Thailand is one of the most popular destinations for tourists. Therefore, the popularity of tourism in this country has thousands of reasons behind them including the hospitable behavior of people and the beauty of Thailand.
Things to do in Phuket of Thailand would have an unending list. Thailand treasures amazingly beautiful beaches, outstanding ancient ruins that will take you right back to history and the Buddha temples. The most popular places to visit in Thailand are:
Phuket is a beautiful island in Thailand. The island includes popular beaches and entertainment sites for tourists. Many people fly to Thailand just for visiting Phuket.
- Koh Samui
Koh Samui has the big Buddha Temple. It is one most popular temples across the universe. Other attractions of Ko Samui include beaches and amazing nightlife.
Read also: Things to Do in Koh Samui
Thailand is a city full of life. Therefore, there is a versatile range of activities for everyone in the country. If you want to visit Thailand, you have to go more than once because it’s not possible to enjoy everything in one vacation. It’s impressive how the Thai people have nurtured their history and are humbled by foreigners. It’s a very welcoming country.
30 Things to Do in Phuket, Thailand
Many tourists have trouble deciding what things to do in Phuket as there are so many many options. Some are reluctant about doing many fun things. Therefore, we have listed the 30 best things you can do in Phuket. Although even if you cannot do all of them, try to make a list and rank the activities. That way you can scratch what you did and decide on the next activity!
1. Say Hi to the Hotshot of Phuket – Phi Phi Islands
Stay on this island for a few nights. The watercolor and temperature are perfect as well as the nightlife is enjoyable too. Go there during the low season (around October) and you will find it peaceful. They host an open-air cinema at night. Moreover, snorkeling day trips on a longboat is another thing you can try in this clear and comfy water! A half-day trip to Maya Bay could be in order. In addition, you can kayak to Monkey Beach.
2. Experience Travelling by Ferry
Second on our list of things to do in Phuket, is picking one of the most common ways to go to Phi Phi Islands from Phuket, which is by ferry. Decide beforehand where specifically in Phi Phi you want to go. Avoid the ticket salespeople. Just go to the pier and compare your options. That way you can save up on lots of money! Buying tickets online would be another step up in saving money. You can order from http://www.phiphiislandferry.com/ and other websites.
Avoid first-class on the ferry and save that for the longboat travel around Phi Phi. You can go with a one-way ticket and get a return ticket while returning (on the spot). If you go from Patong, you can use the big speedboats which will travel full throttle to Phi Phi.
Finally, don’t travel around the small islands around Phi Phi in anything except longboats.
3. Ditch the Crowded, Mainstream Mess – Explore the Other Beauties!
Patong, Karon, Kata – these are all tourist-crowded and have their vibrancy (and dirt). Many would argue that all or some of these are an overrated and overcrowded mess. An alternative would be to grab the opportunity to explore the less-crowded, yet stunning beaches across the rest of Phuket. Go through Banana Beach, Surin Beach, Kata Noi, Nai Thon beaches. As a broad generalization, the western beaches are stunning, yet crowded, while the eastern ones are okay but less populated.
Have your own rented bike or car. However, you would be happier if you avoid other local transports. Also, avoid local beach accommodation for the favor of the tree shades!
4. Kayak or Stargaze -Phang Nnga Bay
Kayak in the open water following the beautiful landscape, through the caves, and also in the lagoons. This beautiful bay has a collection of some 40 islands. The water is green and clear there. Especially, beautiful limestone kursts look like something from a Hollywood movie scene.
Alternatively, you can choose to float across the limestone kursts on June Bathra Chinese Junk boat – while getting in some doses of stargazing and nighttime serenity – sometimes feeling a bit creepy too (points for being adventurous here).
Should you decide to come here from Patong, you will be put on a slow boat with lots of other tourists. In addition, a small kayak ride will likely be a part of this.
5. Go to the “Bond, James Bond” Island and Floating Fishermen Island
An island near Phang Nga Bay is – an actual island from a James Bond movie (named ‘Koh Ta-pu’ or in English – ‘Nail Island’). Nearby there is a Muslim fishing village – Koh Panyee, where you can have lunch! This habitat is entirely built on the shallow water and has a huge wall of mountain in its rear side. However, to go there alone and without the downsides of going in with a large party/pack, drive to Surakul Pier and hire a long tail boat from there and you can reach in 20 minutes. Moreover, the boat ride through the kurstones and mangroves is amazing!
For guide purposes, you could also go for a well-reputed guide agency there. They will take care of the details of what, when, and how.
6. Say Hi to the fishes
Even if you are someone who is afraid of diving in the water, you might be able to get yourself to just dip your head in the shallow, clean, and warm water of these islands as well as swim with the parrotfishes, anemones, and more. Snorkeling can be done on many of the islands of Phuket. Some are – Ao Sane, Kata Noi, Paradise Beach, Ya noi, Laem Ka Beach. If you’re in Ya Noi beach, you can do what most people do – kayak to Koh Keyao Noi because the snorkeling is better there.
Always make sure that the waters are considered safe by local authorities and ask for any potential risk factors. Then, just dip away.
7. Say Hi, then Go on a Full-dive
If Saying Hi doesn’t satisfy you, go into a full-dive to see the fishes’ realm. However, scuba diving has some perquisites. Be sure to go to a well-reputed guide and they will help you with the safeties.
Among the many options available there, Koh Phi Phi is said to be one of the best spots. Similan Islands and Shark Points are two other stunning dive points. In Koh Phi Phi, you will find yourself near small groups of fishes swimming. You can find turtles and sharks almost every day – black tips, white tips, leopard sharks, nothing too dangerous. Although requires a bit knowledge of where to find them, you can find Sea horses and Octopuses too. You can go to Koh Phi Phi from Phuket by a ferry ride of 3-4 hours.
8. Fall for the Water Falls
Some of the notable ones are – Kathu Waterfall, Bang Pae Waterfall, Sri Phang Nga National Park, Tonsai Waterfall, Lampi Waterfall, and Ton Prai Waterfall. Some waterfalls have enough room for you to dip in. Others you can sit by and enjoy some lunch. Just remember to be responsible and avoid littering.
Bang Pae waterfall is inside Khao Phra Thaeo National Park. Go there if it’s a wet season otherwise you will find the water narrowed down to just a trickle. You can swim in the pool at the foot of the waterfall. You can get into the park for a fee of ฿200.
9. Support Gibbons’ Safety and Wellbeing by Avoiding the Take-Picture-With-Gibbons Points
Inside the same park (Khao Phra Thaeo National Park as described in the previous paragraph), there is the Gibbon Rehabilitation Centre. Even if you don’t intend to learn about their rehabilitation and rescue, you can use this place to see Gibbon (if that’s in your agenda in Thailand). Avoid all the take-pictures-with-Gibbons stuff. More than 3000 Gibbons are killed every year in Thailand and the babies are taken from their mothers by hunters and then sold to these people.
10. Get in the Frame with the 3D Interactive Artworks & Pictures at Phuket Trick Eye Museum
This museum is full of 3D artwork and pictures. They label themselves as being “interactive”. According to their website, you can become a part of the picture. It is a place where you can take hilarious photos of yourself and your travel partners to cherish them as memories later! It’s a place to be hilarious, light-hearted, and goofy.
The staff is said to be friendly. They may even come with you to capture you a photo or a few in case you are visiting alone. The experience will cost a few hundred bucks per person.
11. Or Just Take Some Photos in The Upside Down House
Like the Trick eye Museum, this is another illusory activity. It just gives you a different sensory perception. Many find it boring, so do check photos and think if it’s something you’d like.
If you have kids with you, they will likely love it. You can ask the staff to suggest your cool photo poses/settings for the arrangement. They know what looks cool in there.
It is advised that you go there in the morning as there is no air conditioner. The fans only provide so much relief. The higher you climb up the rooms, the stuffier it feels.
12. Volunteer at Soi Dog Foundation
They sterilize thousands of animals every year – making the roads safer. You can go to volunteer or just have a guided tour. You can even manage to get some of those animals as pets back to your home (subject to regulations in your home destination). But be careful to check for important clearing (from diseases) if you decide to bring them back.
13. Ride Get Close to the Elephants in Phuket’s Elephant Sanctuaries
You’ll get to see these mighty beasts in an untamed and relatively natural state. You’ll understand why they should not be ridden despite their size and seeming sturdiness. Go there for some peaceful elephant watching!
Elephant Jungle Sanctuary is one that is said to have people well-versed in spoken English. Another one is Phuket Animal Sanctuary, which is a bit expensive but is one where the tourist has the least amount of contact with the animals (you feed them in the beginning and the rest is watching them). This is a relief for animal-concerned tourists as wild animals are likely to be stressed with contact from humans (especially strangers), let alone riding on them. But the joy is to watch them do their stuff freely. Be sure to look for the one ‘Phuket Animal Sanctuary in Paklok’ as it’s said to have many copiers.
14. Watch the Sunset from Promthep Cape
This is the southernmost point of Phuket. You will get a great view of the island from here. Don’t miss the opportunity to enjoy the stunning sunset from this viewpoint. Beware though – it will likely be full and crowded and so you might want to get there early and settle down at a good spot. It will take around 30 to 40 minutes from Patong. However, a little bit of an uphill walk is part of the activity. So keep that in mind.
Maybe you can save this up for an amazing ending of your Phuket trip – giving it a relaxing and worthwhile finish.
Loving the adventurous trip? Check out Things To Do in Krabi
15. Surf House Phuket’s Wave Pool
Phuket has artificially generated waves in its pools. The wave pool is an exciting spot in Phuket. Additionally, you can surf, learn to surf from people and enjoy watching others surf as well. Also, the surf house has accommodations for tourists.
Surf house kata beach has own bistro and bar. The place is family-friendly so you can take your kids as well. It is suggested to be there and enjoy for around 2 to 3 hours. The main piece of surf house is ‘Double FlowRider’.
16. Explore the Night Market or Explore Phuket Old Town
What is the point of visiting a country if you don’t get to know the people? Phuket market has the most unique souvenirs for you take home to your friends.
The city has houses, shops and local restaurants that are designed for catering to Thai people. You can walk down the streets and you will get a view of the Thai lifestyle.
There is a famous street known as The Walking Street -the 350-meter long road – looks vibrant with various colors of lights. The Sino-Portuguese style houses are something to look at. You will find handicrafts, t-shirts, dresses, and many more. It is an upbeat and vibrant place to walk around at night.
There are people everywhere even after dark. Lights brighten up the place and people are always enjoying their time shopping around in this area.
You should try the local fried foods as well. Be careful not to eat from carts that look dirty or have cats nearby. You won’t want food poisoning to ruin your vacation.
17. Naka Weekend Market
Thailand has a hustling vibe in its markets. Naka weekend is an exotic market that offers tourists a taste of Thai vibes. The smell of street food, as well as the loud voices bargaining, has a chaotic uniqueness to it that you won’t find anywhere else.
What is it? Naka Weekend Market is a huge market in Phuket Town during the weekend that sells all sorts of goods. They have a huge outside area reserved for only street food sellers with authentic Thai and local favorites. Street food is very popular in Thailand. Therefore, you won’t be disappointed with the taste. They even make insects taste delicious.
Why go? The widest and most amazing place to enjoy tasty, original Thai food without spending a huge amount. The weekend Naka Market is not only about food. You will get to witness the Thai people living their life. Along with that, you will have a chance to vibe with them as well.
18. Aqua Spa | Refresh in the Fanciest Way
Looking for the most exquisite luxe Thai massage and Ayurvedic therapies? Indeed, Aqua Spa is your destination. This is the best place for relaxing. The spot has a tranquil and peaceful setting where you will feel at home. Their staffs are very friendly and welcoming like any Thai person.
Massages in Phuket are fairly inexpensive. Although you can get a good relaxing massage in the streets for a few hundred baht, What aqua spa offers is the premium experience. You are not just getting a massage here; you are receiving an experience of a lifetime.
They have rejuvenating beauty treatments and aromatherapy for the ultimate luxurious experience. The spa is not far from Patong resorts and is fairly priced based on their setting and location.
Aqua Spa is a must-visit if you are a beauty enthusiast. You will find the most exciting activities in this spa.
19. Try Your Hand in Thai Food Cooking
Thai food is a prestigious delicacy all over the world. Thai restaurants make more money in the street than most American restaurants do in the United States.
While you are in Thailand, you must indulge in the country’s mouth-watering cuisine. Thai people have thought of everything when it comes to tourism. They don’t have TAT for anything. Additionally, you can sign up for cooking classes in Phuket where they will teach you all about Thai food and how to master it.
Having a skill never disappoints. Learning to cook Thai food won’t either. And when you come back, you can bring a piece of Thailand in you as well!
There are plenty of excellent choices for cooking schools in Phuket. However, the Organic Thai Cooking School is highly recommended by many. The Organic Thai Cooking School has a bunch of options, which include vegetarian menus. 1,450 Baht for one person is the well worth price of their half-day course.
20. Discover the clear waters of Surin beach
One of the popular beaches in Phuket. Surin beach has a luxurious AM hotel for about $55/night. Moreover, the beach is across the street from AM hotel. The water on Surin beach is amazingly clear.
The beach has good accommodations. There is a wine bar 300 meters down the street. The bar sells food as well. So it acts like a diner bar.
The beach has a parking lot. There are food stalls in the parking lot. Like anywhere else in Thailand, the food here is very affordable and tasty.
The beach is safe. You can walk anywhere without worrying. And it is just an hour’s drive from the airport. So you can start from here too!
21. Visit Nai Harn
One of the nicest beaches you can imagine. The beach hasn’t changed in 10 years. If you want a private and less crowded beach, this one should be your pick. There are a few less populated beaches up north near the airport.
If you are going for a romantic getaway, you can choose a semi-secret beach. There are dozens of them around Phuket Island.
Not many tourists go to the east coast. Also, you can visit the less popular beaches there. However, nature has blessed all the beaches of Phuket, you won’t be disappointed.
22. Ride a Free boat to Coconut Island
The village coconut island offers a water taxi to Coconut Island every 30 minutes. It leaves from Laem Hin Pier in Phuket. The service starts at 6 am and ends at 11:30 pm. However, the water taxi ride is completely free!
23. A tour of Chalong Bay Rum Distillery
Chalong Bay Rum Distillery is a prestigious company in Thailand for its high-quality beverages. Thai people and tourists; both love to drink and get drunk equally. The company produces white rum.
Touring this company is a wholesome experience. You will get to see how rum is made and discover the processes behind one bottle. The tour ends with a cocktail workshop and bar. Here you will get to relax and also learn to mix different drinks. Go there with friends and enjoy it!
24. Visit The Phuket Big Buddha
The Phuket Big Buddha is a famous landmark in all of Thailand. In other words, it is a piece of art. The statue of Buddha is huge and very detailed. Although, the statue sits on top of Nakkerd Hills. A height of 45 meters is hard to miss; you will spot the statue from far away.
It’s beautiful up in the hill. You will get a view of the whole Phuket from there. Moreover, the Buddha statue is built of white Burmese marbles and sparkle subtly in the sun.
25. Karon View Point – See the beauty of Thailand Nature
Karon View Point is located just to the south of Kata Noi beach. However, the place usually buzzes with tourists. It is the most popular viewpoint of Phuket. But, the viewpoint can make you see everything.
The natural beauty of Thailand is very expressive. But due to the crowd of tourists and the Thai people; sometimes it’s hard to appreciate the natural beauty of different places.
At the Karon Viewpoint, you will get a chance to see all the beaches in Phuket as well as the blue ocean on the other side. All in all, it’s a beautiful spot.
26. Trip to Wat Chalong
This is a century-old tourist spot, however, Wat Chalong has catered to tourist curiosity for over hundreds of years. The sightseeing in Wat Chalong starts with Poh Jao Wat. The Poh Jao Wat has two statues of older men. One of these statues is of Ta Khee-Lek. He was a local who won many lotteries after he visited the statue of Poh Than Jao Wat. The other statue is of an elderly man named Nonsi.
The most exciting part is visiting the famous Grand Pagoda. It has a tiny broken piece of a bone of the Lord Buddha inside the temple. The pagoda is designed around the life of Gautama Buddha. Therefore, it’s very beautiful inside and gives a feel of a historical era.
27. Touch a Tiger at The Tiger Kingdom
If you are brave enough to get close to the magnificent beast, this is the place for you. The Phuket Tiger Kingdom raises Indochinese tigers from their birth and shelters them to their final days.
It is good to visit when they just open. That way, you will be able to avoid crowds and bond with tigers.
The tiger kingdom also has places for accommodations including two restaurants. One of them allows you to watch the tigers as well!
However, many rumors flow around Thailand’s tiger kingdom. One of them is that they drug the animals. The rumors are concluded untrue.
28. Night Out on Bangla Road
While Bangla road gets closed for traffic after sundown, this is the time Bangla road becomes alive. Especially, the street is packed with bars. There are street entertainers as well as good beer! What more do you need to have a good time? To sum up, it’s a fun road filled with busy people bustling.
29. Phuket Elephant Sanctuary – Discover Your Love for Elephants
Indeed, Phuket is a sanctuary for many animals. The elephant sanctuary promotes a friendly environment for animals and also will educate you on elephants. Although many places in Thailand have offered to ride an elephant, the Phuket Elephant Sanctuary does not. They act as a savior of the elephants. Some of the staff are even friends with elephants!
30. Visit the Soi Dog Foundation
Who does not love dogs? Thai people do too! There are many stray dogs and cats in Phuket city and all over Thailand. However, the Soi Dog Foundation in Phuket is a welfare organization changing little dog’s lives. Soi Dog has sterilized around 12,000 animals a year. Therefore, this initiative has made Thailand roads safer for all.
If you love animals, you can volunteer to help. You can also get a tour around the operating areas of the institution by a guide. Check out Soi Dog Foundation official website.
Phuket is an amazing place. The activities just don’t end. And one is so different from the other! You can also visit monkey hill for watching monkeys, visit the beautiful Phag Nga Bay, watch the Simon Cabaret show to witness outstanding performance of the beautiful ladyboys’, enjoy the famous fantasia show and many more! 30 is a small number to list everything that is fun in Phuket. Nature, the people, the food; everything gives the experience of a lifetime.
Phuket also reminds tourists of movies. The legendary Jui Tui Shrine has a setting similar to the popular animation Kungfu Panda. Every shrine in Phuket carries a story. However, the beauty and depth behind all the pillars of mere buildings give a feel of belongingness on the island even to strangers.
Mom Tri’s Kitchen and the other luxury hotels of Phuket beats all. Everything has a uniqueness to it on the island. As if the island has a life of its own. Although all the components are working differently, everyone is in harmony.
There are some unique things about Phuket and Thailand that both flow around in word and mouth and make Phuket more interesting to tourists. Here are some things that you won’t certainly find on the internet!
You might also be interested in our pick for Things To Do in Bangkok
- No lines
People don’t stand in line at Phuket! Thai people form a crowd instead of queuing up. They follow this style without any discomfort.
- Unique Vehicle Routines
At Phuket, when you are visiting any place; try to reserve a taxi or tell the driver to pick you up for return. Most people get drunk and fight for taxis during nighttime.
You can use their local vehicle Tuk Tuk during the day. They are not very safe to use at night.
- Conversations about the king
In Thailand, people do not talk about their king at all. It is also advised to tourists no to talk about the king or ask questions to the locals about him.
- Customs in eating
It is rude in Thailand to use a fork for eating. Always take food; both solid and liquid with a spoon. You can use a fork for cutting or separating food items.
- Tasty mangoes!
Phuket has the most delicious mangoes in the world. And they aren’t very expensive either. Eat as many as you want, take some back home for your friends.
- Taxi Drivers
Phuket has many attraction spots and some of them are closed on some days. Taxi drivers will say that a nearby spot is closed for the day so that he or she can take you far and charge more. If you have a guide, ask him/her; or just ask another driver.
- Public transport service is good
The BTS (Subway) and MRT (Light Rail) are used by everyone in Thailand. They are comparatively cheaper, and fast. It makes vacation pocket-friendly and more convenient.
- Cheap five-star hotels
Phuket is very generous when it comes to tourists. The five-star hotels cost around $100 a night only! Some of them come with private pools. The accommodations and services are outstanding.
- Customs in temples
It is mandatory to cover elbows and knees inside the temples out of respect. Monasteries and palaces also have the same rule. You can also carry a light jacket with you all the time. However, Phuket is decorated with beautiful temples and palaces; you wouldn’t want to miss anything for a jacket.
- Brace yourself for cockroaches
Cockroaches are very common in Thailand. Thai people consume insects as well. So the roaches don’t bother them. You need to try scorpions from local vendors when you visit Thailand. The food is delicious. Thai people consume these as a source of protein.
- Get massages!
Thai massages cost about 3 bucks for an hour. The masseuses are excellent and will leave your body feeling like jelly.
Thailand’s humidity can ruin your vacation easily. In other words, the temperature rises high and it’s impossible to go out. Don’t visit the country in April. In other months, the weather is amazing!
Why is Phuket Attractive to Tourists?
Although Phuket is not actually a city in Thailand, it’s an island in the Andaman Sea. Therefore, the popular beaches are mainly on the western shore and have clear waters. The island is itself a tourism spot. It has fancy hotels along with restaurants as well as spas.
There are two parts of the island. Phuket city is the capital and has both markets and local shops for tourists. Patong is the main resort town. In other words, it is no less than a Las Vegas experience. Patong has nightclubs, resorts, spa, and disco as well. In addition, they have the most amazing beers in Thailand.
Phuket has always been an important place. During the time before British rule, the island acted as a major trading route for India and China. Portuguese, French, Dutch, and English traders also used this route for businesses. The city then earned revenue from tin and rubber. Now it has tourism.
Phuket was formerly named Thalang. Many people still use this name to address the island. Moreover, Phuket offers the most exciting sites and festivities for tourists in Thailand. One of them is Phuket Fantasia. It’s an outstanding theme park in Phuket and acts as a tourist attraction; especially for kids.
The land of the Smiles certainly has some weird quirks. But who doesn’t? Going through their customs is a fun activity itself. Imagine actually being in the country around the locals. The country is a piece of heaven. Moreover, its beauty and every unique thing it has to offer to make it appealing to the tourists.
How to Get to Phuket?
As it is a popular tourism spot, going to Phuket is fairly simple. Tourists go to Phuket by train, plane or road vehicles.
- By Plane
Phuket holds the second largest airport in Thailand, the Phuket international airport. If you are in Thailand already, you can use terminal 2 for domestic flights while Terminal is used for international flights. Direct flights between Phuket and India, Australia, Malaysia, Singapore, Germany, and other countries take place frequently.
- By Road
There are both air-conditioned and non-air-conditioned buses that reach Phuket. You can also go to Phuket town from Bangkok, Krabi, Phang Na, and Surat Thani through BKS. Southern Bus Terminal of Bangkok provides the most reliable transportation to Phuket. However, reaching Phuket takes about 13 hours in this transportation.
- By Train
There are no direct trains to Phuket because trains from Bangkok reach the Phun Phin railway station. Phuket is a 5-hour bus ride from the station. Therefore, train stations in Phuket are very convenient. You will be dropped at the Phun Phin railway station while the bus stoppage is nearby.
- Phuket Useful Links
We have listed some links that will help you in Phuket, therefore, you can check them out in need. Hope this makes your trip to the best destination fun!
Remember, wherever you go; you are also representing your country as well. Thailand is the land of the smiles. People speak well English, even street vendors. However, it is your responsibility as a guest to be well behaved with everyone in the country because Thai people have some norms which have a huge difference with western country’s norms. But that does not lessen their values. Remember to follow what others are doing when visiting pagodas or any temples beside the street. Moreover, many temples require people to take their shoes off; follow that. Especially, temples are the places of prayer; they are not to be disrespected.
Thailand is a country of friendly people. But there are frauds and muggers as well. No one is perfect so blaming the country does not make sense. Therefore, you maintain your belongings and stay in a reputed hotel. The beginning of this article mentions how cheap hotels are in Thailand, so why compromise with your safety when you can get a private pool free?
Above all, a happy trip will include making friends with the locals. Thai people are friendly, behave well and steer clear of trouble so, you will be just fine. Also, don’t forget to bring home memories from the streets of Phuket!
If You are Already in Thailand, Check Out These 10 Things You Can Do in Kanchanaburi!