10 BEST Things to do in Phuket, Thailand

Phuket is one of the most visited places in Thailand. Phuket is a province spread over a large island along with several smaller islands on the west coast of Thailand. Phuket is Thailand's largest and most developed island. Phuket is one of the most renowned islands in Thailand with exotic natural landscapes, turquoise water, and white sand beaches.

Traveling to Phuket Island near Bangkok is more enjoyable. You can spend 4–5 days in Phuket as there's a lot to do here. Phuket is a party house. There is a combination of hypnotic beaches, lovely hills, trekking trails, luxurious places to stay, night beauty and shopping opportunities.

Phuket (pronounced 'poo-ket') is Thailand's largest island, and offers plenty of mainstream beaches, bars, and restaurants. Take a closer look, however, and you'll discover a delightful Old Town where few tourists go. Whether you head to the Phuket Rum Distillery or just meander around the island's dozen-plus beaches, your only boundaries are how far you're willing to go!

It is worth noting that a scooter or motorcycle would be considered a great way to get around, but be aware that driving on the island is just as dangerous as the rest of Thailand. This island itself is unremarkable. There is a town, but it has less culture than Chiang Mai and less to do than Bangkok. The best reason to come to Phuket is to stay in one of the excellent cliffside hotels as a retreat.

The island receives millions of tourists every year from different countries, who come to enjoy the nightlife, relax, and witness beautiful landscapes. Phuket has 22 white sand beaches, which are popular among the locals as well as tourists for water sports, relaxation, and play games on the sand. In the vicinity of each beach, there are many beach hotels, resorts, beach clubs, bars, restaurants, and other enjoyment activities.

You can find budget-friendly accommodation or luxury resorts and hotels in Phuket with infinity pools in the hilltop or neighboring areas. The renowned beaches have excellent resorts, beach hotels, clubs, and restaurants to ensure an unforgettable stay in Phuket.

Surrounded by the Andaman Sea, Phuket is full of beautiful white sand beaches, exotic landscapes, turquoise, water sports, fun nightlife, and relaxation activities. Hence, Phuket is a popular choice for all kinds of tourists, family, solo travelers, business people, and even honeymooners.

For tourists, this could be a wonderland, and for artists, this scintillating island could be a treasure hunt of glorifying sights and memories. If you are on a fantastic journey to Thailand, then Phuket has to be on your bucket list of must-visit tourist destinations this year. Before any trip, it is almost next to essential that you know about the place before getting in for a wild goose chase in the place. So, let's prep up about Phuket!

This stunning province is situated in the Southern zone of Thailand. Carefully nestled on the Andaman Sea and you can also visit nearby places like Krabi and the other famous one is Phang Nga. The place is mostly entwined in Chinese culture, so you would find a lot of Chinese restaurants, cuisine, and shrines in this place.

Phuket is a good place for vacation. There are many beaches in phuket. Phuket is a big diverse island with dozens of beaches from ultra touristy to near deserted. Phuket Island is believed to be a little heaven on Earth. Travelers are greatly attracted by its rich culture and flavorful cuisine. Spend the day by exploring the natural beauty at the Phang Nga Bay and doing fun activities at the white sand beaches.

Don't miss out to enjoy the lively nightlife in Phuket. Visit during the months of November and April to enjoy beach activities. Phuket is the most visited destination after Bangkok. It features countless resorts and best beaches in Asia for honeymoon along with hotels, nightclubs, restaurants, and accommodation for tourists. You can also visit historical museums, monuments and other significant places that are all over Phuket.

Phuket is one of the best places to visit in Thailand for couples. The crystal clear waters, the shade of palm trees, and the luxury resorts in Phuket offer the perfect backdrop to spend quality time with your one and only. Apart from this, a visit to Wat Chalong, the largest temple in Phuket is one of the must-to-do things in Phuket.

Phuket – Best things to try out on this iconic tourist attractionPhuket – Best things to try out on this iconic tourist attraction

For the beach lover, this is one huge place to flirt with the waters. Some of the famous nearby beaches are Patong, Rawai, Mai Kaho, Karon, and the name list could just go on. And of course, don't forget to enjoy the soothing sunset views that Phuket has to offer you!

1. The Breezy Phuket Old Town

While travelling to Thailand, Phuket old town is a world apart from its ultra-urban vibe. It's a town steeped in history. The architecture is European influenced and its quaint streets are lined with Sino-Portuguese shop-houses and colonial mansions. There are many cafes, bakeries and eating joints along the way. You can just grab a cup of coffee, wander the area and absorb its old-world charm.

Go easy on your trip and enjoy every bit of whiff of romantic breeze that the local Phuket atmosphere has to offer you. The best way to heard start your Phuket travel date would be a walk through the easy, yet bubbly Phuket local shopping town. The aura of the Phuket Old Town will let you transcend through the traditional charm and the addictive cultural influence of the Chinese heritage into Phuket life.

2. Speed boat tour to the Similan Islands

These are a small group of islands popularly called the Similan Islands. They have been segregated as a national park, which automatically has brought it to the spotlight of tourism. Get hold of the local agencies and get an experience of the exotic waters via a speed boat tour. This soothing icy blue water tour will thrill your senses to the fullest.

Apart from the speed boat tour, you can also enjoy a snorkeling session and even engage in swimming in the place. This place is clean and a great place to have a wonderful time in nature safely.

3. Fantasy on the go - Phi Phi Island

There are more than 300 beautiful islands in Thailand. One of the best sight seeing island is Ko Phi Phi. You must should visit those islands during Thailand tour. Island trips are awesome, particularly Ko Phi Phi Don. Spectacular boat ride and amazing day. You can book these through your hotels or tourist agents.

They are all pretty much the same deals and pick you up from your hotel and drop you back. Take the seasickness tablets, if you must. They are offered right after breakfast. You can snorkel and scuba dive during these day trips. Equipment will be provided.

Yup, if Phuket towns have enticed you, then that is just the beginning. This Phi Phi Island is a nearby world that has been marked as a must-visit tourist destination once you reach Phuket. So, don't you miss your pretty planned adventure at this fantasy island! Wade along in a peaceful beat, then get touched with the peaceful vibes amidst the huge rocks and the dreamy effect that fauna and flora offer at this lovely place.

It is a hidden quiet area that has been untouched by the city life and that is what makes this palace such beautiful to believe. Nature is raw beyond imagination and we can actually allow ourselves to sink into the slow pace of life blissfully.

Ko Phi Phi is the biggest island, with most of the inhabitants living here. Most of the architecture is new on this island as it was severely hit by tsunami. However, this place is a must for anyone to visit as it possesses truly natural beauty beyond anyone's imagination. There is plenty of accommodation on the island for everyone to stay, and there are always plenty of beaches to wander.

A small archipelago in the Krabi province in southern Thailand, this place is truly amazing for a happy ending massage. 90% of massage shops offer two basic types, Thai and Oil massage. Thai massage is most common and cheapest and you would normally wear underwear. Oil is normally more expensive and gives generally a better quality of massage.

Depending on the establishment you could wear underwear, use a disposable one provided or go commando. It’s pretty much given that if you chose the latter then you will get a tickle in the most sensitive places to gauge your reaction to see if you want more. This rarely happens with a thai massage. The quality of massage is totally variable and depends on the practitioner.

The idea that strength offers a better, deeper massage is usually prevalent in the touristy places but it can also cause damage. You are always better off if you go with the oldest lady in the shop who knows her stuff and not looking to provide extras. Obviously this isn’t a hard and fast rule. Women rarely offer extras. It is always best to ask around for recommendations. If you walk in off the street without knowing what the place is, you are totally chancing your luck.

4. Experience romance in the air? Head for the Phang Nga Bay

If your honeymoon needs to flame up, arrange an exotic dinner at the Phang Nga Bay. With the soothing waters beating by the rocks, the sensual music playing in the background, and some classic fresh food to tantalize the palate and the minds - anyone would fall head over heels for their special one!

This is one of the hot spots of the newlyweds, as the Bay offers so much privacy and ambiance to fuel up love in the most elegant and budget-friendly manner. Just lay back, enjoy the dinner, and watch the sunset go by right before your eyes. Moments as tranquil as these don't happen in our fast pace of life, so make use of Phuket spiced romance to the fullest!

5. Let sanctity fill you at the Buddha statue

Never miss the touch of religious beauty and elegance that Phuket has to offer. Arrange for a trip to the Nakkerd Hills, where you can witness the 140 feet statue of the elegant Lord Buddha. Since the dominant religion and culture is for Buddhism, this Buddha statue speaks tons about its prominence on the island.

In Phuket there are 29 Buddhist temples and the most important of them all is Wat Chalong or as locals call Wat Chaiyathararam. It is located in Mueang and was built to venerate two great Buddhist monks, Luang Pho Chaem and Luang Pho Chuang. Wat Chalong also known by tourists as the Chalong Temple is the most important and visited Buddhist temple in the province of Phuket.

Poh Than Jao Wat temple building contains two statues of an old man called Ta Khee-lek which was a famous local that won the lottery several times and another statue in the hall called Nonsi. The large central pagoda contains splinters of Buddha's bones and is decorated with paintings on the murals that depict the life of Buddha.

To get to the most famous temple in Phuket you should take the Chao Fah Nok road from the Central Festival shopping center and you will find the temple on the left.

6. Enjoy a traditional Thai lunch in a floating village

Koh Panyee is a floating village near Phuket. The entire village is supported on stilts, making for an interesting day trip. What is surprising is that Koh Panyee is a full-fledged village with schools, a police station and shops selling everything from t-shirts to souvenirs. You can just stroll along its walkways and get lost in its simple beauty.

Although Phang Nga bay cruises include Koh Panyee in their itinerary, hire a longtail boat and go there by yourself. If you reach early, you might be the only visitor. Sail to the south of the Koh Naka Yai island, where you can practice kayaking and enjoy beautiful deserted beaches. Next, you can arrive at Koh Khai Island for an excellent diving session.

7. Shop at the bustling Phuket Indy Night Market

Night markets are one of the best places to watch locals go about their daily business and mingle with them. They are also good for buying funky accessories, cheap clothing, and wacky souvenirs. The brightly lit stalls, energetic atmosphere and the aroma of delicious Thai cuisine are what draw travelers to them. So even if shopping doesn't catch your fancy, night markets surely make for a gastronomic delight.

8. Walk with elephants at Phuket Elephant Sanctuary

The locals have a great deal to smile about including gorgeous surroundings and a plethora of awesome native animals like elephants. Elephants are incredible creatures to behold. They live long lives and are extraordinarily intelligent. When you spend time with them, it is easy to feel a sense of kinship with these gentle giants of the jungle.

Unfortunately, however, while the Asian elephant is a significant figure in the culture of Southeast Asia, not all of the area's inhabitants are as respectful of them as you would think. In fact, many elephants in the region endure sad, painful and hard-working lives. In their youth, they are made to endure the Phajaan, a barbaric ritual in which a wild elephant's spirit is broken to make it more submissive to their owners.

After having endured this, the elephants spend decades typically working in the logging industry, bearing extremely heavy loads every day. Moreover, they are often beaten, tortured and even shot if they show any signs of non-compliance. When they grow too old and weak to work in the logging industry, they usually transition to carrying tourists on their backs.

It is enough to make animal lovers shed a tear, but fortunately, there are people in the region who are dedicated to changing this status quo. What makes Phuket Elephant Sanctuary such a wonderful place to stay is the respect, compassion, and love with which their rescued elephants are treated. These elephants have known only toil and pain all their lives but at the sanctuary, they are able to roam free.

They also have the constant care and supervision of their Mahouts (carers) who keep a respectful distance and help the elephant only when needed. They share a bond of trust with their charges. You won't be able to ride or swim with elephants here, as unbeknownst to some tourists these are actually strenuous and upsetting for the animals.

Here, guests are invited to observe these majestic creatures in their natural habitat (although there are some who are happy to be fed by guests). As soon as you set foot in the sanctuary, the love and passion that the management and staff have for the elephants and giving them the best possible quality of life are palpable. The sanctuary is a truly life-changing place to visit, especially for animal lovers.

9. Explore Phuket Walking Street

Patong beach is undoubtedly the best tourist place in Phuket. The infamous Sois Bangla street, nightclubs, beach clubs, and others attract people from different parts of the world. There are numerous hotspots in Patong. Patong is the primary town on Phuket. At its middle is a bustling business zone with bars, shops and eateries.

Bangla Road is the core of Phuket's renowned nightlife. It's vibrant and fun, nightlife will call you from everywhere with live songs, women dancing on bar counters and ladyboys parading with feathers. It's a party area, and you may experience it without guilt.

10. Go inside a Go Go bar

You don't need to feel guilty to go inside a Go Go Bar, commonly a room with girls dancing with once in a while display that could make your jaw drop. Once more, this is Phuket, and it's quite relaxed. Many couples visit a Go Go bar out of interest, to have a drink and enjoy a bit.

Start with a shooter on the Ice Bar. Enter a -30˙C freezing room without a jacket! Get a vodka shot in an ice glass served on an ice bar and try to stay so long as viable.

Phuket beach clubs are back, and Kudo is the nearest to Bangla avenue, the party avenue with colourful lighting, incredible sounds and international DJs. It's clean to have it all in Phuket! There are rooftop bars in Phuket! They are scattered around the island and invite travelers who prefer a more quiet and intimate celebration.

There are at least three rooftop bars in Patong, and they're top spots for a drink before dinner around a sunset. Hit the nightclubs in Phuket. The most popular ones are Illuzion and White Room on Bangla Road. Banana Disco on the seaside street is an old-time favourite in addition to Hollywood on Bangla and Tai Pan close to Jungceylon mall.

Walk down Bangla Road or any of the side lanes to see limitless tiny bars, all looking 'Same but Different'. A beer bar is a U shaped counter with colorful lighting, loud sounds, a TV screen, few pleasant girls and some silly bar games to play. But the bell hanging at each bar is NOT for fun! It is a way to express your happiness and generosity! Ring it to pay for a round of drinks to anyone across the bar!

There is no shortage of live bands in Patong, and has improved in recent years. Now in case you don't have time to sit for multiple hours on the show, you can see a few ladyboys in Bangla Road (you can't miss them) or some greater modest display in Paradise complex. Phuket has some superb Tattoo artists, and in case you pick one, you might move home with something extravagant!

On a Final Note

This holy place and divine sight will leave you in complete peace on Earth. Spend the day watching Buddha in his meditation pose. Though you can witness the beauty of this statue right from the Phuket Town, a firsthand view is something spending time for.

Of course, these are some of the iconic places that one should visit, but Phuket is never short of more places to visit. If you have plenty of time to explore, and then go for more options. Some of the other popular destinations in Phuket are the Tiger Kingdom, then a lovely session at the largest temple in Phuket - the Wat Chalong.

Kata beach is also a popular tourist place where you can enjoy water sports and other relaxation activities alone or with your family. For the adventurous soul, there are plenty of options like Scuba diving, Snorkelling, Stand up paddling, Paramotor flying, and surfing. Truly, there is something there for everyone. You just have to open your mind and soul and the beauty of Phuket will touch you notably.

Thailand, being one of the top tourist destinations, has many popular luxury hotels and resorts. One of such five-star boutique hotels in Phuket is Avista Hideaway, established on a hilltop in Southwestern Phuket. Staying in this luxury hotel will remind you of the traditional Thai village as the cottages were built in this fashion. Despite building the hotel on a classic theme, the hotel has all amenities for guests to make their stay as sophisticated as possible. With facilities like a spa, fitness center, luxury rooms, banquet hall, the hotel will make your holiday an unforgettable experience.
Kalyan Panja