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Soi Cowboy

Coordinates: 13°44′12.5″N 100°33′45″E / 13.736806°N 100.56250°E / 13.736806; 100.56250
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Soi Cowboy
Soi Cowboy at night in 2023
Length150 m (490 ft)
LocationKhlong Toei Nuea, Watthana district, Bangkok, Thailand
Coordinates13°44′12.5″N 100°33′45″E / 13.736806°N 100.56250°E / 13.736806; 100.56250
West endAsok Montri road
East endSoi Sukhumvit 23
Known forRed-light district

Soi Cowboy (Thai: ซอยคาวบอย, RTGSSoi Khaoboi, pronounced [sɔ̄ːj kʰāːw.bɔ̄ːj]) is a short (150 meter long) street (soi) in Bangkok, Thailand, with some 40, mostly go-go bars. It caters mainly to tourists and expatriates.[1] Soi Cowboy contains one of the three largest groups of foreign-oriented bars in Bangkok, the other two being Patpong and Soi Nana Tai.[2]

Soi Cowboy at dusk


Soi Cowboy is near Sukhumvit Road, between Asok Montri Road (Soi Sukhumvit 21) and Soi Sukhumvit 23, within walking distance from the BTS Skytrain's Asok Station and the Bangkok MRT's Sukhumvit Station. The Pullman Bangkok Grande Sukhumvit Hotel is nearby.[3]


Soi Cowboy entrance on the side of Soi Sukhumvit 21

The first bar opened in Soi Cowboy in the early 1970s, but it was not until 1977 that a second bar opened on the street[2] by T. G. "Cowboy" Edwards, a retired American airman. Edwards got his nickname because he often wore a cowboy hat and the soi was given its name in reference to him by longtime nightlife columnist Bernard Trink. The number of bars grew to 31 by the end of the century, all located on the ground floor.[2]

In popular culture[edit]

Actor Hugh Grant visited Soi Cowboy in December 2003, while shooting the movie Bridget Jones: The Edge of Reason. The Tilac Bar and several Soi Cowboy bar girls are seen in the film. The Sun wrote on 23 December 2003 that Grant was chased by bar girls and had to flee, though this apparently was untrue.[4]

In August 2006, scenes were shot in Soi Cowboy for the film Bangkok Dangerous.[5]


  1. ^ Fuller, Thomas (2007-10-27). "At Home Amid the Red Lights". New York Times. Retrieved 2015-01-25.
  2. ^ a b c Steinfatt, Thomas M. (2002). Working at the Bar: Sex Work and Health Communication in Thailand. Greenwood Publishing Group. p. 30–32. ISBN 9781567505665.
  3. ^ "Guest Friendly Hotels Near Soi Cowboy". 2015-11-23. Retrieved 2016-08-09.
  4. ^ Hugh Grant story[dead link]
  5. ^ "The Story Of Ploen", Stickman's Guide to Bangkok, 20 August 2006, archived from the original on 9 May 2008, retrieved 29 November 2016

External links[edit]