Khaosan: Fake IDs & Pad Thai
Talat Yot, Phra Nakhon, BKK 10200
Location: 13.759088,100.496639

The time when the Khaosan Road was a meeting place for alternative traveller is long gone as the face of the streets in the whole area changed and became another touristy spot in Bangkok metropolis. Of course it is still the place to go if you are a backpacker, if you don't mind the small space that most of the cheaper guest houses provide and if you want to meet like minded traveller. Nowadays the whole area, from Rachadamnoen Road to Khaosan, Rambuttri and Phra Athit Road is filled with guest houses, restaurants and bars so that the needs of the usually young and scarcely dressed (somehow you have to show off the new tattoos!) travellers are met. And throughout Bangkok this area is known as one of the spots to go for shopping. But what is so special here that you can not get in any other area?
When you are walking down the short Khaosan Road there are a few things that catches the attention. The relative high percentage of food stalls that are selling Pad Thai (the question here is: is the Pad Thai real or fake?), the many shirts shops, the jewellry and silver shops that were popping up a few years ago and are now everywhere, some tattooists and the fake ID stalls.

But if you are looking for jewellry and accessories then there is the market in Sampeng Lane where all the sellers in Platinum and Kaosan go and buy their goods and most of the t-shirts you get all over Bangkok, in most shopping malls or street stalls. But if you are looking for some unique designs then you should check different spots like Bangkoker on Samsen Road.
So the things that remain are the Fake IDs. Do not be mistaken, under Thai law it is illegal to produce, sell, buy or possess a fake ID and punishment can be severe. Nonetheless they are sold openly in Khaosan Road and it seems no one would be bothered about it.
The range of IDs is rather impressive, starting with student cards, driving licenses, citizenship IDs or driving licenses for various countries. Most of them are sleazy and are nothing more than a souvenir to gain some laughs. You can also buy various degrees or TEFL diploma which would explain the big amount of foreign teachers in Thailand. The IDs are usually made within 2 hours, depending on how difficult they are to produce. The student identification cards are quickly done but other IDs take more time and are more costly. The rule is: the more sophisticated the ID the more time it takes and the more costly it gets. The prices range from 250 up to more than 1000 Baht.
Overall I have to say that Khaosan is a place that has some nostalgic flair and especially the area around Soi Rambuttri and Wat Chana Songkram has a cozy atmosphere where its nice to have a beer and watch the traveller travelling. There are also some spots that are good for a night out but for shopping Khaosan is not exactly the best place.
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