Party Like The Locals: The Best Glocal Budget Nightlife Destinations
Having a good time in a party destination doesn’t mean you have to break the bank. Here’s how to do it on the cheap and not miss out on a bit of the fun.
Say Bangkok and its buzzing nightlife instantly comes to mind. The city known for its excellent affordable street food is also a top destination when it comes to the choice of affordable nightspots with a fantastic vibe. Sure, there are the rooftop bars in the skyscrapers where the price of a drink will set you back by a fair bit, but there are plenty of places where you can order drinks by the pitcher, or bucket, and still not wince when the bill arrives. The backpacker paradise of Khaosan Road is a great place to start. Here, you can join the milling crowds from across the globe and go pub-hopping stopping by at some cool dives with super live music. You can drink for real cheap at the night market. Or Hippie de Bar which serves up great music with the cocktails and food. The Golf Bar, also in Khaosan Road, is known for its drinks by the bucket. Head then to W District Market in Sukhumvit which serves food from across the globe. The River Vibe Restaurant and Bar in Phra Nakhon is a hidden gem providing great views of the Chao Praya River without the high prices that other riverfront places charge.
Most people associate nightlife in Pattaya with Walking Street, which gets its name because it becomes pedestrian-only at night. There is indeed an amazing array of nightspots to be found here, from the Red Car Bar to Mixx Discotheque, The Pier Disco Club, and more.
If Walking Street is too racy for your taste, wander down Soi 7 which assures revelers of a good time and great drinks that are more affordable than in the more touristy parts of this beach destination. Get adventurous and check out the local whisky in the bars here. Another popular area for budget travelers in Pattaya is Soi Buakhao which stretches from Pattaya Klang to Pattaya South Road. Here you’ll find lots of beer bars and go-go bars. In Soi LK Metro, there are some excellent sports bars for a fun night out.
If you’re on a budget in Bali, head to Kuta as all the backpackers do. One of the most popular party places here is the Bounty Ship which does, in fact, look like a ship. Expect a crowded dance floor post 9 pm and drink the signature concoctions served in jam jars. Green Box is super cheap and has no seating. So, stand around and sip on your affordable drinks and have a great time mingling with fellow budget travelers. Espresso is small and intimate and is known for its live gigs. If you want your turn at the mic, then this is the place. Sky Garden, sprawling over several floors, is another backpacker hub in Kuta. Get here early and you’ll get good deals on the drinks. The dance floor is a big attraction, too. For reasonably priced drinks and Brit-style food, check out Alley Cats, set in a nice courtyard.
You won’t be spending on international travel, but Goa can be pricey, especially in season. But there are well-kept secrets on the nightlife scene where you can have a great Goan experience and not worry about the budget. Club 9 in Anjuna sits atop a cliff in Vagator and has a fabulous hippie vibe. There’s cheap beer and most people come here for the psychedelic music. NH 17 on the highway in Porvorim has a Dhaba feel and does great cocktails, besides multi-cuisine fare. Picnic Bar & Restaurant, also in Porvorim, is known for its affordable drinks and hit-the-spot Chinese offerings. When in Mapusa, step into Bertsy, which is right in the middle of the market. Here, you can unwind over a few drinks and tuck into some good Goan specialties. Top Gear Pub in Altinho, Panjim, attracts tourists and locals alike with its laidback setting and good service. This is a good place to unwind over your sundowners. Aces Pub in Panjim is packed at night, because of its well-priced draught beer and commercial music.
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