PhuketCopyright: Aleksandar Todorovic/Shutterstock.com
PhuketSurrounded by clear blue water, Phuket has all the right ingredients for an unforgettable tropical vacation: its palm-fringed beaches are of soft, clean sand, it has a vibrant nightlife, and you can enjoy the most wide-ranging cuisine – you name it, you can eat it in Phuket. For several years, Phuket has topped travel charts as a holiday paradise – and not without a reason – as the island is a spectacular destination. Add to this the most welcoming people in the world and you can see why travellers love it here.
The IslandPhuket and its surrounding islands are some of the most beautiful and intriguing in the world. Tall outcrops of limestone rise vertically from the sea, and probably the most famous of these was used as a location for one of the James Bond films. It’s now known as “James Bond Island,” but its real name is Phang-nga. Set just off the west coast of Thailand, in the Andaman Sea, Phuket is about the same size as Singapore. The main town is Phuket Town, but many visitors stay in the beach resorts of Surin, Katu, Karon and the most famous (and busy), Patong. To get from Phuket to Patong takes about 20 minutes. Phuket Town has all the administration offices, bigger business hotels and department stores, whilst the beach resorts cater more to the holiday maker. However, excursions to the islands off Phuket go from the port at Phuket Town.
Do & See
Gorgeous white beaches, the bluest water you have ever seen and snorkelling, which is like swimming in an aquarium. This is the place to relax and enjoy yourself, either with scuba diving, spa centres or elephant trekking, there is always something to do.
Thai cuisine has become one of the country’s biggest exports, and naturally, nothing can compare to the real thing. Why not sample a bowl of tom yam goong (spicy prawn soup), or perhaps kaeng phed ped yang (roast duck in red curry) is more to your liking? Many restaurants in the resort towns, such as Patong, will have a mix of Thai and western food. Chinese dishes are readily available at the many restaurants in the resorts, and there are also a fair number of Indian and Arabic places catering to those particular types of cuisine. And here are the best places to eat in Phuket, Thailand:
All the resorts from Surin to Chalong Bay have a beachfront road packed with cafés and simple eating places. Some are part of a hotel; some are just simple eateries on the roadside. Too numerous to mention, just have a stroll and see what appeals to your taste buds.
Bars & Nightlife
Equally, the bars of Patong run into the hundreds. The main bar areas are gathered around Bangla Square and Bangla Road. The road is traffic-free in the evening so you can wander along without the worries of the motorbikes. Off Bangla Road are some "Soi", which are lanes, but again without traffic. In these Sois, such as Soi Eric, Soi Cayote, Soi Gonzo, and Soi Easy there are even more bars. Below are some of the best bars and nightclubs in Phuket, Thailand:
Thailand has excellent shopping, both modern malls with all the regular brands, as well as plenty of traditional crafts. The Central Festival in Phuket Town is the biggest shopping centre and has 300 shops, with branded goods, Thai crafts and electronics. Situated on the outskirts of Phuket Town, you will more than likely need a tuk tuk or taxi to get there. For traditional Thai crafts, there is an organisation which is government supported called One Tambon, One Product. The idea is to encourage rural and tribal people from the villages to produce traditional goods and take the benefits directly. The store is located at the south end of Patong, behind the Holiday Inn Hotel. All the resorts have a night market, but the biggest is in Patong. The vendors begin to set up their stalls around 18.30 and then they are open for business until about 23.00. All the best bargains are here: clothes, sports equipment, watches, souvenirs, luggage and some of the best replicas you can find.