Bucket List Getaway:  Phuket, Thailand

Bucket List Getaway: Phuket, Thailand

Within the serene and enchanting country of Thailand is home to one of its most idyllic regions and largest island, Phuket (pronounced poo ket or poo get) which welcomes the jet-set with open arms and warm hospitality in hopes that you will return again or perhaps consider as a second home.  With 222 square miles, Phuket is recognized as Thailand’s largest island yet second smallest providence, anchored by an explosive re-emerging tourist economy.

Phuket is situated in the Andamen Sea and is quite mountainous with not one river in the region, but instead nine creeks and brooks located throughout the terrain.   The climate is pretty consistent throughout the year with an average high of 90° Fahrenheit and an average low of 70° Fahrenheit.  The region experiences both a dry season (December through March) and a wet season (April through November). 

Phuket has successfully managed to recover from the devastating Tsunami of 2004, as businesses have     re-built and re-opened with no end in sight as other resort and boutique brands come seeking their fortune among the pristine, sandy white beaches.

Getting There and Around

Traveling by air, visitors will touch down in the busy Phuket International Airport (HKT)https://www.airportthai.co.th/en/  located about 20 miles from the heart of Phuket, which services both commercial international and domestic flights, as well as charter jet flights.  

After departing the air terminal, for the budget-conscious, travel consultants advise metered taxis, airport shuttles, or minibuses to journey to selected accommodations and then the use of mini vans (called tuk-tuks), sedan-style taxis or even rickshaws to move about region.  Yet, there are several companies that offer private luxury car/limousine/van service allowing discerning travelers to reserve an all-inclusive package to take care of travel needs to and from the airport and serve as a personal concierge throughout the stay.  Although the following had secure websites, it is highly suggested to complete your due diligence:

·  Blacklane Your limousine service in Phuket | Blacklane·                                                                                               –  Easy Day Phuket https://www.easydayphuket.com/phuket-transfers/phuket-limousine-service/.                       ·  Phuket Limo Private transfers between Phuket airport (HKT) and Phuket’s and Khao Lak’s beautiful beaches and resorts.

Luxury Accommodations – Forbes 2019 Best of List The Best Hotels in Phuket

·         The Naka http://www.thenakaphuket.com/

·         Kameela https://www.keemala.com/

·         The Slate https://www.theslatephuket.com/

·         Banyan Tree Phuket Welcome to Banyan Tree Phuket

·         Anantara Mai Khao Phuket Villas Mai Khao Phuket

·         Amanpuri Amanpuri – Luxury Resort & Hotel in Phuket, Thailand – Aman

And I want to add one more to the list…

·         Aleenta Phuket Resort and Spa Aleenta Phuket Resort & Spa – Luxury Beach Resort in Phang Nga, Phuket

The Unpacking is Done…..

After getting settled, perhaps stopping by the ATM or money exchange for Bhat currency, it’s time to explore why Phuket has been honored with numerous travel and destination awards:

·         Wining, Dining, and Entertainment

Phuket stands out with incredible diversity with regards to cuisine.  The spectrum of delicacies covers authentic Thai food (found in the local neighborhoods), to the freshest, tastiest seafood.  Michelin has recognized several local restaurants, including awarding a 1 Star to PRU Restaurant PRU Restaurant, while given several other restaurants the honor of BIBS and Plates Awards (link to Phucket101.netPhuket Michelin Guide List of Restaurants for the entire Michelin list).  In addition, Lonely Planet or Phucket.101 offers a hefty list of bars, cafes, clubs that will keep you entertained until the wee hours of the morning.  Best drinking & nightlife in Phuket in Phuket

Nightlife in Phuket Archives | Phuket 101

·         Spend a day at Phi Phi Islands –

 Consisting of six islands, with Koh Phi Phi Don being the largest and only inhabited island of the group (or perhaps you’ve decided to stay at one of several spectacular high-end hotel properties).   Once arriving by ferry or speedboat, the only way to explore these scenic islands is by walking.

·         Visit James Bond Island by Speedboat  

Yes, the island had a supporting role in the James Bond movie, “The Man with the Golden Gun”.  Certainly, how else would you get there but in a speedboat pretending to be the great British agent chasing the bad guys!  Also, visitors can sightsee the terrain of the island, immerse oneself into the local culture and enjoy water sports.

·         Sightseeing Tours and Attractions

Phuket can keep you quite occupied:  by exploring natural destinations are prime sightseeing spots to numerous beaches, bays, and forests throughout the surrounding islands;  foodies will revel in the diversity of food selections from street food to fine dining such as the famous Blue Elephant https://www.blueelephant.com/phuket/   (which also offers cooking classes);  and shopping as options range from night and weekend markets and shopping malls which carry department store brands.   With regards to attractions, some suggestions may include touring the iconic Big Buddha, visiting an elephant sanctuary, the Chalong Temple (the most visited Buddhist Temple in the Phuket), and reserve seats and dinner at the Phuket Fantasea (a performance involving Thai dancers, acrobats, and elephants).

·         Water Sports  

There is no end to the diversity of water sports offered including swimming (Olympic training pools were built from the growing success of Thailand Olympic Swimming Program), snorkeling (book a tour to see a variety of waters and wildlife), stand-up paddle-boarding, and canoeing.  In addition, being ranked among the top 10 diving places in the world, serious water adventurers can participate in scuba diving (i.e..coral reefs, shipwrecks, etc.), surfing, jet-skiing, white water rafting on the Phang Nga River, sea kayaking and kite surfing.

Even as a traveler with particular high end tastes when determining vacation destinations, Phuket is relatively inexpensive, in comparison to other international spots (yet is the most expensive region in Thailand), which doesn’t take away their commitment to exceptional service and white-glove treatment.  There is certainly a reason over 5 million visitors take the journey annually as a bucket list getaway.   -AJ

Share your thoughts in the comments section below or on Twitter!

Hat Tip to the following sites for contributing content:

https://www.phuket101.net/

https://www.thrillophilia.com/romantic-things-to-do-in-phuket-on-honeymoon

Thank you to the exceptional photos of Phuket, Thailand by the photographers of Pixabay and Unsplash

Koh Phi Phi Island – Maria Michelle –  https://pixabay.com/users/Mariamichelle-165491/?utm_source=link-attribution&utm_medium=referral&utm_campaign=image&utm_content=1451391

Blue Elephant Phuket – Maria Michelle – https://pixabay.com/users/Mariamichelle-165491/?utm_source=link-attribution&utm_medium=referral&utm_campaign=image&utm_content=1578505

Phuket Villa –  Candy96 – candy96 | Pixabay

Buddha – Thomas Tangelder – https://pixabay.com/users/Tivistar-4956590/?utm_source=link-attribution&utm_medium=referral&utm_campaign=image&utm_content=3259504

Old Town – Arut Thongsombut   – https://pixabay.com/users/oakdog-10063647/?utm_source=link-attribution&utm_medium=referral&utm_campaign=image&utm_content=3664498

Macaque (pronounce Ma Kak) – Mark Knowles – https://pixabay.com/users/markknowles1001-165745/?utm_source=link-attribution&utm_medium=referral&utm_campaign=image&utm_content=3490136

Unsplash

James Bond Island – Diego Muñoz Suárez Diego Muñoz Suárez (@diegyms) | Unsplash Photo Community

Maya Bay – Humphrey Muleba https://unsplash.com/@good_citizen?utm_source=unsplash&utm_medium=referral&utm_content=creditCopyText

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