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  Bangkok - Nightlife

Nightlife in Bangkok is always interesting and there is plenty to do. Shopping of course continues late into the night, restaurants and bars also, but at present there is a 1am curfew on almost everything, so get out into the night by 9pm and plan to play hard until mid-night.

Markets: The biggest is the Suan Lum or Lumpini Night Market, this is a great place to go. Its very safe, has lots and lots of stalls, no hard selling and the biggest outdoor food and beer garden with live music in Bangkok. Get there around 7pm for a beer, wander around, have another beer, there is an outstandingly good pizza place there, husband is Italian, wife is Thai, they have been there for ever and a day. There are many girls and boys to get your drinks and food, tell them what you want and the right person with the right menu will eventually arrive. Don’t forget to tip them! They work hard for little in return. Wander off and do some more shopping. Probably best place for authentic and not authentic souvenirs.

The other major night market area is Patpong. This place is crazy. Its hot, crowded, they will rip you off so bargain hard, and then bargain harder, never buy before you walk away. The downside of Patpong night market is the surplus of girlie bars along both sides of the strip, you will soon find yourself sticking to the inside rows of the market. A lot of the goods are knock offs, and not very good at that, but if you want that, here it is.

One of the best places in Patpong is Radio City where you can see Elvis, Tom Jones and Ray Charles each night from about 10.30pm. They are fantastic and the band is not only good but very funny, every night. The guy who seems to run the place will sing Black Betty every night, its worth going to see him and nobody else. It’s a bit smelly and dark, but you are safe here.

Other popular ‘scenic’ areas are Patpong, Nana Plaza and Soi Cowboy. Here you will see everything you have ever heard about the sleazy side of Bangkok. Take it for what it is, go and have a look if you like, just be very careful. If at any time you feel uncomfortable get out of where ever you are. You will usually find tourist police in these locations, look for brown uniforms or any other expats, they will always help you find your way. Each of these three places have their own character, first timers will probably find themselves in Patpong because of the night market, but you are better off at Soi Cowboy as the touts are less aggressive there. There are many “katoys” in Bangkok so make sure the girl you are dancing with is a girl!

Elephants: You will usually see young elephants with their handlers in the tourist areas at night. For $1 you can feed the elephant and have your photo taken with them, they are really beautiful young animals, don’t ignore them for reasons of false piety, feed the animal and let it grow up and be returned to the elephant park where it will lead a long and happy life with all the other elephants.