The neon-lit bars of Soi Cowboy
Flashing neons welcome tourists to this small lane (it’s just 150m, or less than 500ft long) lined with raunchy bars. They’ve been here since the Vietnam War, with barely-dressed girls at the door inviting men to head inside for drinks and whatever.
Although most bars open at 4pm, this is mostly a nighttime destination, with the fun lasting until 2am.
The name of the street comes from T. G. "Cowboy" Edwards, a retired American airman who opened one of the first bars in the 1970s, and who always wore a cowboy hat.
As one of the most famous attractions in Bangkok, it was featured in scenes of the film The Hangover II, which was set in Thailand. It’s now even more popular than Patpong, with a carnival-like feel. The bars tend to be laid-back, are free to enter, and drink prices are fixed.
A transgender bar in Soi Cowboy
How to get to Soi Cowboy
Take the BTS Skytrain to Asok station, or the MRT (subway) to Sukhumvit station. It’s located opposite the Terminal 21 mall.