Chanthaburi and Gemstones

Chanthaburi City & Gemstone Market. 

Chanthaburi is the Gem Capital of Thailand and maybe not only from Thailand. The city is also known for the "Ruby Burner". Having a look around for gem's at the stone market in the old town show people from all over Asia bargaining in small rooms behind darken windows and some in open air market.

The next bigger gemstone market is in Bangkok around Sathon road Chiang Mai and Mae Sot plus Mae Sei.

The business hours are as it is usual in Thailand different to anywhere in the world they are open on Friday and Saturday other days are closed or maybe open but actually nobody knows everyone just does as he or she likes it's totally chaotic and unpredictable. 

Most gemstone dealing in Thailand is going on in Bangkok and Chanthaburi Town  with mainly Myanmar semi-precious stones and smaller markets are in Chiang Mai Mae Sot Mae Sai. Precious stones traded are jade ruby sapphire quartz & rose-quartz plus more but as usual in Thailand everything is traded everywhere Thais are always open for a good deal and a cheat.


Chanthaburi semi-precious stones trade shops are plenty that means if most shops are closed maybe some are open but nobody knows again, that's Thai style its chaotic and everyone is "cooking their own soup".

Beautiful "pigeon's blood" colored rubies from Myanmar are on display, but since Chanthaburi city is also the worldwide center of so-called "Ruby Burning" most red ruby and other precious stones are heat treated to get rid of inclusions and impurities. 

Pretty dark blue faceted and polished Sapphire from Myanmar and Madagascar are plenty and other precious and semi-precious stones are available. 

Every year from 8 -12 December the Chanthaburi Gems and Jewelry Fair is held here. People of Indian origin negotiate with Chinese trader's, Thai with Japanese, some European gem trader want to make a deal but always shake their head. The gems come from many directions, such as Myanmar or Burma Cambodia and as far as Madagascar one of the new player in the gem market. 

Thai gem traders have invested quite some money in gem mining in Madagascar. The precious stones make their way to the Chanthaburi gem market including jade jewelry and raw jade from Myanmar are very precious materials for Chinese jewelry but larger jadeite jade markets are in Mae Sot at the border to Burma where jade bangle costs from US$ 10,- up to $3000,- depending on the color and the translucent of the jade stone some shops also offer beautiful golden Myanmar pearls. 

If you are not a specialist don't buy anything you will be cheated for sure. It's better to take an expert with you they can be hired at "gem street". All kind of semi-precious stones mainly used in jewelry production is traded here. 

Chanthaburi is the capital of the so-called "ruby burner".

What is a ruby burner? It follows the tradition of Thai means fake manipulation and copying. Since what makes a below average ruby a top performer?... Burn the ruby get rid of inclusions and have a perfectly clear ruby gemstone. Actually this is not a Thai invention even since about 15xx A.D. they burn the ruby to enhance the color and appearance first done in India and after the Arabs enhanced the burning procedure. 

The Thai added a modern touch via technology by the simple Thailand philosophy everything goes including copy illegally everything as long it brings money. If you are truly interested in buying magnificent ruby it makes sense to buy ruby stones from here:

Chanthaburi Gemstone Market.

Chanthaburi is together with Bangkok the Gem Capital of Thailand and maybe not only from Thailand the city is also known for the "Ruby Burner". Having a look around for gem's at the stone market in the old town everywhere  people from all over Asia bargaining in small rooms behind windows or at the open air market.

The business hours are as it is usual in Thailand different to anywhere in the world they are open on Friday and Saturday other days are closed or maybe open but actually nobody knows everyone just does as he or she likes it's totally chaotic and unpredictable.

Most gemstone dealing in Thailand is going on in Bangkok and Chanthaburi Town  with mainly dealing in Myanmar Gemstones and smaller markets are in Chiang-Mai Mae-Sot and Mae-Sai. Precious stones traded are jade ruby sapphire quartz & rose-quartz plus more but as usual in Thailand everything is traded everywhere Thais are always open for a good deal and a cheat.

Chanthaburi semi-precious stones trade shops are plenty that means if most shops are closed maybe some are open but nobody knows again that's Thai style its chaotic and everyone is "cooking their own soup".

Attractive "pigeon's blood" colored rubies from Myanmar are on display but since Chanthaburi city is also the worldwide center of the so-called "Ruby Burning" most ruby and other precious stones are heat treated here to get rid of inclusions and impurities. 

The sophisticated heat treatment came into the market via Union Carbide in the 195x when they got a patent on a certain unique special way although heat treatment of gemstones is done  since hundreds of years but only in recent times the technology became available to make it almost perfect. Beside it is also performed with sapphires the result is pretty dark blue polished Sapphire from Myanmar and Madagascar are on sale plus other semi-precious stones available.

Chanthaburi Gems and Jewelry Fair.

Every year from 8 -12 December the Chanthaburi Gems and Jewelry Fair is held here. People of Indian origin negotiate with Chinese trader's, Thai with Japanese, some European gem trader want to make a deal but always shake their head. The gems come from many directions, such as Myanmar or Burma Cambodia and as far as Madagascar one of the new player in the gem market.

If you are not a specialist don't buy anything you will be cheated for sure. It's better to take an expert with you they can be hired at "gem street". All kind of semi-precious stones mainly used in jewelry production is traded here.

What is a ruby burner? It follows the tradition of Thai means fake manipulation and copying. Since what makes a below average ruby a top performer?... Burn the ruby and get rid of inclusions and have a perfectly clear ruby gemstone. Actually this is not a Thai invention even since about 15xx A.D. they burn the ruby to enhance the color and appearance first done in India and after the Arabs enhanced the burning procedure.

The Thai added a modern touch via technology by the simple Thailand philosophy everything goes as long it brings money. If you are truly interested in buying magnificent ruby it makes sense to buy ruby stones from here. 

Actually in modern times Union Carbide of the US got a patent for a special "ruby burning" procedure but nobody takes that really serious.

Chanthaburi Thailand.

This place is one of the centers of the gem trade but in the old town. The gem market in the main building is only open at weekends and the gemstones are finally transferred into attractive pieces of jewelry with vibrant color combinations and great designs. There are not so many pieces of jewelry on display in Chanthaburi, the focus is the gem precious and semi-precious stones. This is a very interesting town, it's not a big town but for the reason indicated before people from all over the world come here for gem dealing, buying precious or semi-precious stones and also sell them. Actually, there are several beautiful beaches and islands with white sandy beaches close by, but the people who come to Chanthaburi have mainly loose gems in mind. Chanthaburi has a couple of interesting landmarks.

The sightseeing spot including a Catholic Cathedral.

Other landmarks and sightseeing destinations include pretty Chinese temples and not far away at the beach-side several attractive waterfronts with almost white fine sand and some limestone bolder in between. 

The picture shows the Cathedral of Immaculate Conception. Located on the left side of the Chanthaburi river this Church is about 275 years old and has been renovated several times. Christian Vietnamese created the church who have been in Chanthaburi from time to time. The architecture is somehow Gothic style decorated with stained glass and murals. The church looks like the cathedral in Ho Chi Minh City ( Saigon in Vietnam). 

A bit further down the riverside is this pretty Chinese Buddhist Temple pictured here. The Chanthaburi River itself is somehow a romantic view with the houses reaching the waterfront and people often just jump into the river from the veranda when it gets too hot at the beginning of the year.

Chanthaburi Thailand has many facets and is a stronghold of the gem and mineral business in Asia. Quartz and all another kind of rough gem are offered at gem show in back rooms and right on tables at the street in the city center. Gemstones are everywhere and gem wholesale with bead jewelry plus blue gem gold jewelry green gem crystals agate stones, amethyst gem aquamarine are on display on the roads of the old town there is even the Gem Street in the old town. 

All these gemstones finally find their way into Thailand jewelry or many have been produced elsewhere in the world particular interesting are semi-precious stone from Myanmar and Madagascar. Beautiful stones some very rare colorful plus simple rocks (minerals) dug out from the earth. After cutting polishing and set into a piece of jewelry it becomes very valuable. 

For Chanthaburi Hotels pls. use the booking icon on top right.

The KP Grand Hotel has excellent rooms prices start at around Baht 1200,-. There are two hotel restaurants one at lobby level and one at the top  floor with a great panorama view over the city and the old town with the Gem Market. At the top floor restaurant a band plays every evening and at the restaurant on lobby level some girl singer entertain no naughty girls business is on. 

Close to the Eastern Hotel is the Minibus Station for Pattaya plenty of other buses for Bangkok and elsewhere leave from the main Bus Terminal. Since the city is relatively close to the beaches of the Gulf of Thailand not only one resort is waiting to be explored. 

To the west is the beach-side of Laem Singh with plenty of sandy waterfronts and the Philu Waterfall National Park. At Krathing Bay located in the Philu National Park a camping site is available. Khao Laem Singh National Park covers an area of 9,500 rai (15.2 SQ km). The lion-like cape offers a great panorama view. Atop the hill is the Phairee Phinat Fort with a Chedi and a French cemetery. 

The area around Chanthaburi Province has seen plenty of foreigners coming and going after a while notable Vietnamese and French during their time in Indochina and some Japanese during WW2 today this is in Chinese hands. The location of the province has a certain strategic importance since lots of ships pass this part of the Gulf of Thailand. If you are interested in something very special visit Oasis Sea World near Laem Singh about 25 km. Enjoy swimming with dolphins, Dolphin shows are done daily. For more information, contact tel. 0-3949-9222 

In January the shrimp or prawn festival is on people come from everywhere to enjoy to eat shrimps and prawns for free -in certain places-. 

Other festivals are: 

World Durian Festival. Held annually in May at the Provincial Stadium. There is a fruit decorating competition a Miss Orchard beauty pageant and plenty of other tropical fruits on display. There are also some dog competition lots of gems exhibitions and local products for sale. 


A Orchid Festival is in February every year. At Rajamangla University of Technology, there is an orchid contest and photo contest. Plenty of Thai orchids are on display. Pluang Buddha's Footprint Festival held annually from Chinese New Year Day to Makha Bucha Day (around January-March) atop Kitchakut hill. There is a blessing deity propitiation ceremony and a pilgrimage up the hill to cover the Buddha's footprint with gold leaf. Around are many Buddhist and Chinese Taoist temples as almost everywhere in Thailand.

But probably the most interesting events is the Chanthaburi gem market it could be the best to try this ruby and precious gems market. 


We took some text from Chanthaburi History: By Adisorn Muakpimai  

Chanthaburi History.

If you're really keen on history take a trip out to Laem Sing 30 minutes' drive from the town's old quarter. The Tuek Daeng (Red Building) there is a fort built in the reign of King Rama III was subsequently turned into living quarters and a military command post by the French. 

Today it's used as a public library current gem business and selection is mainly done in the old town. Hotels in Chanthaburi are plenty probably the best is the KP Grand Hotel easily recognized since this hotel is the tallest building in town its just beside the Chanthaburi River and close to the Gems Center. At lobby level of the hotel are plenty of jewelry shops. Around the hotel are more shops selling sapphire diamond garnet ruby ( mainly so-called burned ruby) and gem jewelry. People are selling ruby minerals quartz and other rough wholesale and retail items. 

About Chanthaburi History is also to investigate the pattern of the coastal trade of cities which were located on the frontier of Ayutthaya in particular cities on the Gulf of Siam. They are characterized clearly as port cities on the trade route between Ayutthaya and China. 

In general the text below is to examine how the gemstone trade activities in cities on the Gulf of Siam supported the Ayutthaya trade for a long time. This paper focuses on Chanthaburi in the late Ayutthaya period and the Bangkok period. Even after the fall of Ayutthaya in 1767, Chanthaburi continued trading with other port cities without the support of the capital. Moreover, that King Taksin (1767-1782) always stressed the importance of Chanthaburi suggests the existence of an independent trade network from the late Ayutthaya period. Cities on the eastern part of the Gulf of Siam became the main source of revenue for Siam in the early times of Thonburi. In this paper, I will try to look into the link between Chanthaburi and Ayutthaya and whether they were the independent players in the coastal trade or partners in the eighteenth century. 

Mr.Adisorn Muakpimai, the Author of this historical text describe Chanthaburi as a gateway for the hinterland as well as for the coastal ports along the way to China. The Sino-Siamese Trade and the Political Factions in Ayutthaya Many scholars mentioned the rise of Sino-Siamese trade in the eighteenth century in place of the Western-Siamese trade for instance Sarasin Viraphol, Tribute and Profit Sino Siamese Trade 1652-1853 (1977); Saichol Wanarat, Saethakij sangkhom plai Ayutthaya [Socio-economy un the Late of Ayutthaya] (1974); Dhiravat na Pombejra, 

Most of them give interesting evidence that while the Western-Siamese trade decreased the Sino-Siamese trade became the main source of income of Ayutthaya through tributary trade and trading by individuals. A rice shortage in southern China led Ayutthaya and other countries in Southeast Asia to export rice and other products. It made China ease the regulations of the tributary system for rice transporting ships for both states and individuals in Southeast Asia. 

Chanthaburi Thailand. 

This place is one of the centers of the gem trade but in the old town. The gem market in the main building is only open at weekends and the gemstones are finally transferred into attractive pieces of jewelry with vibrant color combinations and great designs. There are not so many pieces of jewelry on display in Chanthaburi, the focus is the gem, precious and semi-precious stones. This is a very interesting town, it's not a big town but for the reason indicated before people from all over the world come here for gem dealing, buying precious or semi-precious stones and also sell them. Actually, there are several beautiful beaches and islands with white sandy beaches close by, but the people who come to Chanthaburi have mainly loose gems in mind. Chantaburi has a couple of interesting landmarks The sightseeing spot including a CatholicCathedral. 

Some pretty Chinese temples and not far away from the beachside several great beaches with almost white fine sand and some bolder in between. The picture shows the Cathedral of Immaculate Conception. Located on the left side of the river, this Church is about 275 years old and has been renovated several times. Christian Vietnamese who have been in Chanthaburi from time to time constructed the cathedral. The architecture is somehow Gothic style decorated with stained glass and murals. The church looks like the cathedral in Ho Chi Minh City or Saigon in Vietnam. 

A bit further down the riverside is this pretty Chinese Buddhist Temple pictured at right. The Chanthaburi City river itself is somehow a romantic view with the houses reaching the waterfront and people often just jump into the river from the veranda when it gets too hot at the beginning of the year, Chanthaburi Thailand has many facets. Gems and minerals, gem quartz and all another kind of rough gem are offered in gem show, in back rooms and right on a table at the street in the city center. Gemstones are everywhere and gem wholesale with bead jewelry, blue gem, gold jewelry, green gem, crystal gem, agate gem, amethyst gem, aquamarine gem goes on on the roads of the old town. There is even the Gem Street in the old town. All these gemstones finally find their way into Thailand jewelry or jewelry made elsewhere in the world. Beautiful stones, rare and colorful plus simple rocks (minerals) dug out from the earth. After cutting, polishing and set into a piece of jewelry it becomes very valuable. Although the town was occupied by forces from French Indochina between 1893 and 1906, there is little evidence that they'd ever been here apart from the distinctive architecture of the Catholic cathedral and a few other buildings. If you're really keen on history to take a trip out to Laem Sing, 30 minutes' drive from the town's old quarter. 

The Tuek Daeng (Red Building) in Chanthaburi.

The Tuek Daeng (Red Building) in Chanthaburi is a fort built in the reign of King Rama III was subsequently turned into living quarters and a military command post by the French. Today it's used as a public library. Gems business and selection is mainly done in the old town. Hotels in Chanthaburi are plenty, probably the best is the KP Grand Hotel, easily recognized since this hotel is the tallest building in town, its just beside the Chanthaburi River and close to the Gems Centre. At lobby level of the hotel are plenty of jewelry shops. 

Around the hotel are plenty of gem shops selling sapphire, diamond, garnet, ruby ( mainly so-called burned ruby) and gem jewelry. People are selling ruby minerals, quartz, rough gems for gem wholesale and retail. The KP Grand Hotel has excellent rooms, prices start at around Baht 1200,-. There are two hotel restaurants, one at lobby level and one at the top of the hotel with a great panorama view over the city and the old town with the Gem Market. At the top floor restaurant a band plays every evening and at the restaurant on lobby level some girls singer entertain, no naughty girls business is on. 

Close to the Eastern Hotel is the Minibus Station for Pattaya, plenty of other buses for Bangkok and elsewhere leave from the main Bus Terminal. Since the city is relatively close to the Gulf of Thailand beaches not only one resort is waiting to be explored. To the west is the beachside of Laem Singh, with plenty of sandy beaches and the Philu Waterfall National Park. 

At Krathing Bay in the Philu National Park.

At Krathing Bay located in the Philu National Park, a camping site is available. Khao Laem Singh National Park covers an area of 9,500 rai (15.2 SQ km). The lion-like cape offers a great panorama view. Atop the hill is the Phairee Phinat Fort with a Chedi and a French cemetery. The area around Chanthaburi Province has seen plenty of foreigners coming and going. Notable Vietnamese, French during their time in Indochina and some Japanese during WW2. The location of the province has a certain strategic importance since lots of ships pass this part of the Gulf of Thailand. If you are interested in something very special visit Oasis Sea World near Laem Singh, about 25 km. Enjoy swimming with dolphins, Dolphin shows are dome daily. For more information, contact tel. 0-3949-9222 Chanthaburi Festivals In January the shrimp or prawn festival is on, people come from everywhere to enjoy to eat shrimps and prawns for free -in certain places-. Other festivals are: World Durian Festival. 

Durian Festival.

Held annually in May at the Provincial Stadium. There is a fruit decorating competition, a Miss Orchard beauty pageant and plenty of other tropical fruits on display. There are also some dog competition, lots of gems boots and local products for sale. Orchid Festival in February every year. At Rajamangla University of Technology, there is an orchid contest and photo contest. Plenty of Thai orchids can be seen. Pluang Buddha's Footprint Festival held annually from Chinese New Year Day to Makha Bucha Day (around January-March) atop Kitchakut hill. There is a blessing deity propitiation ceremony and a pilgrimage up the hill to cover the Buddha's footprint with gold leaf. There are many Buddhist Temples and Chinese Taoist temples around as almost everywhere in Thailand also close to the Chanthaburi gem market. It could be the best to try this ruby and precious gems market. About Chanthaburi History: By Adisorn Muakpimai Introduction. 

The paper below is written with two purposes. The first is to investigate the pattern of the coastal trade of cities which were located on the frontier of Ayutthaya in particular cities on the Gulf of Siam. They are characterized clearly as port cities on the trade route between Ayutthaya and China. Second, in general, is to examine how the gemstone trade activities in cities on the Gulf of Siam supported the Ayutthaya trade for a long time. This paper focuses on Chanthaburi in the late Ayutthaya period and the Bangkok period. Even after the fall of Ayutthaya in 1767 Chanthaburi continued trading with other port cities without the support of the capital. Moreover King Taksin (1767-1782) always stressed the importance of Chanthaburi and suggests the existence of an independent trade network from the late Ayutthaya period. 

Cities on the eastern part of the Gulf of Siam became the main source of revenue for Siam in the early times of Thonburi (Bangkok which became the new capital after the Burmese destroyed Ayutthaya). Chanthaburi also was the center of the trade products from the hinterlands and other port cities and had brisk trade with Ayutthaya.

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