If Pattaya’s bustling nightlife, scores of shopping opportunities and exciting daytime activities, should still not be enough to keep you busy round-the-clock, Pattaya has a wide range of tourist attractions and places of interest that are all well worth seeing and cater to whatever your taste may be. In the last couple of years only, Pattaya has seen the addition of a multitude of attractions that cater specifically to family vacationers and reflect the city’s changing tourism profile.
If you’re staying in Pattaya for a fortnight only, you shouldn’t even plan on visiting all of them; they’re simply too plentiful, some of their features redundant, and not even all worth a visit. Some places, though, are traditional favourites with tourists and deserve to be on every first-time visitor’s must-see list.
Tourist attractions listed here have not been arranged in alphabetical order but randomly. Simply scroll down to go on a virtual sightseeing tour of Pattaya and find exactly those attractions that appeal to you most.
We believe the extensive compilation below comes as close to complete as possible. If there’s still a certain attraction that you particularly enjoyed during your stay in Pattaya and which is not listed here yet, please contact us about it and we will add it to this page asap.
Ladyboy Shows – Alcazar & Tiffany Cabaret Theatres
Thai ladyboy shows might not be everyone’s cup of tea, but if you fancy watching professional Las Vegas-style cabaret shows performed by female impersonation artists – most of whom have undergone at least a partial “sex reassignment” – then you surely shouldn’t miss a typical ladyboy or katoey show in Pattaya.
Pattaya’s two most famous ladyboy shows can be enjoyed at the Alcazar and Tiffany cabaret theatres, both located on Pattaya 2nd Road, not far from Big C and the Dolphin Roundabout.
Tiffany and Alcazar have both been in business for nearly three decades and are renowned across the world for their fantastic, professional ladyboy shows. Regular televised beauty pageants are additional attractions for visitors. The entry fee for both cabaret shows is around 500 Baht, with several shows on offer every evening. For more details, picture galleries or online reservation, please visit Tiffany’s website at www.tiffany-show.co.th (English).
A new place in town for transvestite cabaret shows (opened in 2013) is the Colosseum Show on Thepprasit Road in Jomtien. The Venue (Jomtien Complex) also features a popular ladyboy/gay cabaret show every night, which is free to enjoy for customers.
The Nong Nooch Tropical Garden, or suan nong noot in Thai, located some 15 kilometers south of Pattaya on Sukhumvit Road, initially started off as a fruit plantation in 1954 and was designed on 600 acres of land. Inspired by the beauty of world-renowned gardens abroad, it was later redesigned as a tropical garden of ornamental flowers and plants, initially meant for botanical observation. In 1980, the garden was opened to the public and very soon turned into one of Pattaya’s most popular tourist attractions. The entry fee is 500 Baht for foreigners and 200 Baht for Thai nationals.
Aside from the biggest botanical garden in South-East Asia, Nong Nooch features a variety of attractions like elephant riding, an exotic zoo, animal shows, as well as a fascinating Thai cultural show with dance performances and Muay Thai demonstrations.
The highlight of every visit is probably the truly amazing elephant show where you can watch the jumbos play a game of football, basketball, bowling and darts. Some elephants turn out to be real hobby artists and paint images with their trunks, while others have specialized in a special kind of foot massage. What is most amazing is that this entertaining show isn’t just great fun for the audience, but the impressively skilled and specially-trained elephants seem to enjoy the performance themselves just as much as the visitors, and display a great sense of humour and ambition!
The Sanctuary of Truth, located at the bottom of Naklua Soi 12 in Naklua, is a gigantic wooden construction designed according to ancient Thai ingenuity and architectural styles. Adorned with wooden carvings and sculptures portraying Eastern philosophy and cosmology, this impressive structure right on the seafront has become one of Pattaya’s most popular attractions.
Thai cultural dance performances, elephant trekking, Muay Thai fighting, horseback riding/horse carriage etc. are also provided for visitors.
Admission fees start from 500 Baht for foreigners depending on what package you choose, with generous discounts for Thai nationals.
Koh Larn (Coral Island)
If you’ve come to Thailand for white-sand tropical beaches and diving in crystal-clear waters, and you’re somewhat disappointed by Pattaya’s mediocre, noisy and overcrowded beaches, then a day trip to Koh Larn (a.k.a. “Coral Island”) provides anything you’ve come here looking for.
Koh Larn island has six popular beaches, all with fine white sand and unpolluted waters, where you can enjoy sunbathing in a picturesque tropical environment. Although Koh Larn island has become increasingly “touristy” in the past decade and popular exceedingly with Russian and East Asian day-trippers, who overcrowd the beautiful beaches and restaurants especially during the high season, it’s probably still your best option for a relaxed day on the beach.
Various water/underwater activities like banana boat and jet ski riding, scuba diving, snorkeling or submarine rides, are available around Koh Larn. Overnight stays in resorts and bungalows are also possible now.
To get to Koh Larn, you can book fully arranged day-trips via any travel agency in Pattaya starting at approx. 600 Baht, which includes minibus collection from your hotel, ferry, lunch and soft drinks. A cheaper yet slightly slower alternative is to board one the regular ferries departing from the Bali Hai Pier at the southern end of Walking Street. A one-way trip costs 30 Baht per person and takes 30-45 minutes.
Speedboats can be chartered from anywhere along Pattaya and Jomtien beach; expect to pay between 2,000 and 3,000 Baht. Smaller and less tourist-oriented islands (e.g. Koh Phai, Koh Sak, Koh Khrok) can be reached from either the mainland beaches or from Koh Larn.
→ Sukhumvit Road, Jomtien (south of Soi Chaiyapruek)
Pattaya’s own Floating Market opened to the public in 2008 and claims to be the biggest floating market in the eastern region.
Designed to resemble Bangkok’s famous “floating markets”, the entire compound covers an area of approx. 100,000 square metres and is essentially a themed shopping arcade with more than 100 boutique shops selling the usual souvenirs, handicrafts and regional products. If you’re hungry you can sample all sorts of native dishes as well as specialties from all over Thailand.
There are about 80 boats on standby to ferry visitors around the extensive network of canals and wooden bridges, where freshly cooked Thai delicacies are available from water vendors. Stalls sell the usual souvenir and handicraft touristy bits, reportedly just a bit cheaper than, say, in the “tourist traps” on Pattaya Beach Road, and the vendors are also less pushy and friendlier. The compound also features rice farming, sunflower fields, a wood carving museum, as well as outdoor cultural performances like Thai classical dance or martial art demonstrations.
The Pattaya Floating Market opens daily from 10 a.m. to 11 p.m. and you don’t have to buy anything. While entry to the market used to be free in the first years, the admission fee for non-Thai nationals is now reportedly 200 Baht a person, at least for foreign tourists.
Just a 15-minute drive from the city centre of Pattaya, the Million Years Stone Park & Crocodile Farm has become one of Pattaya’s most popular tourist attractions since its opening in 1992. Unless you’ve got your own transport or want to charter a Baht bus, fully-arranged trips including minibus transfer can be booked at any travel agency in Pattaya.
Aside from grotesque rock formations, Pattaya’s own crocodile farm features an exotic zoo with an abundance of wild animals, including tiger and snake shows, but is most famous for its thrilling crocodile shows held several times a day. When last checked the entrance fee was 300 Baht a person, with discounts for Thai nationals and foreign residents holding a Thai driving license.
Pattaya’s Elephant Village, located just outside Pattaya, originally opened in 1973 as a sanctuary for former working elephants and later became one of Pattaya’s most popular tourist attractions. A daily 90-minute show includes demonstrations of ancient elephant training techniques, bathing, traditional roundup methods, and a spectacular ceremony with a specially-trained “war elephant.”
One-hour elephant trekking through undeveloped bush and forest, rafting or combination treks are also available at 1,200 to 2,000 Baht per person. Trips can also be booked at any travel agency.
→ Pattaya Park Hotel, Soi Pattaya Park, off Pratamnak Road, Jomtien
Opened in 1995, the Pattaya Water Park with its giant water slides and whirlpool, a fitness centre, jogging tracks, sauna etc. can be a great alternative to the beach; also offers a full range of water sports and a scuba diving centre nearby.
With a total height of 240 metres, the Pattaya Park Tower is the city’s most visible landmark yet no longer the tallest building in town. From the top 55th floor, you can enjoy an ultimate view over the coastline of Pattaya and Jomtien, while several revolving restaurants are awaiting visitors on the floors 52-54, where you can enjoy an international buffet lunch or dinner along with breathtaking views of Pattaya bay.
Sky and speed shuttle to the top floors are also available. And for those who are courageous enough, how about a thrilling tower jump?
Koh Samet Island
If the beaches of Pattaya and Jomtien fail to satisfy your desire for a tranquil and relaxing beach vacation; if Koh Chang is too far away for you and a day trip to Koh Larn was just enough to whet your appetite, then Koh Samet might be just the place to go for you. With a length of only seven kilometres and a maximum width of three kilometres, this T-shaped island isn’t popular only with visitors from Bangkok, but also a favourite tour destination for tourists staying in Pattaya.
Samet island is located just seven kilometes off the coast of Rayong province and the fishing village of Ban Phe, which can be reached from Pattaya in approx. 90 minutes. The best option to get there from Pattaya is by minivan. Dozens of minivans are leaving from Pattaya each day, and tickets can be booked for a couple of hundred Baht at many travel agencies around town. Ferries to Koh Samet leave regularly from the Ban Phe pier; the crossing takes around 30-45 minutes. As Koh Samet is a marine national park, visitors have to pay an entry fee upon arrival – 400 Baht for foreigners, 40 Baht for Thais.
Most visitors from Pattaya, with its overcrowded, noisy and commercial beaches, esteem Koh Samet as a tranquil retreat with picturesque white sand beaches and crystal-clear shallow waters. Tourists who seek more challenging activities than just sunbathing and swimming can enjoy a boat trip around the island, go fishing, scuba diving and snorkeling for coral in the shallow waters, take a walk along the postcard-perfect beaches or go hiking in the tropical back-country. Dozens of seafood and barbecue restaurants can be found right at the seafront along the beaches on the East Coast and provide a perfect scenery for romantic sunset dinners. Daily fire shows on the beach are another highlight and top off an exciting day on Koh Samet.
Koh Samet is still very much a natural resort with no proper roads constructed yet and just a track and footpaths around the island’s coastline. Except for 24-hour electricity and running water, a couple of convenience stores and souvenir shops, the island’s infrastructure is not entirely developed yet.
Although Koh Samet is no longer an undeveloped backpacker’s paradise with cheap and shabby huts at deserted palm-lined beaches, but instead has become home to an ever-increasing number of upscale resorts and can indeed become pretty overcrowded over the weekend and public holiday periods, especially during the high season, Koh Samet has pretty much retained the ambiance of an unspoilt tropical paradise island.
Day trips to Koh Samet can be booked at most travel agencies in Pattaya, but it is highly recommended to stay for at least one night in order to fully recover from Pattaya’s exhausting nightlife. Most of the accommodation consists of bungalow developments along the beaches on the East coast (Hat Sai Kaew, Ao Phai, Vongduan etc.) with room standards and prices varying from low/budget to first class.
Mimosa is a new tourist attraction and shopping arcade with a European-style design and architecture of the stereotypical type loved by Asian tourists.
Opened only in early 2013, Mimosa (or Mimosa – The City of Love, to give the place its full title) is located on Sukhumvit Road (opposite the Ambassador Hotel in Najomtien, a few kilometres south of Pattaya) and has become popular especially with family vacationers and local tourists. While the entry fee used to be a moderate 150 Baht in the beginning, latest reports suggest that the admission fee has been raised to as high as 600 Baht a person for foreigners.
Underwater World on Sukhumvit Road in Jomtien (between Tesco Lotus and Soi Wat Boon) showcases the rich variety of marine life found around the region. Over 5,000 fish from 500 different species, including sharks and rays, can be watched closely from a 100-metre-long underwater tunnel with acrylic windows. Visitors are promised to be taken on a “voyage to the bottom of the sea”. There’s also a “Touch Pool Zone” where you can interact with the marine animals by touching them. Open daily from 9 a.m. to 6 p.m. The admission fee is 500 Baht for foreigners (300 Baht for children) and 250 Baht for Thais.
The Sri Racha Tiger Zoo – located near the small seaside resort of Sri Racha and an approx. 45-minute drive from Pattaya – features hundreds of Bengal tigers in the tiger playground (along with piglets and dogs), around 10,000 crocodiles, elephants, and scores of other exotic animals. Aside from the daily tiger, crocodile, elephant and pig shows, you can also feed many of the animals on site or have a picture taken with newborn tiger cubs.
The admission fee is something like 500 or 600 Baht per person. Day trips to the self-proclaimed “world’s largest” tiger zoo can also be booked at most travel agencies around Pattaya.
Buddha Mountain – Wat Yansangwararam
Khao Cheejan (Buddha mountain) and the Wat Yansangwararam temple complex (Wat Yan) are located approx. 15 kilometres south of Pattaya off Sukhumvit Road, just before the entrance to the Nong Nooch Tropical Garden.
Set in a huge area of around 145 acres, the Wat Yan temple complex houses several buildings of different architectural styles, as well as well kept gardens and a large lake. The temple is under the patronage of the king and offers daily meditation courses for those interested in exploring the spiritual aspects of Buddhism.
The impressive Khao Cheejan “Buddha mountain” is located just a few kilometres southeast of the Wat Yan complex and displays a monumental laser-carved and gold-plated Buddha image. About 130 metres tall and up to 70 metres wide – and an outstanding landmark in Pattaya’s countryside – it is rated as one of the biggest Buddha images in the world and is visible over a long distance.
Even if Buddha images and temples aren’t really your cup of tea, the beautiful hilly landscape and its peaceful atmosphere make the Khao Cheejan area a perfect destination for an afternoon trip, particularly a motorcycle ride around Pattaya’s green countryside.
→ off Sukhumvit Road, Najomtien (next to Phoenix Golf Course)
Pattaya Dolphin World is a relatively new attraction just south of Pattaya that caters specifically to family vacationers with kids. A 45-minute dolphin show is performed five times a day. The entry fee is 500 Baht for foreign tourists (250 Baht for children) and 300 Baht for Thai nationals. For an extra fee, visitors can also swim with dolphins and feed dolphins. While the show itself is nothing special, it’s still a must-see tourist attraction especially for families with children. Other activities like pony rides, rock climbing, ATV riding, a shooting range etc. are also open to visitors.
→ Najomtien Soi 52, off Sukhumvit Road, Bang Saray
The Cartoon Network Amazone water park, located just south of Pattaya, opened its doors to paying customers in July 2014 and is the first Cartoon Network-themed water park in the world. With an ever-growing number of family vacationers visiting Pattaya, this brand-new theme waterpark promises to bring the ultimate in family entertainment to Pattaya and is sure to become a popular attraction particularly with wealthy Thais and family vacationers with young children.
To quote from the Cartoon Network Amazone website: “Here you can splash out with all of your favorite Cartoon Network friends” and “explore 10 themed zones catered to suit the preferred experience of every guest.” The multimillion-dollar business venture of the world’s favourite kids’ channel promises an “awesome experience no matter what your age” and “a full day’s fun for the entire family.”
On the downside, the admission fee for non-Thai residents is a crazy 1,590 Baht for adults and 1,190 Baht for children. Thai citizens and residents get a moderate discount of 300 Baht, so even Thai kids still have to pay an entry fee of 890 Baht.
Art in Paradise – 3D Art Gallery
→ 78/34 Pattaya Second Road Soi 1 (near Central Festival Center), North Pattaya
Art in Paradise is Pattaya’s only three-dimensional “interactive” art gallery with hundreds of cool 3D paintings in 10 differently themed galleries. Opened only in 2012, this hands-on “illusion art museum” spreads over an area of 5,800 square metres and has soon become a favourite with art lovers who like to take fun snapshots and interact with the 3D masterpieces. Open every day (including public holidays) from 9 a.m. – 9 p.m.
While foreigners are expected to pay an entry fee of 500-600 Baht it seems, the admission fee for Thais is a moderate 150 Baht. You may be lucky and get the Thai price if you have a Thai driving licence.
Located approx. 35 kilometres north of Pattaya near Chonburi city, the Khao Kheow Open Zoo may be a bit far off if you haven’t booked an organized tour but is definitely worth a visit. As the name says, Khao Kheow is an open zoo on a huge 1,200-acres parkland area where animals can roam freely, and the atmosphere resembles rather a safari experience, not that of a traditional zoo where the animals are held in cages.
Khao Keow features around 8,000 animals of 300 different species, including tigers, elephants, monkeys, kangaroos, elephants etc. Attractions include elephant trekking, various animal shows and a special “night safari”.
Because of the immense size of the royally-sponsored zoo, having one’s own vehicle is surely most convenient for getting around. Alternatively you can use the auto tram or rent a bicycle or golf cart. If you wish to stay overnight, accommodation is available too. The admission fee, including two free shows, is 300 Baht for foreign adults and 150 Baht for children.
Located at the Khao Kheow Open Zoo near Chonburi, this is Thailand’s most highly rated zipline canopy tour and provides the “real” Thai rain forest adventure on three kilometres of the country’s highest ziplines woven into the jungle’s ecosystem.
The price of 3,599 Baht per person for a day trip from Pattaya includes a free tour of the Khao Kheow open zoo, a guided tour of the wildlife and vegetation along the course, air-conditioned van shuttle from Pattaya, free snacks, lunch etc.
Big Buddha Hill – Golden Buddha Statue, Pratamnak Hill
Pattaya has its very own golden “big Buddha” statue located just off Pratamnak Road on the top of Pratamnak hill between South Pattaya and Jomtien.
While the road leading up to the statue itself gives a panoramic view of Pattaya bay, you’ll find the best viewpoint over the city area and coastline of Pattaya on a hilltop just on the other side of the main road. Naturally, this is also a favourite spot for hobby photographers where most of those famous Pattaya bay pictures were taken, so don’t forget to bring your own camera to capture that special moment.
The Thai Alangkarn Theater on Sukhumvit Road in Jomtien is a state-of-the-art theater designed in modern Thai style and can seat up to 2,000 visitors at a time. The “Thai Extravaganza Show” is performed daily at 6 p.m. (except for Wednesday) and presents the kingdom’s ancient culture and performing arts in a “panoramic concept with the combination of multi-dimension techniques of presentation”. These include pyrotechnics and multi-colour laser shows, a huge video screen and more. For reservation, picture galleries etc. please visit their website.
Mini Siam, located just off Sukhumvit Road in North Pattaya (opp. the Bangkok Hospital Pattaya), opened in 1986 and showcases miniature replicas and scale models of important historical sites, famous temples and sacred places from all over Thailand. Built on just 29 rai of land, the theme park is separated into a “Mini Siam” and a “Mini Europe” section. As the name suggests, the latter showcases reproductions of world-famous European and American sites like the Statue of Liberty, the Eiffel Tower or London’s Tower Bridge.
If you haven’t got the time or money to go on a trip around the world or visit all of Thailand’s famous monuments, then Mini Siam can give you with a miniature impression of what you’re missing out on. Particularly interesting for kids and Thai girlfriends who want to view beyond Thailand’s trunk! The admission fee for foreign adults is around 300 Baht a person, with the usual discounts for Thai nationals.
Situated in Samut Prakan province on the southern outskirts of Bangkok, this 320-acre “world’s largest” outdoor museum features reconstructions of Thailand’s most famous historical landmarks and monuments, and focuses on Siam’s history, culture, architecture and arts. The entire compound covers an enormous area, so you’ll definitely need to bring plenty of time and should plan on a full-day trip in order to explore all parts of this “miniature Thailand”.
Provided you’ve got the time though, this impressive theme park is surely worth a visit, possibly in combination with a trip to Bangkok?
The admission fee for foreign adults is 350-700 Baht a person, depending on the time of your visit. You can also rent a personal vehicle to get around the entire compound, join a minivan tour and rent a private guide. For a location map, photo galleries etc. please visit their website.
Situated on the third floor of the Royal Garden Plaza shopping mall (between Pattaya Beach and 2nd Road), Ripley’s Believe It Or Not promotes itself as the “world’s most unusual museum”.
Ripley’s houses more than 300 “stranger than fiction” items and several other exciting atttractions such as, for example, a model of the tallest man in the world, Louis Tussaud’s wax museum, a 12D moving theatre, and a “haunted house”.
The basic entry fee for the museum is 590 Baht a person, plus surcharges for additional attractions. For more details on their current program, please visit their website.
Monkey Training Centre
→ Soi Chaiyapruek 1 (near Sukhumvit Road), Jomtien
The Monkey Training Centre features demonstrations of traditional monkey training methods, like monkeys trained to harvest coconuts, and presentations of their enormous skills; also cock fighting and snake shows. The admission fee is 250 Baht per person.
International Snake Show
→ 39/4 Moo 5, Soi Nernplubwarn, a couple of kilometres off Sukhumvit Road, Central Pattaya
The admission fee is 200 Baht per person. For more information and how to get there, please call 038-731 586.