Patong Offers the Best Nightlife in Phuket
The best nightlife on the island of Phuket is to be found in Patong. The majority of bars and clubs can be found on and around Bangla Road. This is where the raunchier beer bars are situated and just walking around this area can be something of an experience. Many of the side roads (soi) running off Bangla Road are also jam packed with drinking establishments. Patong Beach Road also offers plenty of bars and restaurants – including more western style restaurants. The gay scene in Patong is focused around Soi Paradise (Paradise Complex).
Bar Closing Times in Patong
Officially the bars in Patong are expected to close at 01:00 and the nightclubs at 02:00. This is the law for the rest of Thailand (as of mid-2012). Patong is an important tourist area and local business owners feel that different rules should apply so they stay open later than this. On a fairly regular basis there will be a clampdown and these venues will return to official closing times, but at other times it is possible to find places that are open until 05:00 in the morning.
Another thing to keep in mind is that the drinking establishments are forced to close around election time and on special holidays. Sometimes there will be more than one of these events occurring at the same time, and this can mean that there will be no drinking for a few days. Those who are coming to Patong for the nightlife might want to check ahead to see if any these enforced alcohol-free days are due to occur during their visit so they can be prepared.
Best Bars in Patong
There are dozens and possibly hundreds of bars in Patong. The smaller venues come and go. Returning visitors usually find that some of their favorite haunts have closed down to be replaced by something new. There are other bars that are more established (or at least they are in mid-2012) and here are some of the best of these:
It might seem a bit strange to travel all the way to Thailand to sit in an Irish bar but Scruffy Murphy’s is popular with tourists. It is a great place to go for a bit of live music, and the food menu will appeal to those who like western food. They also offer an all day happy hour for certain drinks.
Tiger Entertainment Bars
Tiger Entertainment Bars is actually a complex of drinking establishments on Bangla Road. The individual units within this complex tend to change ownership on a fairly regular basis, but the ambience remains the same. This is not a good choice if people are planning a quiet evening with a few drinks – it is wild. Those who arrive on Bangla Road for a night on the town will usually be looking for something lively so Tiger Entertainment Bars can be a good choice. There is also Tiger Discotheque upstairs if people are feeling energetic.
- Note: the Tiger bar recently was destroyed in a fire. No news on a rebuild yet. 26-Aug-2012
Banana Disco gets crowded but it is one of the liveliest places in Patong. As well as an air conditioned dance floor area inside there is also an outside bar area where people can mingle. House music gets priority on the turntables (or at least it does in mid-2012) but there are also other music styles to tempt people onto the dance floor. The Banana Disco is located on Beach Road. They charge 200 THB admission fee (as of mid-2012), but this includes a complimentary drink so it isn’t a bad deal at all.
Those who are looking for something a bit romantic or fancy might want to choose the Factory Bar on Bangla Road. The focus here is on cocktails and good service. There is also outdoor seating for those who wish to soak up the wildness of Bangla Road in comfort. The Factory Bar also offers full size pro pool tables.
Aussie Bar is a great option for sports fans. They offer 8 large screens as well as smaller TV screens spread around the venue – all the major sporting events are shown here. Aussie Bar also has a pool table and a good selection of western food. It is one of the more family friendly options on Bangla Road. They also provide free Wi-Fi to customers.
Mobile Bars Patong
The mobile bars in Patong are Volkswagen vans that pull up beside the pavement and transform into bars. They even provide a bar to lean on and stools to sit on. These mobile venues can pop up anywhere, and they offer a unique ambience and the drinks are usually reasonably priced.
Nicky’s Handlebar started off as a simple biker’s bar, but these days it attracts people from all walks of life. They also serve great food and even offer accommodation. They have remained loyal to the biker theme with plenty of Harley Davidson memorabilia – they also offer Harley tours. It is located on Rat-U-Thit Road.
Roots Rock Reggae Bar
If people are looking for a real laid back atmosphere they might want to try Roots Rock Reggae Bar on Nanai Road. The music here is always reggae, and as well as beers they also offer a reasonably impressive cocktail selection.
Saxophone Pub and Restaurant
Saxophone Pub is a great option if people enjoy a bit of jazz or blues. As well as drinks they also serve Thai and western food. They offer live music seven days of the weeks. The Saxophone Pub is located on Thaweewong Rd.
Rock City is located on Rat-U-Thit, and this is the place to go in Patong for rock music. Tribute bands play live here most nights of the week, and there are two floors of action to choose from. They currently (as of mid-2012) charge a 100THB admission fee.
Hard Rock Cafe
There are Hard Rock Cafes in all the top destinations in the world so it is understandable that they would want to open a bar in Patong. Those who have been to this type of venue elsewhere in the world will know what to expect. The drinks and food can be a bit on the expensive side when compared to other venues in the area, but many people agree that it is worth it because of the great music and ambience that you can only get in a Hard Rock Cafe.
Ninth Floor Restaurant and Bar
Wine lovers might want to visit the 9th Floor Restaurant and Bar. This venue has the most impressive selection of wines in Patong. It also specializes in both Thai and European food – they have won awards for their Mediterranean food. This is also the highest open air restaurant in Phuket, and it a good choice to watch the sunset from here to begin the night.