The Paradise of Phuket
General information
 
 
 
 
Southern of Thailand
Andaman Sea
Phuket Island
Samui Island
Krabi
Phi Phi
Phang Nga
Pha Ngan
Khao Sok
Khao Lak
Tours in Phuket
PK01: Phuket City Tour
PK02: Arund Phuket Tours
PK03: Simon Cabaret (VIP)
PK04: Simon Cabaret (Regular)
PK05: Phuket Fansea (Gold)
PK06: Phuket Fansea (Regular)
PK07: Phuket Fansea + Dinner
PK08: Phuket Fansea + Dinner
PK09: Phang Nga by Coach
PK10: Phang Nga by Cruise
PK11: Phang Nga-Koh Khai
PK12: Coral Island Tour
PK13: Raya Island Tour
PK14: Phi Phi-Koh Khai
PK15: Khainok-Khainui Island
PK16: Phi Phi-Koh Phai Tours
PK17: Phi Phi by Speed Boat
PK18: Phi Phi by Seatrans
PK19: Phi Phi by Big Boat
PK20: Phang Nga Canoeing
 

Kamala Beach, PhuketFamous for its beautiful beaches, excellent offshore dive sites and superb sailing opportunities, Phuket is Thailand ’s and Asia ’s premier holiday resort. The best beaches are on the west coast, facing the Andaman Sea , with fine sands and clear water. Patong and Kata/Karon are the most popular, thanks also to numerous resort hotels, fine restaurants and an extensive nightlife.

The west coast is also home to many dive companies which arrange expeditions to a wide variety of offshore diving areas, including the Surin, Similan and Racha island groups that are rated world-class for their colourful corals, clear waters and myriad sea creatures.

Phuket is also a regional centre for yachting, while the annual King’s Cup Regatta is a top international event. Other activities include sea canoeing amohg the rock formations in Phang-nga Bay and windsurfing.

In the island’s interior, environmentalists can find forests, mountains, waterfalls and a national park. Eco-tour companies take out large groups every day on elephant trekking, hiking, canoeing and visiting places like the Gibbon Rehabilitation Sanctuary.

Phuket TownPhuket town offers good shopping, restaurants, hotels and interesting architecture, with old Thai, Malaysian, Portuguese, and Chinese-influenced buildings an indication of the island’s heritage. Every October, the town’s Chinese temples host the famous Vegetarian Festival, during which worshippers forgo meat and alcohol, and mutilate their bodies with metal spikes as a sign of devotion.

For those who prefer more relaxing pleasures, the island has some of the best spas in Asia , offering superb Thai massage and therapy treatments. While Phuket FantaSea theme park puts on a popular cultural stage show each night.

 
Map of PhuketPhuket island is located in the tropical zone off the west coast of the southern part of Thailand in the Andaman Sea and is connected to Phang-nga province by Sarasin Bridge and Thep Krasattri Bridge. It is 862 km. away from Bangkok by road and one hour and 20 minutes by air.
North:Lies The Pak Prah strait, spanned by two bridges running side-by-side, the older Sarasin Bridge, and the newer Thao Thep Krasatri Bridge.

South:Is the Andaman Sea.

East: Is Phang-nga Bay (In the jurisdiction mainly of Phang-nga Province).

West:Is The Andaman Sea.
Area
Phuket is the largest island of Thailand but the second smallest province in area (the smallest being Samut Songkhram). The main island itself has an area of about 539 sq.km., about the same size as Singapore. The total land area of the province, including 39 small nearby islets, is about 570 sq.km.

Climate
There are only two seasons in a year -- the rainy season from May to October and the hot season from November to April. September and October are the wettest months. The best period is from November through February. But whatever the season, there is always a breeze blowing. The average temperatures range between 23C and 33C.

Economy
Since the early 1980's the tourist business has been Phuket's chief source of income. Hotels, restaurants, tour companies, and souvenir shops are much in evidence on the west coast. However, while once all-importance tin mining has ceased, tourism is by no means the island's only activity. Agriculture remains important to a large number of people, and covers by far the most part of the island. Principal crops are rubber, coconuts, cashews, and pineapples.

Prawn farming has largly taken over the east and south coasts. Pearl farming is also important. Phuket's fishing port is at all time filled, and processing of marine products, mainly fish, makes a significant contribution to the economy. With so many healthy industries supplying income, construction has become a major factor in employment. This range from massive public works projects, large office buildings and hotels, and housing estates with hundreds of units, down to single family homes, apartments and additions.

Geography
Phuket is the same size as Singapore Island. About 70 percent of Phuket is forested hills. Mai Tha Sip Song is the highest peak on the island, 529 meters above sea level. Low plains form the rest of the area, mainly in the center and south. There are three canals, Khlong Bang Yai, Tha Jin, Khlong Tha Rua, and Khlong Bang Rong, which run through the island.

Phuket is the largest island in the country, but the smallest province in the South. It is located between 7*45' and 8*15' north latitude, and from 98*15' to 98*40' west longitude on the map.

Surrounded by 32 smaller islands, Phuket occupies 543 square kilometers. The overall length from north to south is 47.8 kms and 21.3 kms from west to east. Phuket connects to the mainland by two bridges, the Sarasin Bridge and Thoa Thep Krasatri Bridge (600 meter, across Pak Phra Channel, bridging Chatchai Landing of Phuket and Tha Nun Landing of Phangnga). To the south and west Phuket adjoins the Andaman Sea, and the Krabi Sea to the East.

Phuket's average temperature is around 28.0 to 29.3 degrees Celsius. The lowest average is around 21.8 to 22.7 degrees Celsius and the highest is 35.7 degrees Celsius (in 1998).

Topography
70% of the area are mountains stretching from north to south, while the other 30% are plains, mainly in the central and and eastern parts of the island.
There is no important river but a total of 9 brooks and creeks. The west coast are stretches of white sandy beaches which are major tourist developments.
Population

The island’s official population as of December 1998 was 231,206. Most live in Muang district.

Thirty percent of the island’s population are Chinese descendants. But they differ from those in Bangkok because they came from the Hokkien region of China, who migrated to Phuket during the boom of the tin mining industry in the 17th – 18th century. Today, the Chinese are responsible for much of the trade and commerce in the city. They also represent the strongest culture of Phuket town.

Equal to the Chinese descendants is the Thai Muslim community which also comprises 30 per cent of the island’s population. Muslims living in southern Thailand are of Malaysian extraction and arrived at an early date. There is also a small number of sea gypsies living in a village in Ko Sirey. By far, sea gypsies are the most interesting original inhabitants of Phuket island but the intrusion of tourists is impinging on their lifestyle.

With the tourism boom in Phuket during the last decade, Phuket has attracted people from other regions to work in the tourism industry, which is now the largest source of income. So it’s easy for tourists to spot the local people who can communicate in English.

Administration & Government
The only island province of the country, Phuket is divided into 3 administrative units called amphoe (county) -- Amphoe Muang, Thalang and Kathu.

The administration in Phuket is divided into three districts, Thalang in the north, Kathu in the west, and Muang in the south. The cities of Phuket and Patong have their own city governments, with elected city councils, the leading members of which serve as mayor. There are also elected provincial, district, and sub-district, or Tambon councils. The local constabulary is part of the Interior Ministry.

Phuket is the richest province in the south and ranked number six in Thailand, thanks to the tourism industry. Since the early 1980's, tourism has been Phuket's chief source of income. In 1997, Phuket's income per capita was around 156,675 baht. Hotels, resorts, restaurants, tour agencies, entertainment businesses and souvenir shops have been springing up like mushrooms along the west coast. In the past, Phuket's wealth was mainly built on tin mining but when tin demand in world markets declined, tourism took over as a money machine for the island. Agriculture ranks as the second source of income. Rubber, coconut, cashew, and pineapple plantations are an important part of the economy. Aquatic animal farming such as prawn and pearl farming are occupations that people living in Phuket rely on.

Language
Central Thai is the official language and used in business and tourism areas. People in general use southern Thai dialect, which sounds more succinct and is spoken faster than the central Thai. English is understood in tourist areas.
Products
The most important products of Phuket are marine products, latex, rubber, fuel oil and frozen fish.