Bangkok Stopover - Must Do No.8

Pubbing and Clubbing

One facet of Bangkok that many Stopover visitors may wish to explore is the club and bar scene, for which Thailand has become a little infamous. To get away from this ‘infamy’ recent governments have introduced new rules to ‘tone the action down’ somewhat. The clubs and bars can still be visited and are situated near the heart of the city, but the attractions and opening hours have been pruned.

The reputation of such areas can make them seem large in the imagination, but often they are difficult to find. As in the seafood restaurant, I was greeted warmly, but the hostesses were more scantily clad. This was a Go-Go bar and a selection of young ladies were dancing (I use the term loosely) on various plinths around the club. Drinks were a little expensive, but not prohibitively so. I discovered that observing the young ladies too intently might lead to them coming over to join me. When they do, they expect to be invited to have a drink or be given a tip for their company. It’s all fairly harmless, but many of the ‘dancers’ have very little English.

For the return journey to my hotel I decided to try a tuk-tuk ride. I’d not seen these vehicles before coming to Thailand, although I’d heard of tricycles being used to taxi visitors in some countries. The tuk-tuk is a motor scooter, which has had its rear wheel converted to make it a three-wheeled, open taxi. You should agree the fare before getting in and it is usual to bargain a little to reach a price.

Nowadays, they are not much cheaper than taxis, but once the fare is agreed you don’t have to watch the meter ticking over in the traffic jams. Zooming along the empty night streets in these noisy vehicles is a great experience.

If all that sounds a little fraught for your stopover, then there are beer bars where you can just sit and sip your drink, watching the world go by.





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