Massive cleanup for Bangkok’s Khao San Road

Posted on 29 July 2019

Khao San Road in Thailand’s capital is known one of the city’s best-known tourist attractions, especially popular among backpackers in South East Asia.

The strip in Bangkok, known for its cheap accommodation, food and drink, became popularised after featuring in Alex Garland’s 1996 novel, The Beach and the cult movie in 2000 starring Leonardo DiCaprio, based on the book.

Bangkok, Thailand

Khao San Road. Image credit: Steve Upton

Now, city authorities have announced a plan to clean up the strip and will be investing 48 million baht (R22 million) in its gentrification. Work will begin in October and is expected to be complete in February 2020.

Also read: Backpackers ordered to leave Venice after breaking new tourist rules

According to the Bangkok Post, ‘footpaths on the famous tourist strip of Khao San Road will be revamped, with clear vendor zoning established to ensure orderliness and safety.’

The road’s footpaths will be levelled (‘eliminating one of the traditional quirks of the backpacker experience: drunkenly tripping over Khao San’s looming kerbs’ says The Australian) and resurfaced with ‘flamed-finish tiles’.

Two hundred and forty street vendors will be allowed to trade here between 9am and 9pm and vendors will be divvied into groups depending on what they are selling. Each trader will have an allocated space of 1.5x2m and no pushcart vendors will be allowed.

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