Travel bucket list idea:
Thai kick boxing at Rajadamnern Boxing Stadium
Bangkok, Central Thailand, Thailand|rajadamnern.com|
There are few better ways to witness Thailand’s from its wild side than at a Thai kickboxing (or Muay Thai) match. There will be sweat, there will be blood, and the crowd will be positively bonkers. But even if you can’t tell a push kick from a round kick, the whooping and hollering around the ring is wildly contagious.
This national sport finds it origins in the battlefields of ancient Siam, but has since grown into a testosterone- and beer-soaked gambling night for the mainly male fraternity. Evenings usually consist of 9 fights, each of which is made up of five three-minute rounds. Headlining fights take place later in the night, and are usually reserved for the 7th, 8th, and 9th match.
The out-of-the-way New Lumpinee Boxing Stadium is the sanctum sanctorum of this national sport and welcomes the biggest stars, but the mid-century Rjadamnern Boxing Stadium near Rattanakosin is a much more accessible and an equally enthralling venue.
Getting there & doing it
Located near Ratanakosin, the Rajadamnern Stadium is easily reachable by taxi from anywhere in town. Just factor in an extra 20 minutes when traffic is heavy – which is often the case during the late-afternoon downpours in the monsoon season.
Numerous tour operators provide tickets and transfers, but attending a match by yourself is easy. Tickets can be purchased through the stadium’s website. However, the cheapest tickets get you a seat far away from the ring, so it’s worth splurging on a ringside spot to be at the heart of the action. Avoid the touts selling tickets in front of the stadium, as they often sell at inflated prices.
When to do it
Fights take place every Monday, Wednesday, Thursday and Sunday from around 6.30pm to 10pm.
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