While you can easily escape the party scene, you also don’t have to look hard to find it. From thumping nightclubs in Bangkok to one of the world’s biggest parties on Ko Pha Ngan, you have plenty of choices if you want to stay out late.
Many of Thailand’s famous beaches are notorious for partying: Patong, on Phuket; Haad Rin, on Ko Pha Ngan; Chaweng, on Ko Samui; all of Pattaya…. On these beaches you’ll find the usual beach bars, complete with fire dancers and tables on the sand. Head inland a few blocks, especially in places like Patong and Pattaya, and you’ll find streets full of bars, often with scantily-clad Thai ladies gyrating out front.
In Bangkok, clubs thump late. You’ll see folks wandering around drunk in the Khao San Road area at 7am, while the Patpong scene is rife with sex shows. For a classier experience, visit one of Bangkok’s rooftop bars (we like Sky Bar at the State Tower). If drinking isn’t your scene, consider perusing one of Bangkok’s many night markets for some after-dark shopping, or take in a Muay Thai show.
Warnings and tips
As with any scene that involves a lot of drinking, do your best to keep your wits about you. While Thailand is generally safe and friendly, we’ve heard first-hand stories of folks (especially men) being slipped something in their drinks, and waking up to find their wallets gone. Don’t accept free drinks from seemingly well-meaning folks, and certainly don’t bring a prostitute back to your room.
Remember that the punishment for possessing illegal drugs in Thailand is much more severe than in the US, and you’re not immune from the law simply because you’re an American citizen.
[Photo credit: re-ality, Flickr]