The 6 Most Happening Places In Thailand To Visit With Friends
With the affordable allure of picture-perfect beaches, an electrifying nightlife, and heart-pumping adventures, it’s a sin to not live out your fantasies in Thailand. Whether you’re planning a bachelor/bachelorette trip, a beach vacation, or a shopping expedition, the country has something to suit all your needs. So dive in and check out our comprehensive guide on the best places to visit in Thailand with friends.
Phuket is perfect for those who wish to enjoy an endless stream of action during the day, party until sunrise, and nurse their hangover lolling under palm trees on a beach the next morning. Come night or day, it holds the promise of good times.
Phuket has something for every type of party enthusiast. For party animals, there’s Bangla Road – a world-famous street lit up by nightclubs, beer bars, go-go bars and strip clubs, it’s your one-stop party shop. You can spend every day on Bangla Road and still not get enough of it.
Want to take it easy for the night? There are beach bars playing Bob Marley, remote hippy hideouts and swanky rooftop bars here, too.
If Phuket dulls your senses by night, it can race your heart by the day. Thrill-seekers can get their dose from bungee jumping and zip lining, while those looking for something milder can scuba dive, snorkel or ride ATVs.
Best Thing To Do: Day trips to Phang Nga Bay or Phi Phi Island
How To Reach Phuket: Via a one-hour flight from Bangkok.
2. Koh Tao
Koh Tao is a diver’s playground – the sea here is a glittering blue, the marine life eclectic and the corals come in a kaleidoscope of colours. Its vividly-clear waters are a siren call to Whale Sharks, the largest fish in the world.
IKoh Tao is also the cheapest place to scuba dive in Thailand, so if you want the best bang for your Baht and a chance to swim with the gentle giants of the ocean, then add Koh Tao to your list.
Even if you are not a fan of diving, there are plenty of things here to keep you occupied. The island is encircled by empty white-sand beaches where you can enjoy a swim and even snorkel off the shores. Adrenaline-junkies can jump off cliffs, hike in the jungles or zip line over the ocean.
For an island that maintains such a low key status, Koh Tao has a prolific nightlife. Its pub crawls are a rage among youngsters. The ritual is simple – go to a pub and break the ice with strangers over drinking games. If you can still stand after all that, groove to some tunes at a beach bar.
Best Thing To Do: Scuba diving
How To Reach Koh Tao: Take a flight or an overnight train from Bangkok to Surat Thani. A 4-hour ferry from there takes you to Koh Tao. Alternatively, you can take a 2.45-hour ferry from Chumphon, which in turn can be reached from Bangkok by flight or an overnight train.
3. Koh Phangan
If your idea of a perfect holiday involves drunken revelry with 30,000 youngsters on a beach-cum-dance-floor, then Koh Phangan is the island for you.
Koh Phangan’s passport to fame is the legendary Full Moon Party it hosts. Once a month, travellers from around the world, all smeared in glow-in-the-dark paint, gather on its white sands to drink, dance and party all night long.
This has all the makings of a crazy party – bucketloads of alcohol, blaring music, insane fire shows, drugs, and a level of madness that has to been seen to be believed.
Can’t make it in time for the Full Moon Party? Worry not. There are Half Moon Parties, Waterfall Parties and Black Moon Parties at all times of the month for you to attend. There is action every night of the week on the island’s beach and cocktail bars.
The morning after, sleep off the hangover under the shade of a palm tree as a trained masseuse kneads you back in shape. Or, check in to a spa for an afternoon of recovery.
Want more action? Rent a bike and discover the island’s secluded beaches and hidden waterfalls.
Best Thing To Do: Obviously the Full Moon Party
How To Reach Koh Phangan: Take a flight directly from Bangkok to Surat Thani. A 2-hour ferry from there takes you to Koh Phangan.
Unless you’ve been living under a rock, you’ve certainly heard of Pattaya, mainly because of its seedy bars and ping-pong shows. But, look beyond the raunchiness and you will still be hooked by its no-holds barred party atmosphere and energetic vibe.
Walking Street is at the centre of all action in Pattaya. It is swamped with thousands of people, either dancing senseless at a nightclub, head-banging to rock music in an open air cafe, cheering in a staged Muay Thai fight, or simply chilling with a drink at a bar. Its loud, chaotic and addictive vibe will ensure you never have a dull moment here.
If you find your ears ringing, there are beach-facing bars where you can enjoy a drink in peace while listening to some mellow music.
Pattaya is also a hotbed for adventure sports in Thailand. For the daredevils, there’s sky diving, bungee jumping and human slingshot, all sure to earn you some serious bragging rights.
Not a fan of extreme adventure? How about peacefully gliding under the ocean, walking on the seabed, or riding a quad bike through the countryside?
And while you’re at it, do wash up at its beaches once in a while for an afternoon of sunshine and sun loungers.
Best Thing To Do: Party on Walking Street
How To Reach Pattaya: Pattaya is just 2 hours by bus/cab from Bangkok.
5. Koh Phi Phi
Koh Phi Phi is almost like a celebrity in the island world – even Leonardo DiCaprio fell in love with it in the movie, The Beach. Fringed by bleach-blond sand and seductive waters, it’s hard not to fall for this charming little island.
Maya Bay is the biggest draw in Phi Phi and the main reason for travellers pouring in. A bay of blue-green water wrapped by rocky cliffs, it remains one of the most photographed spots in Thailand.
The island lies inside a national marine park, meaning that the dive sites are more beautiful than most places in Thailand. The corals are a visual treat, the waters teeming with the smallest of fishes to turtles and massive sharks. It’s also one of the cheapest places in Thailand to scuba dive.
And when you are not diving in Phi Phi, you are partying. After sunset, the island comes to life with thousands of partygoers dancing to the beats from beach bars littered across the island.
Booze is sold in buckets here, quite literally. Sparked with a dose of liquid courage, it’s not uncommon to see drunken travellers attempting stunts with flaming objects like jump ropes and limbo sticks. The scene does get pretty wild here.
Best Thing To Do: Scuba dive
How To Reach Koh Phi Phi: Take a flight from Bangkok to Phuket or Krabi. Koh Phi Phi can be reached in 2 hours from either place by ferry.
Imagine starting your night with a few shots and a Maori-style Mike Tyson tattoo on your face. You begin with a bar-hop along Bangkok’s wildest party neighbourhoods, watch a ladyboy show, eyes widening as the alcohol kicks in, only to stumble into a rooftop bar to sip on some cocktails. Sounds like a recipe for a serious hangover, right? Well, that’s pretty much how your day starts in Bangkok.
A paradise for party lovers, Bangkok is buzzing with flashy nightclubs, wild party streets, chic rooftop bars, and seductive go-go bars. The sheer number of options here will truly boggle your mind.
At night, Khao San Road, the backpacker mecca, transforms into a dance floor, with hundreds of young travellers grooving to the beats, smack in the middle of the road.
And in between all the partying, you can cycle around the city’s alleyways and discover a side of Bangkok that not many have seen. Don’t forget to get a traditional Thai massage to round up your action-packed trip.
Best thing to do: The Hangover Tour