Often referred to as the ‘Pearl of the Andaman’, visitors can explore the cultural background of Phuket at the Old Town Phuket, which features elegant Sino-Portugese-style buildings built nearly 100 years ago, and there’s also vibrant nightlife for those wanting to have party fun. The island also has many temples with the most prominent one call Wat Chalong, which houses a pagoda that contains the Buddha’s relics.
There is also a wide variety of offshore diving area, including the Surin Simila and Racha island groups that are rated world-class for their beauty onshore, colorful corals, clear waters and myriad of sea creatures.
Phuket is also equipped with, astonishing beaches, excellent offshore dive sites, and superb sailing opportunities. Patong, Kat and Karon area the most popular beaches facing the Andaman Sea because of their white sand and many creation activities they have to offer. Other activities on Phuket as well as the offshore islands include world-class golf, sea canoeing, and windsurfing. Environmentalists can find trekking trails and relax in the greenery atmosphere of forests, mountains, waterfalls, and parks; such as, Kathu Waterfall and Khao Phra Thaeo National Park, while Lame Promthep offers the most spectacular scene of the sun setting over the Andaman Sea.
Phuket has long history since Sukhothai Dynasty. The old Phuket town was at Thalang, a popular trading port for tin with Dutch traders during the 16th century.
Thalang was surrounded by Burmese troops who invaded the west coastal area in 1785. Under the leadership of Chan, the widow of the governor, and her sister, Muk, they united local residents and successfully fought and drove the invaders out of Phuket. As a result of such heroic deeds, noble titles were granted to Chan and Muk as Thao Thep Krasattri and Thao Si Sunthon respectively. The name of Thalang has been called Lam Takola, Manee Kram, Jung Ceylon, Phukej (means crystal hill) and become Phuket as in nowadays.
Phuket has a tropical monsoon climate, and is warm all year long. The rainy, or monsoon season is from September until October. During this time it is wet and very hot.
Unless rain is not a factor for enjoying a vacation, it is not advised to visit during these two months. The hottest time of the year is from the beginning of April through the end of May. The average high temperatures during these months are in the upper 80s and lower 90s. November until March is the most comfortable times to visit, when the average high temperatures are in the mid 70s, and there is little precipitation.
Getting Around & Travelling to Phuket
From Bangkok, take Highway No.35 (Thonburi – Pak To) to Route No.4 (Petchakasem Road) Along the way pass the provinces of Phetchaburi, Prachuap-Khirikan, Chumphon, Ranong to Phang-Nga Province.
Then, cross the Sarasin Bridge to Phuket Island. The distance is 862 kilometres.
Both air-conditioned and regular buses leave the Southern Bus Terminal in Bangkok daily. Bus services from private sectors such as Phuket Central Company and Phuket Travel, are also available.
No direct railroad links between Bangkok and Phuket. Those who love train trips can get off at Surat Thani’s Phun Phin Station and catch the local bus to Phuket.
Several domestic airlines operate over a dozen flights between Bangkok and Phuket daily. (Thai Airways, Bangkok Airways, Thai Air Asia, Orient Thai Airlines, Nok Air).
Travelling to nearby provinces
There are regular bus services from the Phuket Bus Terminal to neighbouring provinces such as Krabi, Phang-nga, Ko Samui, Nakhon Si Thammarat, Ranong, Surat Thani, Satun, Hat Yai and Trang. Boat services to Ko Phi Phi and Ko Similan are also available.