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Friday, August 28, 2015

7 MUST-VISIT Places in Pattaya, Thailand

Pattaya got things to see meh? That's what we thought before our trip in July 2015, but after that, our lives are changed forever. Okay, that's exaggeration but trust me, Pattaya is gorgeous and it's no wonder why many Caucasian men choose it as their top holiday spot. Well, besides for the company of Thai ladies, I'm sure. In the morning you can stroll along the long stretch of sandy beaches, while at night, there is the famous Walking Street or you could chill out at one of the many bars or cafes along the beach. Without further ado, here's a list of 10 places you must visit when you're in Pattaya!

1. Pattaya Beach

Pattaya Beach is definitely one of the place you should not miss out (most probably, you will not miss out because of its prominent location). This beach boasts a 4-kilometer coastline of sand and sea, with just shopping centers and restaurants located not more than 20 meters away from the beach. Travelers could choose to play a variety of water sports (but it is not recommended due to its infamous jet-skis scams) or rent a beach chair and sip on some coconuts while watching the day pass. If you're up to the challenge, we took a leisure stroll of 1-hour from one end to the other and it's amazing. At night, there are street hookers literally everywhere along the beach.

Pattaya Beach during sunset

2. Koh Larn (a.k.a Coral Island)

For water activities, such as jet-skis, parasailing, snorkeling, and banana boats, we highly recommend doing it at Koh Larn, a hidden jewel just west of Pattaya. To go to Koh Larn, either take a motor boat (30-min, expensive alternative) or a ferry (1-hour) from Bali Hai Pier, which is located just beside Walking Street. Another alternative is to sign up for a hotel package for a fuss-free experience. The beaches at Koh Larn boast higher quality sand and clearer waters, but beware of sea urchins lurking near the shore. This is a clear warning that everyone must heed, because I was a victim of that and am still suffering the after-effects of it.

Thanks to our newly-made HK friends, Joe and Bi for the beach pictures

3. Walking Street

If you're not looking for go-go bars or one-night stands, Pattaya's red-light district is still recommended for its lively night scenes. There are some decent bars and restaurants, with really awesome live bands and even live muay-thai matches. While you're here, keep an open mind, as you may witness scantily-clad waitresses (gender unknown), topless dancers, and ping-pong ball/tiger-show advertisements with very sex-citing pictures. It is no wonder why the crowd is mostly males.

5. Cabaret Shows

When in Pattaya, do yourself a favour and go for one of their many shows (Tiffany, Colosseum, Alcazar, etc.). For us, we decided to go for the Tiffany Show because it's highly recommended.. and less than 5-min walk away from our hotel. Indeed, we enjoyed ourselves thoroughly with the amazing dance choreography, gorgeous costumes and ladyboys. I swear I almost turned gay for a few seconds. Nevertheless, Tiffany Show is suitable for all ages as there's nothing overly-sexual. You can even take a photo as souvenir and memory after the whole show which lasts for slightly more than an hour, but prepare lots of loose notes (because they might just snatch your whole stack away). An average tip is about 100 Baht, but if you're feeling generous go for it. I have seen a tourist giving 1000 Baht tip and he got to touch the fake boobs. I mean, seriously.

(S)he is a guy. No joke.

5. Pattaya Floating Market

Also known as the Four Regions Floating Market, this vast tourist attraction covers more than 100,000 square-meters and features countless eateries, souvenir and fruit stalls. There is a small entrance fee of 200 Baht and an optional fee if you wanna have a boat ride (suitable for 4 people). I have read reviews that Pattaya's version is unlike the real floating markets they have across Thailand, because evidently, this is built for tourists. Nevertheless, it's a good experience if you have not visit a floating market in your whole life before. Within the floating market, there are smaller attractions such as the love bridge and cultural centers. If you're going there, wear loose clothing and drink lots of water, even so, prepare to sweat like crazy.

6. Thepprassit Night Market

If you're staying at North/Central Pattaya, it will be wise to plan the floating market together with Thepprassit Night Market because of their close proximity. Unlike night markets which serve as tourist-traps, Pattaya's biggest night market is mostly populated by locals and boasts authentic local food, amongst very interesting things, such as dogs and weapons. Nevertheless, if you're looking for cheap and good food and loot/souvenirs, check out this place. You wouldn't be disappointed. And for God's sake, remember to bargain. Thepprassit Night Market opens every Friday to Sunday (5pm onwards).

7. Sanctuary of Truth

Okay we did not visit the Sanctuary of Truth because of time constraints, but it seems like a really cool place to head to when you're in Pattaya. The 20-meter wooden structure is made without any metal nails, and is decorated with wooden carvings of Hindu and Buddhist gods and goddesses. Skip the Ripley's Believe or Not, or the Art in Paradise, even if you're not a follower of their traditions, it can serve like an educational trip to a really cool museum.


There you go, here's my top 7 MUST-VISIT places in Pattaya. If you beg to differ or have any other suggestions, feel free to share in the comment box!