New Years Eve in Bangkok

  • Posted onApril 10th, 2013

New Year BangkokWhile the Songkran festival in April may mark the official new year of Thailand, Thais, and Bangkokians in particular, celebrate the Western New Year in the same fun and manic fashion is as anywhere in Europe or the USA. Often referred to as ‘Countdown,’  The party vibe in the capital build up days before the event with hordes of locals, expats, and holidaymakers flocking to Bangkok in preparation for a party to remember.

With so many heading to Bangkok for New Year there’s an element of ‘survival tactics’ needed in order to get the best out of the occasion. Here are a few tips to help you out:

– Make sure to book a hotel early (and by that we mean 2 or 3 months ahead). Christmas and New Year are considered peak tourist season and some of the better hotels get fully booked well in advance. While you will no doubt be partying into the early hours, you’ll still want somewhere comfortable and centrally located to finally lay down your head and maybe even nurse a hangover!

– Don’t expect to travel far. Work out where you want to be and locate yourself close by. Bangkok traffic can be a nightmare even at the best of time, so you can forget about travelling any distance by road on New Year’s Eve. Even the BTS sky train and MRT will be hellish on New Year’s, and not for anyone who suffers from claustrophobia!

– Plan your night in advance and choose a location that suits your party needs. Every major bar and club seems to put on a party, but you may need to secure a ticket ahead of time for some of the more popular venues.

Where to party

New Year's Eve CentralworldWherever you choose to party on New Years in Bangkok you are almost guaranteed to have a fun and memorable night, with plenty of options for you to mull over:

– For beer bars and gogos, knock back the shots in Silom or sit in the beer bars of Soi Nana (making sure to sit curb-side for a good view of the midnight fireworks).

– If you’re looking for a banging club scene try Sukhumvit soi 11 or  RCA, where each and every club will be trying to outdo its neighbour with special events and guest DJs.

New Year's Eve on the Chao Phraya– For an alternative scene try the chic clubs of Thong Lor and party with Bangkok’s young hiso hipsters, or head over to Khao San to boogie with the backpackers.

– If you’re looking for something a little more classy then book a river cruise meal, a seat at a riverside restaurant, or head to one of Sathorn’s rooftop bars and watch the Bangkok skyline light up with a plethora of fireworks.

The CentralWorld Countdown

New Years Eve at CentralworldTraditionally, the terraces and square of CentralWorld is where you’ll find Bangkok’s biggest New Year’s bash. Hundreds, if not thousands of people gather here to watch live stage shows and bands in the many portable beer gardens, eating delicious Thai dishes as countdowns from around the globe are shown on large screens, building up to Bangkok’s own moment of midnight magic.

If you are planning to head here for countdown make sure to get in early if you want to find a good spot (before 9 PM would be best). Expect traffic to be at a standstill  for much of the evening, and the immediate area will be closed to cars from 6 PM, so if possible head here by foot.

The partying will go on well into the morning and don’t be surprised to see may Thais heading for the temples at sunrise, giving offerings in exchange for a blessed New Year.

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