Getting Tattooed in Thailand

Tattoo done in ThailandI had many plans my first trip to Thailand and one of them was to get a tattoo. Unfortunately plans and Thailand often go awry and I ran out of time. My second trip I had so much going on I completely forgot about getting a tattoo. My last trip my brother was along for the ride and he was absolutely getting ink done here and it finally came to pass that I got a tattoo.

In my trips I’ve been in quite a few tattoo shops in Bangkok and Pattaya and I can tell you for a fact it is very safe to get a tattoo in Thailand. Some of the shops aren’t any bigger than a small room and some are very large but they all put the customers health and safety first. New needles are always used and opened in front of the customer, they all have working autoclaves, and work areas are sterilized constantly. The tattoo shops I’ve been in all used American inks as well. When asked why the answer was “it’s the best”. So, don’t listen to anyone telling you old needles are used or the tattoo shops aren’t safe. If you should be in a shop anywhere in the world and they won’t open the new needle in front of you or it doesn’t seem clean…walk.

getting ink done in Thailand (5)There are many tattoo shops in Thailand, in Pattaya alone there must be 500, some as small as a telephone booth. Not only are there many shops but equally as many talented artists doing the work. I did a lot of research before I got work done and originally narrowed it down to 3 shops but finally settled on 13 Crowns on walking street in Pattaya. My brother got his work done first, a very colorful dragon, and I was impressed with their work and everyone in the shop was great. I settled on a dragon myself but all black with a red eye.

getting ink done in Thailand (8)If you plan on getting ink done while in Thailand do some research of the shops in the areas you’ll be and I’m sure you’ll be pleased with the end results. If you’re in Pattaya head to walking street and look for a bicycle chopper outside a small narrow shop with a sign that says 13 Crowns…you won’t be disappointed.

My brother ended up getting a second tattoo of a dragon and my girl got a small back tat too…you can see the tattoo’s in the Gallery section or you can click here Getting Ink Done.

Thailand Tattoo

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13 Comment(s)

  1. That’s a nice bit of work. I’ve thought about getting a tat done the last two times I was in Thailand as well, but have never had the time. The last trip there we spent some time on Samet and some of the guys that run the snorkeling and scuba trips had some off the hook tats. Really intricate Thai style stuff that they said they had done in Rayong. My wife said the tats were actually symbols for good luck, wealth, that type of thing. All I can say is they were awesome and next time we’re back in Thailand I’ll be hooking that up.

    Thailand Musings | Mar 4, 2008 | Reply

  2. Some of the Thai style tattoo’s are awesome. I had my eye on one and was considering getting it before I left but I ran out of time.

    Whats really interesting are the tattoo’s done by certain monks for luck or protection. They take a while to do because they are using a pointed stick and from what I hear it’s a pretty painful process but the end result looks great.

    Ok, I’m off now to check out your site :)

    talen | Mar 4, 2008 | Reply

  3. I didn’t know Thailand was such a popular place for tattoo artists. My sister inlaw is from Bangkok. I’ll have to mention this to her.

    Karen’s last blog post..Mission Haiti

    Karen | Mar 9, 2008 | Reply

  4. Wow nice tats u got. Your experience is very helpful and thanks for your recommendation.

    Tattoo Flash Designs Images | Jun 28, 2008 | Reply

  5. Once again, another great read! Don’t know about getting a tattoo myself, but if I ever get to Thailand…

    Diane Scott | Jul 27, 2008 | Reply

  6. How much did the tattoos end up costing you?

    Jeff | Aug 4, 2008 | Reply

  7. The all black dragon cost me $60 the small colored dragon that my brother got cost $85 if I remember right and I think the large dragon my brother got on his shoulder cost $100.

    Talen | Aug 4, 2008 | Reply

  8. I think you have paid too much ;-)
    I paid mine 3000 baht in Suan Lum Night Bazaar and it’s shoulder size, three shades of black. I got another one from Samet too.

    rogers last blog post..Luc Montagnier: an HIV vaccine as additional therapy rather than prophylaxis

    roger | Oct 22, 2008 | Reply

  9. The shop had a 2000 baht minimum so, yes I paid a little too much but I I like their work.

    I can understand why they have a minimum because while I was there more than a few people came in wanting 3 letters or a very small design done and wanted to haggle the price.

    One girl wanted a tiny butterfly but only wanted to pay 200 baht.

    The next one I get will be much larger with a lot of color and shouldn’t cost me more than 3000 baht.

    Talen | Oct 22, 2008 | Reply

  10. Hi,
    I am a tattoo artist from austria.
    Many times (31) i go to pattaya, and sometimes i get tattooed in Pattaya.
    The best atrist i ever see, is YOO, from 52 Tattoo on the Art street right handet from Mike-Shopping Mall.

    Greetings to him….Sincerely, Günther

    Günther | Nov 26, 2009 | Reply

  11. where would you guys suggest to go to get a authentic temple tattoo please don’t just say a temple theirs a festival our mass tattooing done every year does anybody know of this
    there some great artists in Thailand i met rob in loh tao a few years back he was from Holland and did the jigsaw man he said he was a very fast and accurate chap wish i could track him down again
    .-= john´s last blog ..ban dung issan Thailand my favourite videos =-.

    john | Jan 16, 2010 | Reply

  12. Hi, I’m actually half thai and was wondering how old you have to be to get a tatto in thailand because my mum doesn’t know???

    daisy | Dec 28, 2010 | Reply

  13. Daisy, I’m not exactly sure but I believe age of consent for a tattoo in Thailand is 16, that being said I have seen tattoos on people younger than 16. I’ll look into it and let you know.

    Talen | Dec 29, 2010 | Reply

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