Source: Wikimedia

Since its beginnings as a sleepy little sleeping village, Pattaya has thrived to become one of the most prominent resort cities in all of Asia. Famous for the way its bustling nightlife intermingles with ancient religious treasures, this city is the gem of Thailand’s east coast, and that reputation certainly isn’t going anywhere! If you’re planning a stop in this fascinating city, here are some of the attractions you should really make a point of seeing.

Walking Street, South Pattaya
Source: Flickr

If you’re stressed out from the hours of air travel and all the complications that come with it, then Walking Street should be your first stop in Pattaya. The incredible sounds and sights here are unlike anything you’ll find in other Thai destinations. This 500-metre strip is the centre of the famous Pattaya Thailand nightlife. Every other building you’ll see is a bar, club, or high-end restaurant, making it the perfect place to unwind while getting your first taste of the local culture. During the day, it’s almost empty and everything is closed. After 6pm though, all the traffic stops and the clubs open their doors. This is where the name “Walking Street” comes from. This is the one sure-fire place to experience a nightlife vastly different from what you’re used to, so make sure you don’t miss out!

Nong Nooch, Na Jomtien
Source: Wikimedia

After all that partying on Walking Street, you’ll probably want to chill out for a while, and maybe go a little easier on that pain in your head! Nong Nooch is a beautiful tropical garden, stretching almost three kilometres and full of some of the most beautiful horticulture you may ever see. You don’t need to be a landscaping enthusiast to appreciate the sheer amount of care and work that’s gone into this garden. You’ll be able to learn something about the local climate by checking out over 670 hybrids of Thai orchids, and avoid homesickness with some of their prim European gardens. Nong Nooch also plays host to regular Thai boxing, drumming and dancing displays, which will really give you a taste for the country’s amazing culture.

Floating Market, Jomtien
Source: Wikimedia

No holiday would be complete without some shopping, and in Pattaya there’s only one place for it; the Four Regions Floating Market. Though you may be on the east coast, this is where you can sample the rich varieties of culture that exist throughout the country. The market is structured based on the North, South, East and West of Thailand, and is teeming with dozens of fascinating shops and stalls. From local cuisine to crafts to clothing, you’ll find it all here in this fascinating district. You may be wondering about the name. Well, Pattaya’s floating market is built on a river that runs towards the coastline, and dozens of the vendors there do indeed float! As you walk around the shops, you’ll see people in traditional Thai canoes drifting by with all kinds of local curiosities on display. The rest make up a beautiful stilted village with quaint covered walkways and bridges.