KOH LANTA SHOPPING PART 2
Koh Lanta Shopping. Last week presented one of the most fun, easiest ways to support Koh Lanta’s economic health: Shopping! But there are so many charming boutiques we needed two weeks to do them justice.
Next stop: Kantiang Bay. A Little Handmade Shop is owner-operated by three local women. This is one of Lanta’s most popular shops for crafts and decorative handmade items. Most everything in the shop is made by the owners. They also offer photography as well as web, product, graphic and interior design. It’s a lovely shop worth the visit just to chat with these ingenious and creative women.
Drunken Tailors is an adjunct of the renowned restaurant Drunken Sailors. In the spirit of the café they offer eclectic, colorful and unique Thai made wares, jewelry, clothing, scarves and sarongs. Many of their products are made by the owner’s family. You can also buy authentic Thai fisherman’s pants here; a must for your yoga practice or a cool night on the beach. Drunken Sailors (the café) also has a book exchange- drop off what you bought in Saladan and pick up a new read!
If designer surf wear is your thing make Win Jeang your destination! They offer Billabong, Quicksilver, Bali and Roxy brands- no knockoffs, only high quality board shorts, bikinis and beachwear.
Lanta old town and hammocks
As we know Lanta’s southern tip is sparsely populated, you may find a few souls selling trinkets on the beach but for the most part it’s blissfully noncommercial. But zip around to the south eastern side and have a leisurely stroll through Lanta Old town for some great Lanta arts and crafts.
Some consider Old Town Koh Lanta’s premier shopping district, but the antique architecture and fishing village vibe keep it from feeling overly commercial or touristy.
It’s an essential visit for many reasons and Hammock House is definitely one of them. This store is a success story. They sell a variety of superior hammocks made exclusively by the Mlabri tribe: once a nomadic clan, known as the people of the forest, deforestation, tourism and industrialization evicted them from their homeland and destroyed their way of life. There are scant 300 hundred people in this tribe but with their ingenuity and labor they’ve managed to maintain their home village and a portion of their culture while adapting to the inevitable. Support these brave people; buy hammocks for yourself, your friends, and the folks back home.
Lanta Leather offers hand tooled leather product made on site: handbags, belts, shoes, outer and travel wear. Owner and artisan Kuhn Eat also makes custom designs. In the same shop is a tiny batik gallery featuring the one of a kind batik fashions, wall hangings and prayer flags. There are several other shops in Old Town that offer handmade products from all over Thailand, many of the shop owners take pride in providing uniquely Thai wares and are pleased to chat about their origins and the artisans.
Remember that Old Town is a real community, not just a picturesque back drop to shops and services. People live and work and do their shopping here as well.
On Sunday afternoons a traditional local market is set up near the pier. It’s a community event and brings out neighbors to buy their groceries, chat and gossip. The roving Koh Lanta Market begins its weekly tour in Old Town as well. Also a great place to meet people, buy fresh produce, cheap used clothing and snack on everything from satay to donuts.
The daily market
The market shows up at different sites all week long. It’s a morning event in Old Town, 8:00-11:00 AM, but at the other locations it runs from 2:00-6:00 PM. Here’s a schedule:
- Sunday: Morning market in the Old Town central square
- Monday: Off the main road in southern Haad Khlong Dao
- Tuesday: Off the southernmost cross-island road, just east of Khlong Nin
- Wednesday: Near the car ferry in Baan Saladaan
- Thursday: Off the main road between Haad Phra Ae and Khlong Khong
- Friday: Off the southernmost cross-island road, just east of Khlong Nin
- Saturday: Off the main road in northern Haad Khlong Dao
Invest in Koh Lanta’s best future — approach commerce as an opportunity to connect with people, buy local, and have fun!