Aranyaprathet is a border town in Sa Kaeo Province, Eastern Thailand and is a popular destination for Thais, Cambodians and expats who are attracted by the border crossing and its market and casinos. Expatriates in Thailand often use (or used) the border crossing as visa run to renew their visas.

The fake market in Sa Kaeo

Aranyaprathet is infamous for the Rong Kluea market, where one can find anything; from pirated versions of iPhones, Android smartphones and Blackberrys made in China, elephant skin jackets, crocodile shoes and belts, ivory items and tusks, handicrafts, fake express visas, to fake perfumes and fashion. Almost everything is for sale at Aranyaprathet’s market, including smuggled Cambodian cigarettes for 600 Baht two cartons. I strongly discourage you from buying these kind of items, mainly because they are illegal and also because innocent animals are killed to get their skin and make clothes.

If you want to buy something at Rong Kluea market, I would recommend that your Thai partner buy it for you and negotiate for a lower price on everything, while you should stay at a great distance from the vendors and remain aloof. As soon as they see a foreigner (farang), marketers will increase the price at least twice or more.

There are a few Thai street restaurants with plastic tables and chairs and many organized beggar gangs, mostly of them Muslims of Cambodian origin. Aside from visiting the market there is nothing to do in Aranyaprathet, it is a very standar place that has not much to offer.


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