New Student asks about Chanthaburi Thailand?

Hi I’m new to Gemology. I am retired and live in Sun City AZ where I joined the Lapidary Club and took the Cabochon Cutting Class, and enjoyed it.

I also spend time in Thailand which is in The Gemology World also.
I am planning a little side trip to Chanthaburi Thailand to hang at the Gem Market. I have been cautioned not to BUY until I learn a bit more but?

Does anyone have any suggestions about the Gem Market there and things I might take advantage of while I am there?

Thanks Gerry

There is a vendor there (grandgemstones on Ebay) who has sold me gemstones for years, and I have yet to get one that was not exactly as advertised. His name is Amnart, and he has offered to buy directly from the markets there for me. I trust him and have spent a lot with him, without disapointment. Contact him, I bet he will shopw you safely around. I envy you your trip!

Toby Smith

One of the biggest problems with buying in Chanthaburi is the light. It is going to be different than what you are used to at home and that can make a big difference. It takes a while for your eyes to adapt to it. Of course there are plenty of other challenges…treatments, pricing etc. but the light is a big one.

It would help considerably to have someone trustworthy with you that knows the market and goes often enough to be used to the light. When are you planning to go?
Contact me privately and I can recommend someone that goes every weekend. If he can’t help, he will know someone that can.



I visited Chanthaburi gem mart last year during my vacations on the way from cambodia to bangkok. The gem mart is a corner in the city center. Not that big as I expected. May be 20 m x 20 m as far as I remember. I took some photos, beside others a dealer with 3 excellent big tanzanites. Much too expensive for me. I found other stones, trying to negotiate and to buy 2 … 3 interesting sapphires. They showed me different parcels of gemstones. After choosing some stones they said, that they only sell whole parcels. OK this was disappointing. But along the street (gem-street - some 100 meters in total) you find jewellers and dealers who sell directly at the street. There you can get stones for a reasonable prize. Knowing a bit about gemstones and compare helps. There are also some dealers near the market place (there is also the shopping centre). Seems a bit bigger than the gem mart, but fewer dealers. If you take some time, if you speak with the people and if you do not buy at the first day you may get stones for good prize. And you can also find some sellers in the old quarter along the river. The doors are open, they sit there and cut stones or sort sapphires. There you can ask. But they have mostly only small sapphires and some other stones. The most important thing you need is a good loupe (of course). And almost all dealers in the street state, that the sapphire - or certain sapphires - are not treated -> do not trust them! If you look inside you can often see evidence for treatment or at least no positve sign (unbroken silk for instance) that the stones are not treated.
And than you find a gemstone center (cannot remember the name exactly - there is a figurine with miners in front of the building, maybe 2 km or more out of the city center and normaly not to find without help). Here they sell very good stones but for very high prices.

So far about my personal impressions from 2 days in Chanthaburi.


Thanks for the feedback very good. I am heading out tomorrow for 6 days I am excited as this will be my first real contact with a gem market. Wish me luck thanks again Gerry

How was your trip? What did you find? Im fascinated by travel which involves gemstones!


Chanthaburi - Market Part 1

Iam Gerry from Sun city AZ. I just got into Lap/Gemology I have been grinding Cabochons for a very short time with 0 practical knowledge
about Gems. I normally spend 6 months in Thailand every year.

Well I spent 2 Days at the Chanthaburi GEM Market, What a blast 100;s of tables 100’s of runners/Sellers and Zillions in Gems.
It was a bit depressing to think I couldnt participate in this process because I was a newbie.

I got a very busy US Guy some cold water and he let me sit at his table as he was buying and even told me why he didnt buy when he
though it would make sense to me. I met his broker and got a card so I will have a place to sell when I am ready to buy.

I walked the streets about 4 sq blocks that I found Offices and open air setups with people buying and selling. Ruby is King
Sapphire is queen with other gems holding court. I sat with people and watched them, found 3 places to buy tools and I could have open a lab
with the quality of equiptment they have.

Food and Cold drinks everywhere with Thai spicy aroma everpresent.

I did buy some stuff though I bought some rough to Cab with I went to the Bargain table and bought about $125 in Rocks
Well within my budget. The result is I learned a few things about Rubys and some other info on What the different rough can look like
with for about 20 or so Gems. Yesterday I was reading and today I was touching. WOW I wish I knew this 13 years ago I would have learned Thai.

Anybody wants questions answered I will do my best. I walked everywhere and got lost a lot.


Later I will list what I bought and ask for feedback.

I’d love to see some photos. Sounds like you had a very fun trip

Sounds great. I know it’s fun but don’t get carried away. I’ve bought stuff in Thailand and then usually found it cheaper right here at home(USA). Didn’t feel I got ripped-off, just not the deal I thought that I got at the moment–fun though. But the fun would have lasted longer if I had learn that I got a great deal :slight_smile:
Check out the gem district in Bangkok. It’s along Silom Rd. I think in Sept. there will be a huge gem show in BKK. I was at the one in Feb. of this year.

Would be awesome to see some photos from your trip! Thai gem market is always fascinating.

I took a few photos, but they weren’t from the show or gem market. Half of the time I left my camera in the room and a good portion of the time that I had it with me I was so absorbed in the moment I didn’t think to take a pic. I did take a few nature photos when I was up north in the countryside. I’ll post a few of those if anyone cares to see them.