While Bangkok during the day might be busy and bustling, Bangkok at night is another story. Out of every country in South East Asia, Bangkok’s nightlife is the wildest, bar none. While there are family-friendly options, things could get pretty crazy and out of control.
Here are some of the ways that you can enjoy the nightlife in Bangkok.
If you are visiting Bangkok with your family for the first time, we highly recommend visiting Night Market first.
Bangkok’s night markets are vibrant. Every location is often filled with authentic Thai food. There are always hawkers selling you handcrafted clothing, artifacts, second-hand goods, and souvenirs. Coming to a Thai night market is the fastest way to experience local Thai culture.
If you’re visiting Bangkok for the first time, you might want to start with the most famous night market. With that, we recommend Train Night Market Ratchada. This night market is right next to the MRT Thai Cultural Center Station.
One of the foods where you must try here is the Laeng Saeb. It is a specialty that stacks spines with pork bones stacked almost like a small mountain of some sort. Some other authentic Thai dishes that you must try include fried jellyfish, Worms on a Skewer, Pad Thai, and Yoklook (watermelon smoothie).
Before you leave Train Night Market Ratchada, don’t forget to stop by the Esplanade Shopping Mall for a panoramic view of the night market.
If you’re looking for some more night markets, you might want to head to Khao San Road or The Camp Vintage.
Kao San Road is a backpacker’s hub. It’s filled with bars, clubs, soap massage parlors and shops that target western tourists. Compared to the Train Night Market Ratchada, there are fewer Chinese tourists here.
The Camp Vintage is a newer night market that’s opened in 2018. Compared to the usual hustle and bustle you’ll see in any other night market, Camp Vintage is quiet and calm. It’s got a hippie vibe, with a hint of retro-futurism mixed in. If you are looking for a place to chill and calm down, perhaps shop while listening to some local Thai pop music, this is the place to be.
Thailand’s red-light district and sex-related nightlife is the most vibrant one out of every country in Southeast Asia. To begin our venture, we might start with the basics of Bangkok nightlife: Nightclubs.
If you want to make friends with the locals, going to a Thai nightclub is the fastest way to do so. Like most nightclubs around the world, men are required to pay an entrance fee (ranging from 100~500 Baht), while women can get in free of charge.
Thai nightclubs accommodate various budgets. There are world-class nightclubs like Onyx and Funky Villa that require some dress code. The drinks could cost a penny if your wallet’s not deep enough. On the other end, there is also Brick Bar, located in Khao San Road. While Brick Bar is a legendary venue for its reggae-infused dance floor, you would also see tourists buying drinks from convenience stores outside the bar and dancing to the music. It doesn’t get as fun and as much of a variety as this.
Another thing that differentiates nightclubs in Bangkok is the music. Instead of playing electronic dance music or sometimes disco beats, some Thai night clubs play hip-hop and R&B music, such as Sugar at 11 Sukhumvit Road.
Go Go Bar, Soap Messages, Japanese Karaoke Bar
Thailand has several red-light districts that specialize in entertaining foreigners. It includes Nana Plaza and Patpong. In any case, you will find several different forms of ‘services’ available in the form of entertainment services. Some of those most common ones include Go-Go Bar, Thai Bubble Bath, and Karaoke Bar.
Go-Go Bars are, in essence, Thai-style pole dance nightclubs. Unlike your average pole dance nightclubs, women who perform at Go Go Bar are usually dressed in a bikini. These performers are sometimes topless to arouse the audience. They usually do not have an entrance fee, but you will need to order at least one drink. If you are an adventure seeker, a visit to Go-Go Bar is a great choice. After the show’s done, you can always invite one or more dancers out.
There are also so-called soap messages and Japanese karaoke. While these places do offer what they suggested to do, they would usually offer something ‘extra’ during service. It is this way that these companies get away from anything illegal, as directly offering sex service is illegal in Thailand.
Ping Pong Show
Out of every suggestion we have on this list, this one’s probably the oddest one out there.
Ping Pong Show is not playing ping pong. It is, rather, a show that uses a woman’s vagina to perform various stunts – such as smoking, throwing darts, and spitting ping pong balls.
Rather than labeling this as a ‘sexy’ show or something arousing, it’s more like a discovery program. It is not for everyone, but an eye-opening experience for sure.
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Ladyboy shows & Muay Thai
If you’re bringing your family along and are not interested in any of the adult options, you should check out Ladyboy Shows or Boxing Matches.
In case you still haven’t figured out, a ‘Ladyboy’ is referring to a transgendered female. Bangkok is one of the cheapest countries to do transgender operations. Transgender females are almost a part of their culture, and ‘Ladyboy Show’ is one of those shows that showcase its history and prowess.
It’s not hard to find ladyboy shows like Calypso Cabaret, Playhouse Cabaret, and Golden Dome in Bangkok. These shows are often a healthy mixture of dance performances, magic shows, singing, sometimes drama and skits. Most of the performances here are targeted at family-friendly audiences.
Another program that is also family-friendly is Thai Boxing, otherwise known as Muay Thai. Thai boxing is actually head-and-shoulders with other kinds of martial arts, such as Kung Fu, Taekwondo, and Judo. It is also the national sport of Thailand. And in Bangkok, you can find two different types of boxing shows matches.
One option is the Muay Thai at Asiatique the Riverfront. It’s a show that contains elements of actual boxing while showcasing Muay Thai’s history and its greatest players ever lived. It’s not an actual boxing match, but rather contains elements of it. Because of that, it is not as violent and fierce as an actual Thai Boxing match. If you are looking for a way to learn more about Muay Thai, this would be a great place to start.
If you are interested in watching an actual Boxing match, you should head over to one of the stadiums located in Bangkok. Rajadamnern Stadium and Lumpinee Boxing Stadium are two of the biggest stadiums that you can start looking for tickets.