Pasar Besar Siti Khadijah (Siti Khadijah Central Market) in Kota Bharu is probably the most oft-photographed market in Malaysia. Perhaps because of its unique architecture and its special traits of having mostly ladies manning the shops and the stalls. The market is housed in a 3-storey, octagonal building which has translucent dome roof with its spiderweb-look frame.
This allows sunlight to penetrate and illuminate the central area on the ground floor where the wet market is located. And this is also where the familiar scene of the market activities are normally captured by photographers, professionals and amateurs alike, thanks to the ambient light that provides interesting and even lighting on the pretty large area.
Kelantan, besides Terengganu, is famous for its enterprising ladies. Most of the traders in any market in Kelantan are ladies and at Pasar Besar Siti Khadijah it is no exception. Pasar Besar Siti Khadijah was formerly known as Pasar Besar Buluh Kubu. It was Tuan Guru Dato’ Hj Nik Abdul Aziz Nik Mat the Kelantan’s former Mentri Besar (chief minister) who aptly changed its name to Pasar Besar Siti Khadijah after he took over the Kelantan State Government in 1990. Pasar Besar Siti Khadijah was named after the first wife of The Prophet Muhammad (peace be upon him), Sayyiditina Siti Khadijah (r.a) who was a very successful entrepreneur herself. It was also a mark of recognition to the enterprising, business-minded Kelantanese ladies who occupy most of the stalls and shops at the central market.
I have intended to photograph the market for quite some time before but I didn’t get around to doing it whenever I went to Kota Bharu, I last photographed this market somewhere in 2005 when I was still using film SLR. Last Hari Raya holiday I had the opportunity to capture this market again. I arrived at about 10.00am when the business activities had just started and took about one hour shooting and walking around inside the market looking for some interesting angles.
Below are some resulting pictures from my walkabout at Siti Khadijah Central Market.
Comments and criticism are welcomed with open arms. You can view more photos of the Siti Khadijah Central Market in my photo gallery.