Is Phuket worth visiting? – 12 reasons to visit Phuket

Many say it is a stunning destination but is Phuket worth visiting? We share 12 reasons to visit Phuket; a popular, busy, and fun island in the south of Thailand.

Phuket is one of the most captivating jewels in Thailand. With its stunning beaches, vibrant nightlife, and mouthwatering cuisine, Phuket is an absolute paradise for travelers seeking a perfect blend of adventure and relaxation. Whether you’re a solo traveler, an adventure enthusiast, or a family in search of unforgettable experiences, Phuket has something spectacular for you! Plus, there are quick, affordable travel options from Bangkok to Phuket, making a visit it here a great part of your Thailand Itinerary.

Is Phuket worth visiting?

Bangkok to Phuket

The Locals

Phuket has always greeted guests with open arms and a friendly smile. Meeting them adds an authentic touch to your trip, immersing you in their daily lives and traditions. By engaging with the locals, you’ll gain cultural awareness, genuine friendships, and a deeper appreciation for Phuket’s rich heritage. It’s the secret to unlocking a truly remarkable travel experience!

Kid Friendly

Phuket is the perfect destination for families seeking adventure and a whole lot of fun! The locals in Phuket are incredibly warm and friendly, making you and your family feel right at home. Plus, the countless activities will surely keep your kids entertained while they learn about culture, history, and the environment. There are also a lot of theme parks, waterparks, and animal sanctuaries for children to interact with, like The Upside Down House, Flying Hanuman, Splash Jungle, Phuket Aquarium, and Phuket Fantasea.

With all these family-friendly places to explore, Phuket promises to be an unforgettable experience for both kids and parents. 

Phuket Old Town

The Price

While Phuket is more expensive than other parts of Thailand, it still provides good value for money. Yes, even if you’re on a budget, there are plenty of affordable accommodation options, delicious local food restaurants, and activities that won’t break the bank. There are also local malls where you can buy souvenirs, clothing, and accessories. Just keep in mind that bargaining and price comparison will help you find a good offer. 

Bangkok to Phuket

The Beaches

As one of the most beautiful places to visit in Thailand, another reason to visit Phuket is its lively and peaceful beaches. Whether you’re in the mood for some lively beach vibes or a serene and tranquil escape, you’ll find exactly what you’re looking for. Most of the beaches here provide water sports activities such as diving, snorkeling, and sailing, or you may simply swim and relax on an island of your choice. 

One of Phuket’s famous beaches is Karon Beach. This beach is a true stunner! Its crystal-clear waters, powdery white sand, and laid-back atmosphere make it a must-visit destination. And if you’re a fan of diving and snorkeling, you’re in for a treat! Karon Beach offers some incredible opportunities to explore the underwater world and get up close and personal with fascinating marine animals.

Island Hopping

Island hopping is a popular activity in Phuket, allowing you to explore the beautiful islands and beaches. You can join organized group tours, hire a private boat or speedboat, or charter a yacht for a more luxurious experience. These tours typically include hotel transfers, snorkeling or diving equipment, and sometimes meals. You can explore nearby islands like Koh Phi Phi, Koh Yao Yai, and Koh Racha.

is Phuket worth visiting?

The Big Buddha 

Another reason to visit Phuket has to be the Big Buddha. This massive, 45-meter-tall white marble statue stands tall as one of the island’s most iconic landmarks. You can spot its majestic presence from various spots across Phuket, and let me tell you, it’s absolutely breathtaking! 

But it’s not just about its size and striking appearance. The Big Buddha also holds deep cultural and spiritual significance for the locals. It’s considered a sacred monument and offers visitors a unique opportunity to learn more about the beliefs and traditions of the country. There are plenty of things to do in Phuket and the Big Buddha is just one of them, so plan at least 1 week in Phuket to see it all.

The wildlife

Even though Phuket may not be famous for its wildlife, there are still some incredible opportunities for you to connect with nature and encounter the local flora and animals. It’s a hidden gem just waiting to be explored!

So, don’t let the misconception fool you – Phuket has its own share of wildlife wonders waiting to be discovered. From the captivating rainforests of Khao Phra Thaeo National Park to the gentle giants at the Elephant Sanctuary and the enchanting underwater realm at the Phuket Aquarium, you’ll have plenty of opportunities to connect with nature and create unforgettable memories.

Vegetarian food in Thailand

The Food

Phuket’s culinary style is a fusion of Malaysian and Chinese flavors, resulting in a unique and intriguing cuisine. To truly savor the authentic taste of Phuket, head to the vibrant Old Town, where various eateries await. These local gems use fresh, homegrown ingredients to create mouthwatering dishes that will leave you craving for more.

For a truly immersive dining experience, visit the fresh seafood markets, where you can hand-pick your favorite seafood and have it expertly cooked in nearby restaurants. Talk about freshness and flavor that are out of this world!

Pad thai, mango sticky rice, kuay tiew (noodle soup), khao phad (fried rice), and gai pad med ma muang (stir-fried chicken with cashew nuts) are also some of the must-try delicacies in Phuket.

The Massages

Phuket has some of the most interesting spa facilities in the country, offering a wide range of rejuvenating and relaxing experiences. Whether you’re a couple seeking relaxation or a solo traveler in need of some self-care, Phuket’s spas and wellness centers have you covered. 

The best part? You don’t have to break the bank to indulge in these blissful experiences. Phuket caters to all budgets, with options ranging from affordable beachside massages to elegant and luxurious spa sessions. You’ll find massage spas scattered across every street corner, ensuring that self-care and relaxation are easily accessible throughout your island adventure. Thai massages are a must-try, especially if you’re suffering from aches, pains, or tension.

What to do in Phuket

The Night Markets

Phuket’s night market offers a unique combination of culinary delights, shopping options, cultural immersion, and a vibrant atmosphere all in one place. It’s an experience that shouldn’t be missed during your visit to this enchanting island. It is also an opportunity to interact with the local people, try authentic flavors, and bring home memories and souvenirs from your vacation.  Night markets are an important part of Thai culture and are indeed a must-visit!

The Phang Nga Bay

Phang Nga Bay’s breathtaking beauty, unique karst formations, and peaceful ambiance make it a must-see for nature lovers and those seeking an escape into natural beauty. It provides a variety of activities and experiences that allow guests to admire the natural wonders of the bay while making unforgettable memories.

Phuket hotel on the beach

The Nightlife

Phuket is well-known for its vibrant and diverse nightlife. When the sun goes down, Phuket comes alive with a nightlife that will have you dancing, laughing, and creating memories to last a lifetime. No matter what kind of nightlife experience you’re after, Phuket has got you covered. From energetic night markets to laid-back beach clubs, from swanky rooftop bars to captivating dinner shows, there’s something for everyone.

Best things to do in Phuket

Things to know before you go to Phuket

Helpful resources:

Travel Essentials

  • Travel Backpack – There’s no need to bring a large bag to Phuket unless you’re hiking across Thailand. The Ultralight Portable Packable Day Pack provides the ideal combination of storage and mobility for carrying daily necessities around Phuket.
  • Travel Wallet – While Phuket is not a dangerous place, it is always a good idea to keep your money and travel documents secure. A travel wallet fits nicely around your neck or in the hotel room safe, making it easy to store and secure your documents and cash.
  • Phuket Guidebook – Phuket is a large island, and a guidebook can help you discover restaurants, cafés, activities, and other things to do.
  • Phuket Map – A reliable map makes it much easier to move around Phuket. There are two alternatives here: either get a local SIM card at Phuket Airport and navigate using Google Maps, or have a Flexi Phuket map in your daypack.

What to pack:

  • T-Shirts, Shorts, and Summer Clothing – Phuket is a hot, humid tropical island. So, it’s important to bring a variety of cotton t-shirts, shorts, summer shorts, and other lightweight clothes for a relaxing experience. We love these fun temple-style pants, perfect for hot weather and they cover your legs so you can still visit temples whilst covering your knees as necessary.
  • Hats and Sunglasses – Even during the wet season, Phuket is hot and sunny. A decent-quality hat will keep your face shaded when visiting the island or sunbathing, and sunglasses will keep your eyes safe during the day – just don’t overspend on sunglasses as they may get ruined between time on the beach, in the sea, and near monkeys!
  • Swimwear – Phuket’s beaches are its most popular attraction, so bring comfortable swimwear. Thailand is a conservative country when it comes to beach attire, so bring a sarong or casual clothes to put over your swimwear when you leave the beach. 

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Bangkok to Krabibangkok to khao yai national park