In Asia, the entertainment for most folks is just going outside and taking a walk, especially if they are lucky enough to live in a beach community. Of course, most people only go out for a stroll or to hang out when the heat subsides, as during the scorching hours of the day, from around 10 am to 4 or 5 pm, most people (and especially locals) choose to stay indoors and in the cool shade whenever possible. But when the sun starts to go down and the temperature drops, that’s when people come out in droves. That’s one of the reasons why so many cities in Asia are nocturnal, with more action and more people working after dark than during the middle of the day.
In fact, that’s even more so the case here in Thailand, as the Thai people really hate the sun! They rarely voluntarily go outside in the sunshine, and almost never just want to go outside to catch some rays. (Among other things, they’re obsessed with trying to keep their skin as light as possible, as it’s a mark of socioeconomic stratification.)
Beach Road in Jomtien
All of that aside, avoiding the heat and sunlight is one of the reasons why the Beach Road here in Jomtien, Thailand comes alive at night, too. This approximately 8 kilometer stretch of well-paved and orderly road curves up and down the coast of Jomtien, a quiet but touristy beach community right outside of crazy Pattaya. On the inland side, you’ll find block after block of shops selling kitsch to the tourists, 7-11s, massage parlors, spas, cafes and open-air restaurants selling local seafood, and hotels. Across the street, by the ocean, there’s a sidewalk along a narrow (probably 10-feet wide) plaza with palm trees planted every 20 feet or so. Past that, it slopes down to the beach. The sand isn’t the finest white powder like you see in exotic locations in Thailand, but it’s clean enough and there’s usually not much trash washing up – especially when you consider its proximity to a major, bustling area like Pattaya. I can’t say the same for the ocean water, as it’s polluted by the sewage and runoff from Pattaya even though it looks clean.
In the mornings , this is the perfect locale for tourists to get some exercise, and you’ll see plenty of Russians on holiday, English, German, and Australian expats, and other tourist running, walking, or bicycling up and down the Beach Road boardwalk. As the day goes on and the sun gets hotter, people do sit on the beach, as there are rows and rows of umbrellas and small beach chairs set up for convenience . It’s actually really nice just to chill there and feel the ocean breeze, and you can order fresh seafood or fruit from the many vendors pushing their carts by.
But at night, it really springs into action, as so many people – including Thais for the first time – come out to walk, sit by the beach with friends, drink a few beers, people watch, or dip their toes in the water.
The Beach Road is a great place in Jomtien to visit and hang out, no matter what time of day or night! You may also like the Tiger Park.
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