Fabulous Phuket holidays
If the scenery in Southern Thailand looks like it’s been lifted straight out of a travel magazine, Phuket is its cover story. Picture white beaches washed by clear blue waters, traditional longtail boats bobbing in the shallows, and jungle-topped islands soaring upwards straight out of the sea. This is picture-book Thailand, where visitors flock from all over the world to soak up the country’s legendary beauty and laidback lifestyle.
Phuket is also the gateway to countless tiny islands - each more idyllic than the last - and a few hours’ island-hopping by longtail boat is a memorable way to spend a day. Of course, night markets are big here too, just as they are in Bangkok and Chiang Mai. You might go to a market to shop, but these places are as much about eating, drinking and soaking up the atmosphere as they are about trinkets, clothes and souvenirs.
Lots of people visit Phuket for a relaxing beach holiday, but there is plenty more to discover and experience on this beautiful coast of Thailand.
For an island most famous for beaches and nightlife, Phuket has more than its share of temples and religious shrines. Chalong Temple is the largest temple on Phuket, but perhaps better known is the 45-metre gleaming white statue known as Big Buddha. Big Buddha can be seen from almost anywhere in the south of Phuket, and the panoramic views from its surrounding terrace are breath-taking.
Thai culture and traditions are very evident right across Thailand, and Phuket is no exception. There are cultural and religious symbols everywhere, from magnificent, gilded buildings to modest street offerings. Rise early and you can still see the morning ritual known as Tak Bart, when people give food to monks in return for a blessing or prayer. And if you can time your visit for a festival – say Loy Krathong in November or Songkran in April – you’re in for a colourful and lively treat.
It’s one of the biggest attractions on Phuket, and with more than 40 to choose from, you’re sure to find the perfect beach for you. From wide golden coves hidden by dense forest to long narrow strips lined with coconut trees, and those where you can drink, dine, shop and party as well as top up your tan, the beaches on Phuket are legendary.
Phuket is an island in the Andaman Sea off Southern Thailand. It is the largest island in Thailand - about 30 miles from north to south and about 13 miles wide.
Thai is the official language, although you’ll find English is widely spoken in Phuket.
The Thai currency is the baht. Each baht is divided into 100 satang.
The total flight time from London to Phuket is about 13 hours.
Most people visiting Phuket will fly to Bangkok and then get a connecting flight to Phuket International Airport.
As in the rest of Thailand, tipping isn’t expected but it is always appreciated. Check the bill before paying in a restaurant because a service charge may already be included. Elsewhere, a small tip to hotel staff, taxi drivers etc. will be gratefully received.
Thailand is seven to eight hours ahead of the UK, depending on British Summertime.
British passport holders can stay in Thailand for up to 30 days without a visa, but your passport must be valid for at least six months after your date of arrival. Please also check your passport’s condition because passports that are damaged or have pages missing can lead to entry being refused. We recommend you check for up to date entry requirements well before you travel by using the tool at CIBT visas and read the travel advice at GOV UK.
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