try one of the many floating restaurants, some offer an excellent infusion dishes from South Thailand. There's also a very good choice of Western food.

Retail: Generous space (unusual) for stalls offering a variety local product; food, clothing as well as the touristy souvenirs.


You could easily allocate the entire day, it just depends on your stamina. Late evening offers the most beautiful setting and ofcourse less traffic for the journey home.

Adventure along the Saen Saep Canal, get acquainted with local Icons, it's an inexpensive way to beat the traffic.

From Pier Asoke allow 35min for the 11km transfer to Wat Sri Bun Ruang Pier, while there visit the blind fortune teller (once lawyer) Khun Nipon (allow 30 mins), then a short walk (500mtrs) to the main road to hail a cab for the remaining distance 10kms on a highway. The taxi transfer should take about 15mins (depending on traffic), see map below.

If you have time... before the Fortune Teller stop at the huge shopping mall (8) centre with a huge cinema complex and water theme park (Fanatasia Lagoon) on the roof. 

When the Taxi turns of the main road to the floating markets/temple Bunpen, at that corner   (see pic right) is a newish Mood Gadaa restaurant, this is (Thai style BBQ) and must do for tourists.   

For around 150bt (all you can eat), Moo Gadaa is excellent value and adventure, best to try with Thai. 

Saen Saep Canal goes right through Bangkok to the old city of Bangkok in Rattanakosin finishing just a 1km from Khao San Rd



About 25kms East of Siam Square.  map link
Longdo map tricks: position map centre (+), type key word such as transport or attractions, 
see all key word tips in @ Longdo Hospitality, mapped venues include photos facebook guestbook

At Soi Wat Bam Pen Nua Bang Pen Tai, Seri thai Road 60, Ramkamheang 187, Kuang Meenburi (Mini Buri), Ket Meenburi Bangkok.

Photo image: map image of journey from Pier Asoke


Kwan Riam: An Epic love story which became a box office hit movie in Thailand

The plot: In 1936 in rural Bang Kapi, at the time nothing but rice paddies and small farming villages, Kwan and Riam are the son and daughter of rival village chiefs. They both work in the rice fields with their water buffaloes. Riam at first resists the courtship of Kwan, but Kwan, a jolly young man who sings and plays bamboo flute, is persistent. Kwan pleads with Riam, telling her he wants to die in the river if he doesn't have her love. Riam gives in to Kwan's charms and the two pledge their love for each other at a spirit shrine on an island in the river.

Riam's father disapproves of the relationship. He wants Riam to marry Joi, the son of a wealthy local nobleman. Riam's father, Joi and some other men go to confront Kwan and find him on the spirit-house island with Riam. A brief swordfight ensues, and Kwan is struck by sword wielded by Riam's older brother, Roen. The cut on the side of Kwan's head eventually becomes a noticeable scar, which Kwan says is a mark of his love for Riam.

At home, Riam is chained up in a storage shed. Her father then decides to send Riam to Bangkok, where she will be sold into slavery as a maid for Mrs. Thongkham, a money lender who holds the deed to Riam's father's land. When the woman sees Riam's face, she is struck by Riam's resemblance for her dead daughter. Instead of being put to work as a servant, Riam is essentially adopted by the woman, who gives Riam Western clothes and introduces her to high-class Bangkok society, including the son of a wealthy nobleman, Somchai.

After hearing that her mother is near death, Riam returns to the village on Somchai's boat. Riam arrives to see her mother die, and a funeral is held. Kwan comes to bid his last respects, and Riam agrees to meet him the next day at noon, on the spirit island.Kwan grows despondent. His father urges him to enter the monkhood to wash away his bad luck. Kwan then goes to take a drink of water, and sees blood in the drinking gourd. He then breaks down and apologizes to his father for being ungrateful, and promises to be ordained the next day "if I'm still alive".

The next day, Kwan sets fire to Somchai's boat, to prevent Riam from leaving without meeting him. Kwan is then hunted by Somchai, Riam's father and older brother, Roen. Somchai finds Kwan and shoots him in the chest with a pistol. The mortally wounded Kwan swims to the spirit island. Riam then jumps in after Kwan, and grabs the knife from his hands and stabs herself, dying with her true love in the river.

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