Walking Street Pattaya is the biggest and busiest party hotspot in the whole of Thailand, with only a couple of the top places in Bangkok beating it for sheer volume and variety. A full kilometre from its high-tech gateway at the Beach Road end to the Bali Hai Plaza end, almost every building along its length is a nightclub, go-go bar, beer bar or restaurant. Each of the side streets – which span from Soi 14 to Soi 16, with a couple of uniquely-named streets in between – is more of the same, making the whole southern end of the city into a warren of nightlife entertainments, with something for practically every taste.
The remarkable thing about Pattaya Walking Street is that there is so much to see and do, and it is so densely packed that you could spend every night for a whole week there and, aside from having the mother of all hangovers, you would still be finding new places each and every evening. We have endeavoured to survey the main points of interest and even here we are just scratching the surface of the hundreds of venues on and around the neon-drenched strip.
Anyone who has ever been to Pattaya will know about Walking Street: around 500 metres of bar after bar of dancing girls and nightlife entertainment. Even outside the bars, groups of girls wave and call at all passersby to try and entice them inside. Things get going from around 20:00 until late into the night and the street is a constant throng of tourists.
Go-Go bars come in many shapes and sizes, but the typical elements include a bar, a central stage with several poles, and lots of seating facing the stage. Girls will dance on stage to club music, replaced every few songs with a new group of dancers. In between dancing, these girls will mingle with the crowd, and are happy to have a chat in return for a free drink.