Eating durian for the first time in Thailand

Eating DURIAN for the first time in THAILAND [YUCK!]

They call it “The King of Fruits”. Grown mostly in South East Asia and regarded as a delicacy in Thailand, durian is… well, how to say it… an acquired taste!

On the outside, it looks like a true warrior, grand and spiky, deserving of its royal designation. On the inside, though, durian is soft and custardy – yet, for my taste, not in a good way. It’s (in)famous for its truly pungent smell and a flavor that (supposedly) varies greatly according to level of ripeness.

Durian farmers in the island of Koh Samui

Durian farmers in the island of Koh Samui

When you visit a market in Thailand, you don’t need to look around too hard to find durian. Normally, the smell will come and greet you even before your eyes can place where the durian stand is. That odor is no joke! No wonder this smelly creature is banned inside hotels and public transportation.

As seen inside a hotel in Thailand

As seen inside a hotel in Thailand


Yet you’ll see that most local people love not only the fruit per se, but also use it in other desserts such as ice-cream, moon cakes or candy.

Like many other fruits in this country, it can be purchased already opened and cut, ready for consumption – just like we bought it in Bophut’s Night Market a few days ago.


This was the moment when we finally tried durian for the first time:


After filming this clip, we drank some coke in a silly attempt to extinguish the after-flavor in our mouths. Oh, what a dumb move! Not only the coke vendor made fun of us for being newbs “you eat durian? I don’t like!!” [insert a blend of hilarious/evil laugh here], the coke made us burp for hours… and we’re not talking about caramel-cola like burps here. Instead, it felt like we were farting through our mouths. We ended up eating some spicy crocodile skewers and, finally, the sweet yet strong chilly sauce of the meat marinade helped “cleaning up” the durian scents left in our palates.

Ashray came up with a theory that night: if food that smells good ends up smelling like poo the next day, chances are the stinky durian would smell like yummy food the next day. I am somehow happy to confirm that that was not the case!..


Have you tried durian before?
We’d love to hear your opinion!

And if you haven’t… would you have the guts for it?!

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  • Anita Catita Says

    Not yet, but I will. Promise.

  • Avinash Manohar Says

    Zara, I nearly threw up after seeing you retch :) I haven’t visited Thailand yet but Durian is definitely off the menu.

  • I’m really impressed – I’m born and raised in Indonesia and have never eaten Durian all my life, despite all the durians near me! Even some of us Southeast Asians can’t stand durians, haha!

    • Ashray Says

      Actually, the guy we bought the Coke from saw us holding the Durian. He laughed and we asked him “Do you like this?” and he screwed up his face and said “NO!!!!!”. We’re at an AirBNB right now sharing with a Taiwanese girl and her take on Durian was “I don’t eat that garbage” So I suppose not all Asians like it.

    • Zara Says

      Sometimes I think Asian people are very keen on selling durian to tourists and, really, they’re just laughing away when we buy (and bite!) into the hype. Your comment sort of proves my theory! ;)

  • Johann Says

    I love your video. In Singapore my friends loved Durian, but were also used to eat a lot of litchi afterwards, maybe to remove the fart taste ^^ ?!

    • Zara Says

      If they need to remove the taste it’s cause they don’t love it that much, one would think. Why do people need to try so hard?! It’s almost as if you’re cool if you like durian, or something like that..

  • Yep, been there, tried it!! I didn’t mind the ice cream, but durian custard and the plain fruit was a bit too much for me to handle!!

  • I tried Durian for the first time while I was in Singapore, It was an experience by itself. But I didn’t really freak out, although the smell was terrible the taste was bearable. I ended up bringing back Durian flavoured candies to some people… must say after that, many of them are terrified to ask for a souvenir when I travel.

  • Krina Says

    I remember trying durian! It’s a cross between a mango and garlic! Not sure if I would take a 2nd bite though :)

    • Zara Says

      That’s actually a pretty good explanation of what it tastes like. There’s definitely garlic flavor in the mix… perhaps rotting garlic, actually! :P

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  • Durian is definitely my favourite fruit. It certainly is not a tourist scam – locals in China pay top dollar for good quality durian imported from Thailand. The reputation that durian has is not fair, most foreigners have a preconceived idea that durian must be bad before they even see one.

    As far as eating other fruits after the durian, mangosteen is commonly eaten to balance the heat from the durian. It is not about removing the durian taste!

    • Zara Says

      I don’t think Durian is a touristic scam as such.. but I have read that they do tend to sell the poorest quality durian to tourists, because we wouldn’t by default known the difference. Still, they don’t tend to be cheap.. at all!

  • Mahendra Nand Kishore Says

    We are in Bangkok now and perplexed about having durian or not. Last day we were buying it but my fellow friend didn’t show interest in it. I guess we saved… hehehe

    • Zara Says

      C’mon.. go ahead and try it!
      If not for the flavor, it’s at least worth it for the sake of the the experience! ;)

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