After 18 years I have finally returned to Thailand, to the island of Phuket. It’s my first visit to this part of Thailand and it has reaffirmed my love of the country and its people. The Thai people are so kind, gentle and humble. I don’t think that there’s another country on earth like it.
This trip has mostly been about spas – and the very best that Phuket has to offer: Banyan Tree Phuket, Amanpuri, Sri panwa and Point Yamu by Como. If you want the bucket and spade brigade, and by that I mean buckets of alcohol, head to the resort of Patong. If that’s not your scene the northern beaches of the West coast are quieter and more refined. We have been at the Laguna complex (Banyan Tree), Pansea Beach (Aman) and on Surin Beach and now the East Coast which is completely different. Cape Panwa is fabulous. It’s a big island and takes a while to get around and as public transport is pretty poor you will rely on taxis and they aren’t that cheap. Get your haggling head on and negotiate a good price and off you go.
Highlights so far:
Phuket Old Town and the weekend market
Lotus flowers in the bath at Amanpuri
Private pool in the spa pavilions at Banyan Tree Phuket
Visiting Big Buddha
Eating at the street markets
Thai massage on the beach at Surin
Feeding and washing elephants at Elephant Hills camp in Kaho Sok National Park
Watching the sunset from Baba Nest at Sri panwa
Art and design at Point Yamu by Como
I wasn’t sure I would like Phuket – but you make it your own. If you want party central, then there’s plenty of that for you. If you want a chilled beach trip, with a few posh spa experiences, then this island is definitely for you too. The upper end luxury resort market is booming with new properties opening all of the time. I have fallen in love with Phuket and am already planning a return to Thailand.