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Khao San Road

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Khao San Road: The epicentre of Thailand’s backpacker scene

If you’re planning a trip to Bangkok, chances are you’ve heard about Khao San Road. The undisputed starting point for backpackers, party-goers, and the young at heart, the vibrant and slightly manic heartbeat of Bangkok’s party district is simply not to be missed. The chances are that the people who say something like ‘remember that night in Bangkok,’ are referring to something that happened during their time spent on Khao San Road.

Let’s dive in and take a look at what makes Khao San Road such a must-see destination for tourists, as well as some much-needed advice on how to keep safe during a visit to Thailand’s party capital.

Party all night long (or at least until 2am!).

Although you will find people wandering up and down Khao San Road during all times of the day, it truly comes alive at night. Street vendors sell all sorts of food, ranging from scorpions to pad Thai, and your senses will be overwhelmed by the booming music coming from the bars and clubs that line the road. Perhaps the toughest decision you have to make is where to start your night, as there are so many venues to choose from including strip bars, live music venues, and cheap bars selling literal buckets of alcohol. Most tourists enjoy some form of bar crawl and take in the variety of venues the road has to offer.

Shop at Thanon Khao San market.

Khao San Road is not just about the partying. At Thanon Khao San Market, located next to the main strip of guesthouses, you will find a unique assortment of goods and souvenirs for your perusal. Whether you’re on the hunt for luminous hats and accessories to supplement your fancy dress costume, or you want a somewhat humorous t-shirt informing people back home that you’ve been to Bangkok, you’re going to find it at Thanon market. You can also find the usual souvenirs like fridge magnets and postcards, so it’s an excellent place to pick something up for your loved ones back home.

Top tips for visiting Khao San Road.

As with many of the tourist attractions in Thailand, Khao San Road gets extremely busy, and there are several things you should consider before paying a visit. Below we share five tips that will make your trip down Khao San Road a memorable one:

  • Leave your valuables behind. If you’re heading for a night out on Khao San Road, leave all of your valuables in the hotel. And we mean all of them. Take some cash, your ID, and your phone, but leave everything else. Pickpockets are rife at night and are ready to take advantage of drunk foreigners.
  • The street food is of questionable quality: Don’t head to Khao San Road explicitly to try the street food. While it might be ideal after a few drinks, it’s not the best quality available in the city. For quality, either head to Chinatown or the area surrounding Victory Monument. You won’t be disappointed!
  • Don’t arrange a taxi home from Khao San Road: Taxis and tuk tuks are vastly overpriced on Khao San Road. It’s better to walk around the corner and arrange a ride elsewhere, as you’re more likely to be quoted a fair price.
  • Stay elsewhere: Although not everyone will agree with this, it’s a good idea to find accommodation away from Khao San Road and jump in a taxi to head there at night. Although there is a great deal of cheap accommodation, it is incredibly loud at night, and it can be tough to get a good night’s sleep!
  • Head to Soi Rambuttri to keep the party going: Most establishments on Khao San Road are forced to close at 2am, but Soi Rambuttri remains open all night and is the perfect destination for all night revellers.

How to get there

Although many people arrive at Khao San Road by tuk tuk or private taxi, the best way to arrive is by boat. Tha Athit Pier is the closest to Khao San Road and is a short walk upon disembarkation until you reach your destination. Simply follow the crowds (and the noise!) when you get off the boat and you’ll be sure to find your way.

Conclusion: Khao San Road

Although it might not be for everyone, Khao San Road is the beating heart of Thailand’s backpacker and party scene. If you’re looking for a memorable night out, few places in the world compare to Khao San Road, so make sure it’s at the top of your list of priorities when you arrive in Bangkok.


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