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Things to do in Phuket
Recognised as one of the most prominent symbols of Phuket, this statue is 45 metres tall and sits on a hill overlooking the city. From the Big Buddha, you can get a great view of some of Phuket’s top beaches, including Karon, Kata Noi, and Phang Nga Bay. The Buddha is made of Burmese marble and shines beautifully in the sun. The area around the Big Buddha gets extremely hot in the middle of the day and afternoon, so for the best experience, make it your first stop of the day.
Go to the Beach
With more than 30 beaches, Phuket is an ocean-lover’s dream. There are lots of beaches that will appeal to different types of travellers. Patong Beach is one of the most popular. It’s close to the centre of Phuket Town and is a popular nightlife area. For a quieter beach experience, Karon Beach, Kata Beach, and Paradise Beach are great spots to go. They have quiet and secluded atmospheres, but are still close to lots of restaurants. All of the Phuket beaches are beautiful with white sand, bright turquoise water, and lots of palm trees.
Thailand is known for its beautiful temples, and one of the best ones to visit in Phuket is Wat Chalong. Inside this Buddhist temple, you can see several artifacts, including a walking stick that is said to hold healing powers and even a piece of Buddha’s bone. Wall art throughout the temple teaches you about Buddha’s life story, making Wat Chalong a great place to learn about the spiritual side to Phuket. The temple is beautifully designed and a must-visit when you book airfares to Phuket.
Phang Nga Bay
Northwest of Phuket is Phang Nga Bay, which makes for a perfect day trip. Several boat tours are available from Phuket to Phang Nga Bay, or you can hire a private boat for your group. The bay is full of limestone cliffs emerging from the water, and the bay is even home to the famous James Bond Island. On the northern end of Phang Nga Bay, you can also visit a fishing village called Koh Panyi. The floating village is made up of stilt houses that are popular throughout Thailand.
Karon Temple Night Market
There are several night markets throughout Phuket, and this is one of the best. The market is held on Tuesdays and Fridays and is set up right on the temple grounds. The market is full of local crafts, art, and clothing that will give you a great insight into Phuket culture. The market also has lots of food stalls where you can sample some amazing Thai food. Some of the must-try foods on a visit to Thailand include pad thai, tom yum, panang and green curries, and mango sticky rice for dessert.
Go Island Hopping around Phuket
Phuket is located on an island itself, and all around are many more islands for you to visit. With the close proximity of many of the islands to Phuket Town, you could easily visit for a day, or you could plan to spend a few days on the surrounding islands. All of the islands have beautiful beaches and great snorkelling and diving. The Phi Phi Islands are some of the most popular to visit outside of Phuket. They are just 45 minutes from Phuket by speedboat and 90 minutes by ferry. There are several Phi Phi Islands, with some known for their nightlife and others known as a quiet paradise. The Similan Islands are another beautiful spot, located 45 minutes from Phuket by speedboat. And for a day of diving and snorkelling just off the coast of Phuket, the Koh Kai Islands are only located 20 minutes from town by speedboat.
When should you book cheap airfares to Phuket?
Phuket is located in the tropics, so its temperatures are stable throughout the year. It gets hot during the day, and nighttime cools down but stays at a comfortable 24-25 degrees. Although the temperature doesn’t change much, Phuket experiences vastly different weather throughout the year.
Due to its tropical location, Thailand experiences a wet season and a dry season. The dry season is the best time to book cheap airfares to Phuket and lasts from November to April. January and February are the busiest months, so if you plan cheap flights to Phuket during this time, be sure to book your hotel far in advance. Monsoon season lasts from May to October. These months experience a lot of rain, and some attractions close for the wet season. The ocean can be dangerous during monsoon season, and swimming and diving are not recommended due to powerful waves and rip currents. Prices drop during the wet season, so it could be a good option for travellers who aren’t planning to dive or snorkel in Phuket.
It’s always exciting to book flights to Phuket for one of their big celebrations! It’s a great way to learn more about the Thai culture and see how locals celebrate their holidays. The Songkran Water Festival is held in April to celebrate the Thai New Year. The festival involves water fights and people dumping buckets of water over each other. Water is seen as purifying in Thailand, so being soaked during the festival is a way to purify yourself of the bad memories from the previous year and start the new year with a clean slate. For a more relaxed festival, you can look at airfares to Phuket for the Loy Krathong Festival in November. During Loy Krathong, hundreds of floating lanterns are released into the sky, making for some beautiful sights.
Arriving in Phuket
Phuket is home to the third busiest airport in Thailand, just after the two Bangkok airports. Located 30 km north of the city, Phuket Airport is the gateway to southern Thailand and many of the Thai islands. The airport is made up of three terminals. Terminal 2 receives international flights to Phuket, domestic flights to Phuket land in Terminal 3, and Terminal X receives charter flights and private planes. Flying from Australia, you will most likely fly into Terminal 2. However, your flight may arrive to Terminal 3 if you have a stopover in Bangkok.
Getting to the city centre from Phuket International Airport (HKT)
The most budget-friendly way to get from Phuket Airport into town is on the Phuket Airport Bus. This bus offers a route between the airport and Phuket Bus Terminal in the town centre. Other stops along the bus route include the Phuket Boat Lagoon, Sarakul Stadium, and Pranang Srang Temple. From the Phuket Bus Terminal, you can transfer to buses heading to other areas of Phuket, including Patong, Kata, Karon, and the Rassada Pier. The Airport Bus picks up passengers outside Arrivals for Terminals 2 and 3. The bus departs the airport every 60 to 90 minutes and arrives to the Phuket Bus Terminal in a little over an hour. Tickets are available to purchase on the bus and cost 100 Thai baht (about $4.20).
For an easy transfer from the airport to your hotel, you can catch a taxi outside of your terminal. A taxi into the centre of Phuket Town costs about 400 baht and takes 30 minutes. A taxi ride to Patong costs about 550 baht and takes 40 minutes. If you are staying at a hotel in Kata or Karon, taxi fare from the airport costs about 600 baht and takes an hour. When you catch a taxi from the airport, there is also a 100 baht surcharge that gets added onto your fare.
Looking for a unique Thai experience to start off your holiday? Tuk tuks are a popular method of transportation for visitors to Thailand. Tuk tuks are not very big, so taking one from the airport may not be possible if you have several pieces of luggage. Due to the popularity of tuk tuks, they are often more expensive to take than taxis. Phuket has set maximum rates for tuk tuks to avoid tourists being overcharged. Maximum rates from the airport include 1000 baht to Kata and Karon, 800 baht to Patong, and 550 to Phuket Town. While these are the maximum fares, tuk tuk drivers will expect you to negotiate down the price, and you can often get a tuk tuk ride for about the same cost as a taxi.,/p>