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Phuket, Thailand

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The island of Phuket has long been misunderstood. Firstly, the ‘h’ is silent. Ahem. And secondly, Phuket doesn’t feel like an island at all. It’s so huge (the biggest in Thailand) that you rarely get the sense that you’re surrounded by water, which is probably the reason why the ‘Ko’ (meaning ‘island’) was dropped from its name. Dubbed the ‘pearl of the Andaman’ by marketing execs, this is Thailand’s original flavour of tailor-made fun in the sun.  ---LONELY PLANET

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We visited Phuket on the second week of November 2011. Just in time for the Loi Krathong Festival.
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I have to admit, the town is one busy place. It seems like everybody has their business to attend to. Just look at the traffic.
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Traffic jam. This was around late in the evening. 
               
We arrived early in the afternoon via Air Asia. It was our first with them. The whole flight was a pleasant experience. A good sign of things to come, I spotted a rainbow during the flight. Cool!


Upon arrival from the airport, we rented a taxi to take us to our Hotel. From there we decided to explore the Patong beach area. We used the hotel's shuttle service then off we go to the beach.

I like Patong beach for the shore's adequate proximity from buildings and establishments. Lots of space to roam, lounge and relax. It won't matter if the tide is high.
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I didn't swim because the water looks murky. I'm not sure if it was the time of the year when, sea water goes through a phase which gave it a brownish color. I was expecting clear blue water, white sand etc. We should've visited Krabi instead (guess my research wasn't good enough). 

There's lots of beach activities available like para-sailing, jet skiing etc. I'm not sure about the prices and whether it's negotiable. 
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Nevertheless, we enjoyed the place with a romantic stroll.
The couple in this picture, NOT us.

There are markets, food stalls, tour agencies, tailoring shops, spas, hotels etc. near the beach. There are lots of choice for recreation and eating. It's just a matter of choice. Prices varies according to beach proximity (my personal opinion). Prices are higher if establishments are near the beach.
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For shopping and mid to up-scale dining, Jungceylon mall is a short distance walk from Bangla road. Fast food joints (KFC, Burger King), Starbucks, bistros, cafes and fancy restaurants they have it. ATM machines are available inside as well.
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Good to Know Info:

  1. Many locals can speak English. Its easy to communicate especially when asking for directions.
  2. The tuk-tuk usually costs 200 Baht per tuk-tuk NOT per person. If you can get it lower than 200 Baht, well good for you.
  3. Shopping in Phuket is expensive. This is in comparison with what Bangkok shopping has to offer.
  4. Money changers are all-over the place. Not all establishments accepts credit cards. Better to have cash at all times.

This is Day 1 of Phuket. Will post Day 2 in a while.


XOXO

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