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With two weeks to spend in Thailand, you’ve got plenty of options for what kind of holiday you have there. We’re giving you some ideas, such as a cultural trip or one focused on adventure. Visiting temple ruins and trekking through the jungle are both great, but some people just want to have a good time on their vacation. Let’s see what kind of damage you can do with a 2-week party in Thailand.
Seeing as how you’ll probably have to pass through at the start of your trip anyways, you might as well kick off the party in the capital city. Plus, Bangkok’s nightlife is the stuff of legends. From the backpacker ghetto of Khao San Road, to fancy rooftop bars and everything in between, the night is definitely your oyster in BKK.
With a few days here, you can move around the city a bit and take in different scenes. Go ahead – spend a night schwilling buckets of booze with the backpackers on KSR. Some people like to rag on the place, but it is what it is – a giant party – and that’s what you came for anyways, isn’t it? At the very least, you’ll find some of the cheapest drinks and eats in Bangkok and you’ll be entertained by the wild scene.
Another night, go for drinks at expat-favorite Cheap Charlie’s on Soi 11. If they’re around, grab a drink at one of the makeshift bars out of VW vans while you’re over there. Nice and buzzed up, you’ve got plenty of options for dancing the night away in the area. Whether you’re looking for a live band or a DJ, you’ll have no trouble making it a big night in this part of the city.
You knew we couldn’t talk about Bangkok’s nightlife without mentioning the infamous go-go bars. Indeed, the X-rated side of the city’s nightlife is what made it notorious worldwide. Full of neon and bikini-clad ladies (and ladyboys, for that matter), these bars are located in a few different districts around the city. The most famous places are Patpong, Nana Plaza, and Soi Cowboy. Get a sneak peak in this video:
Get out there and see a few of the sights during the day if you can – nights tend to turn into days real easily here. If you don’t make it to many temples or museums this time around, no worries. Chances are you’ll have so much fun that you’ll be planning a return visit before you even head to your next spot in Thailand.
After a few wild days in the city, it’s time to hit the islands to make this feel more like a vacation. The party must go on, but you’ll probably want to take a day or two off to recover from that compounding hangover and the travel day. With less than a week, you’ll want to pick just one or two of the three islands here. Ko Samui is incredibly popular and is the easiest to go to as it has an airport, but I’ve avoided it on all my trips to Thailand so I can’t say much about it.
Ko Tao is best known for its diving, as it’s one of the easiest and most affordable places to get certified in the world. It’s also firmly on the Banana Pancake backpacking trail around SE Asia, bringing in boatloads of people looking to let loose on a daily basis. The island’s marathon pub crawl is an absolute blast, and it’s gotten so popular that they now do it four times a week. Check it out in this short video:
On the off nights, there are still plenty of options for enjoying a few drinks with fellow travelers while catching a fire show on the beach.
Neighboring Ko Pha-Ngan is home to the infamous Full Moon Party, which has been drawing tens of thousands of partygoers to the island every month for decades. Just be prepared – it is absolute lunacy on the beaches of Haad Rin. If you’re looking for something a bit more mellow, the island hosts plenty of other gatherings. In addition to half moon and black moon parties, there are also jungle parties, waterfall parties… you get the picture. Even if there isn’t a bash going on, you won’t be hard-pressed to find something cool going on.
While you could easily whittle away the rest of your trip on the gulf coast, you might as well make the short trip to check out the other side. The most popular place there – and perhaps the country at large – is Phuket. Once again, I’ve avoided this part of Thailand for that exact reason, so I can’t really tell you what it’s like. There are certainly good times to be had there, though. The same goes for the islands of Ko Lanta and Ko Lipe. I’ve heard from friends that they’re lots of fun, but you can’t go everywhere with just a few weeks.
If you’re looking for a chilled out backpacker vibe, adventure activities like climbing and kayaking, and a fun nightlife scene, you don’t even have to go to an island. The town of Ton Sai is cut off from the rest of the mainland by mountains and is only reachable by boat. Share beers with fellow travelers at the awesome Small World while you try your hand at slack-lining or just take in a fire show, and turn it up to 11 late night with the wild dudes over at the Sunset Pirate Bar.
For those who didn’t linger too long at the other spots and would like to have one more wild night or two on a Thai island, Ko Phi Phi just might be the place. Get a free bucket for fighting a round of Muay Thai at the Reggae Bar, burn one down at Hippies, and dance the night away at one of the countless bars on the beach. If you’re not too hungover one day, consider taking a boat trip to visit Maya Bay, go snorkeling, and do a bit of cliff-jumping.
Obviously, this trip is focused primarily on the islands. I figure that most people coming to Thailand for just two weeks looking to get wild will want to limit the days spent on a plane or in a bus. If you’re feeling up for the challenge, though, you can definitely party hard in the north as well. Those trying to take in a bit more of the country would be advised to check out Chiang Mai and Pai. With just a few precious weeks, however, perhaps it’s best to just stick to one side of the country in addition to Bangkok and save the other for your next trip. After such an awesome 2-week party, why wouldn’t you be back?