Bangkok became a popular destination with international tourists in large part because of its nightlife, made famous by the "go-go bars" - that is to say, the red light district type of evening entertainment. These days though, while you'll find this kind of nightlife in the Soi Cowboy, Nana Plaza and Patpong neighbourhoods, the Thai capital has so much more to offer than just scantily-clad "dancers"!
Bangkok's party areas
- Banglamphu: Based on Th Khao San and its side streets, this is one of the city’s best nightlife hotspots, where you'll find a chaotic mix of foreigners and increasing numbers of locals. Brick Bar is popular with locals and has great live music; The Club is enormous and often hosts guest DJs; Phra Nakorn Bar & Gallery has a lovely rooftop area.
- Riverside, Silom & Lumphini: The streets off Th Silom are home to Bangkok’s gay scene and all are welcome. Rooftop Moon Bar and Sky Bar are iconic and offer spectacular views of the city - although drinks prices reflect this; find dance clubs on Soi 2, or head to Soi 4 for a more chilled vibe.
- Sukhumvit: This long street is packed with cocktail bars, craft beer pubs, live music venues, eateries and nightclubs. Favourites are Levels, a hotel club that stays open late; Nung-Len for live bands; and WTF (Wonderful Thai Friendship!) for pretty much everything!
- Khaosan: This area is filled with foreigners and young backpackers. The dress is more casual and the vibe is rowdier. You'll probably find the cheapest drinks here.
- Royal City Avenue: The most posh area for partying in Bangkok, the atmosphere is young and elegant. The only downside is that the area is a bit far from the center, however, it's easy to reach by cab.
- Thong Lor: If you're looking for something more exclusive, Thong Lor is what you're looking for. It's a neighborhood where you can eat in expensive restaurants, go to chic bars and end the night in a swanky nightclub. Here, foreigners are mixed with wealthy Thais.
Nightclubs in Bangkok are quite large and ticket prices are usually about € 10 (US$ 10.40). Once inside, a bottle to share between several people costs about € 15 (US$ 15.60), making it the economic option.
- Route66: The biggest nightclub in Bangkok and the preferred one of young people. It has three rooms with various styles of music, ranging from electronic to commercial.
- Levels: The most exclusive club and one of the most famous nightclubs in Bangkok. It's located on the sixth floor of a luxurious hotel and is one of the nightclubs with more atmosphere in Bangkok.
- Demo: Don't be deceived by it's graffiti decoration and neon lights. Demo is one of the most sophisticated nightclubs in Bangkok, where the wealthiest Thais go.
- Insanity: This nightclub is open til late in Bangkok, so it's always a good option.
- In the nightclubs of Thailand, it's more common to order bottles in a group than individual drinks. It's cheaper and the quality is better.
- The drinking age is 20, although this is usually only enforced at nightclubs.
- Keep in mind that most bars and clubs officially close at midnight, although some places have licenses to remain open until 1 or 2 am.
- Many clubs and nightclubs in Bangkok have a dress code. As a general rule, shorts and sandals are not allowed. You'll see that the Thais are very well-groomed and image-conscious when going out.