WHEN

The dates for 2017’s Pattaya International Music Festival weren’t announced, and while almost certainly it would occur in March, it appears that it has been cancelled without explanation, but most likely due to the passing of the King. 2016’s festival took place across the middle weekend of the month, from the 18th – 20th. If you are planning to coordinate your Thailand visit with future Music Festivals, it will need to be at the last minute as dates have been difficult to extract from Tourist Authority of Thailand (TAT) in the past. Hopefully 2018 will see the return of this festival to Thailand.

WHAT

The Pattaya International Music Festival is one of the biggest in Thailand. It takes place right next to the beach, kicking off at 18:30 each night, meaning you can get a full day’s sunbathing in, before partying all night!

2016’s edition saw three main stages, packed with acts for all three days. The music on offer ranges across a variety of genres, including western genres like rock, RnB, jazz, hip hop and reggae (reggae is actually popular across Thailand; so much so that, at the Pattaya International Music Festival, it gets a whole stage to itself). East Asian music is also heavily represented, with artists from across the continent, including plenty from Thailand itself.

Oh, and was it mentioned that the whole thing is completely free? That’s right; free!

WHY

Music festivals have been growing in popularity across Thailand, and the Pattaya International Music Festival is one of the biggest in the country. In fact, it might be the biggest beach music festival in the whole of Asia. It’s been going for over 15 years now, which is testament to its commercial success, and its popularity, with Thais and foreigners alike.

Let’s be honest: your Coldplays, Green Days and Beyoncés aren’t going to be headlining any time soon. It’s nowhere near the scale of Coachella or Glastonbury. They do get seriously good crowds, though. Pattaya is always a good place to party, but when the International Music Festival rolls into town, the atmosphere gets cranked up to the next level.

WHERE

The Pattaya International Music Festival takes place right next to the beach, with the various stages being strung out along Beach Road. It’s easy to get to Beach Road from anywhere in Pattaya by taxi, and once you’re there you should wander between the stages at your leisure.

If you’re staying in Bangkok, Pattaya is a very cheap and easy bus journey from the Ekkamai Bus Terminal (also known as the Eastern Bus Terminal), which has a BTS stop right next to it. If you’re in Bangkok for a while, a short journey over to Pattaya for the weekend is more than worth it. Sun, sea, sand, and the sounds of great music. What more could you ask for?!

Pattaya

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