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May 22 2016

Thailand Trip Report – May 2016, Part 1

Thailand Trip Report – May 2016 (Part 1)

 

So during May 2016, I went to Thailand for another holiday. This time I was visiting Bangkok, Pattaya and Phuket. Instantly as you get off the plane you can feel that the heat is intense and I was wearing pants and a jacket at this stage. So first thing was to change into something cooler and then head off to the Hotel in Bangkok. Landing at Don Mueang there was no Sky Train available so off to the Taximeter rank, I find this the cheapest and easiest option, rather than a private transfer.

During the Taxi ride it was visible that there has been a lot of works going on to improve the Transport throughout Bangkok. The new rail line from Don Mueang has come a long way since September and looks like it may actually get completed. This Skyrail will join Don Mueang to the existing Skyrail BTS. There are also long term plans to create a Skyrail from Survarnabhumi to Utapao Airport (Pattaya/Rayong). Travelling along the Expressway you could also see works occurring to the areas around the Bangkok Train Station where more upgrades to the Thailand rail network are being completed.

Pattaya-city

Staying in Soi 11 as it is one of my favourite Soi’s and instantly there was a change. President Palace Hotel was Closed (this was one of my favourite Bangkok Hotels).. More construction of new buildings had started and the area had almost become unrecognisable. None the less the first night we managed to get out and have a meal and a few drinks. Opted to eat food from one of the street stands which turns out to be one of the worst Pad Krapao dishes I have ever had. We Ventured to the Rooftop bar in Nest and relaxed and enjoyed the first night back in Thailand.

Second day we had planned to go to Pratunam Markets as well as a little site seeing. I prefer to walk and use the BTS while in Bangkok, so we got on the BTS at Nana and got off at Chit Lom and walked our way toward Pratunam. On the way we got to see the Erawan Shrine, which was very busy, even after the recent bombing. The elevated walkway is great to stay away from the traffic and with more under construction Bangkok is coming very easy to navigate by foot. Our first stop was Superrich to exchange some money. I have said it before but I will take Australian Dollars to Thailand and exchange it in the country where you get a better rate.

We finally made it to Pratunam where we engaged in some shopping and a great Isan meal. It is a great place for clothing, and bulk buys and with Panthip close by, you have all the electronics available. All this walking and heat, I think it is time for a massage and a few beers at Soi 22.

Soi 22 feels like a different atmosphere to Soi 11. It is a bit more relaxed, I had managed to find a nice hotel, place to eat and a great massage parlour. Unfortunately I discovered prior to the trip that the hotel I like to stay at was closed (Citrus 22). But it was not until I got there that I discovered the place I like to eat (Cheers Bar and Gill) was also gone, thankfully my Massage shop (Lek @22) was still available. Now I know what you are thinking but when I get a massage, I want a real massage. Here I have always been able to get a good massage without being pushed into “extras”. I am a larger guy so I generally get the strongest women, or even a male for my massages. My first massage from a male I was very concerned but I have never been let down yet and no longer worry.

After the great massage we went to some open air bars where is nice and relaxed to have a few beers. We eventually found the bar that we were going to drink at and we made the right choice. Free pool, Gunz and Roses playing, cold beers, fun staff and many cold towels for the heat. The way I choose my bars all depends on the people working there. Weather I am travelling alone, with my partner or looking for a companion for the night, I still want to be treated well and have a good time. I have found that when travelling with a partner a lot of the staff at the bars will not interact with you, as you are already “Off the market”

This night I promised my partner that I would take her to a Thai Restaurant just out of Bangkok, which was owned by a famous Thai Comedian. It was an All you can eat (for 90 mins) Seafood buffet called Sabai Sabai Bar, This restaurant is aimed more for the Thai people so it is not an easy place to find. For 499B per person, we had as much fresh seafood as we could eat as well as drinks (including Beer). The owners of the restaurant were currently travelling so my GF did not get to meet them but she was just happy to be able to get there.

Turning back a bit to finding a Taxi to get to the restaurant. It is always touch and go getting a Taximeter in Bangkok. You have to find a Taxi that is available then ask them if they will take you to the required location. You will get one of three responses; yes – get in, Yes with a price (legally they must use the meter, but some will test you), or you will get a NO! Very often you won’t even get a No, they will just drive off, nearly driving over your feet.. If using a Taxi in Bangkok, be very careful and be aware of what to expect.

Our bellies were full and the night was well upon us, So it was time to hit the town. Tonight we were heading to Soi Cowboy to visit a few Go Go bars. Personally my Favourite is Tirak Bar, so I will always start of there and jump from bar to bar. While at Tirak Bar siting at the stage looking up at the many beautiful women we discovered that it must have been no underwear night… This came as a shock to us so we had to order another beer and investigate further hehehe. We then did venture to a few other bars including Long Gun, which is well known for its shows and different attire worn by the women. I have to say the shows were great, the girls were beautiful and I liked that there were many girls wearing different “uniforms”. Eventually we stumbled back to the hotel as we were to Pattaya the following day.

I will always use the same company when I go to Pattaya. I use Mr T who is cheap, reliable and been operating for many years. Generally they do the pickups from the 2 Bangkok airports and will take you to your hotel in Pattaya. I asked to be collected from my hotel and they accepted for the extra 100B. The trip to Pattaya takes about 2 hours with minimal traffic and with this services Tolls are covered in the price.

Now, Me personally when I arrive in Pattaya, I am like “A Pig in Shit”, have a smile from ear to ear and ready to party. I choose to spend a bit more money on this trip and stayed in a nicer hotel as opposed to a guesthouse or cheaper room. I stayed at Initmate Hotel by Tim Boutique. I highly recommend this to anyone travelling to Pattaya. It is in a good location near Soi Diana and Buakhao and not far from Walking Street. The Staff were great, always happy and willing to help out, the facilities and rooms were great and I know I will be coming back here for many trips to come.

So we were settled into the room and ready to get out on the town. First was the food court at Central Plaza followed by some shopping and then a swim in the pool to cool down? In the pool I met the owner of the Hotel, who was a very nice older Thai women. She spoke great English and we talked for about an hour about Thailand, family and life in general. The pool was located on the rooftop and had a swim-up bar, gym and Sauna available.

So first night in Pattaya was upon us and there were plans for a big night. Starting with a big feed at an Indian restaurant that managed to get my order wrong and followed by Walking Street for Open Air Bars, Live Music, Go Go Bars, The Pole Angels, Nightclubs and of course late night drunken Kebabs. The atmosphere of Walking Street is great. Bright neon lights, music, women lining the street, tourists from all corners of the globe coming to see the attraction. Walking Street is a well know Red-Light District but is also great to just have a look around. Our Night ended up in a full VIP area of I-Bar, where we then caught a Motorbike taxi back to the room.

pattaya-nightlife-walking-street

Continue with Part 2 here

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