Phuket, The Basics
Nestling in the calm and pleasant waters of the Andaman Sea on the Indian Ocean coastline, and approximately 862 km south of Bangkok, Phuket is the largest island of Thailand. It runs 48 Kilometers in length and 21 kilometers in width and is situated in the Southern Thailand.
Phuket can be classified into Western Phuket, South-eastern Phuket, Interior Phuket and Phang Nga Bay. Western Phuket is the major region and has made Phuket extremely popular all over the world. Boasting of a wide variety of outstanding beaches, it comprises Bang Thao, Kamala, Kata, Laem Sing, Mai Khao, Nai Thon and Nai Yang, Patong and other areas.
South-eastern Phuket comprises Chalong Bay, Cape Panwa, Nai Han, Rawai, and Ya Nui. Chalong Bay is the largest town in this region and serves as a harbor for boats that go to Phang Nga Bay. Interior Phuket which is made up of Bang Rong, Ko Sire, Phuket Town, Phra Taew National Park, and Thalang is not visited much by tourists. It is basically a hilly expanse which consists of rubber and pineapple plantations, mangrove forests and shrimp farms.
Phang Nga Bay in Phuket comprising of Ko Bon, Ko Hae, Ko Lon, Ko Mai Thon, Ko Maphrao, Ko Racha, and Ko Yao is renowned for beautiful cliffs, caves, mangroves and fishing villages.
The major cities of Phuket are Chalong Bay, Kamala, Kata, Nai thon and Nai yang, Patong, Rawai, Surin, and Phuket town.
There are several means of reaching Phuket. You can go there by plane, by train, by bus, by car, and even by boat.
Phuket International Airport which lies in the north of the island is Thailand's largest airport, second only to the Bangkok airport. There are frequent flights to and from Bangkok, as well as direct flights to other airports in the region. There are direct international flights to Phuket from Australia, Germany, Hong Kong, Indonesia, Korea, Malaysia, and Singapore. There are also charter flights in high season from European and Asian countries such as Taiwan, Japan, and Sweden.
You can easily get buses to Bangkok, Chumphon, Hat Yai, Krabi, Phang Nga, Ranong, Satun, Sungai Kolok and Surat Thani. There is the BKS terminal situated in Thanon Phang Nga in Phuket Town. While the public BKS buses are the most reliable and also the most affordable means of reaching Phuket, there are also private bus services that you may use for reaching Phuket.
From Phuket bus terminal, you can hire a motorcycle taxi, tuk-tuk, or metre-taxi.
Phuket is connected to the mainland by the Thao Thepkasattri Bridge. If you are going by car from Bangkok, you can take Highway 4 through Nakhon Pathom, Prachuap Khiri Khan, and Chumphon, thence through Ranong Provinceâ€™s Kra Buri and Kapoe districts, Phang Nga Provinceâ€™s Takua Pa and Thai Muang districts and onto Phuket Island. The total distance is 862 km.
Ferry services connect from Rassada Port in Phuket Town to Ko Phi Phi and on to Krabi on the mainland, two times a day, taking roughly 90 to 120 minutes. It's usually a pleasant ride, but you may experience the bumps if it is windy.
Things to do in Phuket
There is so much to do in Phuket if you are looking for an action-packed holiday, you would simply be spoilt for choices. The most popular activities in Phuket are swimming, snorkelling, diving, yachting, parasailing, and jet skiing. Phuket is the diving hub in Thailand and every year tourists in large numbers come here to enjoy the best diving experience. The popular diving sites in Phuket are Chalong Bay, Racha Yai, Racha Noi, and ko Phi Phi. From mid October to May, you can have one-of-its-kind diving experience in the warm and clear blue waters of the island.
Phuket is considered as the sailing and yachting center of Thailand. Here you would find the sailing yachts of every size to explore the beautiful island. Snorkelling can be enjoyed at Patong, Karon, Ko hae, Kata, Ko Racha Yai, and ko Phi Phi.
Other activities that you can indulge in during your holidays in Phuket include freediving, wind surfing, kite surfing, wake boarding, and sea fishing. Sea canoeing is another popular activity at the island.
Major Phuket attractions
Phuket has an array of attractions to keep you busy, including zoo and gardens, temples, shrines, museums, viewpoints, national parks, and much more. And the best part is that all these attractions are at a short driving distance from each other. Phuket heroines monument, Bang Neow Shrine, Thalan national museum, Panwa viewpoint, Wat Tham Ta Pan, Phuket Zoo, James Bond island, Phuket mangrove, Phuket waterfalls, Khao Phra Thaeo National Park, Thai Hua Museum, and Phuket Seashell Museum are just a few of the several attractions in Phuket.
If you are looking for entertainment, there is lot in Phuket. Cabaret shows in Phuket, Phuket Fantasea, Pradise Complex, Phuket Siam Niramit Show, and Phuket cinemas are famous all over and are loved by tourists who come here.
In order to cater to the large number of foreign travelers, several shops have come up that serve cosmopolitan food. But if you wish to taste the local cuisines, you must try out fried or boiled noodle dishes served with pork or chicken, khanom Jin, noodles served with spicy curry sauce and fresh veggies, and Nam Phrik Kung Siap, smoked shrimps served with chillies and fresh vegetables. Do not forget to taste Phuket pineapples as they are grown and available there all year round and are very sweet and firm to taste.
With several beautiful beaches to explore, colonial mansions and shimmering temples to visit, and indulging in many activities like scuba diving, golfing, and shopping, and fine dining, a visit to Phuket is sure to give you an experience of a lifetime. Make your bookings in advance to enjoy attractive rates on holiday accommodation and airfare.