The famous half-mile (one km) stretch that is Khao San Road features bars, budget guesthouses, mid-range hotels, internet cafes, tattoo shops, travel agents and so much more. What emerged as a backpackers’ hub in the early 1980s thanks to its laidback, carefree vibe today attracts a whole range of tourists and locals, particularly musicians and art students.
Most people who visit Khao San Road simply stroll through, stopping to shop, eat and drink. There are all kinds of eateries, from local street food to restaurant fare and even a McDonalds. During the day and into the evening, this busy road is lined with stalls selling clothing and an array of typical tourist items, while after dark, bar-goers spill out onto the street while live bands and dance music entice passersby.
Khao San Road is a popular starting and finishing point for various tours of Bangkok, particularly those that focus on the Old Town area. Bike tours often begin here, while certain day and night tours end on the road, allowing travelers to enjoy everything that its energetic nightlife has to offer.
Insider's Tip: Due to its popularity among tourists, Khao San Road sees more than its fair share of scams, which are mainly centered around tours and transport. To avoid this, it’s best to book in advance.
Khao San Road is in the Banglamphu (Old Town) area of Bangkok, about a 20-minute walk from the Grand Palace. Express boats, buses and taxis all serve the area, but there is no connection via the Skytrain or metro.