Patong is a magical place filled with confusing genders and bad choices. I LOVED it. Say what you want about ‘Phuket’s Dirty Diamond’ – I will still love it and my chaotic, sometimes incredibly vague memories will be treasured for life.
I say Dirty Diamond because behind the ‘dirt’ lays a tourism GOLDMINE. Phuket International Airport is unveiling an upgrade come 2015 to accommodate 12.6 million passengers per year. That hardly keeps up with the demand and the streets of sex are overcrowded come rain, come monsoon, come waves, come diseases…
I could write about Patong for days, (an X-Rated book is on the cards) but to be honest I will just share my wisdom and give a brief survival guide for both sexes. Ladyboys excluded.
The Survival Guide for the Timid Narrow-Minded Female Tourist
Calm the fuck down. It’s sex. I can never understand why tourists get shocked after seeing what they paid for. When I went to Paris I knew I would see art, snooty women and metrosexual men. Tadaaa there were no surprises there. So ladies, when you come to Patong, expect to see incredibly HOT Thai women in next to nothing grinding on poles and touching everyone and everything… and they will touch you. But remain calm, only one in five try lunge you and grab your tits. Totally kidding. (Not really.) If it makes you feel any better they probably all had male genitals once upon a time, so homophobes rest easy.
In all seriousness, you will not enjoy it if you keep wiping your hands with sanitizer and lifting your nose at everything. Patong brings in an incredible amount of money and supports thousands of families in Phuket. I lived 15 minutes away for 6 months and some of my students had parents working those streets as bartenders or dancers. If you don’t want to see a live sex show, then don’t. You can still enjoy the craziness that is Bangla Road, sipping on a few buckets and enjoying the half-naked talented dancers at Tiger Bar.
The Survival Guide for the Incredibly Horny Ignorant Male Tourist
Getting a Vitamin B shot is not gonna help you here, mate. Have your fun but remember that they really don’t mess around. My friend from SA watched a live sex show and was then brought on stage for audience participation. His ignorance led him to a dash for the exit door trying to button up his trousers on the move. If you into that kinda thing, then YOLO to you champ!
Ladyboys. They are HOT. You are guaranteed to check one out and I guarantee that you are gonna flirt with one of them. By accident, cause most of the time you are not gonna know. Add beer-goggles and the lunging begins. When you finally realised what sex you are dealing with, (whether by groping or a slightly less-drunk friend) try remember that YOLO crap. It’s amazing Thailand. Embrace and use protection fella’s!