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World's Greatest Bars for Picking up Women

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Travelers Tales from Thailand and the Philippines

The Best Countries:

.  Thailand
2.  Brazil
3.  Philippines
4.  Cambodia
5.  Costa Rica
6.  Dominican Republic
7.  Cuba
8.  Malaysia
9.  Russia
10.  Hong Kong


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Sexy Thai Girls

Thais have a saying, mai pen rai, heard often in Thailand. More than any three words possibly can, it expresses the Thai attitude toward life. It means, essentially, that whatever happens is going to happen. Just take it in stride. Enjoy it for what it is. Donít think about yesterday or tomorrow. Thais are Buddhist and their amiability demonstrates how strongly Buddhism effects everyday behavior. Even the lowest, sleaziest, dirt-floored bar will have an offering to the Buddha ó a glass of Coca-Cola or perhaps some peanuts.

During your stint in Bangkok you may never feel that you are with a prostitute. You will quickly learn to avoid the few exceptions. Some people say itís just an act on their part, and that may be true. If it is, they ought to get an award. There is no way to tell for sure. These ladies will inspire you to treat them with nothing but respect and admiration. Each will become a new friend.

The Bars of Bangkok

In Bangkok bars are concentrated in three areas. The biggest, most flamboyant and expensive district is Patpong, a privately owned street crowded with noisy go-go bars. Every bar you walk past, a doorman swings open the door so you can check out the scene inside. For action, dancing girls and loud music, this is the place. Even if you like a quieter atmosphere, with as many girls, thatís there too. For the most part, though, Patpong does not have a "laid back" atmosphere.

The Upstairs Bars

There are three short streets in the Patpong area: I, II and III. Patpong I is the biggest and noisiest. Patpong II has quieter bars. Avoid Patpong III entirely. It specializes in transvestites and some are so good at it they can fool an expert. Never pick up a girl on the street in Bangkok or Manila. You canít be sure what youíre getting. You donít want any surprises when you get her back to the hotel. The upstairs bars, particularly on Patpong I, can be raunch personified. Check it out if youíre interested.

Soi Cowboy and Nana Plaza

Patpong is probably the strip most frequented by male tourists in Bangkok. Two smaller, more concentrated areas off Sukhumvit Road, Soi Cowboy and Nana Plaza, offer similar entertainment for a better price with a more casual atmosphere. The girls are almost as pretty and, I think, a little less on the hustle. You can hang out in Soi Cowboy or Nana Plaza bars to enjoy the companionship of a lady without getting pestered to pay her bar fine or buy ladies drinks for three or four girls. This is a good way to relax and get to know some ladies without spending too much money.

The girls of Soi Cowboy seem to have more fun than their sisters on Patpong. Patpong has a touristy commercialism about it. There is a lot less hassle on Soi Cowboy. The last time I was in Bangkok Nana Plaza had nude shows, but none at Soi Cowboy. Recent reports have it that this has changed and you now can see those kind of shows on Soi Cowboy. Soi Cowboy is a favorite with local expatriates.

Another evening alternative is Klong Tooey, a tiny strip of bars by the wharf. It lies between the docks where sailors arrive and a sprawling ghetto. There are two or three bars and some restaurants that appeal to sailors from all over the world. Klong Tooey is sleazier, but not much cheaper, than Soi Cowboy. Your taxi driver may not even know how to get there or believe that a tourist could possibly want to visit it.

I could name countless bars in Bangkok but they change so often itís useless to make recommendations, except for one: a bar on Soi Cowboy where Iíve always had a good time with stunning girls, Our Place.

Thermae Coffee Shop

If go-go bars arenít your stile you can try your luck in the Thermae coffee shop on Sukhumvit Road. This place is legendary and frequented by very loose women. After 2:00 a.m., when the bars on Soi Cowboy and Nana Plaza have closed, there is an influx of women who just got off work. You will have to battle your way through the door to be greeted by some aggressive women. Smile and head up to the bar.

Get yourself a drink and look around. You may need to use of the most important Thai phrase you know, my ow kop (no thanks), because you may be appoached by persistent women who wonít take no for an answer. In this case, a friendly my ow kop nearly always works. The kind of lady you are looking for may not approach you. You have to approach her yourself. Wandering around look for a pretty face. She may have just arrived in Bangkok. Many are from the impoverished northeast, near the Laotian border. Other may be from Laos. Many Laotians cross the border into Thailand, where there are more economic opportunities.

Make eye contact, followed with a smile. A smile is the single most useful item you will carry with you on your international journeys, with the possible exception of condoms. Available women may not hold your gaze for long, but will smile and turn their heads shyly away. Theyíre the type youíre looking for. Approach one and offer to buy her a drink. If she doesnít understand, point to your drink and then her. Say "Coke?," an internationally understood word. She probably doesnít drink alcohol anyway. When the drink arrives sit down with her. She may be with companions, but donít let this bother you. If all the seats are taken, someone will probably vacate her seat for you once she sees your interest in her friend.

Ask if she speaks English. If so, youíre a lucky man. Usually only the old pros develop that skill to any degree. If she doesnít speak any English, and that your prerequisite, thank her and try the next one who catches your eye. If English-speaking skills arenít important, pull out your Thai-English dictionary, a surprisingly effective tool. After exchanging names, look up the word "restaurant." Point to it in the dictionary, then to her and to yourself. Enjoy your dinner and each other.

Soap Suds and Seduction

A typical Bangkok parlor will have over thirty young ladies seated behind one-way glass watching TV. Drinks are served while you make your decision. If you want, you can call a girl to your table and chat with her before you decide.

The massage room will be equipped with a small couch, table, coat rack and bed. A stereo plays your choice of music in four languages. The phone is for ordering drinks or food. There is a bath tub with a spray attachment. Most conspicuously, the tiled floor has a drain and an air mattress lying on it.

Your masseuse will solve the riddle of the ancient Siamese air mattress without saying a word. After bathing you thoroughly in the tub, your masseuse will have you lie down on the air mattress. She will use the sprayer to keep you wet. After she removes her dress and lathers her body, she will massage you with all the resources at her disposal. You can imagine why squirming around naked on an air mattress with your masseuse is a popular form of entertainment in Bangkok.

The Thais have an unusual name for this type of massage, "B-course." It is a massage during which the masseuse uses more than just her hands. Itís a mystery where the term came from. Bangkok is famous for its massage parlors. The one described above is an upscale establishments. There are less lavish ones for other tastes and budgets. Some cater to locals and have little more than a spigot and a mattress in the rooms. On Sukhumvit, near Soi Cowboy and Nana Plaza, Darling and James Bond are popular. The Mona Lisa is also a famous massagge parlor. A tax driver will be happy to take you to one. He may even have color brochures promoting them, since he gets a commission for taking you there.

Pattaya and Phuket

These resort areas are great alternatives to Bangkokís awful traffic and pollution. Beach lovers may find Pattaya a disappointment, but they will love the nightlife. Pattaya is a four hour ride from Bangkok. My favorite bar in Pattaya is the Tahitian Queen. Phuket has great beaches and nightlife, but you need to fly or take a long bus ride to get their. The food in Phuket is fantastic.

Chiang Mai and Tribal Villages

In Bangkok, you canít survive without air conditioning because of the humidity. The dry heat is more tolerable further north in Chiang Mai. Air conditioning is extremely expensive in both Thailand and the Philippines. You can save a lot of money if you stay in Chiang Mai.

The girls of Chiang Mai are reputed to be the most beautiful in the world. The facial features of northern girls differs from southern girls. They have a blend of doll-like oriental features with a primitive, tribal quality. Their skin is slightly browner than southern girls and their facial features slightly thicker. This may not sound like an improvement over the delicate beauty of other Thai ladies, but the difference is really subtle but significant. It gives the ladies of Northern Thailand a unique beauty.

Chiang Mai is surrounded by hills. The tribes living in these hills have interbred with Thais over the centuries and the result is the stunning beautiful girls of the area. Since each tribe developed independently, with their own language and culture, you may encounter girls who not only donít speak English but donít speak Thai either. This offers quite a challenge. Befriending a Thai who doesnít speak English is one thing because their are many people and dictionaries to help translate between Thai and English. A girl who speaks an exotic hill tribe dialect poses a rough road to making a proposition.



During the glory days of Manila nightlife the action centered around Ermita. Several years ago, Mayor Lim closed down all the bars in Ermita. He did an efficient job. What used to be bar after bar filled with pretty, available women is now boarded up buildings. Some of the hotels and restaurants survived. There are still some tiny bars masquerading as restaurants where you can buy a girl or two a drink. You may even be able to pay her bar fine. dancing beauties in bikinis are gone. Thanks to the Mayor, except for cheap hotels and countless money changers, Ermita doesnít have much to offer.

While Mayor Lim was bad news for Ermita businesses, it couldnít have come at a better time for Angeles City. Decimated by over ten feet of ash from the eruption of Mount Pinatubo in 1991. The place looked like it had been bombed. Its primary source of income, the U.S. military at Clark Field, closed down. Angeles City had to rely on tourists to take up some of the slack, so Mayor Lim facilitated the recovery of Angeles City.

If you canít get to Angeles City, the dancing beauties in bikinis business still exists in Manila. Old Ermita hotspots like Superstars and Lovebirds are long gone. The lone survivor from the old Ermita days is the venerable Firehouse. It moved to Pasay at the International Food Center in a complex with five similar clubs. The Cotton Club has the same ownership as the old Australian bar in Ermita.


The strip of bars in Makati along Burgos Street is great if have plenty of money to spend. Bottoms, Papillon and Dimples open at noon for early risers. They employ two shifts of dancers. The second starts at 8:00 p.m. and work until 4:00 a.m. Similar bars in the area open at 6:00 p.m. There problem with Makati is the prices. Ladyís drinks are US$8 and the bar fine is nine ladyís drinks (US$72!). The girls will often ask for a US$100 gratuity on top of that. Compare that to Angeles prices: US$3 or US$4 for a ladies drink and the US$35 bar fine includes her gratuity. In many Makati bars they hassle you to death to buy ladyís drinks. The worst is a place called Hollywood. There is no pressure in Pasay or Angeles City. If you must stay in Manila, go to Pasay. Better still, leave Manila the minute your plane arrives and head for Angeles City.


The International Food Center is on Edsa Blvd. in Pasay. It houses the Firehouse and Cotton Club opens at 6:00p.m. There are six go-go bars. The new Firehouse may not have the ambience of the old place in Ermita, but it is still fun. The Cotton Club is the biggest bar in the complex. Regulars of the old Australian will be surprised to see the same attendant in their comfort room (what we call rest rooms). He used to hawk everything from condoms to postcards to antibiotics in the Australian. While he offers less competition to the local drug stores, he still has a pretty extensive line of goods for a toilet vendor.

Angeles City

Angeles City is the place to go for the hardcore bar-hopper seeking female comanionship. An air-con tourist bus from the Swagman hotel in Ermita three times a day. Itís a two to five hour drive, depending on Manila traffic. Better still, avoid Manila entirely. Have your hotel in Angeles City arrange a car to pick you up at the airport for US$50. If itís your first trip to a third world country, it might be worth the extra US$15 to see someone holding up a sign with your name on it as you leave customs in Manila. If you donít mind haggling, you can negotiate a taxi ride at the airport for about US$30-35.

There are many bars in Angeles City, mostly on Fields Avenue between Margaritaville and MacArthur Highway. The size and number of bars may be a far cry from the hundred or so that thrived during its heyday, when Clark Field was up and running. There are still plenty of places to see.

Make a hotel reservation before you leave. Some hotels are booked in advance, especially if the U.S. Navy is in town. Up to 5,000 horny sailors occasionally have R&R there. To avoid commuting via side-car motorcycle taxis (called "trikes") between your hotel and the bar district, try the Orchid Inn, Park Chicago or Tropicana. Further out the German-owned Clarkview is a nice place as is the Swagman, which serves Australian food.

There are so many bars filled with friendly girls in Angeles City itís hard to recommend just a few. The best bar is the one you meet the right girl in, and the girls in the bars are always changing. I always have a good time in Voodoo, Y and the Club. Tahitian Queen and Champagne have the best-looking girls. I always spend lots of time in La Bamba. Like Connections, it opens at 2 p.m., three or four earlier than most bars. Margueritaville never closes. This bar and restaurant has good, cheap food and drinks where you can meet local freelancers and shoot pool. They serve decent Thai food.

One Angeles City phenomenon is Cherry Girls or virgins. Every bar has a couple and some have many. How does a virgin work as a prostitute? Some do not. Some work in the bar only and make money from ladyís drinks. Others will go bar-hopping with you, but wonít sleep with you. Some sleep with you but keep their clothes on. Still others will do pretty much anything as long as she remains, technically, a virgin.

Barrio Barretto and Subic

Barrio Barretto and Subic were near major U.S. Navy facilities, but, like Clark Field in Angeles City, the U.S. military is gone now. The major industries in both towns were described as beer and prostitution. When you sat down at a bar she would whisper sweet, obscene nothings in the sailors ear. Then the action under the table got a lot more exciting than the game of cards on top.

Unlike Angeles City, neither area has anything close to the nightlife it used to have. Even so, Midnight Rambler at Barrio Barretto is one of the Philippinesí great bars. It remains open along with a few other places. Likewise, remnants of nightlife survive in nearby Subic.

Cebu City

Cebu City offers a laid-back, wholesome alternative to Manila. There are tree-lined streets, nicer taxi drivers, and all the amenities of a metropolitan city. In contrast to the sprawl of Manila, where it can take hours to cross town, Cebu is centralized with downtown and uptown areas. The nightlife that appeals to foreigners is in the uptown area.

Prices for female companionship are higher than Angeles, but much lower than Makati in Manila. Ladyís drinks are about US$4.50 and bar fines are around US$20. Like Manila, the bar fine is not shared between the lady and the establishment. She will ask around US$40, but that is of course negotiable.

The nightlife for foreigners in Cebu is smaller in scope than youíll find in Manila, Angeles City or Subic. It compensates with quality. Youíre likely to find drop-dead gorgeous ladies in the following places:

The Silver Dollar on Osmena Blvd. near the circle is the best place in town. They have two dancers at a time, each with her own stage. Unlike every other go-go bar in the Philippines or Thailand, these ladies actually dance rather than move around and look bored half the time. They know how to do splits and just be generally sexy and provocotive. The bar doesnít hire just any decent-looking girl off the street, either. Most of the girls look mighty fine.

The bar in the Saint Moritz Hotel on Gordo has attractive girls, though not as good-looking or energetic as the Silver Dollar. They have a dance floor. The Viking on Maxilom is a hustle joint catering to Filipinos with a mamasan pushing girls and ladyís drinks. There are plenty of girls, though. If you donít find someone at the Silver Dollar or the Saint Moritz check it out. They have a pool table.

Two nightclubs near the Kan Irag hotel are adjacent in the same building. One is called Bigwig. Both charge US$3.00 admittance to watch listless dancers and hear distorted music. Theyíre still worth checking out if you havenít found the right companion at any of the better places.


Brazil is actually not part of Latin America. They were colonized by the Portuguese and that is the language. Brazilian women are passionate and spectacularly beautiful. One traveller claimed the women look like "movie stars." There are a wide variety of physical and racial characteristics: black, white and everything in between. While they have a reputation for being great lovers, their reputation as wives is not so great. Many men claim Brazilians are the best lovers in the world. You may find there isnít much else to do with her, since her language is Portugese and most speak little English.

Rio de Janeiro, especially during Carnaval, oozes with sexuality. The night clubs are filled with young women who would be centerfold candidates in the U.S. By all accounts, they treat you like a king and go at the sex act with a gusto unlike any other women. Looks and age donít mean that much to them. They aim to please and be pleased. Of course it wonít come free. Expect to pay between US$30 and US$100 for all night.

Copacabana, naturally, is one of the best places for tourists to meet women. The nightlife centers outside the Othon Hotel. The nearby Help Discoteria is considered the best nightclub for finding women. Hundreds of beauties show up on weekends.

The outdoor cafes, Meia Pataca and Mabs, near the beach are good places to meet women any time, day or night. Cafes are a long-standing Brazilian hot spots for meeting women. Make eye contact with the beauty of your dreams and gesture for her to join you. Or wait for a girl to come to your table, introduce herself and ask if she can join you.

There are numerous boites, or bars, in Copacabana meet women either employed by the establishment or there as customers. Barbarela is an enduring hangout with a plethora of beautiful women. Some boites offer shows ranging from samba to striptease to live sex. Most shows donít start until after 10 p.m.

Some hotels charge extra for bringing a girl to your room. Two moderately priced (US$50-US$75) hotels near the beach in Copacabana that do not are Rio Rioss and Debret.


Cuba is a very poor country, but the people are polite and helpful. The women are beautiful and outgoing. Violence against tourists is rare, but there are occasional petty thefts. In Havana, beautiful young women stroll around, looking for a man like you. They actively seek out American and European tourists. Like Brazilians, they can be any color from black to white. Some are prostitutes and ask for money, but not until afterwards. The asking price is likely to be shockingly low. The whiter a Cubanís skin, the more demanding she can be. Cuban women like to be treated with kindness, respect and generosity (a bottle of coke now and then). If you give them what they want, they are the cutest, most trustworthy and funniest ladies imaginable.

One Norwegian in his late forties, admittedly a bit fat and average looking, didn't sleep alone a single night after landing at Havana Airport. He and his brother met two sisters, eighteen and twenty-one, both stunning beauties. The girls invited them to their table in a cafe. A few hours later they just moved in with them. The women demanded nothing. They told the Norwegians it was enjoyable and a status symbol to be seen with foreign men.

The women explained that they did not want to marry Cubans because it meant a life of hard work and poverty. A Cuban husband is a real gentleman before marriage, but a tyrant afterward. They dreamed about a European or American husband, and age was no concern.

Another Norwegian, married to a Cuban woman, explained that unlike other Latinas, they make the best wives. Cuban women are, perhaps, the best educated women in Central America.

The best place to meet a woman is in the Cafe Paris in Vieja Havana. Girls practically attack you at the door. They ask to sit down with you, begging for a meal. You can find all kinds of women, from professionals to girls out with their fathers. Other clubs are the Havana Club Discoteque at the Hotel Commodore and the Ache at the Hotel Melia Cohiba. The best beach to visit is at Mar Azul, also called Tropicoco. It is loaded with bikini-clad beauties hoping to make it with tourists.

It doesnít take much to find a woman to stay with you for a night or a week. They often ask for nothing, but are extremely happy if you give them simple gifts such as modern soap, perfume, or a manicure set. Cuban women can be aggressive lovers, making love not just when you like, but sometimes when you think you donít. Sheíll convince you that you wanted to after all.

If you donít give them at least US$100 when you leave for the airport, consider yourself a jerk.

The only drawback to this fantasy destination is that itís a communist country. Like Viet Nam, you will have a difficult time getting a girl in your hotel. Instead, ask a taxi driver or your girl to help you find a private rental called a "casa particular."

Tourists usually pay in U.S. dollars, since little can be bought with local currency. While Americans are banned from travel to Cuba there are flights from Canada and Mexico to Havana. If you ask, the Cuban customs officials will not stamp your passport, so you wonít raise suspicions when you return to the U.S.

Costa Rica

Costa Rica is the most prosperous country in Central America. San Jose, its capital, is a fun place to visit with plenty of fun-loving women with a love for nightlife. National Geographic, of all things, reported that the national pastime in Costa Rica was "making love." The women have a reputation for treating their men like babies. Years ago, foreign men who had stayed more than three months were screened before leaving the country to make sure they hadnít gotten anyone pregnant. This law may still be on the books.

The nightlife of San Jose centers in its bustling downtown area. One of the worldís great and famous bars, the Key Largo, is a meeting place for expatriates and local women. Try this place to have your first beer and enjoy the local scenery. Another good place for meeting women is the Blue Marlin inside the Hotel Del Rey, also a nice, convenient place to stay. There are numerous smaller bars catering to particular types of music in the area.

Dominican Republic

Comparable to the other fine places for having liaisons ó Thailand, the Philippines, Costa Rica and Brazil ó the Dominican Republicís biggest plus, for Americans, is its proximity. Itís only a three and one-half hour flight from New York. This small, Spanish-speaking nation is the western half of the island that includes the Western Hemisphereís biggest basket case, Haiti. You can have great time in both the capital, Santa Domingo, and the nearby seaside resort, Boca Chica, where the Hotel Neopolitana is a good mid-priced stay. Popular clubs in Santa Domingo for meting women are the Casa Rosada and Casa de Models.

Viet Nam

A lecherous German drinking buddy from Hong Kong asked me to visit him in Ho Chi Minh City. He claimed to maintain a villa and a harem there. He reported that Filipinas were only the second best lovers in the world. The Vietnamese ladies were assuredly the finest.

If you go to Ho Chi Minh city remember that you are in a communist country. You will not be able to take a girl to your hotel room unless you bribe the security guard. If you pick up a girl you will have to take her to a short-time hotel. It will probably be a dive. She might be able to help you find accommodation in a private home. You donít have to look far to find a girl in Ho Chi Minh City. At night, girls on motor skooters approach you outside of any hotel. Discos, such as Gossip at the Hotel Metropole, Apocalypse Now and Queen Bee, are good places to meet women. There are also hostess bars throughout the city where you can sit and chat with available young beauties.


Cambodia is a chaotic, semi-lawless adventureland with cheap sex for under US$5. I canít really recommend it.  There are discos where you can meet local girls, and the brothel districts, Svay Pak and Tuol Kork.