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Pattaya, Thailand

Travel Information, Attractions Listing and Guide

Pattaya, dubbed " Queen of Asia's Resorts ", it has the rare distinction of being both a beach destination and a full- fledged city. This near paradoxical status ensures the comforts and entertainment facilities of a major metropolis plus all the delights of sun, sea and sand.

Located 147 kilometres southeast of Bangkok or only about two hour drive, Pattaya is Thailand's premier beach resort and annually attracts hundreds of thousands of pleasure seeking tourists from all over the world.

Visitors can windsurf, water ski, swim, sunbath, snorkel, sail, or take trips to offshore coral islands (where bungalows allow overnight stays) by ferry, hydrofoil or hired boat.

They can rent water scooters to explore Pattaya bay, and motorcycles and jeeps to explore neighbouring beaches such as the increasingly popular Hat Chom Thian just south of Pattaya, where accommodation is also available.

Tennis enthusiasts can enjoy themselves at leadings hotel's courts, and golfers can visit the beautifully-landscaped and challenging Siam Country Club and Bangphra Golf International Courses, both within 30 minutes off Pattaya.

Bowling alleys, snooker halls, shooting galleries and archery offer further entertainment; while Tiffany and Alcazar Cabarets offer fascinating night shows with broad popular appeal. Pattaya boasts an incredible choice of accommodation to suit every pocket. Facilities range from air-conditioned opulence to basic simplicity. Essentially, the visitor has the choice of luxury hotels with private-beaches; bayside hotels and bungalows; and "inland" economy-class hotels and guest houses.

Pattaya offers some of Thailand's choicest seafood in several specialty restaurants. Steak houses and fast-food outlets provide attractives alternatives and gourmets and gourmands alike find satisfaction in restaurants featuring French, Italian, Swiss, German, Hungarian, Scandinavian, English, Indian, Moslem, Japanese, Chinese and Thai Cuisines.

From families to individual visitors, Pattaya offers something for everyone and all the ingredients for a truly memorable holiday.

Visitors on social and business visit purposes are to be guided by the following visa requirements:

Visa Exemption
No visas are required for citizens of Commonwealth countries (except Bangladesh, India, Pakistan and Sri Lanka), British Protected Persons or citizens of the Republic of Ireland and citizens of Switzerland, Netherlands, San Marino and Liechtenstein.

Three Months Visa-Free Visit
Citizens of Albania, Austria, Algeria, Argentina, Bahrain, Belgium, Czech Republic, Republic of Slovakia, Denmark, Egypt, Finland, France, Germany, Hungary, Iceland, Italy, Japan, Jordan, Kuwait, Luxembourg, Lebanon, Morocco, Norway, Oman, Qatar, Spain, South Korea, Republic of Bosnia, Sweden, Saudi Arabia, Turkey, Tunisia, Turkmenistan, United States of America, United Arab Emirates and Yemen are eligible for three months visa free visit.

One Month Visa-Free Visit
Applicable to citizens of ASEAN countries.

14-Days Visa-Free Visit
Citizens of Afghanistan, Iran, Iraq, Libya and Syria are eligible for 14-days visa free visit.

7-Days Visa-Free Visit
Applicable to citizens of Armenia, Azerbaijan, Republic of Belarus, Bulgaria, Estonia, Georgia, Kazakstan, Kirghizstan, Latvia, Lithuania, Moldavia, Romania, Russia, Tajikistan, Ukraine and Uzbekistan. Air travellers on transit (not exceeding 72 hours) are eligible for a visa-free visit. As regulations may change from time to time, it is advisable to check with the nearest Malaysian Embassy before your departure.

How to get there
By air-conditioned bus (Duration 2 1/2 hrs.)

  • Departure from the Eastern Bus Terminal (Ekkamai) to the Pattaya Bus Station on North Pattaya Rd. daily at 05.00 hrs. and every 30 minutes until 22.00 hrs. One way fare : approx. 66 baht.
  • Departure from the Northern Bus Terminal (Mor Chit) to the Pattaya Bus Station on North Pattaya Rd. daily at 05.00 hrs. and every 30 minutes until 19.00 hrs. One way rare : approx. 67 baht
  • Departure from the Bangkok Airport to Pattaya daily at 9.00, 12.00 and 19.00 hrs. One way fare : approx. 180 baht
  • Reservation : Thai Airway, arrival longe, Bangkok Airport

By non air-conditioned bus

  • Departure from the Eastern Bus Terminal
  • Daily at 05.00 hrs. and every 30 minutes until 21.00 hrs.
  • One way fare : approx. 37 baht

By train
There is a train leaving the Bangkok Railway Station (Hualamphong) to Pattaya daiily at 7.00 hrs. Call (66-2) 2237010, 2237020 for further information

Local Transportation
Travel within the resort is most convenient by minibuses that continually ply the Beach Road and Pattaya 2 Road in counterclockwise circuits. Fares are 10 baht per person per ride. Fares beyond the main bay area are negotiable.

Those who wish to be independent, and explore Pattaya's surrounding countryside and beaches at leisure, can hire motorcyles, jeeps or cars. The visitor is advised to shop around, and consult local tourism publications, for different companies offer different prices and conditions.

SIGHTS, SCENES & SPORTS
As a beach resort, Pattaya misses no opportunity for taking full advantage of sandy beaches, a warm sparkling sea and year-round sunshine. There are ample provisions for all kinds of water-sports ,sailing, windsurfing, water-sking, snorkeling, scuba diving, deep-sea fishing and more. Not only is all the necessary equipment available, there is also expert instruction.

Pattaya Beach is today a hive of activity, but four kilometres to the south lies Chomthian Beach.Here is a beautiful stretch of sand, less crowded than Pattaya though still have all the watersport options. To the north there are smaller beaches which offer a more tranquil retreat.

If the beaches are not enough, then you can enjoy idyllic cruises to various offshore islands. Nearest to Pattaya are Ko Lanand Ko Sak, just a 45-minute boat ride away, where there are full facilities .

Further away are other islands, in particular Ko Samet which lies off the coast of Rayong but can also be reached by boat from Pattaya. Far less developed than Pattaya, it affords a tranquil escape and makes a perfect day excursion.

Although a beach resort, Pattaya provides plenty of on land recreation, a short radius are a number of excellent 18-hole golf clubs, while other sporting options include tennis, horse-back riding, go-kart racing, shooting, archery, bowling, snooker...the list goes on. There is even a motor racing track. More leisurely fun for the whole family can be enjoyed at Nong Nooch Village, where varied attractions include orchid farm, cultural show and elephant show.

GETTING AROUND
Mini bus and pick-up trucks regularly ply the main routes within Pattaya, stopping on request. Alternatively there are plenty of places where you can hire your own jeep or motorbike. Most hotels also have taxi services, as well as tour counters to arrange excursions outside Pattaya and to the offshore islands.

DINING & ENTERTAINMENT
True to its city status, Pattaya, unlike other beach resorts, shows no slackening of pace after sundown. South Pattaya, popularly referred to as "The Strip", is packed with all kinds of restaurants, bars, discos, and shops.

If South Pattaya is a trifle overwhelming, those seeking quieter opportunities for shopping, dining and evening entertainment will not be disappointed. Such has been the development of the resort in recent years that full amenities are now to be found throughout Pattaya which extends well inland from the bay.

Shopping possibilities are as varied as Pattaya's other attractions. Souveniers, handicrafts, gems and jewellery, ready-to-wear and custom-tailored clothing, paintings and more are all to be found along "The Strip" and increasingly at smart shops and department stores throughout the resort.


ATTRACTIONS & PLACES OF INTEREST

With many interesting attractions in and around Pattaya, visitors can have a variety of do-it-yourself day trips to keep your holidays fun-filled and enjoyable.

Mini Siam & Mini Europe
Located near Pattaya Klang, is Thailand's first wonder displaying Thai and European heritage on a miniature scale. This is the third miniature town in the world after the Netherlands and Taiwan that brings together models of important objects and historical sites of different culture, and civilizations of various periods from the ancient time till the present. More than 100 models, each on a scale of 1:25, are displays in an area of 29 rai, surrounded by natural scenaries blended with different types of well selected trees.

Open from 7.00-22.00 hrs. Adminission fee is 200 Baht person. Call (038) 421628 for more details.

Million Years Stone Park & Crocodile Farm
Located some 9 kilometres from Pattaya township, comprises breeding pens with more than 1,000 crocodiles, a zoo, and a bonsai garden decorated with rock formations. Open daily from 8.30-18.00 hrs. There are crocodile shows at 11.00, 14.00 and 16.30 hrs. Admission fee is 250 baht per person. For more information please contact Tel. 5795033 (Bangkok) or (038) 249347-9 (Pattaya)

Wat Yansangwararam
A temple under the king's patronage is unique for it's modern Thai architecture. Here meditation course is available to those are interested. 16.00 and 18.00 hrs. The temple is 12 kilometers south of Pattaya and only 3 kilometers from Nong Nooch Village. Call (038) 237642 for further information.

Nearby is a chinese-style building called "Wihan Sian" housing antiques and art objects from China. Admission fee is 30 baht per person.

Siam Country Club
Located at Km. 145 on Sukhumvit Highway, with the left turn about 11 kilometers. With 6,448 yards, par 72, it is one of country's most challenging courses with lots of wooded hills. The course offers accommodation in a hilly photogenic landscape. For more information Tel. 215-3124, 280-2532 (Bangkok), (038) 249381-3 (Pattaya).

Pattaya Elephant Village
Is on the road to Siam Country Club Golf Courses. The village shows elephant displaying forestry skills, playing football and re-enact of war elephant parade. The village also demonstrates how wild elephants were captured in the northeastern part of Thailand. Daily show time is at 14.30 P.M. Tel. (038) 428-645.

Panarak Park
5 kms. off Pattaya City on the road to Siam Country Club Golf Course, offers a tropical garden setting. The park equip with fishing gears for a wellstocked fishing pond. The place also facilitate with bungalow accommodations, restaurant, jogging and cycling paths, boating and water-cycling. It gives up-country experience for staying overnight there. Further information please contact Tel.5210763, 5211665.

The Bira International Circuit (Pattaya)
Located at Km. 14 on Route 36 to Rayong, offers international motor and motorcycle racing occationally. The 2.4 kilometers circuit is ideal for formula 3 races. For the one who loves speed and would like to experience real thing on the racing track, the circuit opens every day. For more details Tel. 5877448.

Another spot is Hat Chom Thian located 2 kilometers from south Pattaya. White sandy beach is good for swimming. Reasonable accommodation is also available.

Pattaya Park
Between south Pattaya and Hat Chom Thian, is a water amusement park with water sliders, whirlpools and large pool for childern. Admission fee is B 60. Open from 9.00-18.00 hrs. Accommodation is available, contact Tel. 5110717 or (038) 251201-8.

7 kilometers from Pattaya is Hat Sai Thong with accommodation which can be booked at Tel. 2588452 (Golden Beach Resort).

Covering an area of some 500 acres about 15 kilometers from South Pattaya is a Thai-village-style recreation-cum- vacation park, Suan Nong Nooch. The entire area is beautifully landscaped, with orchid nursery and other botanical gardens. There are also cultural and traditional performances and an elephant show. Accommodation may be booked by calling 2521786 (Bangkok) or (038) 436655-7 (Pattaya)

The fishing village of Bang Saray Few kilometers off the main highway at km. 164, offers deep-sea fishing opportunities. There are also other recreational facilities at Bangsaray Fishing Inn (Tel. 038-436095) Bangsaray Fishing Lodge (Tel. 2337799, 038-436757) and Sea Sand Club (Tel. 2555960, 038-435163).

Ko Lan
45 minutes offshore by tourist boat or 15 minutes by speed boat, is the largest of Pattaya's archipelago. Major attractions include viewing coral reefs from glassbottomed boats, snorkeling, scuba diving, windsurfing, skiing and parasailing. There are a lot of seafood restaurants on the island's main beaches. Deep sea fishing can be arranged to Ko Lan's neighbouring islands such as Ko Khrok and Ko Sak.

Beyond Ko Lan another 40 minutes sail is Ko Phai (island) currently under the care of the Royal Navy. Visitors are not allowed to stay overnight here, but it has fine deserted beaches that are open during the day.

All the nearby islands are easy to get to and charters can be arranged through the hotel tour desk or by negotiating a price direct with the boat owners.

Boat charters cost 700-1,500 baht per day depending on the season and size of the boat.

Pattaya Festival
Thailand's world-famous seaside resort puts on its most festival face for this annual event, held in April at the height of the summer season. Food and floral floats, beauty contests, stalls selling local delicacies, and a spectacular display of fireworks on the beach are only a few of the highlights that attract merry-makers