The Phuket Low-down
Todays guest blogger Connie Hum has spent the last couple of years travelling around Asia and currently resides in Hong Kong. Thailand is an attractive holiday destination for many reasons; the people, the food, the temples but most of all the beaches. Connie gives us her low-down on the popular beach destination of Phuket.
Phuket Island in Thailand is known the world over for its gorgeous beaches and year-round sun. Covering approximately 570 square kilometers, Phuket has plenty of coastline and plenty of beaches that cater to every type of holiday-goers. Here’s a quick rundown of some key areas to enjoy all that Phuket has to offer!
One of the main tourist beaches on Phuket, Patong is located on the central west coast of Phuket island, providing an expansive stretch of sandy beaches and warm, blue waters. In recent years, development has exploded in Patong and it now boasts itself as Phuket’s premier nightspot with plenty of bars and clubs to enjoy until the sun comes up.
Tip: Banana Disco, located on Beach Road, is an established institution in Patong and even after ten years, people just keep coming back, ready to dance the night away.
The palm-fringed beach of Kata Bay draws in the family crowd looking for something a little less hectic than Patong Beach. Gentle waves, seafood restaurants, small shops and a lively but calm nightlife charms all of Kata Beach’s visitors. Surfers come out to play among the waves between the months of May and October.
Protected as part of the Nai Yang National Marine Park, Nai Yang Beach is quiet and blissfully peaceful. Nai Yang is one of the few places in Thailand, if not the world, where you can feel like the last person on earth. There’s not much by way of development beside the few restaurants that run along the beach and small shops by the road, prepare yourself for the much-needed respite you’ve been looking for.
Often overlooked by travelers during their rush to reach the beach, Phuket Town has much to offer visitors and can provide a great day trip away from the beach should the sun get too hot to handle. Local artists have taken over much of Old Phuket Town, many of which display their works in the numerous galleries along Phuket Town’s small lanes. Cafes and restaurants serve up international cuisine with a Thai flair. The old Sino-Portuguese architecture provides the perfect backdrop for a day of shopping.
Tip: Splurge for a dinner experience you won’t soon forget at Raya House on New Dibuk Road. The 90-year old Sino-Portuguese house has been lovingly converted into quite a fancy establishment that often caters to Thailand’s high society and celebrities. Raya also offers cooking courses for those looking to bring the taste of Thailand home with them.
No trip to Phuket is ever complete without an excursion to the fabled island of Koh Phi Phi Don. Gaining international fame for being the location where Leonardo Di Caprio’s The Beach was filmed, Koh Phi Phi is now one of the most popular destinations in all of Thailand. Many adventurers will love Koh Phi Phi for its diving, snorkeling, kayaking and rock-climbing possibilities. Beach-goers will fall head over heels for the pristine beaches and crystal clear waters.
Tip: Book hotels in advance during summer months as the island does run out of rooms in the busy months. Head to the street food stalls near Barracuda Divers where you can gorge on all the inexpensive food you can eat.
Phuket is an approximately 1 hour 30 minute flight from Bangkok and flights to Bangkok take around 11 hours 30 minutes. Call 0208 045 4186 for the latest Phuket flight deals and find more of Connie's Asian adventures here!