Bit of a shorter post this time as Phuket really was all about relaxing really…but nevertheless lots of great advice lies ahead.
Getting from Krabi to Phuket was quite straight-forward, we paid our hotel again for an air-conditioned minibus there. We got in a very nice minibus to a bus-depot, then were crammed into another one (and when I say crammed I mean it).
The attitude in Asia to public transport, is to cram as many people as possible into a vehicle – no matter what kind (train, bus, boat, songthaew). So forcing 4 people to squash into the back of minibus really was quite a feat. Squish-squashed we were :/.
Half way through the journey we were dropped off at a travel agents (of course – a friend of the driver’s) who tried to get us to book a hotel or tour with them. They were very rude when we told them we were not interested but that’s just the way it goes it seems. These unexpected stops are very annoying but at least allow you to stretch your legs, not be squashed for a few mins and use the WC.
However, afterwards we were dropped off straight to the door of our hotel so that was good. We stayed at a very nice, very clean Italian-run hotel called the Casa E Mare on Kata beach.
We opted for Kata because it had a more chilled scene, like I’ve said previously, we are more bothered about relaxing than partying…you can do that anytime after all so Kata was a good call :).
We had also heard a fair bit of negative comments about the party scene in Phuket. It seems what was once considered to be a Thai paradise (like many other islands) has become overrun with tourists, drugs and nasty-ass nightclubs that ruin the scenery.
We were very close to the beach though, which was small but very nice. The only annoying thing was that all the sun-loungers were patrolled by men demanding 200B for a seat. Insane.
Rather than throwing money away like that, of course we found alternatives. A shaded wooden shack to sit in, hidden sun-loungers at the back of the beach and just a towel on the sand. I think if you’re coming here for a short holiday and aren’t backpacking, paying that money may seem ok, but to us, that was a major rip-off. Really, you should be able to sit anywhere for free – don’t you think? Being a free world and all that?! Indeed.
Kata is small but driven by tourism. There are restaurants, huge hotels, supermarkets selling imported goods – everything to cater for the masses. But as a result of this commercialism there is very little street food on offer (which means having to pay tourist prices for food).
So once again we resorted to living on 7/11 convenience food. We found a few cheaper restaurants and even treated ourselves to western meal or two but the lack of street food was a real shame.
I really recommend forgetting about restaurants and just eating on the street in Thailand. You always get really appetising dishes, they are cooked fresh in front of you and they usually cost no more than £1. It really is the way to go.
In fact, while on the lookout for street food one night we found a real treat…instead of grub we stumbled across an awesome Thai Elvis impersonator! Personally, I don’t think you can get any better than that. And he really was very good!
He seemed to have a performance contract with Asian coffee shop chain Black Canyon Coffee. Their stores are loosely American themed. They have huge food and drink menus – I really recommend the Green Macha Tea Red Bean Frappe – soooo good.
There is a surf culture in Phuket so if that’s your thing, there are lots of surf shops on the beach to rent boards from.
Alongside surfing you can have a go at parasailing and hit the waves on a jetski. Or just go for a swim in the lovely warm waters, like I did.
Overall it’s a great place to relax, have a go at watersports and see a Thai Elvis hehe!
What are your thoughts on Phuket kids? Did you like the party scene?
Love and sunbeams Em xoxo