Getting to know Phuket
Known for its sprawling nightlife, beaches and massage parlours, this paradise is the largest island of Thailand. Being close in area to Singapore, one can only imagine how much there is to choose from in Phuket.
From scenic island tours to crazy parties, there is something for everyone here. To make the most of your trip, it is always wise to have a basic idea of the aim of your holiday (relaxation, fun or adventure) and the activities you’re interested to indulge in, in order to plan how many nights you want to stay in this remarkable place!
Where to stay in Phuket?
Try looking for hotels and resorts in Phuket, and you’ll be spoilt for choice! I visited Phuket with a girlfriend of mine and remember how confusing it was for us to choose where we wanted to book our resort. Though we didn’t make the best choice, here’s a guide to help you decide where to stay based on your interests.
Want to go where the crowds go?
Easily the most happening area in Phuket, Patong is sprawling with buzzing nightlife, restaurants, bars, massage parlors and lots of street shopping! Home to the famous (or infamous) Bangla Road, this is the place for you if you’re in Phuket to experience crazy parties, noisy streets and tons of organized chaos!
Having plentiful of options for accommodation, ranging from cheap hostels and lodges to luxury hotels and resorts, head to Patong if you’re on a budget.
As you may have guessed already, Patong is a good pick for travelers visiting with a group of friends, solo travelers looking to have crazy fun or the adventurous couple who enjoy crowds. Heading to Phuket to celebrate a bachelors or bachelorette party? Look nowhere other than Patong!
Having said that, Patong should not be your choice if you’re looking for pristine breaches or a relaxed and quiet family holiday.
Kata is smaller and much more peaceful in comparison to Patong. Though featuring many eateries and bars, Kata attracts lesser crowds and has a relatively quiet nightlife scene. Kata is known for its clean beaches with almost crystal clear waters, soft sand and plenty of sunshine. It is the ideal place for families, for couples looking for solitude or for those on a relaxed island getaway.
However, heading to the airport or to Patong can prove to be an expensive affair from Kata. We ended up shelling out between Thai Bhat 400 and 500 for a one way commute from Kata to Patong. And this in a city where a Thai massage costs you approximately THB 300 and beer around THB 70 – THB 100.
Now if Patong and Kata have left you confused and you are a group with varied preferences and requirements, head to Karon. Bringing a little of both worlds and located on the way from Patong to Kata, Karon has lovely markets to shop from, upscale restaurants and lounges with a fairly decent hint of nightlife around. Karon beach is a delight and heading to Patong to get a slice of the city is not as expensive as it is from Kata.
Given the size of Phuket, it definitely has many more beaches and areas to stay in. However, they are lesser known and hence less frequented by tourists. Nai Yang is beautiful and only 5-7 minutes away from the airport. Rawai and Nai Harn are also pristine and relatively untouched with lovely sea life on display.
Here is a quick fact file to help you further:
So, pack your bags, get those shades out, and head to Phuket this summer!
Have you visited Phuket already? Where did you stay? When did you go? Let us know in the comments below!