Phuket, touristy island

Phuket town street, Thailand

The flying time between Kuala Lumpur in Malaysia and Phuket in Thailand is only 45 minutes.
Plus several hours between taxis, go and back to the airport. So why bother to take a plan and not a bus? For the visa, as entering by air grants you 15 extra days!

Phuket is a big island in South of Thailand. All the South of Thailand is said to be touristy, as it is a land between Adaman sea and China sea, with a lot of well known beaches..

Nevertheless Phuket is a good surprise!
Right after the landing we were a bit gloomy, the taxi drivers were hunting us, and we were half expecting to have to move chased away by over-expensive accommodation.
This proved to be far from true, some hotel are inexpensive (TIP: NaNachart Mansion, 200 Baht / night private bathroom, Montri Road, close to Crystal GuestHouse ).
Phuket its a city : Phuket town, very nice with its Sino-Portuguese heritage, its colours and odours, its busy streets filled with old trading houses, Chinese temples …

Phuket town sino-portuguese house, Thailand

The good surprise proved to be the Thai people. They are the most zen people we ever met. Of course the island is suffering a bit of its very touristy status : tuktuk (3 wheel taxi) drivers are rather barker and 4 times too pricey, beaches are filled with luxury new age vacation resort, but Thai people are smiling, and despite the very few words we can exchange they spare no efforts to cook for us, to accommodate us and to make us discover their country.
(TIP: NaNachart Mansion, 200Baht/night private bathroom, Montri Road, near Crystal GuestHouse).

Karong beach, Phuket, Thailand

Here tourism is a big busyness (like prostitution according to our guidebook). The island is full of foreigners, tourists and expats, well organised with their own newspapers, restaurants and hotels. But between the big resort, you can still see local people climbing up coconuts tree barefooted to harvest the precious nuts.

The island has developed very fast, too fast. Electricity poles carries hundred of wires humming and crackling days and nights. And no real public transport except converted small trucks. Maybe this is due to the recent taxi strikes against a new bus line, in any case taxis are badly overpriced, and it is really difficult to move for low-budget.
But let’s not be to demanding, as the island has been rebuilt since the terrible 2004 tsunami.

Hermit-crab, Phuket, Thailand

Aquarium Phuket, Thailand

The aquarium is very interesting. Not really big neither really surprising for its classical part, you can nevertheless visit the back-office : the aquariums for the aquariums, where the star-to-be are bred. And there is also a centre for sea turtle breeding, with hundreds of tiny juveniles swimming, and a fake beach for reproduction purpose.

In a nutshell, Phuket we love you, because despite your touristy ghetto-like resorts, you are showing the beautiful spirit of Tha people.

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