Phuket is a paradise island, full of things to do and see. And if you just want to lie on the beach, Phuket offers miles of golden sands for your relaxation needs. Phuket also provides plenty of opportunities for having fun, with water- and land-based activities for all the family. Here’s how to have a great time on vacation in Phuket with our tips for travel and staying on the island.
Phuket Airport Transportation
Phuket is a large island so unless your hotel is one of the few near the airport, you are likely to have a long drive (around an hour or more) to get to your destination after you land on the plane. If your resort offers a pick-up service check the price and consider using it as it will probably be a lot cheaper than a taxi or a pick-up that you get from the airport with a private firm. If you do use a taxi as a transfer from the airport then the metered taxis offer a better deal but be careful if they offer a fixed fee as this can be higher than the metered charge would be. There is a bus service that goes from the airport to Phuket Town and makes a few stops on the way. This may be an option if you are on a tight budget but in general a resort pick-up service or a taxi is more convenient.
Getting Around in Phuket
If you are staying in Patong, one of the largest resort towns in Phuket, you will probably need to use local transportation in order to get to places around town. You can rent a car or a motorbike – this gives you freedom and flexibility, although the price of a rental car is quite high, and motorbikes can be dangerous so always keep alert. If you do rent a motorbike this is a good way to be able to visit the smaller towns and villages outside of the main resorts. If you don’t want to rent your own transport, you can take a taxi bike. Taxi bikes are cheap and fast but be aware that they can be dangerous – always use a crash helmet when you opt for this form of transportation. Tuk tuks are getting more expensive but they are convenient – if you think the price is too high, walk away and find another driver. Taxis are convenient and if you find one that charges a good price then keep his number and use him again when you need to get around.
Find the Best Beaches in Phuket
Patong is the main resort town in Phuket and many travelers base themselves at this location to take advantage of the beach, activities, restaurants and nightlife. While Patong beach is a good place to relax, there are other stunning beaches within a short drive of Patong. Don’t miss out by sticking only to Patong – for example, drive south for 20 minutes and you will come to Karon and the popular Karon beach. Drive a little further and Kata beach and Kata Noi are quieter and very beautiful. Going further south on Phuket you will find the beach town of Nai Harn and the small village of Rawai. Both these locations have great beaches and you can enjoy a lovely day trip here if you are staying in Patong. Going north from Patong you have Kamala and Surin beaches. Surin beach is the place to find many of the island’s most upmarket resorts.
Keeping Safe in the Water in Phuket
If you are visiting during the high season in Phuket then in most cases the waters surrounding the island will be calm enough for swimming and safe for all manner of water activities. Most beaches have areas that are marked for safe swimming – it is best to stick to these areas to avoid running into boats or jet skis. During low season, some beaches are unsafe to swim from and it can be dangerous to be in the water. Check with locals to find out where and when you can swim.
Tips for Thai Etiquette
Whenever you visit another culture it helps to know how to avoid offensive behavior so you can have a happy time getting to know Thais without causing problems. Thais are generally very friendly, respectful people and the charm of the locals on Phuket is one of the reasons why people enjoy such amazing vacations. It is worth remembering that aggression and losing your temper is not acceptable in many situations in Phuket and you are not likely to get anywhere if you take this tack to try to barter or resolve an issue. Never talk in a disrespectful way about the Thai royal family as this will undoubtedly cause offence, and it is also against the law. And dress appropriately when visiting Buddhist temples.
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