Pattaya is a Thai city a couple of hours' drive away from Bangkok in a South Easterly direction. It is a beach side resort that is famous for its nightlife and severe lack of morals in terms of a very public sex trade. There are two areas to the city, namely Pattaya itself and nearby Jomtien Beach.
Pattaya is a fairly big place but most of the action centres on the beach front promenade, which is lined with shops, restaurants, shopping malls, and tourist attractions. There is very little, if anything, of the real Thailand in this place because it is over run with american fast food chains and things like Ripley's Believe It Or Not. Aside from the sex that is very clearly for sale, it could be any town or city anywhere in the world.
Lots of people like it, but it wasn't for us. We liked the fact that there was something going on and that we could people watch quite happily. We would have enjoyed walking up and down the promenade if it hadn't been for the literally thousands of prostitutes lining the street and the frightening number of rats on the beach.
You can buy almost anything you want in Pattaya, whether that be high street favourites or tacky souvenirs of your stay, Bartering is the norm in many of the shops and you can grab yourself a bargain if you so wish.
Food and drink wise, there are lots of generic places where you can get cheap eats. Don't expect fine dining though because it just isn't there. I will recommend the ice cream parlour above the Pizza Hut restaurant though because the choice is amazing and there are some fantastic sundaes on offer.
This is a smaller resort right next to Pattaya that is mainly filled with resort hotels. There is a small promenade on the front which could have been a lovely place to walk in the evening if it didn't practically shut down and become so dark and quiet. During the day it is a hive of activity and the small, narrow beach is literally rammed full of loungers, sun umbrellas and snack stalls.
Jomtien is billed as a family resort and this is probably thanks to the fact that there is an amusement park but there is not much else to make it a family resort to be honest that we could see. There are a lot of hotels that welcome gay people and the beach is gay friendly.
Jomtien is not as seedy as its neighbour, but that's not to say that there aren't elements of it. They are not quite as obvious and in your face though, so it generally is a more pleasant place to be than Pattaya.
===Getting Between the Two===
You can get taxis that will cost a few pounds each way and they are easy to pick up on the main road at either end. Make sure you negotiate a price first.
The cheapest and most fun way to get between the two though is a bus. It's not a bus like you are used to, but more of a converted van that you just hail down, jump into the back of and press the button to get off at the other end. These cost a matter of pennies for each journey and there are hundreds, if not thousands, knocking around so you won't have to wait long for a ride. You can get a private one, but it'll cost much more. You are better looking out for one that is already moving and has people in it so you know they aren't going to make you want until it is full.