The intense gay life of Thailand makes this Far East dream an attractive reality for LGBTI travelers.
Thailand is one of the most open-minded and welcoming countries in the world, with the gay community completely accepted and welcome. The country presents a rich and organized gay scene, that even the big metropoles of Europe and US would be jealous for.
With exotic destinations that make you instantly fall in love, like Phuket, Ko Samui and Pattaya, and with one of the most fascinating capitals in the world – Bangkok – Thailand has become one of the top destinations for gay travelers from across the globe.
Destsetters, in collaboration with Gay Star News, takes a deep dive into the Thai world and presents the the top things to know about gay travel in the country…
When to travel to Thailand?
The best period to visit Thailand is between November and February, when the weather conditions are excellent and the country is comparatively dry. If you are a beach lover, you could enjoy a festive tanning day in one of the numerous crystal-clear water beaches of Thailand. Or, take a winter break anytime you feel like getting some hotter moments!
What about travel costs in Thailand?
The official currency in Thailand is the Thai Baht. One Thai baht equals £0.023, $0.028 or €0.027. Costs are low compared to Europe and the US. The affordable prices in Thailand will allow you to explore the country and its local culture as much as possible. With these prices, don’t be afraid to plan a long trip to Thailand!
How accepted are LGBTI people in Thailand?
Even though LGBTIs are fully accepted in Thailand, you’d be wise to avoid kissing in public, since it can be poorly-received, for both gay and straight couples. But in general, Thailand is a very friendly country for all kinds of travelers.
Bangkok: the gay capital of Asia
Bangkok is the capital of Thailand, and probably the gay capital of Asia. It has an exciting gay scene, offering plenty of gay bars, clubs, saunas and massage spots. As a modern city, Bangkok has everything a traveler needs and mixes the modern lifestyle with traditional habits in a unique way.
1 The most famous areas for gay locals and travelers are Silom Soi 2 and 4, where you will find the most popular gay bars and clubs in Bangkok — most of them within walking distance from one to another.
2 In Bangkok, there are plenty of gay spas and massage centers for men. They’re the most popular attractions for gay travelers visiting the city.
3 When in Bangkok, make sure not to spend your entire time visiting the various gay spots. The city has so much more to give. Like some of the most amazing temples (the Temple of the Emerald Buddha and the Wat Arun/Temple of Dawn). And, of course, the unique floating markets, which are among the top attractions of the city.
Top 3 hotels in Bangkok for gay travelers
1 Sheraton Grande Sukhumvit, a Luxury Collection Hotel
2 Centara Grand at CentralWorld
3 Shanghai Mansion Bangkok
Phuket: the exotic gay resort of Thailand
Gay travelers in Phuket can find a well-organized gay scene to make their holidays more vivid and spicy. At the same time, you can enjoy the exotic sun and beaches combined with intense parties and fun by the sea. Beach life will be a big part of your holidays and socializing in Phuket is one of the easiest things.
1 The majority of the gay life of Phuket is concentrated In Paradise Complex of Patong Town, where you will find plenty of gay bars, clubs and saunas that will satisfy even the most demanding traveler. Get ready to meet the local gay culture. The scene can be quite different from what you are used to meet in the main European destinations!
2 The most popular and crowded gay beach of Phuket is the one in the middle of Patong beach, just behind the Flora Patong Resort. When you see the rainbow flag, you know you are at the right spot. Blend in and meet locals and tourists looking for new friends.
3 Phuket Pride is a great occasion to visit Phuket. It attracts thousands of visitors every year. The Pride next takes place from 27-30 April, and will give you the chance to see Phuket in its gayest season of the year!
Top 3 hotels in Phuket for gay travelers
2 B-Lay Tong Phuket, MGallery Collection
3 The Naka Island, A Luxury Collection Resort
Ko Samui: a paradise for gay honeymooners
Ko Samui is a paradise for gay couples, as it offers a peaceful exotic setting with spectacular beaches, and a quite interesting gay scene, if you want to get more social. Naturally, the gay scene of Ko Samui is not as intense as the one in Bangkok and Phuket. However, you can still find lots of choices for fun and meeting locals and tourists.
1 Most of the popular gay spots in Ko Samui can be found around the Chaweng area. Keep in mind that there is not an official gay beach. However, you can relax and enjoy the sun everywhere at this little piece of heaven.
2 The top beaches to visit in Ko Samui are Chaweng Beach, Lamai Beach, Bophut Beach and Lipa Noi Beach.
3 Diving, trekking, playing golf, relaxing in the idyllic white-sand beaches and rejuvenating your body and mind in exotic spas, are the top things to do when staying in Ko Samui.
Top 3 hotels in Ko Samui for gay travelers
1 Zazen Boutique Resort & Spa
2 Centara Villas Samui
3 Beach Republic
Pattaya: a beach city that has it all
Pattaya is another popular destination for gay travelers in Thailand, as it offers one of the most organized gay scenes in the country. Being a vibrant beach city, Pattaya has it all: beautiful beaches, a bustling urban rhythm and an intense gay scene.
1 Boyztown and Sunne Plaza are the gay hotspots of Pattaya, where you can find the majority of gay bars, clubs, massage centers and gay guest houses.
2 Jomtien area and Jomtien Beach are also packed with gay bars, gay-friendly restaurants and popular gay venues.
3 Dongtan Beach is known as the most popular gay beach in Thailand, which attracts many gay tourists all year round.
Top 3 hotels in Pattaya for gay travelers
1 Movenpick Siam Hotel Pattaya
2 Mera Mare Hotel
3 Baan Souy Resort
Visit Destsetters.com for more destinations around the world!
Destsetters is a client of Gay Star News.