Pattaya (May 15 - 17, 2011)

This was originally posted at my MTP on May 20, 2011. (journal/item/444)

(May 15 - 17, 2011)

Pattaya is (in)famous for its nightlife and in the past it was clearly not a place recommended for family trips. Fortunately there are more and more decent places in Pattaya where families with young children can visit without feeling awkward... But I am not writing for a tour magazine so allow me to move on from here.

For those that want to know more:

We chose Pattaya because there was mileage rewards that will be gone soon. We had to use them. Since Tony (our older son) could not join us this time I did not want to go far. We therefore chose Pattaya. It was only two hours' drive from our neighborhood. Dusit Thani was supposed to be one of the best hotels so we booked it - but just for one room. We did not know how big or small the room was, thinking it was just a three-day two-night trip... Using the mileage rewards we had to pay only for the VAT, which was less than 1000 Baht. (Divided by 29 or 30 and you have it in USD.)

We had not been to Pattaya for many months. Central opened a new branch at Pattaya and we would love to take a look.  We had "Central" all over Bangkok and in some cities in Thailand. The big one in downtown Bangkok, called "Central World", was burned down by the mysterious and violent police-still-could-not-tell-who-ordered-it group of the people during the chaotic days not that long  ago....

Oops I should not bring up sensitive political topics here.

OK...  Pattaya, here we come....

We left home at about three in the afternoon and arrived at our hotel two hours later. Dusit Thani looked flat but we were wrong. Although the main lobby seemed to be on the street level it was actually on the fourth floor. Our room was two levels lower.  We could easily walk to the beach, which was at the back of our hotel.  But it was too crowded so we did not bother to.

Central was having a festival with huge signs on the roads so it was easy to locate the place - although traffic was a bit congested.

Turned out it was in the white-and-brown cube-like big building that had the Hiton's in it. (On the left in the picture below.)

View from Dusit Pattaya

This Central was a lot bigger than our Central City in Bangna. It had every store that we know, plus more. As if a mini-Bangkok had been moved to Pattaya!

In a bookstore we bought a few books.  Mine was "In the land of the invisible women" by Qanta Ahmed, MD, a journal written by a British doctor trained in the US, who spent two years in a hospital in Saudi Arabia. I chose the book simply because it had nothing to do with murder.... and it was thick.  But I was glad I chose it!

For your info, here is the review I googled after I came home:

What a contrast: I read this book while we were in Pattaya - where the world was so very different from the world in Saudi Arabia!

Pattaya did not look like "an ordinary place"  for the Thai people... Signs in foreign languages were everywhere, mostly in English. And many were in Russian. We saw the words  that meant restaurant ("PECTOPAH") and cafe, and pub, and excursion.  It was fun spelling them.  We were in our car passing by the beach road - without the intention of getting into any of these places.... On the street I saw quite a few fat-belly farang (= "Caucasian") with tattoos on their upper arms. We also passed by two places that had year-round ladyboy shows.... Their beauty contest is well-known all over the cyberspace.

Honestly the main streets of this "city" made me uncomfortable.

Anyway, here are the pictures... It had nothing to do with the mainstreet...

Pattaya, May 15 - 17, 2011

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