It might surprise you to learn that the origins of the bachelor party are rooted in ancient history—as far back as 5th century B.C. Spartans would hold a dinner for the groom-to-be on the night before his wedding, and they’d spend the night feasting, and toasting the groom and each other. Fast forward to the twenty first century, and the dinner has been replaced by a party (or even a couple of nights of partying!). That’s not all that’s changed—rather than an occasion to celebrate the groom, it’s become an opportunity for him to enjoy one last blowout before settling into a life of maturity and responsibility.
Luckily, you don’t have to travel halfway around the world to make this happen. There are many places in Asia itself that boast a huge variety of culture, food, beaches and nightlife. Here we’ve listed one location each from five different Asian countries that should definitely feature on your list of possible destinations for that memorable bachelor party:
1. Koh Phangan, Thailand
The island might not be the biggest, but the local party scene remains unmatched. Delicious food, cheap drinks, and beautiful beaches—all the essentials that make up a perfect bachelor trip.
When To Go: The island is busiest from late December to March, but you can ditch the crowds if you visit between April and June. September and October are best missed because of the heavy monsoon season.
How To Get There: The nearest airport is Koh Samui, from which there are at least three ferries to Koh Phangan. Fly to Bangkok, from where Koh Samui is a train, car, or bus ride away.
What To Do: The Full Moon Party is an unmissable monthly bacchanal that celebrates the full moon, and takes place once a month in Haad Rin. Can’t make it in time for the full moon extravaganza? There are half moon parties as well! Just be sure to book well in advance.
The FMP isn’t the only party to attend here—check out The Jungle Experience, Merkaba Beach Club, Eden, and Sandcastle—there’s a different party every day of the week!
Where To Stay: Opt for The COAST Resort, a reasonably priced modern establishment that’s only a 10-minute walk to the FMP. Also convenient are The West Coast Beach Resort and the 1 Boutique Hotel.
2. Langkawi, Malaysia
Visualise idyllic, restful beaches in the day and crazy party scenes when the sun goes down—that’s Langkawi for you in a nutshell.
When To Go: The best time to visit is between January and March, when you can enjoy the best weather. However, it remains packed from November to April, in anticipation of the great weather!
How To Get There: There are regular flights to Langkawi from Kuala Lumpur and Penang, so getting there is not a problem at all.
What To Do: Walking along the streets of Pantai Cenang or Tengah, you’ll see restaurants transform themselves into colourful pubs to keep the party going. The Cliff, Budaba Music Bar, Charlie’s Place, Eagle Rock Cafe and Sunba are the major hotspots in the area.
Where To Stay: The Danna, Berjaya Langkawi Resort, and Vivanta by Taj provide luxurious accommodation for your stay.
3. Bali, Indonesia
There’s something here for everyone— countless bars and clubs for raging all-nighters, and more refined hotspots up the coast. Go where your mood takes you!
When To Go: May, June and July are generally considered to be the best time to travel to Bali in terms of the weather. If you feel like surfing with your bachelor party gang, however, the western side of the peninsula creates some of the world's best waves from May to October.
How To Get There: There are direct flights to Bali from India, travel won’t be complicated at all.
What To Do: The Sky Garden and the Potato Head Beach Club are just two of the many legendary party hotspots that you and your crew must visit for the ultimate party experience.
Where To Stay: Check out the Westin Resort in Nusa Dua, the Hard Rock Hotel, or the Grand Hyatt for a great stay while you’re there.
4. Boracay, Philippines
Once the kingdom of hippies and beach shacks, it’s now become a tried-and-tested destination for party-goers.
When To Go: The peak season is November to May, but the weather is quite pleasant almost all year round.
How To Get There: There are no direct flights into Boracay— all visitors must fly to either Caticlan (the closer airport) or Kalibo. From there, drive to Caticlan Jetty Port, and it’s a 10-20 minute boat ride to Boracay. There are flights to Caticlan from the capital, Manila.
What To Do: Boracay is divided into military-like stations, with happening party spots spread across the town. An amazing venue is Area 51, while EPIC and Summer Place are also extremely popular.
Where To Stay: The Phaidon Beach Resort, Casa Venecia, and Hotel Metro are extremely affordable places where you can enjoy a relaxing stay during the day, and party your nights away!
5. Ha Long Bay, Vietnam
The beaches witness adventure sports during the day, and bonfire parties at night—with a UNESCO-designated landscape surrounding it.
When To Go: March-April and September-October are the best times to visit, if you wish to enjoy the finest weather—but it’s an okay spot to visit any time of the year.
How To Get There: There is a bus from Hanoi to Halong city, the capital. If you’re looking for more affordable means of transport, there’s connectivity by road and rail as well.
What To Do: Castaway Island offers an amazing experience, where the staff not only knows how to take great care of you, but can also set up a great party! Other options include Funky Bar and Ba Hang Bar.
Where To Stay: The City Bay Palace Hotel, the Vinpearl Resort Ha Long Bay, and the Royal Halong Hotel are sure to make your time in Ha Long Bay a great one.
Don’t let your notions of a bachelor trip be tainted by what you saw in The Hangover—with just a little bit of planning, you can have a great time—and remember everything that happened as well!