Sep 05 2012
There can’t be many cities in the world that boast entire streets dedicated to entertainment, but Bangkok – being a notorious party town – has several, including backpacker haven Khao San Road, Soi Cowboy and Patpong, which are geared towards sex tourists, and Royal City Avenue, which is packed full of clubs. Single-street nights out are a great option for the lazy planner, or those who can’t face dealing with Bangkok’s hideous traffic more than they need to.
Sukhumvit Soi 11 is rapidly becoming another such street, where a whole evening’s entertainment can be found. New hotels and restaurants open regularly along the soi, which now offers a hugely varied selection of hangouts – which sets it apart from Bangkok’s other famous streets. There are budget options, such as VW bars and the outside dive bar, Cheap Charlies. There are the more specialist haunts, including the Old German Beerhouse and the Manchester United bar. There are numerous cocktail bars, including Marshmallow, Nest and Oskar and there are high end clubs, such as Bed Supper Club, Q-bar and the newly opened Levels. Remember to bring your ID; you’ll almost always be asked for it.
Your first clue that Soi 11 might be a little more vibrant than other streets is the abundance of activity, visible as soon as you start the trek from one end to the other (it’s better to take a motorbike taxi for 10 baht on a hot night, as the walk can take a long time due to the volume of human and vehicle traffic). Neon lights blare, street vendors sell everything from mangos and durian to flashing bunny ears, hookers huddle around Villa supermarket and people wander up and down the soi in search of their next drink.
Drinks are something that is certainly well-catered for on the street. Food options are less varied, but you certainly won’t go hungry. Dosa King serves up hearty vegetarian dishes, you can grab overpriced pub grub in The Australian, Chilli Culture is great for a refined Thai meal, Limoncello boasts some of the best Italian fare in the city, and there are numerous street stalls selling fresh Thai seafood dishes to order.
As the street becomes more popular with tourists, the road becomes packed with scam taxi drivers at night, trying to make a quick buck. Never bother taking a taxi that doesn’t take you on the meter, there are plenty of drivers who will gladly pick you up from Sukhumvit Road.
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