28 Best Things To Do in Phuket
Phuket has transformed from the sleepy hidden paradise of the South East to a vivacious city that doesn’t sleep over the past decade. Whether you are a beach bum or an adventure junkie; whether your idea of a holiday is party hopping or some S&S (spa and shopping!) – Phuket caters to every travellers’ unique tastes in a way that will make you come back for more.
Here’s a list of experiences for you to enjoy Phuket in your own special way!
Surrounded by beaches and the gorgeous sea, Phuket provides the perfect opportunities for thrill seekers to get their fix. Whether you have dreamed about exploring the sea or flipping in the air above it – Phuket provides something for everyone.
1. Scuba Diving And Snorkeling
Whether you know how to swim or not, you can experience the incredible underwater world full of corals and sea creatures by diving into the gorgeous aquamarine waters that surround Phuket. There are many diving sites and operators in the city with the islands around Phuket also offering a variety of courses for first timers and advanced divers.
Some operators offer up an opportunity to snorkel along with a full day tour of one of the islands surrounding Phuket. Diving courses are available for beginners and certified divers both.
2. Canoeing / Kayaking
If boating on the tranquil waters of the Andaman Sea sound appealing to you, then you must take one of the many available day tours from Phuket to its surrounding islands. Most of the tour companies will offer you the equipment and expertise to paddle in the open waters amongst stunning natural landscapes.
3. Jet Skies, Parasailing And More Water Sports
A beach holiday is incomplete without falling off a banana boat or speeding off into the open water on a jet ski. There are thousands of vendors on the beaches in Phuket and the islands around it that offer every imaginable water sport.
4. Kite Surfing
With gentle winds and shallow waters, Phuket provides the perfect setting for those who either want to try or enjoy the extreme adventure sport of kite-surfing. The location of the beach where you can perform this acrobatic activity over the sea depends on the season: December – March in Chalong Bay, April – November in Nai Yang Beach.
5. White Water Rafting And Zip Lining
If you enjoy battling the thrashing river or being suspended from a wire in the middle of the jungle, then Phuket offers the perfect backdrop to make your heart race. The untouched beauty of Ton Pariwat Wildlife Sanctuary adds to the charm of the adventure of a lifetime.
6. Bungee Jumping
Jumping from 50 meters or more with a rope tied to your ankle sounds fun? Then bungee jumping is for you! If you fancy a jump — either as a first timer or an experienced jumper — Phuket offers up a beautiful spot for you.
Phuket is the entry point to many Thai tropical islands and bays; some located just about five minutes away by speedboat. There are many ferry, speedboat and private charter services and tours that take visitors to experience the awe-inspiring views that surround Phuket.
7. Phi Phi
Often referred to as the crown jewel among the islands of Thailand, the Phi Phi islands find themselves on bucket lists all over the world. Made up of six magnificent islands they offer a range of activities from snorkeling to some truly exotic local cuisine.
Update on Maya Bay restrictions: Please note Thai National park authorities have prohibited boats from dropping anchors or alighting their passengers within Maya Bay indefinitely, to assist with environmental regeneration
8. Phang Nga Bay
Located between Phuket and Krabi, Phang Nga Bay is known for its gravity defying limestone outcrops, breathtaking lakes, untouched beaches and caves. If you have opted for a tour, it most likely will take you to Khao Ping Gan (Leaning Rock), popularly referred to as the James Bond Island, after getting featured in one of the movies.
9. Racha (or Raya) Island
A 30-minute speedboat ride away from Phuket, Racha Island has pristine blue waters and white sand beaches. It provides the perfect getaway from Phuket and is a popular destination for watersports and snorkeling!
Thailand has a rich history that is prominently and proudly displayed and shared with visitors. The only way to truly experience the country is to immerse yourself in the colorful traditions that Thailand unique.
10. Theater, Shows, And Musicals
Phuket has a host of productions – some that invite visitors to submerge themselves in the Thai history and culture, while some promote what Thailand has become to be known for – lady boys! Depending on your preferences, it is definitely worth experiencing a night of music, dancing and glorious costumes on your holiday!
11. Museums And Art Galleries
If you are an art junkie or want to learn about the history of Thai mining and culture, or (and most likely) it’s raining and you can’t visit the beach – Phuket has got some interesting options for you to spend a pleasant afternoon. Whether you want to invest in some art or enhance your knowledge, it is definitely worth it to get out of the sun for a few hours and head to one of the centrally located galleries and museums.
12. Thai Cooking Class
A trip to a foreign country is incomplete if you do not experience the local cuisine. For those of you who enjoy working in the kitchen, there is simply no better way to remember your travels than learning how to make the local foods. There are a number of professional chefs in Phuket who have opened up their kitchens to teach their craft in recent years.
13. Muay Thai
There is no better way to learn or even polish your Thai boxing or Muay Thai moves than in its place of birth. Phuket is swarming with gyms providing everything from day boot camps and pay as you go classes to customized training programs for visitors who are on the lookout to get fit.
Phuket has plenty to see beyond the beaches and the waters. From giant statues to expansive forests, the sights that you experience around Phuket are sure to let you awe struck.
14. Nature and Wildlife
If you enjoy interacting with animals and learning about their origins, then Phuket has some great zoos and sanctuaries for you to experience. From cobra farms to tiger kingdoms, Phuket provides a unique way of interacting with nature.
15. National Parks
Phuket is covered in acres of untouched forestland that provide the perfect trails for visitors who love hiking. What’s more visitors can cool off by jumping into one of the hidden waterfalls in the parks. Visiting a national park is the ideal offbeat family outing for visitors in Phuket.
With over 30 beaches boasting perfect white sands, Phuket is one of the most popular destinations for beach seekers around the world. Whether you prefer a beach with lots of activity like the famous Patong beach or a quieter spot – Phuket has something for everyone.
Phuket city is home to serene temples and magnificent monuments that are sure to stun visitors. Spending a few hours exploring the city will definitely make you feel more connected with and enhance your Phuket experience.
A holiday is incomplete for some without purchasing one souvenir (or many!) to remember your trip by. While you are at Phuket you can experience the wonders of street shopping (in the middle of the night) or simply go to a mall – and of course wrap up your day with a famous Thai massage after all that work.
Thai massages are extremely popular around the world and whether you are a massage person or not, if you are in Thailand you simply must indulge in a massage at least once (it is quite addictive!). Massages are offered at literally every nook and corner of Phuket – whether you are at the beach or walking down the street.
19. Street Shopping
Night and weekends markets are unique to Thailand and are essential to visit if you want to get the feel of the local culture and products. They are a fun, colorful and can often be messy and overwhelming, but they offer a glimpse into the life of Thai locals like few other experiences can.
20. High Street
With hordes of international tourists making their way to Phuket every year, the international brands have followed suit. Phuket is home to many malls and super markets where visitors can shop for international and local boutique wear and produce.
Aromatic curries and sticky mango rice – is your mouth watering already? Thai food is extremely popular all over the world. However, the authentic flavors and aromas you get to experience in Thailand are incomparable to anywhere else in the world. Whether you are a fan of oriental food or not, you simply must give in and pick up and satay stick!
21. Street food
Thailand is known for its variety of seafood and, if you love Thai food, there is no better way to get authentic food than sampling the wares of one of many street vendors around the city. Most of these vendors have spent years perfecting one dish, so be rest assured you are getting the best version of the local dish.
22. Fine Dining
If you want to treat yourself to an exquisite dining experience, Phuket has many local and international chefs who have curated the perfect menu for you. Perfect for a romantic date night, many of these restaurants boost outdoor seating with beach views adding to the charm of your dinner.
23. Unique restaurants
If you enjoy trying places off the beaten track, then Phuket offers up some hidden gems – quite literally. Located a bit away from the city, there are a few secluded restaurants that challenge you to experience Thai food that are a delicacy to even some locals.
24. Late Night Clubs
If you are looking to dance to night away, Phuket has an ever-expanding collection of clubs and bars that are sure to tickle your fancy. Patong and Soi Bangla are ideal venues for those who enjoy club hopping and want to experience the colorful Thai nightlife.
25. Beach Bars
With its abundance of natural beauty it is no surprise that bars on the beach is the latest trend in Phuket – ranging from sophisticated clubs that will remind you of Ibiza to good old shacks. These bars boast spectacular views and the perfect for those looking to sip cocktails as the sun sets and party the night away.
26. Sports Bars
If a bar experience for you is incomplete without a TV showing some sporting event, a pool table and of course, lots of beer – then there are some havens in Phuket that perfectly emulate this “western pub” culture.
27. Cocktail Making Class
Phuket is all about the beaches. But if you are visiting Thailand in the winter (and it’s too cold to visit the beach!) or want to experience something unexpected in the tropical country – how does learning how to make cocktails in rum distillery sounds good right? Not a bad way to spend a few hours – bonus, you will be surrounded by magnificent environs of sugarcane farms and the bay!
28. Yachting/ Sailing
Ever dreamed of being the captain of your own ship? Phuket offers you the chance to gain some practical (and theory) experience to make your dream a reality. The cherry on top is the fact that perfect white sand beaches and turquoise waters will surround you on your journey to the open seas will surround visitors – talk about motivation!
Phuket is a vibrant city with something for everyone. The list above doesn’t begin to do justice the length and breadth of the experiences the city provides. Whether you spend a few days or a few weeks there, you are sure to feel as though you have not had enough. And will find yourself planning your next visit!