One of the joys of visiting Thailand is the rich and varied food on offer from street vendors and while it will still be available in other cities, banning it in Bangkok is a big blow.
Skyscanner Australia rounds up some of the best and strangest items on offer from street stalls – try them while you still can!
A regular at most walking markets; everything that creeps, crawls and hops is available. Like Simba in The Lion King, many people are disgusted at the thought of eating bugs, but find them tasty when they give them a try. The insects themselves don’t have a lot of taste, but they’re crispy, full of protein and normally cooked with salt and chilli to give them some moreish flavour.
It’s a fruit that smells like rotting garbage, to the point that it’s explicitly banned from many hotels and buses. You have to be brave to have a nibble at something with that scent and while some swear it has a creamy, caramel taste, others compare it to vomit or, worse, its actual aroma.
You can also find less offensive fruits sold from stalls or the backs of trucks. Whether you want to find mangosteen, rambutan, tamarind or longan, you’re never far from something delicious.
All parts of the animal
There’s been a recent upturn in the head-to-toe eating trend in Australia, but they’re way ahead in Thailand. While the slightly odd sight of chicken feet (teen gai) in your soup might be enough adventure for some people, the braver mouths may be keen to explore the various organs (livers, kidneys and hearts) cooking on the barbie or just go straight for the plate of duck beaks (baak bpet).
Red ant eggs
Like escamoles in Mexico, ant eggs are considered a delicacy in Thailand. But while in Mexico its simply the buttery taste of the eggs that are eaten, in Thailand they’re mixed with the sour taste of the ants themselves. This dish is known locally as larb mote daeng.
Raw beef salad
If you want to avoid food poisoning while you travel to many poorer countries it’s commonly advised to give up meat for your trip. However, if you’ve got an iron stomach or you’re really daring, you can try larb leuat or one of its relatives. The main ingredient of this is raw beef which is then mixed with mint leaves and some raw blood.
Not all street food is for the brave, and there are many great options such as khanom buang. These small treats look a bit like tacos, but are essentially crepes filled with coconut cream, mixing crunchy with soft. They often also have an orange topping, with savoury and sweet options available.
Street food isn’t just about the weird and wacky. From Thai favourites like curries and pad thai to adopted Western treats like pancakes, where there’s street food vendors there’s always a place to find something delicious and cheap to eat.
If anything above has whet your appetite, compare airlines on Skyscanner to find the cheapest flights to Thailand, as well as great deals on hotels and car hire in Bangkok.
Remember, though, that unless you go in 2017, you may not be able to find street food in the capital.