Thailand bans half and quarter Moon parties

Looks like Cambodia might be getting some more tourist $

Half and Quarter Moon shindigs — along with some supplementary jungle parties — will no longer be staged on the islands of Koh Phangan and Koh Tao, near Koh Samui, for ‘drug and alcohol’ reasons.

The only beach rave left standing is Koh Phangan’s original Full Moon Party which last month attracted about 20,000 revellers from around the world.

In further moves aimed at curbing more freewheeling tourist lures, Thailand’s ruling military junta has announced another attempt to sanitise the country’s sex tourism and sleaze capital Pattaya, only a few hours drive form Bangkok.

The same ‘clean-up’ has been applied to Phuket — where an average of 25,000 Australians holiday every month.

Beaches from Rawai north to Mai Khao, including the hotbed of Patong, have been cleared of deckchairs, umbrellas, masseurs and hawkers.

This week, the hiring of surfboards from all Phuket beaches was deemed illegal because of its commercial use of public space.

Dozens of swanky beach clubs operating on crown land have been torn down or closed and jet ski hire has been pushed off the beach and onto the road.

The so-called ‘taxi mafia’ and narcotics trade — the two main targets of the crackdown — have been worn down, but so too thousands of local businesses and their employees, whose livelihoods depended on tourists buying their food, drinks and wares.

Australian tourists seeking a cocktail or beer delivered to their deck chair and a foot massage — “cheap luxury” most have come to expect — are out of luck.

“We are not happy,’’ Dorothy Dickman, of Melbourne, said, as she and her and husband Eric lounged in beanbags they dragged onto Surin beach where a row of half a dozen beach clubs has been torn down.

“We love Phuket, we have been here five times but this is why we come here. You just can’t get this in Australia.

“But now,” she says, gesturing at a posse of soldiers roaming the beaches’ edge, “you can feel the tension.”

Locals say that the military plans to bring licenced vendors back to the beaches — in time — with more limited deckchairs and umbrellas for hire.

The police chief of the Koh Phangan district Colon Prahcum Ruangthong told News Corp Australia that the Half Moon, Quarter Moon, Jungle and Waterfall parties had been cancelled indefinitely as part of an anti-drugs campaign.

“The main reason is that drinking outside an taking drugs is illegal — as well we are concerned for the safety of tourists attending thee events where such things are available,’ he added.

Quizzed on the effect the party cancellations would have on already struggling tourist numbers, Colonel Prachum told News Corp Australia: “The sort of tourist that comes here to drink too much and take drugs are not the type that Thailand wants.”

Visitors numbers to Thailand dropped by more than 10 per cent for the first nine months of the year, compared with the same period last year — a stark comparison with the 20 per cent uplift in 2012 when almost 1 million Australians visited.

Fedor approves:

Did you like Thailand in general?

I'm not going back there again! (laughs) When you look at Bangkok: all you see is bars, sex-tourism prospers, alot of prostitutes and transvestites. It only disgusted me as an orthodox man.

hahaha if Fedor approves, then its the right thing to do!!!

I went to a half moon party when I was in Koh Samui. It was fucking great but then after only being there for about 2 hours, police stormed in and closed it down out of respect for a politician that was shot earlier that day.

Was stranded on the island until the next morning cos the boats that were meant to bring us back to Samui came earlier then they were supposed to. Load of bollox. Still love Thailand though. Phone Post 3.0

BrunoMcGyver - hahaha if Fedor approves, then its the right thing to do!!!
I definitely agree with him, I always thought Bangkok was a shithole. Phone Post 3.0

Thailand has lost most of its shine as a tourist destination.

I suggest exploring Laos instead (drinking is not only accepted practice, but encouraged.). Beer Lao is also probably the best beer you'll ever have with no hangovers even after a dozen 640ml bottles.

To make matters worse, the ruling government is actively discouraging foreigners to stay long term in the country.

I'm going to the full moon party next week.
Jungle experience being cancelled is a fucking pisstake, was the best party on the island. Phone Post 3.0