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Home > Travel > Destinations > Reasons to visit Patpong, the birthplace of Bangkok’s go-go culture
Reasons to visit Patpong, the birthplace of Bangkok’s go-go culture

Bangkok is a living and breathing creature in its own right. It grows with new spots and hidden treasures popping up everywhere every day. It’s a city for everybody: every neighbourhood, every street, every soi has a different personality to offer. And it’s truly worth exploring them all. This time, we’re heading to Patpong.

The city has a rich culture and history. It is a place where tradition and modernity stand side by side in a stark yet beautiful contrast. There’s no shortage of what to do and places to explore. It doesn’t matter if you’ve been here for two weeks or 10 years; Bangkok will always have something to offer.

Patpong is undeniably one of the most iconic places in the city. People flock to the street to enjoy shopping, sightseeing, and to bask in the wonderful welcome of the people who work here. It’s a great place to take the whole family and be immersed in the culture and friendliness of Thailand. Lit up with lights, bustling with activity, and filled with people who simply just want to have a good time, we’re giving you some reasons why you should visit Patpong in this neighbourhood guide.

Neighbourhood Guide: 5 reasons to check out Patpong

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lsa neighbourhood guide patpong
Image credit: SiamBangkokMap.com

1. The shopping

An array of items can be found at Patpong’s night market. ‘Branded’ items for ridiculously cheap and souvenirs for tourists can be found in numerous stalls drenched in neon light all while a number of convivial personalities sitting outside curious establishments warmly greet you. There’s no doubt that visitors to the Kingdom will feel most welcome when visiting here. And where else can you get Louis Vuitton and Gucci for THB 300? Some will say it’s fake, but true Bangkokians know nothing is fake in this town. 

2. The food

Patpong is home to a number of dining options. Head over to Morimoto for classic okonomiyaki, or if you want a genuine Irish pub experience, The Paddy Field is the place to go, complete with authentic Irish stouts. Last but not the least, there’s the famous Took Lae Dee restaurant of Foodland that’s open 24 hours. Enjoy a number of classic Thai dishes as well as Western favourites like the incomparable American fried rice, all the way from the US of A. You’ll find a number of foreigners usually dining here, stumbling their way inside in the wee hours of the morning after what I suspect has been a long hard day at work. It would explain their dishevelled looks. 

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3. The Patpong Museum

Curtains bearing a race car number (image credit: Patpong Museum FB)

The Patpong Museum gives visitors an in-depth look at the history of one of Bangkok’s most famous streets and how it became the well-known tourist destination it is today. It traces the street’s origins all the way back to 1881 and recounts its history until present day. One exhibit even gives visitors a chance to experience the Patpong David Bowie enjoyed back when he visited years ago. The museum doesn’t shy away from more serious topics like the Vietnam War and the infamous serial killer, Charles Sobhraj. They also have exhibits on things called Go Go Bars, which I’m guessing are bars dedicated to racing. Plenty of these bars still currently exist on the street. There’s one with a huge sign that seems to be advertising a superpowered cat. Maybe that’s the name of the car.

4. The sports

Just an example of the balls shot around in these sports shows (Image credit: Rae Wallis/Unsplash)

Another thing Patpong is very well-known for is its sports shows. While I have personally never seen them, many of Patpong’s residents and those who have visited the street have spoken so highly of the famed ping pong shows that simply leave audiences dumbfounded. I can only assume that there must be some great players exhibiting some riveting skills in these shows. 

5. The friendly people

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Last but certainly not the least, visit Patpong for the friendliest people you’ll ever meet in Bangkok. The most genial of women are all seated outside just for the sole reason of greeting you and calling you handsome, making you feel so welcome, especially if it’s your first time here in Thailand. On top of that, some of the men are also so friendly that they will usually come up to you and show you pictures of what I can only assume are their nieces and aunts. Most of them are scantily clad but I guess it’s some sort of themed family photo. The bottom line is that there’s no shortage of friendly people here in Patpong.

(Hero and featured image credit: Patpong Museum/Facebook)

Reasons to visit Patpong, the birthplace of Bangkok’s go-go culture

Eric E. Surbano

Eric can be found lost in his own world jamming with headphones on while writing when he's not prepping for a DnD session or researching 'Star Wars' galactic history on Wookiepedia. A proud Ravenclaw, he loves playing (and writing about) video games, humming the 'Doctor Who' theme under his breath, and rewatching 'Friends', 'New Girl', and 'The West Wing'.

   

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