Everything there is to know about Phuket and all the best hotels, resorts and villa deals in Phuket.
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Phuket is famous in Thailand for it’s nightlife, bars, clubs, resorts right on the beach as well as the fantastic natural scenery. It’s a great family holiday destination where you can spend time with the kids on the beach or by the pool in one of the many fabulous hotels. Phuket is located in the Andaman Sea and is about an hour plane flight south of Bangkok.
It is one of the most popular tourists destination in Thailand because of it’s warm, balmy, tropical climate, white palm tree lined sandy beaches, really hospitable and friendly locals plus a range of seriously great hotels. Phuket can either be a 24/7 party or a chilled out, relaxed holiday. It has something for everybody.
Is this your first time to Phuket and don’t know where to stay? Following is some really useful information.
Not every beach area in Phuket is the same. Although they may look the same in the glossy brochures and websites there are marked differences between all beaches. For the first timer knowing this information can be the difference between a perfect holiday or the holiday from hell. You need to know which area is right for your holiday requirements. There are so many choices and so many options that making the right decision can often prove very tricky. This is the reason why we have prepared this very simple guide to provide you with extensive information to help you make the right choice when it comes to your Phuket holiday.
Should I stay in Patong Beach?
Located on the west coast of Phuket, Patong Beach is known for it’s bars, clubs and is the ‘go to’ destination for all nightlife. The main road Bangla Road is where it’s all happening and is where you are going to find a concentration of bars as well as most of the hotels and resorts, all ranging from budget to mid priced. Perfect if you want a place to crash for the night. As you head north towards Kamala, the scenery becomes more picturesque, with magnificent sunsets and more boutique private resorts/villas.
- Budget travellers, especially backpackers who love to party
- People who want to experience a really busy ‘buzzy’ beach
- If you like everything in one place; bars, clubs and hotels, shopping, eating out and nightlife
Not so good:
- It’s very commercialised – not too may Thai influences here
- Traffic is very heavy and it is polluted
- It can get noisy with the nightlife
Should we stay at Kata Beach?
This is a great all round beach that’s ideal for families and budget travellers wanting to get away from the noisy parts of Phuket. The beach is great for sun baking, chilling out and there is a reef nearby suitable for divers. There is some nightlife here but nowhere near anything like Patong. If you are staying at a hotel here these is ample shopping and great restaurants to eat out at night. Great family holiday area especially if you are travelling with young kids.
Why it’s great.
- Young backpackers on a budget who want to relax
- Families with youngsters
- Chilled out nightlife with plenty of restaurants
- Scuba divers
- Uncrowded beaches
- Lots of hotels that are reasonably priced
What’s not ideal
- There is a bit of a hike between the budget hotels and the beach
Should I book my hotel room at Karon Beach?
This is the 3rd largest beach in Phuket and you can see tourist walking up and down it daily. It’s got pure white sands, inviting blue tropical waters and a large range or hotels and resorts. This is really a very popular tourist hot spot that ticks all the right boxes; family, nightlife, restaurants etc.
Karong is great for:
- People that love the beach and enjoy long walks
- If you enjoy shopping, Thai cuisine and some nightlife thrown in
- People who want the chilled Thai vibe but also want to be near nightlife
It’s not so good for:
- It is very spread out so getting from 1 place to another requires a taxi (tuk tuk)
Surin Beach, Whats the deal here?
This is the uber hip and very cool part of Phuket where your going to find the rich and famous tanning themselves on the beach or in their private villas. There are some hi end exclusive shops/boutiques with some hip clubs on the beach. Surin beach is all about seclusion, privacy and getting away from the noise and hectic pace of some other beach areas.
It’s great for
- Travellers with big holiday budgets
- Quiet exclusive beach areas
- People watching
- Staying in very upmarket resorts
Not ideal for:
- The average person with a tight budget
- People who are looking to party and lots of action
Should I stay at Kamala Beach?
Close to the frenetic Patong area, Kamala is a quite, beautiful stretch of beach that is the exact opposite of Patong. It’s relaxed, quiet and really popular with the elderly and retirees. With this comes the deluge of day saps, luxury private villas and wonderful hotels. The night life here is non existent but there are a few cosy restaurants for those tourists wanting to relax and dine out peacefully at night. If your in no hurry and have a good book to read then head off to Kamala.
It’s great for:
- Families with children wanting privacy
- Travellers wanting to experience the Thai vibe
- People who want to grab a hotel bargain
- If you like dining on the beach – there are great restaurants here
Not so good for:
- People who want to party and socialise at night
Phuket Town, what’s happening there
This is the capital of the island and it’s filled with great shopping, heaps of restaurants, temples and cultural attractions.If you want to experience the real Thailand, stay in this part of Phuket. It’s not so touristy but as you would expect has more locals.
It’s great for:
- Backpackers on a holiday budget who want a cheap hotel room
- People who like culture
- If your into local Thai cuisine
- People who want to mix with the locals and who enjoy local markets.
Not so good for:
- Lots of Thai traffic
- Can be quiet at night
- You are not on the beach
Nai Harn Beach, is this right for you?
This beach is popular with the locals as it is set deep in a cove area that’s uncrowded, tranquil and very quiet. The geography of the place is ideal for sun baking and relaxing on the many little coves dotted around the area such as Ya Nui. If your into snorkelling, sailing and scuba diving then this area is perfect. There’s basically not much going on here in terms of nightlife and shopping as visitors come here for the natural beauty and serene atmosphere.
This is great for:
- Beach goers and sun worshippers
- Aquatic life, water sports and snorkelling
- Peaceful relaxed setting
- Not overly developed
Not good for:
- Shopping, nightlife and activity
- An array of hotel choices
Bangtao Beach, what’s it like?
Bangtao is a very long beach and is the second biggest in Phuket. The area is a mixed bag with the southern part catering for the budget / back packer style accommodation, the centre are has the Laguna Complex, while the northern end (which finishes at Layan Beach) is pretty much deserted. Bangtao is generally quiet except for the restaurants and bars near the Laguna complex.
Bangtao is great for:
- Upmarket travellers with a healthy holiday budget
- Tourists who want to chill, relax and get away from the noisy parts of Phuket
- Families with kids wanting some serious beach time – there is 6km of it.
- People who do not want to leave their local area. They like everything close by
Not good for:
- Lovers of night life and partying
- If your into shopping and spending lots of money clothes and presents on holiday.