November 2012
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Phuket is the original Thai paradise island with some beautiful beaches.

Phuket is the original Thai paradise island with some beautiful beaches.
• Phuket is Thailand’s largest island.
• It is 48 km in length, 21 km at its widest.
• It is in Southern Thailand, on the west-facing Andaman Sea coastline.
• It is suspended from the southern tip of Phang Nga Province by a pair of short but substantial road bridges.
• Phuket nestles in balmy Andaman Sea waters on Thailand’s Indian Ocean coastline.
• This is 862 kilometers south of Bangkok.
• Phuket formerly derived its wealth from tin and rubber.
• It enjoyed a rich and colorful history.
• The island was on one of the major trading routes between India and China.
• It was frequently mentioned in foreign trader’s ship logs.
• Phuket’s top earner has been tourism, which has transformed the island into Thailand’s wealthiest province.
• The west coast of Phuket was hit severely by the Indian Ocean tsunami of December 2004.
• Phuket enjoys great popularity as a travel destination.
• Most beaches are on the west coast, with Phuket Town to the southeast and the airport in the north.

Regions in Phuket

– Western Phuket (Bang Thao, Kamala, Karon, Kata, Laem Sing, Mai Khao, Nai Thon and Nai Yang, Patong, Surin)
• This region is what Phuket is known for all over the world.
• There is a wide variety of beaches.
• Patong is one of the party capitals of Asia.

– Southeastern Phuket (Chalong Bay, Cape Panwa, Nai Han, Rawai, Ya Nui)
• It is slightly off-beat beaches that are worth the trip.
• Chalong Bay is the largest town.
• It acts as a harbor for outgoing boats to Phang Nga Bay.

– Interior Phuket (Bang Rong, Ko Sire, Phuket Town, Phra Taew National Park, Thalang)
• Besides Phuket Town, the interior of Phuket is pretty much un-visited by foreign visitors.
• This fertile hilly expanse consists of mangrove forests, fishing villages, rubber and pineapple plantations, small Muslim communities and shrimp farms.
• The Phra Taew National Park is the Gibbon Project.

– Phang Nga Bay (Ko Bon, Ko Hae, Ko Lon, Ko Mai Thon, Ko Maphrao, Ko Racha, Ko Yao)
This bay is popular for its limestone cliffs, caves, mangroves, fishing villages and James Bond Island.

Cities in Phuket

• Phuket Town: It is the administrative center of the province, and the island’s main population center.
• Chalong Bay: It is home to Phuket’s most popular yacht anchorage. It is also the primary gateway to the islands off Phuket.
• Patong: It is the largest beach resort which is known for its nightlife.
• Karon: It is the second most-developed beach after Patong which is split into Karon Yai and Karon Noi beaches.
• Kata: It is busy, clean tourist beach with good surf.
• Kamala: It is a quieter beach to the north of Patong.
• Nai Thon and Nai Yang: They are two quiet beaches in Sirinat National Park.
• Rawai: It is set off point for lots of local islands, popular with locals for eating on the beach.
• Surin: It is an up-and-coming upmarket destination.

Culture of Phuket

• Phuket is a melting pot of Buddhists, Thai-Chinese, Muslims and sea gypsies.
• The majority of the population in the rural areas is Muslim.
• Outside of the provincial town, the rural folk speak with a thick Southern dialect.
• The provincial town’s economy has boomed over the past decade.
• The lifestyle of the urban Thai-Chinese resembles that of Bangkokians.
• Phuket is one of Thailand’s premier tourist destinations and (basic) English is widely spoken.
• English is spoken in especially in the beach areas.

Best time to visit / climate

Phuket is hot and humid throughout the year.
– The hot season is generally considered to be from March to early May.
– During the summer monsoon season from May to October, mornings and afternoons are still sunny and clear.
– It tends to rain in the evenings and water clarity goes down.
– Locals consider November to February the “cool” season.
– The weather is quite tolerable.
– It’s comparable to Florida’s summer weather in temperature and intensity of rain storms.
– 25-33 deg C, flying clouds, short and thunderous rainfalls in the afternoons and evenings.
– Surfing is possible off the western beaches.

Location on Google Maps

View Larger Map

Or click and paste the URL below on your browser:,+Thailand&gl=in&t=m&z=10

How to get there?

1. By plane
• Phuket International Airport is in the north of the island.
• It is Thailand’s second largest hub, second only to Bangkok.
• There are very frequent flights to/from Bangkok as well as direct flights to many other airports in the region.
• This includes Singapore and Kuala Lumpur, and direct charters to Europe and Australia in the high season.

International flights
– Australia: V Australia, Air Asia via Kuala Lumpur; Jetstar (direct or via Singapore with sister airline Jetstar Asia) with flights from/to major cities in Australia.
– Germany: Air Berlin has non-stop flights to Munich.
– Hong Kong: Thai Airways , Dragonair and Air Asia have non-stop direct flights from Hong Kong to Phuket. Hong Kong can connect you to the rest of the world via Cathay Pacific or other major airlines.
– Indonesia: AirAsia flies from/to Jakarta and Denpasar Bali, and often this is the cheapest connection between Thailand and Java and more eastern parts of Indonesia (promotional fares are often $30-50 for a 3 hr flight). They had flights to Medan in Sumatra as well, but they have been discontinued due to low demand.
– Korea: Asiana Airlines and Korean Air non-stop services from Seoul with connections from Japan and North America.
– Malaysia: AirAsia flies to Kuala Lumpur (LCCT), FireFly flies to Penang, using small ATR-Turboprop aircraft, and Malaysia Airlines has flights from/to Kuala Lumpur. Qatar Airways also offer daily flights from Kuala Lumpur.
– Qatar: Qatar Airways operates direct daily flights from/to Doha, which connect in Kuala Lumpur.
– Singapore: SilkAir has 32 flights a week. Low cost alternatives are Thai AirAsia and Tiger Airways . In addition, Jetstar flies there too.
– Taipei, Taiwan: China Airlines, Non-stop direct flights from Taipei to Phuket. Taipei has easy connections to Japan, Korea, and the Americas.
Other low cost direct connections include India, Macau, Seoul, and Busan.

Charter flights
– There are some charter flights in high season from European and Asian countries such as Sweden, Taiwan, Japan, etc.
– The airlines charge a very cheap fare.

Domestic flights
– Several domestic airlines fly here, including Nok Air , Air Asia , Orient Thai . Tickets from Bangkok can cost around 1,300 baht one-way if booked well in advance, or around 2,000-2,500 baht (including taxes) if bought on the day or the flight.
– Thai Airways flies from Bangkoks Suvarnabhumi airport several times every day, as well as once daily from Chiang Mai.
– Bangkok Airways has a monopoly on direct flights between Phuket and U-Tapao (Pattaya / Sattahip)and Ko Samui. They also have 6 daily flights from Bangkok.
– Fares are usually the same as Thai Airways, but sometimes they have very inexpensive promotional fares as low as 1,390 baht incl. taxes when purchased on the airline’s website.
– Bangkok Airways flights are usually less crowded and the entire journey is more relaxed.
– You can use their lounges for free even as an economy-passenger.

2. By train
• There are no direct rail services to Phuket.
• But many trains leave from Bangkok’s central station going south all the way to Singapore.
• The most comfortable are the sleeper trains (~685 baht for a berth in a 2nd class A/C car.
• Travelers by train must get off at Phun Phin railway station near Surat Thani and continue for another 5 hours by regular bus to Phuket.
• Do not buy the bus ticket until you actually see the bus and can make sure it is not standing room only as it picks up passengers at the popular Ko Samui ferry.

3. By Bus
• Buses to mainland destinations including Bangkok, Chumphon, Hat Yai, Krabi, Phang Nga, Ranong, Satun,Sungai Kolok and Surat Thani use the BKS terminal off Thanon Phang Nga in Phuket Town.
• The most reliable buses from Bangkok are the public BKS buses from the Southern Bus Terminal to Phuket.
• The journey takes 13 hours and costs between 650-950 baht.
• There are also some private bus companies, Phuket Travel Tour, Phuket Central Tour and Phuket Travel Service.
• Khao San Road operations have a bad reputation for theft, often turn out to include a “surprise” transfer to a minibus at Surat Thani, and are best avoided.
• Richly Travel Center offers a bus leaving at 19:00 from near the HuaLampong Train Station inside Bangkok for 900 baht.
• The TAT next door offers the same for around 1,100 baht.
• From Phuket bus terminal to your final destination, you can take a motorcycle taxi, tuk-tuk, metre-taxi, or bus.
• A motorcycle taxi into Phuket Town will be about 10-20 baht; to most beaches 100-200 baht (negotiable).

4. By Car
• Phuket is directly connected to the mainland by the Thao Thepkasattri Bridge.
• From Bangkok, take Highway 4 through Nakhon Pathom, Prachuap Khiri Khan, Chumphon, thence through Ranong Province’s Kra Buri and Kapoe districts, Phang Nga Province’s Takua Pa and Thai Muang districts and onto Phuket Island.
• The total distance is 862 km.
• Cars can be rented easily in Phuket.

5. By Boat
• Ferry services connect from Rassada Port in Phuket Town to Ko Phi Phi and on to Krabi on the mainland twice a day, taking 90 to 120 minutes and costing 350/650 baht one-way/return, for each leg.
• It’s usually a pleasant ride, but can be rather bumpy when it’s windy.
• Prices for speedboat charters to/from Phuket range from 3,000 baht to 60,000 baht+ depending on distance / size of boat.

Some Travel Books about Thailand

Lonely Planet Discover Thailand Thailand PhotoMazing Thailand

Places to stay (hotels / restaurants along with website / contact numbers)

Hotels at
Hotels at
Hotels at

Blogs / Sites about Thailand – Phuket

Blogs at
Blogs at
Blogs at
Blogs and reviews at

Images and photos of Thailand – Phuket

Images at
Images at
Images at
Images at

Videos of Thailand – Phuket

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