Khao San Road a.k.a Backpacker Street

This road is full of bars and hostels. It was the first place I was offered a “sexy ping pong show”. Think American frat boys abroad for the first time mixed with Aussie lads, lost Norwegians and drunken English people. Music is blasting from every bar and the drinks come in buckets.

Khao San Road full of bars in Bangkok
Khao San Road

Khao San Road is within walking distance of the Grand Palace so it’s conveniently located if you want to visit the major temples. The hostels are a good price, if you’re brave enough to risk being given a room facing the street….

Bar in Khao San Road Bangkok
Bar in Khao San Road Bangkok         
Gin bucket
Gin bucket

As much as I had a great time in Khao San Road, my friend went drinking the week after and had his iPhone stolen, so remember to look after your things.

Sky Bars

Bangkok is an amazing vibrant city best seen from above. On most tourist lists is a visit to a sky bar. These are scattered throughout Bangkok. We chose to visit Above Eleven, a bar on the 32nd Floor of the Fraser Suites.

We didn’t have a booking and as it was a weekday I didn’t think we’d need one but I was wrong, reservations are usually required. It’s easy to make one on their website.

It was around 9pm, we were given a buzzer and took a seat at the bar. I was on gin and tonics and was surprised at how reasonably priced there were (220 Thai baht ~ £5 a shot). However, this was one of the cheaper sky bars, especially compared to the Sky Bar – on the 63rd floor of the State Tower, which has a strict dress code. Above Eleven has a relax dress code and is probably at the lower end of the sky bars in Bangkok but is still very nice!

Without siting on an outside table it was hard to find a good photo spot. So if you want to take a good photo, make sure you have one of these seats. While it was food oriented, I didn’t feel pressurised by the staff to order food.

Above Eleven Sky Bar in Bangkok
Me at Above Eleven

Nearly everyone there was Western – this wasn’t a local’s place. This is common with the sky bars as they’re tourist magnets but the views are incredible and make up for this.

Bangkok Skyline from Above Eleven Bar
Bangkok Skyline from Above Eleven

Sukhumvit

Sukhumvit is the name of an exclusive district in Bangkok, very popular with Expats, with lots of bars to cater to them. It’s also full of huge shopping malls. Sukhumvit Road is one of the longest boulevards in the world and the west end is the area I’m covering. The further southeast you go, the more “Thai” it feels.

Sukhumvit Road in Bangkok
Sukhumvit Road

The BTS Sukhumvit Skytrain line runs along this road. There are many hotels around here and Siam Station. We stayed at Hotel Icon in this area. It was a great hotel with an awesome rooftop swimming pool. However, there aren’t many tourist attractions around here but with the Skytrain, public transport links are good.

Skytrain at Siam Station in Bangkok
Skytrain at Siam Station

At night the road really comes to life and due to the large number of expats and foreign tourists there are bars to suit everyone. We found wine bars and clubs here aiming for a higher clientele. This area is for those that who have outgrown Khao San Road but still want to have a good night out.

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