Pattaya City is probably best known for its wild nightlife and its range of adult entertainment. That reputation is not entirely misleading since the city tends to attract many Western men in search of love or simply casual encounters.
However, Pattaya is also a popular spot for family vacations due to its proximity to Bangkok and the numerous activities on offer.
If you come to this city, you may be wondering what to see and do in Pattaya.
A city, located an hour and a half south of Bangkok that you can reach by taxi if you can afford it, or by taking a bus from Bangkok at Ekamai station ( Bangkok Bus Terminal Eastern ) for about 150 baht.
In Pattaya, you will find beaches and various places of attractions, but if there is something that stands out about this site, it is its kilometer-long streets full of GOGO bars and places for adults.
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Stroll down Walking Street in South Pattaya, a pedestrianized precinct from early evening till morning.
It is a place aimed at adults, although it is very standardized so it is common for you to find families walking with children in the early evening.
Packed with go-go bars, happy ending massage parlours, live music bars, restaurants, and beer joints, the scene is crowded and noisy which gives the casual punter an idea of what is on offer.
The ubiquitous girlie and gay bars are there, but alongside these, there is an Irish pub and heaps of loud discos and an array of places to grab dinner and watch the show walk by.
Pattaya City – Soi 6
If you go to Pattaya, you know what you are going to find there. Streets and streets are full of bars, GOGO halls, showrooms such as the popular Ping Pong Show, and dozens of surprises and experiences that you cannot even imagine.
If you are going to Pattaya, I recommend you go to Soi 6. In Thai, the word street is said Soi so that you will see on every corner a sign with the word Soi and a number or a name.
There are so many bars, lounges, and clubs that it is difficult to recommend any. The best thing is to go to Soi 6 and explore for yourself.
Cabaret Shows – Alcazar Cabaret
Another great Pattaya City staple is the cabaret shows. Usually performed by ladyboys, they are a music and dance show with fantasy costumes. It is not adult content so that anyone can go. , what has been a cabaret.
The most popular is the so-called Alcazar Cabaret, which, from the beginning, performs the most valued show by tourists.
What to Do in Pattaya City
The other most popular activities in Pattaya are obviously swimming and sunbathing. Pattaya Beach in itself is fairly unremarkable and tends to be overcrowded.
However, just outside of the city, Jomtien Beach is a popular option with families and altogether, offers a much more pleasant experience. The Southern part of Jomtien beach also offers a gay section for same-sex travelers.
Several shopping centers now exist in Pattaya, the latest and largest one being the Central Festival Pattaya complex. Other options in town are the Royal Garden Plaza and Mike’s Shopping Center.
Goods on offer in those malls vary from low-quality pirated products to high-end luxury items. Most of these shopping centers also offer bowling alleys, a myriad of restaurants, karaoke, and movie multiplexes.
Other popular activities for families are available throughout the city. Several zoos and theme parks, for example, can be found in Pattaya City.
What to See and Do in Pattaya City – Beaches
After a long night of madness, the best thing to do is spend the day on the beach recharging your strength for the next night. Beach Naklua Beach, to the north of Pattaya, is one of the best.
Being separated from the town, its waters are cleaner and less crowded. An excellent place to escape from noisy places that make your head explode because of a hangover.
Wong Amat Beach
Located after the previous one, Wong Amat Beach is another option to spend your day of rest, relax on a beach. Being a little further from Pattaya than the previous one, it is less crowded.
So if in the first option there are too many people for you, make an effort, walk a little more, and get here to find the tranquillity you are looking for.
Jomtien Beach is next to the Pattaya beach, so it is more crowded than the previous two. I put it in third place because here you will find more people and more noise. Also,the water is less clean.
But if you are lazy and don’t want to go a little further north, it will always be a better option than Pattaya Beach itself. Without a doubt, one of the points to keep in mind when wondering what to see and do in Pattaya.
Koh Larn Beach
Koh Larn is an island about 7km south of Pattaya City. An obligatory visit if you want to visit a paradisiacal beach since Pattaya City does not stand out for its beaches.
So the best option, to find a white sand beach and crystal clear waters in this area, is to take a ferry (45min) or a speedboat (15min), and finally enjoy a clean beach without water spills.
The best, and perhaps only option to find such a beach in Pattaya City. It has seven beaches and a coral area so you can also enjoy snorkeling.
What to See and Do in Pattaya City – Excursions
Nong Nooch Botanical Garden
The Nong Nooch Botanical Garden is a beautiful park located inside Pattaya Town. Easily accessible, being within the town, towards the interior, it is a place to visit and thus enjoy collections of plants from around the world.
It has a European garden, the French one, the Stonehenge garden, and an endless number of tropical plants gathered in one place. A beautiful place to spend a day while waiting for the next crazy night.
The Great Buddha Hill
The Great Buddha of Pattaya, which belongs to the Wat Phra Khao Yai temple, is a large golden Buddha that you will find on the south hill of Pattaya.
A beautiful temple from which you will also have beautiful views of Pattaya. An excellent place to go during the day, when you are tired of so much beach.
The Pattaya Floating Market is one of the main attractions in the area. In general, they are one of the experiences that you cannot miss if you come to Thailand. One of the best ways to get into traditional Thai culture.
Although today they have indeed become so popular that they are more frequented by tourists than by the Thais themselves.
But still, it is an experience. The best thing is that you hire the excursion at your hotel, or cheaper, at any of the travel agencies that you will find on any street.
They will seat you in a traditional boat, they will give you a leisurely walk through the market canals, and they will offer you all kinds of souvenirs and food—one of the points to keep in mind when wondering what to see and do in Pattaya.
Sanctuary of Truth
The Pattaya Sanctuary of Truth, known as Prasat Sut Ja-Tum in Thai, is a spectacular building made entirely of teak wood. Taking a close look at the handcrafted carvings around the building is a real wonder.
It is still unfinished, but it is so advanced that it is already open to receive tourists. Of course, the entry, somewhat expensive, is 500 baht that the artists use to finance the project.
For once you go to Thailand, it is worth seeing. Both for its tourist interest and its cultural interest.
What to See and Do in Pattaya City – Activities
The Buddha Mountain, Buddha Mountain in English, or Khao Chi Chan in Thai, is a famous mountain in Thailand on the side of which a spectacular image of Buddha is engraved.
It is right at the end of Pattaya Beach, and above Jomtien Beach. So it is very easy to find, and it is the ideal place to go trekking or go up with the motorbike.
Ramayana Water Park
Ramayana Water Park is nothing more than the typical water park with slides. But it offers all the fun of this type of park, which is also freshwater.
To leave the party route or the beaches, and especially if you travel as a family, a perfect place to spend a fun day. Also, it is very close to Pattaya, which is always good.
Getting to Pattaya City by Air, Taxi, Bus, or Train Extended Directions
Pattaya has its own small airport named U-Tapao. Unfortunately, it only connects the city with Koh Samui and Phuket. No flights to or from Bangkok are available.
However, since Pattaya is only 150 km away from Bangkok, surface transportation is usually fast and cheap. Taxis in Bangkok sometimes agree to take travelers directly to Pattaya.
The fare is usually around 1200THB, including highway tolls and the journey takes about 100 minutes.
Buses are the most popular option but can be much slower. Buses to Pattaya can be found in most Bangkok bus stations.
However, Ekkamai station on Sukhumvit Road is the only station to offer hourly departures to the seaside city.
Travelers should choose the first-class bus since the journey on those is usually more comfortable and faster than on second class buses.
On weekdays, it is also possible to get a train from Hua Lamphong train station in Bangkok to Pattaya City.
However, even though this is by far the cheapest option, traveling by train in Thailand can be extremely slow and should be attempted only by tourists visiting the country on a very tight budget.
If you found this guide helpful and want to learn more about Pattaya City please check out our Pattaya City Fun Guide.
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