Watch “Racy Drag Show At Mixer Bar Jomtien/Pattaya” on YouTube

Even the dog gets in on the act…

Elephant Festival Preview

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https://plus.google.com/107338967088121205697/posts/2jiJ6AjoKJv

Yes indeed I’m starting a huge project about my trip to Surin, Thailand in 2014. I attended the annual Elephant Roundup, taking about 20,000 pictures over the four day festival. Starting with the elephant buffet, over 250 elephants come to town for parades, pageants, historic battle re-enactments, tricks, games, and dancing.

What a feast for the senses, especially the eyes. And sweet, gorgeous people.

The project started with the above video. I shot it just outside the elephant pageant stadium, about an hour after the show. Many of the mahouts (the elephant’s caretaker and master), make extra money selling sugar cane to tourists like me, to feed back to the elephant.

I decided it needed an SEO tune-up, added music, a nice new thumbnail, and a ruthless editing. In the process of looking at the pictures I took that day, I found they had marinated long enough. It’s now time to set them out on the buffet, and pick and choose.

Here’s a sneak peek, the first chapter of my project. Please do enjoy a feast for the eyes, 475 of the best pictures from the Elephant Welcome Parade:

http://store.photojimsf.com/Galleries/Gay-Travel/2014-11-14-Elephant-Welcome

Sawatdee Krup,

Jim

My First Quora Answer: Exotic Gay Travel

Quora question:

So I’m really stressed out and want to go away. I am a gay man looking to travel solo and am looking for a resort to get ALL my needs met if you get my drift. Any recommendations?

 

photo: A golden elephant adorned with flowers stands majestically in the lobby of the fancy Mandarin Orient Hotel, Bangkok.

Answer: Thailand Is My Favorite Exotic Gay Destination

I’ve visited Thailand ten times since 2005. My go to spot is Dongtan Gay Beach, it’s in the town of Jomtien just south of Pattaya, the “Extreme City”. There are more gorgeous men who throw themselves at you left and right than there are noodles in China.

photo: Matteus, one of the extremely attentive and flirty attendants at the beach concessions, Dongtan Gay Beach, Jomtien/Pattaya, Thailand.

Gay Guest Houses

I’ve stayed at “Tui’s Place”, “DD Inn”, “Feelgood Rooms”, and my favorite is “BB House Inn” aka “Best Bed House”. The average cost of these rooms are less than twenty bucks US$ a night! And BB House is about 20 steps away from the gay beach.

Gay Bars

My favorite bars are “BC Bar”, I think it stands for Boy Cambodia, where most of the staff are from. Also the “@ Home”, “La Dolce Vita”, and “4T”. All of these are in a one or two block area known as “Jomtien Complex”. There’s at least a dozen bars, with a couple dozen young men working in each. They make their living on drink commissions, and hopefully a “take off”. This is where you pay a “bar fine” for taking them home with you. So for a drink and one for the boy, bar fine, and “tip-tip”, it’ll run you from $30 to $50. Such a deal.

Boyztown

For more lurid options, take a ten minute baht bus or moto-taxi ride to Pattaya. The most famous gay area is “Boyztown”. There’s about a dozen bars that feature drag, go go boy, and strip shows. “Boys Boys Boys” is the best and most famous one. They have a scandalous “cock show” around 1am every night. It’s a bit more upscale than Jomtien Complex, so the same drinks and take off will run you $50 to $100. The men are slightly older (late 20’s as opposed to early 20’s) and more muscular.

Sunni Plaza

For a sleazier “down market” experience in Pattaya, go to Sunni Plaza. Yes Sunni, as in Muslim. The most peculiar place, where gorgeous straight Arab men walk arm in arm, and live and work in hookah bars, cheek to jowl among dozens of gay go go bars and brothels. My favorite is “Good Boys Bar”. For about $10, you get your choice of cutie pie, a drink for both of you, and a “cock show” in the darkened back area of the bar. Most of them are straight, and watch girlie porn on their phones while performing. But what do you expect for $10? Ummm, they let you, umm, assist them also.

photo: Chai, who I met in Sunni Plaza. Notice the hookah bar in the background? It was directly across the soi (alleyway) from one of the gay beer gardens where he worked.

Bangkok

If you’ve never been, you may as well hit Bangkok for a few days before taking the two hour bus ride to Jomtien/Pattaya. I stay at the “Malaysia Hotel” near Lumpini Park. It’s not far from the notorious “Pat Pong” area of downtown where there’s also a Boys Town with a dozen scandalously fun go go boy bars. Also near is the “Tawan Muscle Boy Bar”, the “Jupiter Club”, the “Balcony Bar”, and the institutional “Telephone Bar”. “Jimmy’s Disco” if you like loud, crowded with young twinks dance clubs.

photo: Bangkok Pride Swimsuit Competition, Lumpini Park, Bangkok.

MASSAGE!!!

Ever had a Thai massage? After just two or three days of massage, my back pain and sciatica disappeared. It’s a brutally pleasant experience, where they twist, fold, and bend you into healing yogic positions using their hands, feet, elbows, and knees. Or try a foot massage, which includes calves, neck and shoulders too. And cheap, cheap, cheap! Anywhere from $4 to $10 an hour for legit. Fifteen to thirty for, umm, non-legit with, umm, happee ending.

I love the Thai Blind Massage Institute, nestled in between the bars at Jomtien Complex. They have about 30 blind people, men and women, who give the best legit massages in town. $8 to $15 including tip. Blind people are very gifted and intuitive with touch and I highly recommend this place.

Not Far From There

Nowadays, I skip Bangkok and take the government bus from the airport directly to Pattaya/Jomtien. It’s about $4. From my base there I try to visit one more city in SE Asia every year, such as Phnom Penh, Siem Reap (Angkor Wat), and further away Hong Kong, and Taipei.

I’ve also visited Phuket; Patong Beach is where all the action is. I loved Chiang Mai the two times I went, it’s about half price on everything from Bangkok. There’s lots of gay action in both.

photo: This adorable cutie-pie was a performer at “My Way” cabaret show bar in the Paradise Complex, Patong Beach, Phuket.

A Few Tips

The bars change hands and names frequently, so two great resources for current info are Nicky’s Pattaya, and Utopia Asia. Google them and all the other names I’ve mentioned, I’m sure you’ll be on the next plane.

Now, look: I’m mad at Thailand right now. There’s a military coup in power there, and they seem to go back and forth between cracking down and loosening up, and they don’t tolerate any criticism or dissent. So be careful what you say and post, and for God’s sake DO NOT say anything bad or critical about His Majesty The King or any of the Royal family.

Bali

I visited Bali in 2007 and loved it. Not as developed for tourism as Thailand but I sure had great luck meeting hot men there. Especially at the north end of Kuta Beach. From 4 ish in the afternoons to 9 ish or so there’s hundreds of “Kuta Cowboys” cruising for hookups with westerners (they go with men and/or women!).

There weren’t many options for gay lodging, but I did stay at the gay friendly Kumala Grand in Legian, just north of Kuta Beach. Also, Ganesha Beach is in Seminyak, the next town north of Legian. It’s pretty gay for Bali, and there’s a cruisy bush area. I had a massage $6 to $9, and lunch $5, every day at Callego Warung (outdoor restaurant) and Massage, also at Ganesha Beach.

photo: The garden behind Callego Warung And Massage, Ganesha Beach, Bali.

I Hope This Helps You

I hope this gives you a starting point for your travel plans. For some fun and trashy stories and pictures of my Thailand and Bali travels, and their fantastic food, why not pop on over to my photo adventures blog: Photojimsf.com.

P.S.: The Philippines is on my bucket list so I have no info to share on that yet.

Gigantic Three Headed Elephant And More Erawan Museum Bangkok

New Portraits In My Idol Garden Gallery

Ladies and gentlemen I’ve had the distinct honor and pleasure to meet a small group of mythological creatures from the Himavanta Forests surrounding Mount Meru. In case you didn’t know, that’s pretty close to the center of the universe in Hindu and Buddhist cosmology.

I found them hanging out in the gardens at the Erawan Museum, and was so tickled to have them pose for portraits, which I’ve posted in my new Idol Garden photo adventure galleries.

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The Museum Is A Temple

A gigantic three headed elephant sits atop the temple. Inside are housed priceless cultural icons and antiquities from several Southeast Asian religions. The place was founded by the same eccentric millionaire, Lek Viriyapant, who also built the truth sanctuary in Pattaya.

You can actually climb up inside the elephant, there’s a Buddha shrine in it’s belly, and slightly above there’s a lookout. Unfortunately no pictures allowed inside the temple and museum.

Mythical Creatures Lurk In The Gardens

But there’s plenty to see in the surrounding gardens. Chinese heaven-geese, elephant-lion-horses, elephant-fish, human-swans, and other mythical creatures can be found in this unique museum and gardens in the Bangkok suburb of Samut Prakan.

A worthwhile stop while in Bangkok. By the way it’s half price after 5 p.m.

How to Get to the Erawan Museum

Take the BTS Skytrain all the way to Bang Na station, and then take a bus #25 or #511 straight to the entrance of the temple – only about 3 – 5 km from Bang Na station.

Also, there’s tons of taxi’s waiting at a stand downstairs from the Bang Na station. If you can, show a picture of the three headed elephant to the driver. I had a disastrous ride when I went, because there’s another Erawan Shrine way on the other side of Bangkok. The one that got blown up last year. It’s a four headed Buddha.

The drivers know the three headed elephant Erawan by it’s Thai name, Chang, which means elephant. It can be seen from miles away so the guy instantly knew he was way off track when I finally got my uncooperative mobile phone to bring up the image.

Address: 99/9 Moo 1, Bangmuangmai, Samut Prakan, Thailand 10270

Links:

Erawan Museum And Gardens Website

Photojimsf’s Idol Garden Gallery

Tongue Biting Good

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Yesssssssss! Thai green papaya salad made just the way I like it, no chilies, just a little garlic. This at my favorite cheap cheap eatery in Jomtien Beach, Thailand.

Ran Nong Som, a family-run establishment right on the beach road has good quality food at very reasonable prices. (it’s on Jomtien Beach Road just past Soi 3 but way before soy 4).

Along with the salad, I had a huge piece of fried chicken thigh, and a Coke Zero with ice. Would that be considered a paleo diet?

I was so enjoying it, but distracted, that I bit my tongue, for the second time today. Fortunately I did not break the skin this time. But I did earlier this afternoon while I was on the beach gossiping with my buddy Paul about financial woes of the global economy.

When something bothers me, I google it and see if I can find relief. I read there’s a superstition that says when you bite your tongue, it means the next thing you were about to say is a lie.

That doesn’t describe me at all, paragon of virtue that I am. Okay, rarely, I might embellish a story just a teeny tiny little bit.

Continuing my Google quest, I found all kinds of hypochondriac causes, such as antidepressant medications, seizures, obsessive compulsive disorders, anxiety, stress, bruxism, and more.

Treatments involved psychotherapies, habit retraining, orthodontics, even surgery.

Towards the end of the research, I decided it was merely not being mindful while eating, saltwater rinsing all that’s needed.

Thankfully the pain is gone, and I truly enjoyed my healthy, or relatively healthy for me, meal at my favorite eatery in Jomtien beach.

Stay tuned for more of Jimbo’z fairy tales from afar, including a lurid story about breaking in a new foreigner in town at Boyztown.