Located 147km from Bangkok city, the beach resort town continues to be a popular getaway for locals and tourists. Although it used to get a bad reputation, in part due to the Walking Street (known as the red-light district of Pattaya), taking a day-trip to the nearby Koh Larn is still common among young adults and families. Only 7 km away off the coast of Pattaya and accessible via speedboat and ferries, the beaches on the island are much less crowded and waters still crystal clear.
If you’re a fan of watersports though, there’s much to be found on Jomtien Beach, be it jetskiing, parasailing or even windsurfing. For some family fun, spend half a day at Cartoon Network waterpark (888 Moo 8 Na Jomtien Rd., 033-004-999 Mon-Sun 19am-6pm) or Ramayana water park (9 Moo 7, Na Jomtien Rd., 033-005-929, Mon-Sun 10am-6pm), the latter equipped with 21 waterslides that make it one of the biggest water parks in Asia.
Credit: Sky Gallery
But there are plenty more reasons to visit Pattaya due to its recent city revival. With new trendy cafes, bars and restaurants, teenagers and adults can enjoy a fun day of cafe-hopping and indulging in delicious seafood cuisine from dawn till dusk.
From the brunch goodness at Loaf to the beach side establishments with an amazing view at The Sky Gallery (12 Rajchawaroon Rd., 038-418-588, Mon-Sun 7am-12am), Silver Lining (Na Kluea 18, Wongamat Beach, 098-930-9800), and the Pattaya branch of The Chocolate Factory (12 Soi Rajchawaroon, Pratamnuk Rd., 092-467-8884), visitors will be spoiled for choice.
Those seeking a sanctuary from a long hot day can head to A La Campagne (Sukhumvit Rd., 061-441-5181, Mon-Thu 10am-8pm, Fri-Sun 10am-10pm), a new European-style community space inspired by a countryside town which features an award-winning Thai restaurant (Somtum villa), a chic tea cafe (Tea Factory) and a weekend farmers’ market.