Hua Hin is Thailand’s most popular beach resort. It’s also the home to a brand new open-air art night market, Cicada Market, that just opened in 2010. Trendy markets selling artwork, handicrafts and handmade products are all the rage in Thailand and, Cicada Market is already Hua Hin’s biggest new hot spot. If you love night markets, delicious (and cheap!) Thai food, and buying unique items you won’t see anywhere else in Thailand, then a visit to Cicada Market in Hua Hin is a must.
Where and What is Cicada Market? – Located on the outskirts of Hua Hin in a very large and pretty garden area, in the Khao Takiab area of town, Cicada Market is an artists’ community, where you can buy unique handmade products you won’t find in Bangkok, Chiang Mai or anywhere else in Thailand. Most products sold at Cicada Market are one-of-a-kind items made by the sellers themselves. Most sellers are young artists or university students, who make art either for a living or as a sideline. Products are beautiful quality, yet inexpensive.
What Can You Buy at Cicada Market? – You name it, you’ll find it at Cicada Market. On my trip to the market, I traveled with a Thai friend who loves buying clothing. I collect bags. So, of course, our goal was to find something unusual in the clothing and bag area, with maybe some jewelry thrown in. Frankly, we had so much choice of so many beautiful things, it was hard to keep our purchases down to just a few. I ended up with two bags at only 200 baht ($6) each. My friend bought several hand-painted t shirts (250 baht or $7.50) each. She also found some hand-painted shoes, and I bought a couple of hand-beaded necklaces, a cell phone holder, a hand-enameled photograph frame and a small piece of artwork.
At Cicada Market, you’ll find everything from hand-painted or hand-embroidered t shirts, to unique one-of-a-kind skirts, shirts and pants, shoes, jewelry, bags, hats, art work, dolls, postcards, handmade paper, lamps, photograph frames, photo albums and so much more.
Don’t miss the two white houses in the middle of the market either. These are art galleries that showcase different artists’ work all the time. They’re cool places to check out and the artwork is incredible and a great way to buy some inexpensive art while helping a local Thai artist.
Eating at Cicada Market – Of course, being Thailand, there’s always food and Cicada Market is no exception. There’s an incredible open-air food court that serves just about every favorite Thai dish. Omelettes, pad Thai, curries, chicken and rice dishes and on and on. Prices are cheap (between 40-60 baht, $1.25-$2) for most dishes and there’s a great selection of items. Don’t miss the traditional Thai desserts too.
The seating area is nice, as it’s pleasant sitting outside in such a trendy area, watching folks walking by, just put on some mosquito repellent if you’re the type that attracts them as you might get a few friendly ones here.
Music at Cicada Market – There’s an open-air amphitheatre with dance and music performances, and these change nightly. There’s everything from traditional Thai dance to Thai theater and Thai pop. Outside in the main garden, you’ll also see break dancers, guitarists, artists painting – it’s an exciting atmosphere, which attracts artistic people, so you never know what you’ll find here, and it’s different every day.
Cicada Market is one of the most fun things to do in Hua Hin and is a must visit place if you enjoy something a little different, like to experience ‘real Thailand’ (few tourists have found their way here yet), and love to see a lot without spending much money.
Cicada Market opens around 4pm, but starts to get really busy by around 6:30pm. The market is open every day and closes around 10:30pm.
Video of Cicada Market – Great way to get an idea of the atmosphere of the place