What to expect in Patong – from Ping pong shows, Lady boys and fabulous shopping

What to expect in Patong - from Ping pong shows, Lady boys and fabulous shopping

The first thing I noticed in Patong was the smell, Oh my goodness! We had clearly been blessed with fresh air in Rawai (where our hotel was based). Patong is the smelliest place I have ever been too! But don’t worry you do get used to it fairly quickly along with the other “interesting things” around patong, lets take a look below:

Plan your trip?

Avoid hidden fees in the exchange rate while withdrawing from millions of ATMs abroad, paying in restaurants and shops, and buying your accommodation and flights using the Wise Card. You can hold up to 40+ currencies at once to spend in in over 150 countries, and convert them in real time with the free Wise app.

Need help planning your trip from start to finish? Check out these helpful links:

This post contains some affiliate links for your convenience. Click here to read my full disclosure policy. You can also read our content/editorial policy here.

Mall Shopping in Patong

After the initial shock  (of the smell), you can headed into Jungceylon Shopping mall. It’s much like the Myer Centre in Australia (a large shopping mall with a few different shops within it), what they both have in common is they are both fairly expensive.

Where to go shopping in Phuket?

Market Shopping in Patong

In search of a bargain or two, you can wander around the streets of Patong for a few minutes and run into street long markets selling everything from designer/fake clothing, handbags and anything else designer you can think of.

As well as “normal” watches, wallets, clothing, shoes, hats, jewellery, art work, DVDs etc. If you end up at Bangla Street  you will likely be were mobbed by Lady-boys, Ping Pong shows and Tailors.

It’s definitely an experience I can tick off of your bucket list, although I’m not really sure it should be there in the first place.

Where to go shopping in Phuket?

Endless Bars in Patong

If you dare to head down Bangla Street you will see that the street is a mixture of strange and weird…. there are markets and small stores spotted along the street.

This is mixed in with strangely themed bars littered with pretty girls enticing young (and old) men to come in and enjoy drinks with them… which usually means you will end up spending hundreds of dollars more than you have intended to as the girls encourage you to drink and buy them drinks…

What to expect in Patong - from Ping pong shows, Lady boys and fabulous shopping

Not every Massage parlour in Patong offers a happy ending

Thailand is famous for the amazing massages and lets face it in this “seedy” part of town there are likely to be massage parlours that will certainly give you a happy ending…. however there are some that pride themselves in proper massages, without a sleazy ending…

What to expect in Patong - from Ping pong shows, Lady boys and fabulous shopping

Lady Boys in Patong

Should you dare to stop to have some photos with a Lady-boy, beware it will cost you and in all honestly its unlikely that you will want to be stopped, more like you are mobbed until you agree to stop and take a photo with them (don’t stress its not a scary experience!) it’s more like an interesting but entertaining experience and hey, “when in Rome”.

The lady boys in Patong are pretty friendly and go to a massive effort to get all dressed up and do their make up – show a little appreciation of the “local art” haha!


Ping pong shows along Bangla Street

The next people to mob you are the “ping pong” show people, who will try to convince you to come and watch some lovely ladies shooting pin songs out of their …lady bits and other fairly disturbing shows but hey no judgment here, everyone has their kinks. Entrance to the ping pong shows are free however (so i’ve heard) the drink prices are marked up incredibly.

Animal cruelty in Patong

After a little photo-op with the Lady boys and mobbing by the Ping Pong show fanatics you’ll likely have people come up to you and offer to have photos taken with a baby “Slow Loris” and an “Iguana Lizard”.

While you might think this is a great idea as its unlikely you would have seen these animals up close. Little do you know that this is actually Illegal in Thailand. Take this as a warning to other “Silly Tourists” (like myself at the time).

Don’t fall for this, these animals are not treated well. The mothers and fathers of these little animals are killed and the babies are taken away, once they have grow too old they will be discarded like rubbish and the process of getting a new baby starts again! –

See the links for stories about this. Here or Here  or a story about Gibbons on Tripadvisor

What to expect in Patong - from Ping pong shows, Lady boys and fabulous shopping

Patong is certainly an experience I would recommend to everyone who makes their way to Phuket, be cautious and have fun!


  • Samantha King

    Sam, a seasoned traveler across four continents and 49 countries, is a leading authority in travel planning. Her website, Travelling King, offers tailored itineraries and expert guides for seamless trips. Sam's expertise in luxury travel, fast travel, and destination guides keeps her at the forefront of the travel community.

    View all posts https://www.tiktok.com/@travellingkng

Similar Posts

One Comment

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *

This site uses Akismet to reduce spam. Learn how your comment data is processed.