Sports and Activities in PhuketAs Phuket is a beach lover’s Shangri-la, most of the activities are water-based. Facilities are there for many water sports like boating, fishing, sailing, kayaking, parasailing and jet skiing. Other activities that do not involve water are also there. The most prominent among them are Thai kickboxing, elephant rides, trekking, climbing, jungle hiking, ATV rides and cycling. White water rafting facilities are available in nearby Phang Nga.
Water Sports in PhuketWith the calm, crystal clear Andaman Sea, caressing the beaches of Phuket, no wonder that Phuket has developed into a major tropical tourist destination. Phuket is an important center for sailing, yachting, kayaking and boating activities. Here there are many clubs offering facilities, lessons and gear for these activities. Sport fishing is popular both close to land near the mangrove estuaries and coral reefs, as well as in deep-sea area, where fishes such as Black Marlin and Sailfish are found. Guided boating trips during the daytime are available for visiting nearby small islands and Phang Nga bay. Else, you can rent a kayak or a canoe and venture on your own. If you like speed, jet skiing is ideal. You can enjoy this at Patong or Kata beaches. Whirring past with water spray on your face is very exciting. Another thrilling sport is parasailing using a high-speed motorboat. This is also there on Patong and Kata beaches. Remember to behave sensibly, as the enforcement of safety rules is lax in Thailand.
Snorkeling and DivingMost tourists coming to Phuket engage in diving or snorkeling. It is very popular here due to the right conditions for both the activities, like calm sea, crystal clear water with good visibility, teeming colorful tropical fishes and abundant coral reefs. In most of Phuket’s beaches, guided expeditions are available with lessons thrown in for beginners. One such is Openwater I, which is cheaper as well. If you are short on time and do not have much experience in water sports, snorkeling near the land is the best for you. There are many day tours offered to safe and exotic spots near beaches and islands in Phuket. This is more rewarding than trying you luck in deep-sea areas.
GolfingPhuket has unique identity as a golfing vacation spot among golf-aficionados, with around six international standard 18-hole golf courses spread over the island. The additional attraction of Phuket is its bewitchingly beautiful landscapes, tropical forests, lagoons and clear aquamarine sea lapping the shores – all lying adjacent to the golf courses. While playing in these courses, you not only get to enjoy the game and the scenery, but also have a relaxing time. You can hire high standard gear and caddies. The greens fee comes to around 2000 baht, with hire charges extra. Most of the time, you can find luxury villas for rent near Phuket golf courses.
CyclingYou will find biking tracks all over Phuket’s beautiful landscape. The jungle tracks are the most preferred by tourists for obvious reasons. Many smaller islands surrounding Phuket have only cycle as land transport. Cycles are offered for hire in most beaches. However, the bikes seen here are not suitable for hilly terrain. So cycling around for sight-seeing is out of question. You can do it with some extra effort and guidance from a local biker.
Thai kickboxingThai kickboxing or Muay Thai is a unique martial art of Thailand, developed long ago to protect the region form invaders, especially Burmese. Now, Muay Thai is being practiced all over the world as an effective fighting and self-defense technique. Many come to Thailand to learn this martial art. The training is exacting and difficult. It focuses on stamina, concentration, coordination, confidence and flexibility. Facilities for training are available in Phuket Town, Chalong and Rawai, some even providing accommodation for the trainees. If you have come to Phuket especially for this, an all-inclusive package at one of the gyms is the ideal. They take in people of all physical condition for training.
Adventure Sports in PhuketPhuket is bestowed with picturesque tropical rainforests full of exotic birds and wild animals. The unique vegetation seen here also attracts many tourists. Among animals, none is more popular than elephants. Elephant safari is a novel way to enjoy jungle trails. This way you get to watch other wild animals at close range. ATV is another way to explore the country, where the roads are not proper. You can either set out on your own or join one of the guided tours. Cycling is also popular, but you can do this only where the land is of even elevation. Another problem is that on Thai roads, rules are flouted and cyclists are treated shabbily. For high adventure, Jungle Bungee Jump at Kathu is recommended. This operator has proper license and insurance coverage and is the only one having these in Thailand. Here, you can bungee jump 50m over the Jungle Lagoon. For shooting ranges, head to Chalong. The staff here is very helpful and even beginners start shooting well fast.
Sports activities in Phang NgaPhang Nga, located close to Phuket, has many unique outdoor activities that prompt tourists to go for day trips. Mountain biking, rock climbing and white water rafting are some of the adrenaline-pumping sports offered by Phang Nga. There are several package options for different skill levels and ages.
Phuket is the golfing capital of Thailand, with many international standard golf courses. The tropical weather and lush green rolling grounds surrounded by lagoons and abundant vegetation, attracts golf enthusiasts from all over the world. The three top golf clubs of Phuket offer 81 holes for the public. These clubs have caddies, carts and golfing equipments for hire at affordable rates. During the winter holidays in the months of December and January, the Phuket golf clubs are fully booked. Hence, to avoid disappointment, it is advisable to make reservations in advance. Typically, you will be charged 2,000 baht ($50) for a round of golf.
Blue Canyon Country ClubThe club has two of the best golf courses in Phuket. Another attraction of this club is its proximity to the airport. It is located barely seven minutes away, towards the north direction. The Canyon Course is a championship-class golf course and is among the best in all of Asia. This par 72 course is 7170 yards in length. The course has exciting challenges like water hazards present in 10 holes and eighty bunkers spread over the rolling green. Out of the 18 holes, there are four par three and par five holes each. The 600-yard 11th hole is considered the most difficult and the 407-yard 4th hole is said to be the easiest. However, the short 309-yard 13th hole with a huge bunker is quite a challenge for a player of any handicap. The Lakes Course, named so due to the presence of water hazards in 17 of the 18 holes, is comparatively easier than the Canyon Course. This course is ideal for relaxed play and novices, as the greens are bigger and traps fewer. The most difficult hole is the fourth, which have a dogleg with a wide fairway narrowing into dense vegetation and continuing over a ravine into the raised green. The 18th hole here gives you two options to play, either the right or left path around a spread-out tree, which occupies the center of the fairway.
Laguna Country ClubThis course lies inside the luxurious Laguna Complex, which houses some of the elite resorts and luxury villas in the Phuket Island. It used to be known as the Banyan Tree Phuket Golf Club. Recently, the club and the course underwent drastic changes and were renamed. Many water hazards were added to the course, still it is suitable for a relaxed round of golf. This par 71, 6654-yard course has water present on 14 of the 18 holes. The 17th hole and the 9th hole are the highlights of the course. The 17th is a par 5, 612-yard hole that winds left and right and ends in a triangular green. The 9th par 4, 373-yard hole has a sloping island green, which poses a challenge any day. Golf carts are not available at present, but will be introduced shortly.
Phuket Country ClubThis club has two courses lying on either side of the road connecting Phuket Town with Patong Beach. The Old Course is an easy 18-hole course, though chances of ending up with a low score are high. The New Course is a 9-hole with diverse landscapes that offer more challenges to a wide range of players. The par 5, 557-yard 10th hole of the Old Course challenges the player to carry the 240-yard water hazard to the green in a single shot, which is extremely difficult but possible. The par 3, 143-yard 17th hole has in effect an island green, which offers a wide putting surface that is not easy. The New Course has a par 5, 450-yard 8th hole with dense vegetation located right in the middle of the course, separating the fairways into two - one in front of a canal and one on a plateau. The par 5, 545-yard 9th hole is a tough challenge for players, with a narrow fairway and a lengthy water hazard at the approach to the green.
With ideal conditions for diving and perfect setting for a tropical holiday destination, Phuket is one of the top ten diving spots in the world. Its colorful and vast marine life and amazing coral reefs, makes diving here, a unique experience. The tropical climate makes the water warm and aquamarine clear water around the locations gives good visibility to the diver. The guided expeditions, diving lessons and equipment rentals are other facilities here that make Phuket a great diving destination for tourists all over the world. Phuket Island’s beaches have diving facilities. In addition, diving trips are arranged to nearby small islands for diving freaks. Most of the dive operators in Phuket Island are located in and around Chalong and Patong areas. High quality diving equipments are available in the shops located in the Chalong Circle-Chalong Pier Road. Foreign nationals own most of these shops and they offer training and arrange diving trips as well. Phuket is the right place to learn diving, especially scuba diving for beginners. The excellent conditions and infrastructure make the training enjoyable. Certification courses through NAUI, PADI and SSI are offered at these centers. With these certificates, you can dive anywhere in the world. If you are not able to make up your mind, try the one-day ‘Discover Scuba Diving’ course, which comes to 1500 to 2000 baht. The four-day Open Water Certification course costs 8000 to 14000 baht. Other courses available are Open Water Advanced and Dive Master. The specialty courses are Deep Diving, Night Diving and Navigation, which comes cheaper.
Diving TripsBookings for diving trips can be made in the dive shops in Phuket Island or contact villa manager or reception. There are two types of diving trips from Phuket. Day trips to small islands nearby or live aboard trips, which takes around five days. Day trips are more popular with regular tourists and these are usually to one of the small islands around Phuket, like Racha Yai, Racha Noi, Coral Island or Phi Phi Island. Typically, these trips start out early in the morning and take about an hour to reach the diving location. The dive master aboard the boat use this time to give basic instructions and prepare the divers for the expedition. You are allowed two to four dives at the location. Lunch is mostly included in the trip. The cost for this trip will be 1500 to 3000 baht per head. Live aboard is for serious divers and this trip is for longer duration. Depending on the tour operator, the trip’s length and destination varies. Three to five day trips are there to Similan Islands. Seven to ten day trips are offered to Burma Banks, Surin Islands and Richelieu Rocks. A cabin or a bunk will be given for staying on board and food will be provided. This expedition allows for unlimited dives during daytime and night dives. The cost for this trip varies vastly depending on the duration and destination and come anywhere between 15,000 to 50,000 baht.
Dive operators in PhuketPhuket in Thailand figures in the list of top ten diving locations in the world due to its numerous beautiful diving sites. These are spread over Phuket’s beaches, which makes it less crowded and convenient for tourists. There are many diving operators in each beach to offer guidance, training and gear to the diving enthusiasts. These operators also organize expeditions to diving sites located in the smaller islands around Phuket. Some locations have more operators, depending on the popularity and demand. Find here listed some of the diving operators in Phuket.
Karon BeachSunrise Divers These are professional operators, experienced in this field from 1999. They have more than a dozen ‘live-aboard’ cruise boats and a German-speaking staff. Sunrise Divers offer courses to divers of varying skills. For more information, visit www.sunrise-divers.com.
Patong BeachAll 4 Diving This dive operator offers a wide range of options like day trips and ‘live-aboard’ cruises to tourists. They offer the full range of PADI dive courses as well. For more information, visit www.all4diving.com/en/. Santana Santana, a veteran in the field with 25 years experience, specializes in scuba diving trips and courses. They also have day trips, ‘live-aboard’ trips to Burma, and regular diving courses. For more information, visit www.santanaphuket.com. Mermaid Live Aboards Mermaid Live Aboards are more into ‘live-aboard’ cruises to far away places like Mergui in Burma and Komodo in Bali. They also offer PADI dive courses. For more information, visit www.mermaid-liveaboards.com. Sea World Dive Team This dive operator has the entire range of day trips, courses and ‘live-aboard’ cruises to Burma and Indonesia. For more information, visit www.seaworld-phuket.com.
Kata BeachDive Asia They offer various types of trips and courses. Their attraction is the seven-day cruise to Similan Island and Surin National Park. For more information, visit, www.diveasia.com. Phuket Scuba Club They offer PADI courses, day trips and ‘live-aboard’ cruises. For more information, visit www.phuket-scuba-club.com.
Rawai BeachPhuket Pro Dive and Sail This operator provide day trip and ‘live-aboard’ cruise to Similan Island and Surin Island. The PADI courses offered here includes ‘Rescue Diver’ and ‘Adventure Diver’. For more information, visit www.phuket-scuba-diving.com. Poseidon Diving They have on offer day trips, diving courses and safaris. Though they do not have ‘live-aboard’ cruises, they have long cruises to other islands where bungalow accommodation is provided to tourists. For more information, visit www.poseidondiving.com.
Khao Lak BeachSea Dragon With 15 years experience in the field, Sea Dragon offers day trips, ‘live-aboard’ trips and PADI diving courses. They have a one-day refresher course for divers, who have not dived for a long time. For more information, visit www.seadragondivecenter.com. Phuket’s famous and best dive sites has been listed and documented in the web site greatestdivesites.com.
Phuket is famous for its nightlife that attracts many tourists from all over the world. It is found mostly in and around the busiest beaches of Phuket – Patong, Kata, Karon and Rawai. The choices are vast for a night out after an active day at the beach – Western-style discos with dance floors, Thai-style nightclubs with live music, tranquil pubs, small bars dotting the beaches and go-go clubs that offer good ‘company’.
Nightlife in PatongBangla Road in Patong Beach is the hub of Phuket’s nightlife. This area has closely packed mini bars as well as sprawling western-style nightclubs. The entrance fee at the discos here is around 400 baht, which includes two drinks. Go-go bars are mostly located in Soi Seadragon. The popular strip clubs are Soi Tiger, Soi Eric and Soi Crocodile. Safari Bar on the city outskirts is a popular nightspot. The highlights here are food stands, dance floors and a rock-climbing facility.
Nightlife in Kara-Karon areaThis area is much smaller compared to Patong and the atmosphere here is calmer. It is frequented by Scandinavian tourists. A few bars located here, cater to the night customers, but there are no discos. The nearby Rawai looks sleepy during the day, but becomes active at night. There are around ten medium-sized bars here that flout closing time rules every now and then. There are activities for families as well. Latest English movies can be seen at the theaters in Jung Ceylon and Central Festival Walk. Other attractions are facilities for go-karting, shooting, bowling and mini golf. Music Matter, a small jazz spot, hosts Live Jazz Jams every Wednesday night. A quiz show is conducted by The Green Man British Pub on Thursday nights.
Nightlife in Phuket TownThai-style nightclubs are the major attraction of Phuket Town. Locals and expats are regulars at these places. The live bands play a mix of Thai and western music. Though you are expected to pay corkage fees for bringing in liquor bottles from outside, it is normally overlooked. There are no separate dance floors in most of these places. Karaoke is a popular feature in many of Thailand’s bars. The facilities at different places depend on the standard of the bar. The high-end restaurants even have private booths or hotel rooms with a hostess taking care of your needs. Hostess expenses are extra and they charge per hour. There is no guarantee that the hostess will come with you later. Thailand has an open approach towards Girlie Bars, where you can find girls and gay boys to spend the evening with. Some bars in specific localities specialize in this field. Many tourists come to Thailand to enjoy this feature. Even if you are not interested in the affairs there, there is no harm in visiting the place to see how it operates. The atmosphere is friendly and approachable. The girls in these bars will come with you outside, if you are willing to pay a ‘fine’ of around 400 baht. Some are even willing to overlook this, if there is a possibility for a long-term arrangement. Most villas allow you to bring girls to your room from outside. Some villas even charge extra for this. However, some luxury villas in Phuket do not allow this. So to save any awkward situation, check their rules before trying.
Discos in Phuket IslandPhuket City and Patong are the major hubs of discos in the island. However, other beach areas also have joints with bars and sometimes dance floors. The atmosphere at these places are normally relaxed and the music played here are good, but cannot be called disco music. These kinds of places are found at crowded areas frequented by tourists.
Discos in Phuket CityQ-Spot: This is a new Thai-style nightclub, with a dance floor and posh décor. Located off Ratsada Road, Phuket Town, it is open from 7.00pm to 1.00am. Address: 34 Phang-Nga Rd, A Muang, Phuket 83000 Telephone: +66 76 256 588 Email: [email protected] Timber Hut: It is a popular nightclub with live band and good food. Address: 118/1 Yaowarat Rd., A. Muang, Phuket 83000, Telephone: +66 76 211 839 Blue Marina: Live music and great atmosphere are the highlights of this nightclub. It is usually jam-packed with tourists by 10.00-11.00. It is attached to Blue Marlin Hotel in Phuket Town and occupies the basement. Address: 158/1 Yaowaraj Rd., T. Taladayai, A. Muang, Phuket 83000, Telephone: 076 212866-70
Discos in PatongPatong discos are livelier, blaring out music till 2.00am. They usually charge 400 baht as admission fee, in which two drinks are also included. FBI: This is a highly popular bar with friendly staff. The place is located at one end of the Bangla Road and entry is free here. Banana: Excellent music, friendly crowd and great drinks are the attractions of Banana. Like elsewhere, they charge 400 baht for admission, which includes two drinks. Address: 124 Thaweewong Rd., Patong, A. Kathu, Phuket 83150, Telephone: +66 76 340 306 Tiger: Located at the heart of Bangla Road, it comes alive after midnight. Address: 49 Bangla Rd., Patong, A. Kathu, Phuket 83150, Telephone: +66 76 345 112, Email: [email protected] Seduction: Spacious dance floor and weekly beach parties on Wednesdays are the highlights. Admission is free before 12.00. Drinks are expensive at 200 baht. Address: 39/1 Bangla Rd., Patong Beach, Kathu, Phuket 83150, Telephone: +66 76 340 215, Email: [email protected] Baya Beach: Located at the end of Bangla Road, adjacent to FBI, it comes to life after 2.00am. It is well known as a good pick-up spot in Phuket. Safari: This is an open-air nightclub with facilities for games like rock-climbing. Located on the road to Karon, it opens at midnight and stays open till morning hours. Address: 28 Sirirat Rd., Patong, A. Kathu, Phuket 83150 Clublime: This fairly new joint is more patronized by locals and is said to be a clean place. Located on the road to Patong Beach, close to Rock City, it opens at 9.00pm and closes late at night. Address: Thaweewong Rd., Telephone: 076 341613, 085 7871195, Email: [email protected]
Phuket Town is the largest town and economic center of Phuket province. In Thai language, it is known as Muang Phuket. It has an estimated population of 63,000. It is not a great tourist destination, with all the exotic beaches lying close by. However, accommodation and food is cheaper here than the nearby beaches. In addition, Phuket has a Chinatown offering a great Thai-style shopping experience. Phuket had an important place in history and many a battle was waged to possess it. This town was an important halt in the India – East Asia sea route. Tradesmen used this route for centuries to transport goods. Burmese, Portuguese and the Dutch have tried at various times during the history to take over this small town. After this came the tin mining boom, which brought with it thousands of Chinese immigrants. They settled here and infused their culture, cuisine and architecture into the local scene. Phuket Town has excellent examples of Sino-colonial architecture, Chinese temples and houses dating back a century. If you are interested in the history of Phuket, this town has more to offer than the beach areas.
How to reachLocal buses and songthaews run between Phuket Town and other beaches from 7.00am to 6.00pm. In Phuket Town, the buses start from Thanon Ranong at Ranong market. Services to Patong Beach run every 30 minutes and takes 45 minutes to cover the distance. The fare is 20 baht. To other beaches, the fare is in the range of 15 to 30 baht. Taxis charge anywhere from 200 to 400 baht – less if you bargain hard. Phuket International Airport is towards the north of Phuket Town, lying at a distance of 30kms. By taxi, it takes 30 minutes and 500 baht and by shared minibus, it takes 45 minutes and 100 baht to cover the distance.
Getting aroundThe ideal means of transport around the town is tuk-tuks, which are available in plenty. Decide on the fare before boarding, as they tend to overcharge. Motorbike taxis are also available for hire. There are no public bus services in the town. Phuket Town is too big to travel on foot.
Places to seePhuket Town has many interesting buildings dating back a century, which will interest students of architecture. Even ordinary tourists can enjoy visiting the well-preserved buildings. Some of the most important tourist attractions are:
- Put Jaw and Jui Tui Temples: These are located near the Ranong bus terminus, on the corner of Soi Phuthon and Thanon Ranong. Put Jaw temple, built almost two centuries ago, is the oldest Chinese Taoist temple in Phuket. It is dedicated to Kwun Im, the Goddess of Mercy. The neighboring Jui Tui temple is a later addition and is bigger. Here, devotees find answer to their questions by throwing two red-colored mango-shaped blocks up in the air in front of the altar. If the blocks fall on different sides the answer is taken as ‘yes’ and if they fall on the same sides, the answer to your puzzling question is ‘no’. There is no entry fee, but donations are welcome.
- Sino-Portuguese mansions: These mansions, located in Thanon Krabi, were built by the tin tycoons during the tin mining boom in late 19th century. They look impressive even today.
- Wat Mongkol Nimit: This Thai-style temple, located in Thanon Dibuk, has a beautiful towering roof and colorful glass tiling.
- Phuket Cultural Museum: This museum, located at Rajabhat University, displays information about Phuket’s history through pictures and tableaus. Entry to the museum is free.
Things to doPhuket Town is popular among tourists as a shopping destination. Other than department stores, malls and local markets, Chinatown’s Thanon Thalang provides an incredible shopping experience. Here you will find local handicrafts, antiques and art as well as apparels ranging from designer wear to cheap stuff. Phuket Night Bazaar is another shopping location favored by tourists. However, you will get the same products at cheaper rates at the supermarket, Big C.
AccommodationPhuket is very popular destination for vacation rentals. Here you can find many available vacation homes such as villa or apartment to rent. Click here to see our collections of luxurious beach villas.
Though Phuket comes nowhere near the range and volume of products found in Bangkok and Northern Thailand, it still has a lot of offer to tourists. Phuket is well known for cotton and silk fabrics, ready-made and custom-made clothes, batiks, ceramics, jewelry, antiques and leather products. Recently, furniture and home décor products are also becoming popular with tourists. Both permanent and makeshift shops are found all over Phuket. Thai-style makeshift shops operate in the mornings and evenings in the tourist areas and sell mostly handicrafts, souvenirs and knickknacks, normally popular among tourists.
Phuket CityPhuket City has a wide range of shops from department stores and hypermarkets to handicraft and furniture stores. The famous hypermarkets are Big C and Tesco-Lotus, located on the Bypass Road. To buy branded clothing it is advisable to visit department stores. Central Festival Mall is a favorite among tourists. ‘Old Phuket’ has on offer a few unique boutiques offering great deals. As the place has old style buildings and small restaurants offering great local cuisine, the place is worth spending a full day. It is as if the time has stood still here. For inexpensive shopping, the weekend market, Chatuchak Phuket, located in the Phang Nga Road, is very good. You will get anything from clothing, shoes and jewelry to handicrafts and local food. Take a break from the beaches and visit Phuket City for a wonderful shopping experience.
PatongIn Patong, most of the shopping is through makeshift street vendors. They are not seen during the daytime. As night falls, the main roads and lanes become active with these vendors. They sell anything from clothes, souvenirs and accessories to luggage, leather goods and paintings. Fancy electronic gadgets are a favorite among tourists here. Pirated and fake goods are found in plenty and there is great demand for these products. Duplicates of famous brands are the hottest selling items here. Raids are conducted here to crack down on this market, but still they flourish due to high demand. In addition, if you choose your holiday rentals near Patong beach, you can easily find the places for shopping. The major night market of Patong is located on the Beach Road and its adjoining lanes, which is convenient for the tourists coming to the beach. During the peak tourist season, a similar market operates thrice a week on Rat-U-Thit Road, opposite to Paradise Complex. Regular shops here are Ocean Department Stores, one on Bangla Road and one on Beach Road, 7-11s, small grocery stores and pharmacies. http://www.jungceylon.com/
Kata and KaronBoth the beach areas are chock-a-block with vendors selling handicrafts, souvenirs, clothing and home décor products. Electronic items like ipods are sold at unbelievable prices. They even arrange the shipping of the bigger items brought here.
Bang Tao and SurinAs these areas are seeing the property development boom, they are well known for their furniture and home décor products. You will find modern as well as antique pieces of furniture here. Most of them are located just outside the luxury Laguna Complex. Inside the Laguna Complex, the Canal Village shopping center has expensive shops offering gifts, home décor items, spa products and silks. Surin Plaza is the only worthwhile shopping center in Surin, located on the main road to the north of the beach. Here you will find boutiques and restaurants. Bang Tao has an open-air market, selling inexpensive clothing including t-shirts. This is located opposite to Cherng Talay police station.
Thai cuisine is definitely an added attraction for many tourists to Thailand. Phuket has numerous restaurants that do justice to the local cuisine. Thais are typically very fond of foods and because of this, the cuisine and restaurants flourished here. For Thais, eating is an occasion to spend time with family and friends. As anywhere else, Phuket has a wide variety of eateries, ranging from street-side vendors to plush five-star restaurants. To get to know the Thai people, their culture and their food intimately, you should pay a visit to the street vendor. Phuket is famous all over the world for its seafood dishes with fresh fish, crab and shrimp. Some of the most popular dishes are Goong Makham, fried prawns with Tamarind sauce, Goong Tord Gratiem Prik Thai, deep fried tiger prawns, Gaeng Kiew Wan, sweet and spicy green curry and Tom Yum Goong, a shrimp soup.
In Phuket, you will find restaurants offering a variety of cuisines, due to the flow of tourists throughout the year. You will find restaurants having Chinese, Japanese, American, Italian, French and German cuisines as well.With a good influx of tourists to Phuket, there are many high quality restaurants all over the island, especially the beach areas. The high-end restaurants have internationally famous chefs serving local, international and fusion cuisines with great flourish. International restaurants are costlier than those serving local cuisine. Most of the time, you can find a good restaurant around your villa. However, the good thing about staying in villas is you can easily ask for private chef to cook for you in the villa. To rent your villa close to restaurants is also a good idea. Some of the international restaurants popular among both tourists and Thais are listed here. Refer the budget guide given at the bottom for explanation of symbols.
International Restaurants in PhuketW Wine Bar and Bistro: This bistro is part of the Wine Collection. It has excellent variety of main dishes as well as meat and cheese plates. Address: Fisherman Way Business Centre, Chalong, Budget: $$$ Green Man Pub and Restaurant: This has the atmosphere of a conventional English pub, with a wide selection of imported beer. It offers good quality food and on Sundays, they serve roast. On holidays, they have special menus. Address: 82/15 Moo 4, Patak Road, Chalong (076) 281445, Telephone: +66 (0) 76 281445, Budget: $$ Khanasutra: This is an Indian restaurant serving all types of Indian cuisines, with good food and great ambience. Address: 18-20 Takua-Pa Road, Phuket City, Telephone: + 66 (0) 76-256192, Budget: $$ The Family: This restaurant serves Mediterranean cuisine, including shawarma, falafel and hummus. They undertake bulk orders from sailors. Address: Chalong Circle, Budget: $$ Salvatore’s: An Italian restaurant specializing in wood-fired pizzas. The highlights are their exceptional service and cigars on offer. Address: 15 Ratsada Road, Telephone: + 66 (0) 76 225 958, Budget: $$$ La Tavern: This French restaurant’s proud possessions are its two French chefs. They provide five-star dishes at affordable rates. Also on offer are superior house wines that are one of the best in Phuket. Address: Rawai, Budget: $$+ Buffalo Steak House: Highlights are the meat imported from New Zealand, ample portions. It has three outlets on three beach locations. Address: Patong, Karon, Kata, Telephone: + 66 (0) 76 340855, Budget: $$$ Zen: This is for lovers of Japanese food. They serve excellent sushi menu. Have three outlets at the three major beach locations. Address: Central Festival, Phuket City; Swiss Palm Beach Resort Hotel, Patong; Phuket Arcadia Beach Resort, Karon, Budget: $$
Upscale Thai Restaurants in PhuketThe Natural Restaurant: Wide variety of excellent Thai dishes, stylish décor and multilevel seating arrangements for the convenience of diners. 62/5 Soi Phutorn Bangkok Road, Phuket City, Telephone: + 66 (0) 76 224287, Budget: $+ Ban Klung Jinda: Retain ancient ambience with the restaurant operating out of an attractive erstwhile house. On offer is the conventional Siam Spice Thai cuisine. Address: 158 Yaowarat Road, Phuket City, Telephone: +66 (0) 76 221777, Budget: $$+ Ban Rim Pa: Has the old-world appeal with a classy piano bar and excellent wine collection. The panoramic view and award-winning Thai food adds to the enjoyment. Address: 223 Kalim Beach Road, Patong (076) 340789, Telephone: +66 (0) 76 340789, Budget: $$$ Tom Yum Gung: On offer is the sour and spicy Thai soup. Excellent food and exotic location. Address: Kata Beach (foot of the hill), Budget: $$ Banana Corner: Excellent open-air restaurant with mouth-watering Thai cuisine at unbelievably low prices. A good choice for a leisurely dinner. Address: 43/37 Saiyuan Road, Moo 1, Rawai, Telephone: + 66 (0) 76 289045, Budget: $+
Lunch Restaurants in PhuketMae Porn Seafoods: Visit this place for excellent curries and stir-fries. The service is friendly. The restaurant if closed on Sundays. Address: 50/52 Phang Nga Rd, Phuket City, Budget: $ Steak Samkong: Specializes in fusion menu of Thai and Western cuisines. Steaks are excellent. Address: 367/26-28 Yaowarat Rd, Phuket City, Telephone: + 66 (0) 76 217190, Budget: $ Flints-One Bakery: Good pizzas and sandwiches on the menu. Offers wide variety of freshly baked breads. Address: 19/23 Moo 8 Chao Fa East Rd, Chalong, Telephone: + 66 (0) 76 289210, Budget: $+ Molly Malone’s: Irish-style pub food with live music at night. Address: 68 Thaweewong, Patong, Telephone: + 66 (0) 76 292 771, Budget: $$+ Oasis Restaurant: A small unpretentious out-of-the-way place offering excellent grilled chicken and sandwiches. Their all day breakfast is popular with the patrons. Address: Nai Harn, Budget: $
Restaurants in PatongJoe’s Downstairs and Da Maurizio: These two restaurants are connected by a stairway, which leads to a private beach. Highlight is the view across the sea, which is said to be the best in Phuket. Both are very expensive. Joe’s is famous for tapas. Da Maurizio has on offer private chef service with personalized menu. Telephone: + 66 (0) 76 344254, Budget: $$$$ Fuji: Fresh foods and set meals at affordable rates are the trademark of this restaurant chain. Quite popular among tourists and is always crowded during lunch and dinner hours. Budget: $$ Da Mario: This Italian restaurant offers comfortable dining options with fresh seafood and homemade pastas. Address: South Patong, near CNN Hotel, on the road to Karon, Telephone: + 66 (0) 76 398056, Budget: $$$ Savoey: A popular seafood restaurant with both outdoor and indoor seating options. Excellent Thai food. The chef is open to suggestions from the guests. Address: Beach Road, Patong, Telephone: + 66 (0) 76 341171-4, Budget: $$$ Floyd’s: This is the first Keith Floyd restaurant outside Australia. It is attached to Burasari Hotel. The food is good, but quite expensive. Telephone: +66 (0) 76 292929, Budget: $$$$ Lim’s: This small but modern restaurant has unusual décor and art pieces adorning its walls. They serve Thai cuisine. Address: Kalim, Telephone: + 66 (0) 76 344834, Budget: $$
Restaurants in Kata and KaronJoe Cool’s: The tagline ‘the worst restaurant with the worst food’ given by the restaurateur is drawing in the crowd. Try it for yourself and discover the truth. Address: Ramada Hotel, Karon Ratri Jazztaurant: Hilltop restaurant with excellent views of the Bay. Ritzy décor, friendly ambience and capital music. Telephone: 076 333538, Budget: $$ Joe’s South: The Kata outlet of the Patong restaurant, Joe’s Downstairs. Same menu. Address: Kata Gardens, Telephone: +66 (0) 76 285385, Budget: $$ Mom Tri’s Kitchen: This high-end restaurant is attached to the luxury resort, Villa Royale. This place used to be the private residence of its proprietor, the famous architect, Mom Tri Devakul. The hallmarks of this restaurant are the high quality food and extensive wine list. The restaurant offers panoramic views of the surroundings. Telephone: + 66 (0) 76 333569, Budget: $$$$ Boathouse: This beachfront restaurant is worth a visit for a sunset view with cocktails. The menu is also worth mentioning. Address: Beach Road, Kata, Telephone: + 66 (0) 76 330015-7, Budget: $$$$
Restaurants in Surin BeachTaste: This new restaurant located close to the sea offers international cuisine. They also have westernized versions of local cuisines. Like the pork belly in broth, which is an adaptation of the Malaysian dish, Bah Koot Tay. Their chocolate mousse steals the limelight, being the best on the island. Budget: $$ Twin Brothers: This beachside restaurant with rustic ambience is famous for their fresh seafood and mouth-watering pizzas. Budget: $$ Twin Palms: This high-end restaurant has on offer the best brunch in Surin. Their smorgasbord has sushi, fresh oysters, beef, mash, cheeses and strawberry in chocolate sauce, with a complimentary bottle of white wine. Excellent for a relaxed dining experience. Budget: $$$$
Restaurants in Bangtao and LayanLittle India: A fine Indian restaurant offering a wide range of Indian foods. Service is efficient. The naan and kormas are worth trying. Address: Entrance to Laguna Complex, Telephone: +66 (0) 76 270673, Budget: $$$ Capri: Excellent restaurant for pastas, pizzas, ice creams and desserts. Affordable prices with good service. Address: Entrance to Laguna Complex, Telephone: + 66 (0) 76 345280, 076 34 5196, Budget: $$ Supper Club: Regular haunt of the rich and famous, while visiting the island. Friendly ambience and stylish décor. Telephone: +66 (0) 76 270936, Budget: $$$
Restaurants in North PhuketIndigo Pearl Resort: This resort has two new restaurants, Rivet and Rebar. The unusual décor and modern atmosphere offers a change of scene. Address: Naiyang Beach, Telepone: + 66 (0) 76 327 006, Budget: $$$$ Trisara Resort: This super-luxury restaurant is ideal for a relaxed evening of cocktails followed by menu of your choice. Telephone: + 66 (0) 76 310100, Budget: $$$$ Laem Som Seafood: Looking across the Phang Nga Bay, this restaurant on pilings serves fresh seafood at affordable rates. Mostly patronized by locals, it is a wonder that tourists do not come often. Budget: $ Marriott’s Siam Deli: Attached to Marriott’s Resort, this deli shop is ideal to buy imported cheese, ham, fresh bread and olive oil. Their breakfast menu is excellent. Telephone: +66 (0) 76 270140, Budget: $$$
Restaurants in Phuket TownSiam Indigo: This restaurant-cum-gallery is the perfect setting for art lovers, with many art pieces on display. They are known for grilled foods. Address: Near Kasikorn Bank, Phuket Town, Telephone: +66 (0) 76 256 697, Budget: $$$$ Salvatore’s: This traditional Italian restaurant with flashy décor and friendly ambience is well known for the calamari and ceasar salad. Food is excellent. Telephone: +66 (0) 76 225958, Budget: $$$ Dibuk: This French restaurant occupies a century-old building and has the quaint appeal and atmosphere. The pate and steaks served here are beyond words. Telephone: +66 (0) 76 258148, Budget: $$$ The Mangosteen Restaurant: This restaurant has on offer a fusion of international and Asian cuisines. The highlight here is the underground wine cellar. Address: 99/4 Moo 7, Soi Mangosteen, Rawai, Telephone: +66 (0)76 289399, Budget: $$$ Budget Guide
- $ dishes up to 100b; quart of beer 60-80b; shot of whiskey 80-90b; cocktails 100 b
- $$ dishes 100-250b; quart of beer 80-100b; shot of whiskey 100b; cocktails 125-150b
- $$$ dishes 250b+; quart of beer 100b+; shot of whiskey 120b+; cocktails THB 150b+
- $$$$ first class international restaurants with meals in excess of 400b
Luxury Holiday Rental Homes GuidePhuket is a beach hot spot and people love the idea of going here to unwind, relax, and just forget about work for a while. The Phuket lifestyle is laidback and luxurious, making it a favorite of those who love to indulge. If you prefer to stay in a private villa for rent , you have a variety of options. There are many impressive for all kinds of tastes and budget. Baan Sopaa is perfect for a medium sized group. Located in Kamala, Phuket, this is one of the tropical island retreats in the area that offers amazing scenic views. With 4 bedrooms and 4 bathrooms, this is suitable for eight people. Just 20 minutes away from Patong and about half an hour away from the airport, this is absolutely great for a nice Phuket break. Its hillside location gives the Baan Sopaa an advantage when it comes to the scenery. Guests will enjoy looking out and admiring the beauty of the place. Hundreds of trees and tropical plants balance the heat of the sun and makes the property naturally relaxing. The Kamala Beach is only a short stroll so everyone can laze around the fine white sand and enjoy the clear blue waters. There is a swimming pool on site for beginners and those who would want to swim all day. Sun beds are placed near the pool so one can relax after swimming. The living room is simplistic, with floor to ceiling windows to allow most of the views to be seen even from the inside. There are cushioned chairs for your comfort and tables where unique Thai-inspired ornaments are placed. The dining area looks out at the pool area. It has seats for all the guests and is a great place to have a Thai meal. Antique style décor are incorporated in the interiors to create a homey feel. The kitchen is contemporary, with a spacious counter for meal preparation or some chat time while snacking or having breakfast. The bedrooms at the Baan Sopaa are spacious and feature the same open design concept like most island villas. White washed walls, roomy beds, and dark wooden floors create a homey look so everyone can have a good sleep. Again, the ornaments used are made from indigenous materials and feature Thai prints, native woodwork, and local crafts. There is a nice work table with a chair for all your important stuffs. The bathrooms are spacious and boast contemporary fixtures. Guests will enjoy their bath as all the essentials are provided. There are fragrant toiletries and fresh towels. This holiday homes will make you and your family feel pampered all throughout your stay. The place is all about comfort and easy-breezy island living that you will be so impressed.
Long Term Rental HomesInternet connection is available here as well as an entertainment system for your needs. In Baan Sopaa, your vacation will be as memorable as you would like. The location is secure and has very good accommodations. Enjoy your stay in one of the best villas for rent in Kamala.
The main living room is done in white and is very spacious. Pristine couches that are modern in design are accented with aqua colored pillows. Aqua colored chairs are also used to complement the beach colors. Floor to ceiling windows allow the views to be a part of the interiors, which is really cool.The dining area deviates from the usual formal style. Here, the dining table is casual yet cozy, with wooden benches as seats instead of individual chairs. Nearby is the kitchen breakfast counter with its set of bar stools. A complete set of cooking equipment is featured in the kitchen. There is a huge fridge, a toaster, espresso maker, and modern faucets and sinks. When it comes to amenities, this is among the best luxury villas there is. The bedrooms follow different color schemes but all have the same open concept and detailed old school windows. Wooden floors make these private spaces feel cozier. The focal point is the bed, which is covered with luxury linens. A modern art work hangs on the wall---a different one for each bedroom to distinguish it from the others. The bathrooms are roomy and done in good taste. The shower is big, while the marble tub is perfect for a private soak any time of the day. If spacious villas are what you are interested in, this contemporary Phuket haven will surely tickle your interest. The place has a secure parking area and is air conditioned. More details about Luxurious Holiday rental, please go to visit home page.
Villa of the month (Exclusive Review)
Ananda Luxury Holiday HomeTo be able to spend a few days in an exotic location is a dream for many. One of the popular Asian destinations where people can have fun in the sun is Phuket, Thailand. Considered to be a beach capital, this island is known for its amazing white sand beaches that stretch for miles. Here, the scenery is nothing short of spectacular. If you want more privacy, you might want to consider a number of Phuket villas for your place to stay. Ananda is among the holiday home in Phuket is known for. Just 25 minutes from the Phuket Airport, this is a luxury retreat that is suitable for 12 people. The views from here will make any vacation really special. It has 7 bedrooms and 7 bathrooms, all decorated to perfection. It can accommodate 10 adults and 6 children max, making it one of the best villas in Phuket for the whole family. The property boasts well tended landscapes. This is a modern holiday home that is only meters away from the beach. The structure is classy and the décor incorporates as many local ornaments as possible. Hundreds of palm trees are in the property so there is plenty of shade and fresh breeze. Guests will love to relax at the covered sala while enjoying the view of the beach. There is a large swimming pool, which is great for swimming no matter what time of the day. The living room is fusion in style. Modern couches dominate the area, while the wooden ceiling creates a tropical vibe. Native furnishings resonate with warmth and comfort. The open design allows guests to enjoy the views and the fresh breeze. Luxurious fabrics are used to create a homey feel. The dining area is perfect for all the guests and features an elegant dining table and wooden seats with arm rest. Utensils and china are available for use. The kitchen is modern and has all the contemporary appliances needed for cooking any dish. A work counter is set at the center so those who are preparing meals won’t run out of space.
The rooms are all elegantly designed. Because they have an open side, plenty of natural light enters these private spaces. The beds are spacious and are covered with crisp luxury linen. Native furnishings are used to complete the whole look. Guests can sleep well while here as the ambience is very relaxing. The bathrooms are made to be spacious. Bath time is relaxing and worry free. Bath essentials and clean towels are always available.This is among that are highly recommended for special celebrations. The beach is enticing and is the ideal place to enjoy the sun, get a tan, and enjoy the water views. Kids will surely love building sand castles, while adults will surely get addicted to taking leisurely walks day in and day out. Ananda has a traditional feel to it, but the modern amenities that you are used to are all present. It will make anyone feel that they are in a luxurious resort, only better.
Top 5 Phuket Beaches You Can Find Villa To Rent
1. Patong BeachPatong beach, the crescent-shaped 3km beach, is the most popular, well developed and frequented beach in Phuket. It has a host of beach activities and water sports options for visitors. Patong is also famous for its peppy nightlife and seafood joints. Patong lost its village atmosphere long time back. It has developed into one of the busiest cities of Phuket. The restaurants here offer a variety of cuisines to suit the taste of the international travelers. It has bars and pubs with live music to add spice to the nightlife. There are hotels, resorts, villas and guesthouses that suit the pocket of a wide range of travelers from five-star to low budget. Patong has a horde of travel agencies to help the tourists with sightseeing and other activities. In Patong discos and nightclubs, you have more chance of meeting your friends back home than in your own neighborhood. Tourism is a big industry in Patong and everything is being done to lure the tourists here. Patong has attractive shops that sell anything that tourists want, especially clothes. You will get them cheaper in the shops inland than from the vendors selling items on the beach itself. The beach area has many food stalls to cater to the hungry beach visitors. The beach has facilities for activities like banana boat, windsurfing, parasailing, jet skiing, waterskiing and wakeboard.
How to reachFrom Phuket International Airport, Patong is 35km to the south and takes 45 minutes by car. Taxis vouchers can be bought from the airport for 500 baht to Patong. If this too steep, you can opt for shared minibuses, which come to around 150 baht. Still cheaper is to take the airport shuttle service to Phuket town and catch a local bus to Patong beach. Bus services from Phuket town to Patong run every half an hour. The time taken is 45 minutes and fare is 20 baht. Location Map
Getting around Patong AreaPatong is small enough to travel on foot. Still if required, there are many transport options. Taxis here are of two types – metered sedan-style taxi and songthaews-style minivans that have no meter. The metered taxis are colored yellow and red and have ‘TAXI-METER’ sign displayed prominently on top. The minivans drivers are worse than highway robbers and charge you astronomical fare. If you are boarding minivans, decide on the fare before the journey. You have to bargain hard. For short journeys around the city, 100 baht is a reasonable fare. If you are going for a longer trip, metered taxis are the better option. Motorbike taxis also operate with fares starting at 20 baht.
Places to see near Patong BeachPatong is the place for you, if you like modern conveniences and a vibrant nightlife. If you are looking for unspoiled beaches, this is not for you. The beach is very beautiful, but crowded. You find what you seek here. If you are looking for flaws and drawbacks, you will find them in plenty. If you come here with a willingness to accept the place as it is and enjoy what it has to offer, you will find that Patong has well developed facilities to cater to the demand of a wide range of travelers. It has five-star amenities as well as budget accommodations and restaurants. Patong has an active sex industry, but if you want to avoid it, keep away from Bangla Road. Patong has bars of good repute suitable for couples out to enjoy a night out. They have regular performances of professional dancers with unique dance routines and music. For live music, visit Saxophone on the Beach Road. Each night they have top blues, jazz, soul or funk performances. The place is well designed and the music is good. For the rock fans, there is Rock City. It is close to Saxophone and it has a huge neon-lit guitar displayed outside. Live hard rock and great setup – good combination.
Things to do in PatongThe beach and water activities available in Patong beach are
- Scuba diving
- Jet skiing
- Banana boat
- Cruise along the river
- Enjoy a Thai Massage
- Try Nail Spa at Oriental de Phuket
- Cable slide in the jungle
- Learn to kickbox in two hours for 300 baht
- Watch Thai boxing at Bangla Stadium or at Simon Complex
- Stitch a designer dress or a suit for cheap amount
- Watch ladyboy show at Simon Cabaret or the cabaret show at Erotica
- Buy cheap souvenirs from the many shops
- Dance to boogie music at various joints
- Learn to speak Thai
- Shopping at Jungcelon, the biggest shopping centre in Patong
Recommended Villas to Rent near Patong Beach
- Atika Villas
- Villa Yoosook
- Seductive Sunset Villa Patong
- Villa Baan Thap Thim
- Jirana Patong
- Reuan Thai Villa
- The White Villa Patong
- Seeka Villa
- Baiyok Villa
- Simon Villa
- Jungceylon Villa by Lofty
- Villa Vanda
2. Kata BeachThis place can be divided into three parts – the long Kata Yai beach in the north, the smaller and quiet Kata Noi beach in the south and Kata Center, which is the town located away from the beaches.
Kata YaiKata Yai is about a kilometer long beach, which is smaller and quieter than Patong beach. It is considered a safe beach for swimming, even for children and beginners. Always pay attention to the warning flags that are flown to warn swimmers. On the right side of the beach, there are coral reefs that run all the way to the small green island called Poo Island. While lazing around the beach, you can watch local anglers trying to catch their day’s supply.
Kata NoiThis beautiful little beach lies hidden in the south and is less crowded. The lion’s share of this minuscule beach is occupied by the huge resort of the Kata Thai group. There are a few smaller budget hotels and resorts in the area. Kata Noi doesn’t offer any facilities in the way of nightlife. So if you want to escape from the world for a few days, this is the right place. Even during peak season, the place is not crowded. During lean periods, you may have the entire beach to yourself. However, during off-season, the sea may be rough and it is advisable not to venture out into the sea.
Kata CenterKata Center is a hustling-busting place crowded with restaurants, bars, shops, internet cafes and travel agencies. The place offers a variety of budget accommodations like hotels and guesthouses. They give discounts, if you are renting the place for a week or a month. Kata center has restaurants that cater to all kinds of tourists. The best part of these eateries is that they are not very expensive. The bars around here attract wild crowds, which result in high noise levels during night hours. Hence, consider this, before renting rooms here.
Getting aroundTaxis and tuk-tuks are the best choices and their fares are similar.
Places to see in Kata BeachFor the first –time traveler, local market is a must-see. This is open only on Thursdays and is located off main Kata Road. Locals buy spices and fish from this market. An old man shelling coconuts using an ancient-looking dangerous machine is a curiosity here. In the jungle close by, there is a sauna. You will find this place if you walk for 10 minutes along the Kata-Chalong Bay Road. There is a kettle-shaped copper boiler, a pool and a café here.
Things to do in KataLocated on the north end of the bay, there is a safe diving and snorkeling area. For more information, visit Phuket-Diver. They also give information on equipments for the expedition. There are facilities for SNUBA diving, which is considered safer and inexpensive than scuba diving. Kata beach offers excellent opportunities for surfing.
Recommended Villas to Rent near Kata Beach
- Kata Sea View Villas
- Ocean View Villas Kata
- Villa Ginborn Sea View Poolvilla
- Villa Elisabeth
- Charmante Villa
- Katamanda Luxury Villas by Lofty
- Kata Horizon Villa
- Villa Ruedi
- Villa Amanzi
- Baan Song Thai Villa
3. Karon BeachKaron beach comes second in popularity among the Phuket’s beaches, the most popular being Patong beach. Development activities are progressing at a phenomenal pace here, even during peak tourist season. Karon beach has all facilities as Patong beach, but on a lesser scale. Karon beach lies on Phuket’s west coast. It is more frequented by families, as it is quieter and less crowded than the neighboring Patong beach. Many Scandinavian tourists come here and because of this, there are many business establishments that especially cater to their needs.
How to reach Karon BeachFrom Phuket International Airport, it takes an hour to reach Karon. The transportation booth in the airport sells vouchers for 650 baht for the drive. For the budget travelers, vouchers for 150 baht are available at the same booth for seats in mini buses. It takes longer on the minibus, as it stops at many points on the way.
Getting aroundThe most popular and fastest means of transport here is tuk-tuk. Taxis to Phuket town cost around 400 baht. For the budget conscious, public buses run every hour from Karon to different destinations for a fare of 20 baht.
Places to see in KaronBeach is the only attraction here. However, unlike other beaches it is not crowded. You can enjoy by lazing around in the quiet beach that stretches for a considerable length. Beach umbrellas are available for rent. The sunset views from Karon beach are fantastic.
Things to do in KaronKaron beach has some wonderful diving and snorkeling locations. For more information on this, see Phuket-Diver. You may hire a scooter and go exploring Phuket.
Recommended Villas to Rent near Kata Beach
- Karon Beach Walk Villa
- Sun Paradise Villas
- Karon Hill Villa
- Kanita Resort & Villa
- Andaman Seaview Villa
- Villa Samoot Sawan
- Oasis Villa
- Karon Sunset Seaview Villa
4. Kamala BeachKamala beach is sandwiched between Patong beach on the north and Surin beach on the south, on the western coast of Phuket. Kamala beach is not crowded like its popular neighbor Patong beach. The northern end of the beach is always quiet, while the southern end will see more tourists during peak season. The Beach Road or ‘Rim Haad’ at the southern end has many budget hotels and restaurants. You can find still cheaper eateries on Kamala Road. Kamala retains its village charm, in spite of the tourist influx. This may not last long, as more resorts and complexes are under construction or being planned. Here you will find more locals and than tourists even during the peak tourist season. You also get to enjoy the local food in authentic surroundings in Kamala.
How to reachFrom Phuket International Airport, you can find cabs to take you to Kamala. The fare is around 500 baht.
Getting Around Kamala BeachYou can travel around the place in taxis and tuk-tuks. Their fares are almost the same.
Places to see near Kamala beachBeach is the main attraction of the place. Besides, there are Fantasea show and the Buddhist Temple, located at the southern end of the beach. There is a monument dedicated to Tsunami in a park located at the middle of the beach.
Things to do in KamalaKamala boasts of a beautiful beach that is uncrowded. If you are contended to spend the entire day lazing around the beach, this is the right place for you. The water is crystal clear and the sand clean. During low tide, the water recedes and the right end of the beach will be perfect for swimming. At the left end, near the rocks, you can go fishing. Massage is not available on the beach itself. These are offered in the stalls lining the beach. The rate is fixed at 300 baht per hour. Kamala Wat is the Buddhist Temple located at the south end of the beach. You will spot it only if you go looking for it. It was vastly damaged during the Tsunami. It was restored with the help of the Australian TV program, Backyard Blitz. You will find a memorial tree with a dedication plaque in the garden here. The events of Tsunami with pictures are displayed on a board for the benefit of visitors. The temple itself has the life story of Buddha depicted in pictures on its walls. The Buddhist monks and locals welcome tourists warmly. You are allowed to take photographs of the place if a local person accompanies you. A visit to the temple is ideal to know more about the local culture. Phuket Fantasea is a popular show and theme park in Phuket Kamala. It combines Thailand’s cultural heritage and technology to enthrall the tourists. The 4 D show is much appreciated. The park is spread over 140 acres and has a multi-cuisine restaurant that can accommodate 4000 guests. A shopping arcade is also here that sells local products. The park is open from 8.30pm on all days except Thursdays. (phuket-fantasea.com) Patong Beach is close by if you are looking for extra fun and change of scene. However, cabs charge 500 baht one way. For cheaper transport, tuk-tuks are an option. They charge 300 baht for the trip. Some hotels arrange shuttles to Patong for their guests. If you don’t want to spend this much either, the best option is the local bus to Phuket town. It gives you a good feel of the place and its people. This service runs every hour from Kamala. You will invite amused stares from the local passengers. Just flag down the bus and hop in through its open backside. You can pay the driver at the end of the journey. This is for the adventure-seekers.
Recommended Villas to Rent near Kamala Beach
- Coco Kamala Tropical Villa
- Villa Yin
- The Regent Private Pool Villa
- Villa Minh
- Kamala Luxury Villa
- Kyerra Villa by Lofty
- Kamala Heights Villa
- Tian Blue Villa
- Villa NakaWanna
- Villa Nevaeh
5. Rawai BeachRawai Beach is not as popular with tourists as Patong or Kata beaches. It is located at the southern end of Phuket. If you are interested in Thai culture, this is the right place for you. Rawai beach is well known for scenic locales and seafood. There are too many boats here and the shallow water is muddy and hence not suitable for swimming. The beach is filled with litter, like the nearby Chalong Bay. With beach dirty and water muddy, the beach area is not attractive. Tourists come here mostly for seafood. All over the place there are vendors cooking fresh seafood right in front of you. The cost is much lower than in other beaches like Patong. The specialty here is crabs, prawns or fish with rice and fresh vegetables. Pakbang Food Center, located at the east side of the beach serves excellent food for reasonable prices. The food is typically served on tables with recliners or on rattan mats laid out under shade. The vendors here know broken English and they have menu written in English as well. Beware of stray dogs and flies that are attracted by the food. Across the sea, the island Koh Bon is visible. The beach there is entirely reserved for the guests of the Evason Phuket Resort. There are a few other smaller islands like Koh Lone, Koh Kaew, Koh Hae and Koh Aeo, close to the Rawai Beach. You can visit these islands from Rawai beach by chartering a private boat. There are conducted tours to these islands as well from Rawai and Ao Chalong, which comes cheaper than chartered boats. Still better is to hire a longtail boat on your own and go exploring along the islands or go fishing, snorkeling or diving. It is better to ask the boatmen loitering around the beach about the options. There are quite a few good beaches on these islands that are known more to these boatmen than anyone else. For snorkeling enthusiasts, Promthep Cape on the west side of Rawai Beach is ideal.
How to reachFrom Phuket Town, there are songthaews running to Rawai for a fare of 30 baht. The songthaew pickup point in Rawai is the east end of the beach. It runs in this route between 7.00am and 5.30pm. If you are planning to return to Phuket Town on the same day, make sure that you are boarding at least the last songthaew. If you miss, you are at the mercy of tuk-tuks, which charge 400 baht for the trip.
Getting around Rawai BeachRawai Beach is too vast to be covered on foot. Scooter is the popular means of transport among tourists, which comes to around 150 to 200 baht as rentals per day. If you hire for longer duration, the rates will come down.
Things to do in RawaiAs Rawai beach is not suitable for swimming, diving and snorkeling, it is used only to anchor boats. Longtail boats and speedboats are available for hire for water sports and visiting other islands. Recently, a new pier was opened for the convenience of tourists. There are many seafood stalls and restaurants on the beach area, for which Rawai is famous. Even the locals come here on weekends to enjoy the food and for a night out. The bars in the beach offer limited entertainment. For accommodation, the best is the Evason Resort. There are many middle to low budget hotels as well. You can go to Nai Harn Beach, which is nearby, for enjoying beach activities. There is a beautiful Buddhist temple in Rawai beach overlooking the lagoon. The luxury Meridian Phuket Yacht Club is located on a hill at one end of the beach. Promthep Cape offers picture-perfect sunsets on the Andaman Sea.
Recommended Villas to Rent near Rawai Beach
- Villa White Elephants
- Villa Rawai Holidays
- Tropics Sun Villa - Phuket
- Salika Beach Villa
- Villa Lorangi by TropicLook
- Rawai Villa
- Villa Marine
- Rawai VIP villas Resort
- Rawai Pool Villas - Holidays
- Phuket Luxe Villa