Pattaya has an official population of a little over 100,000, however it gets over 4 million tourists a year. Many of the workers serving this tourist trade are still registered in their home town so the total number of people in the city sometimes makes it feel even more crowded than Bangkok.
With its vast numbers of hotels, beer bars, go-go bars, massage parlors, and by-the-hour room rentals, Pattaya is probably best known for the gorgeous ladies that work in these establishments.
Although Prostitution is technically illegal in Thailand, reality shows that something very similar to it happens here. It is also claimed that Pattaya has Asia’s largest gay entertainment area, which is located around Boyztown and Sunee Plaza. It is also famous for its flamboyant cabaret shows where “lady boys” perform to packed houses.
Family Friendly Pattaya
In addition to the adult night life, the city and the surrounding area has many family friendly attractions.
We have listed below some of these attractions.
Not many people come here for the beaches. They mostly come for the party atmosphere and the vibrant night life. Also the sea is not that clear and the beaches are not always clean, so if you are picky on this you should perhaps go to Phuket or Koh Samui.
- Pattaya Beach – The main beach which fronts Beach Road. Although family friendly in the day time many would not walk their children in this area at night.
- Jomtien Beach – is considered one of the better beaches, but by world standards there are better ones. I would not come here just for the beaches. The beach is about 8 km long and be aware that a small section of the north western part of Jomtien Beach is a very popular local gay attraction. Not that this causes a problem as it is only a short section so it is easy to move on if you are a little sensitive about it.
- Wong Amat Beach – is a relatively quiet and a tranquil beach. It is cleaner and less crowded than the main beach yet closer than Jomtien to the action of the city if you want more excitement. You may see a high percentage of Russian tourists in this area.
- Tawaen Beach – A short boat ride from the city. One of the most popular family beaches.
Temples and Religious Places
- Sanctuary of Truth (Prasat Sut Ja-Tum) – A large wooden structure. Not a temple as their is no monk and there is no religious affiliation.
- Buddha Mountain (Khao Chi Chan) – An outline image of Buddha “sketched” on to the side of a mountain.
- Wat Phra Yai or (Wat Khao Phra Bat), (Commonly known as Big Buddha) – Sits high on the hill overlooking the city.
- Wat Yansangwararam (Wat Yan) or (Wat Yannasang Wararam Woramahawihan)- About 25 km south, near Silver Lake.
- Wat Chai Mongkon – Right near the red light district of Walking Street. Some of the innocent looking ladies seen here are dressed differently to what they may be at night.
- Viharnra Sien (Anek Kuson Sala) – Chinese temple (no longer technically a temple) South of the city towards Silverlake, now in use as a museum. Houses some unique collections.
Gardens, Parks and Animals
- Nong Nooch Tropical Botanical Garden – Beautiful gardens and a cultural show. Performing elephants, playing football, darts and painting.
- Underwater World – A world class aquarium suitable for all age groups. Definitely worth a visit.
- Khao Kheow Open Zoo –
- Million Years Stone Park & Crocodile Farm –
- Elephant Village –
- Three Kingdoms Park –
- Dolphin World & Resort –
- Sri Racha Tiger Zoo –
- Pattaya Water Park –
- Monkey Training Centre –
- Chang Thai Thappraya Safari –
- Silverlake Winery – A winery and park area near Buddha Mountain about 25 km from the heart of town. Owned by a popular Thai movie star.
- Siriporn Orchid Farm –
Other Family Entertainment
- Art in Paradise– A 3D and interactive art exhibition. Suitable for all young and young-at-heart.
- Ripley’s Believe It or Not! –
- Teddy Island, Teddy Bear museum – This is Not and island and not a museum but an interesting location to take the kids for a Teddy themed entertainment area that is air conditioned a a relaxing escape from the outside heat.
- Khao Phra Tamnak –
- Rocket-Ball – Age limited (and also at the end of walking street) and not advisable for those with medical conditions. If you want a thrill, you do get launched – quickly!
- ALANGKARN – An area of 32 acres. Includes a prototype Hexa stage Theater with 2,000 seats and a Restaurant with 1,000 seating capacity.
- Mini Siam and Mini Europe – Miniature replicas of famous or important landmarks from around the world.
- Easy Kart – Two separate tracks and two different cart specifications for the learner and advanced drivers
- Floating Market – A poor attempt at a replica of a floating market. Only go if you can get in for free.
- Pattaya Park Tower – Overlooking the city, it has 3 revolving restaurant on the 52nd 53rd and 54th levels and Observation area on level 55.
- Tuxedo Magic Theatre – Mr. Tuxedo combined his engineering know-how with in-depth magic study to create and transform magic tricks into mesmerizing magic shows.
- Bira Circuit – A motor racing track named after Thai prince Prince Birabongse Bhanutej Bhanubandh. About 15 km north east of Pattaya
- Louis Tussaud’s Waxworks – Over 200 life-like figures of movie stars, historical figures, and fantasy.
- Herb Garden – Peaceful and tranquil, and filled with stunning tropical flowers.
- Bottle Art Museum – Hard to find. Opposite Mini Siam
- Central Festival Haunted House – On the 4th floor of Central Festival shopping complex.
- The Porch – Watch a movie from a choice of round bed sofas or reclining bed. Or better still (recommended by most who have tried both) use the First Class option from the same cinema within the SFX multiplex cinema at Central Festival Pattaya Beach shopping mall.
- Tiffany’s Show – Great cabaret entertainment. Obvious lip-syncing by lady-boys but that adds to the fun of the show
- The Venue Cabaret – An amateur night of cabaret entertainment which will only cost you the price of a beer. Note that this is in a gay bar if that offends you don’t go.
- Colosseum Cabaret – Similar to Tiffany’s although considered by some to be slightly more “professional”, but slightly less “entertaining”. Both good shows if you have time to compare
- Beach road – Walking this road at night will give you a view of the Pattaya night life that will be hard to forget.
- Walking Street – Lots of light, costumes and scantily clad ladies to tempt the young sailor into parting with his money.