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When you hear someone say Thailand the first things that come to mind is the famous tropical Phuket. Phuket is the largest island in Thailand which you can get to from the mainland by crossing over a bridge. Over the years Phuket has developed into a city and become Thailand’s main tourism hub. Phuket is famous for its beaches, surrounding islands, markets and nightlife. Here is our Travel guide for Phuket Thailand:

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Things to do in Phuket Thailand

1. Soak Up the Sun At Freedom Beach

Freedom beach is a 300-meter long strip of white soft sand and clear blue water. The beach is in a beautiful bay that is surrounded by rocky cliffs covered in lush jungles. There are no water sports, loud music and massive crowds which is perfect for relaxing.

It’s challenging to get to Freedom beach, but it’s worth trying to make your way there. If you aren’t up to the demanding walk it takes to get to this beach the only other way you can get there is by taking a longtail boat from Patong beach.

It will take only 10 minutes and cost around 1,100 to 1,500 baht for a roundtrip.

Freedom beach is a beautiful beach in Phuket for swimming

Also Read: 5 Wonderful Things to do in Hua Hin, Thailand

2. Experience Spirituality at The Phuket Big Buddha

With the majority of Thai people being Buddhist, there are many temples and statues to see but this one is by far the most impressive. Standing 45 meters high and made out of marble, this incredible big buddha is a must-visit.

It’s located in Nakkerd Hills which lies between Chalong and Kata. Once you climb up the hill, you will also have a beautiful panoramic view of Phuket island.

Close up to the Phuket Big Buddha itself, the atmosphere is very peaceful. Next to it, is a smaller Buddha statue of a gold colour, however, it’s made of 20 tonnes of brass.

Since Phuket Big Buddha is a religious site, it’s disrespectful to come here in anything that is see-through or doesn’t cover the shoulders and knees. Also, try to avoid T-shirts with offensive texts or images.

You can visit Phuket big buddha from 06:00 to 19:00.

Big buddha in Phuket surrounded by beautiful palm trees

Also Read: Top 8 Best Things to do in Krabi, Thailand

3. Have a Fun Night Out at Bangla Road.

Bangla Road is the most popular street in Phuket and comes to life after sunset. Its close to Patong Beach and has many bars, pubs, restaurants, clubs and markets. It’s the perfect place for a night out, however, it can get extremely crowded.

During the day Bangla road has some delicious places to eat and some typical Thailand markets and it’s the perfect place for singles, couples and families. However, after sunset Bangla road is not very family-friendly.

Also Read: 11 Things to do in Bangkok, Thailand

4. Learn to Cook Like a Pro by Taking a Cooking Class.

Thai food is delicious. When it comes to Thai food there is no better place to learn how to cook it than in the land of smiles.

There are so many different cooking classes available in Thailand. The best will be to look around a bit and then find a cooking class with the dishes that you would like to learn how to cook and a cooking class in your price range.

People taking a thai cooking class in phuket
Photo from https://www.phuket101.net/phuket-best-thai-cooking-classes/

Click here to view some of the cooking classes available in Phuket Thailand.

5. Explore Phuket’s Islands by Taking a 1-day Boat Tour.

The best way to explore all of the islands around Phuket is by taking a one-day boat tour. Your tour package will depend on the company that you decide to do your tour with, however most of the time these kinds of tours work similarly.

These tours include pick up and drop off at your hotel. Snorkelling equipment, light breakfast, coffee and tea, lunch and fruit will be provided. The price of the tour will depend on the places you want to visit and the company that you use.

This is a must when you are in Phuket. It’s one of the best ways to see the beautiful attractions around Phuket.

Book a Phi Phi Island, Maya bay, Khai island and Bamboo Island Day Trip from Phuket here.

Also Read: 7 Things to do on Koh Tao, Thailand: Unique Island Itinerary

6. Watch a Muay Thai Boxing Match

Muay Thai is also known as “Thai boxing”. This is a form of martial art and combat sport that uses techniques such as stand-up striking and clinching.

Muay Thai is a fight that uses a combination of fists, elbows, knees and shins. You can experience these boxing matches all over Thailand but Phuket and Bangkok are the most popular places for tourists to watch these matches.

You can also visit a Muay Thai boxing gym and learn how to do some Muay Thai.

watch a Muay Thai kickboxing fight

7. Phuket Elephant sanctuary

Phuket Elephant Sanctuary offers a home to sick, old and injured elephants that are unwanted. This sanctuary borders the Khao Phra Thaeo National Park and is 30 acres of lush tropical jungle.

Elephants come here to be rehabilitated and eventually live their best lives like they are meant to. Here they can roam around freely.

It’s important to ensure that these sanctuaries operate ethically. Riding on elephants is damaging to their backs and it should be avoided, please.

As far as we know Phuket Elephant Sanctuary is ethical but if you observe that they aren’t please report them.

Click here to read more about the Phuket elephant sanctuary.

Please say no to elephant rides.

8. Phuket Old Town

If you are looking to do something more traditional and less touristy, head over to Phuket’s Old Town.

Once here, you will find a laid-back atmosphere full of character. The buildings are a bright colour and have a beautiful colonial style to them.

This scenic town also has a walking street where you can try traditional Thai cuisine. You can also shop for souvenirs, gifts and authentic handicrafts.

Book a half-day trip to Phuket town here.

Also Read: Travel Tips for First Time Travelers

9. Wat Chalong

Wat Chalong is an iconic Buddhist temple in Phuket Chalong Bay. For many years, the Thai locals have used this temple for praying almost every day while tourists come here to learn more about the Buddhist religion.

If you want to experience the Thai religion and culture then this is the place for you.

Must-try dishes in Phuket, Thailand

This travel guide for Phuket won’t be complete without some of the best dishes in Thailand.

1. Mango and sticky rice

Mango and sticky rice are known as Khao Neow Mamuang to the locals. This is one of the most popular Thai desserts among tourists visiting Thailand.

This is a very basic dessert to make but delicious. The main ingredients are up of sticky rice, mango, coconut milk, sugar, salt and yellow mung beans. Mango and Sticky rice is a must-try when you are in Thailand.

Delicious mango and sticky rice with mango and passion fruit ice cream

2. Tom Yum Goong (Spicy Shrimp Soup)

Tom Yum is a sour and spicy shrimp soup and the best way to describe this dish is that it’s earthy.

The soup contains a lot of different herbs as well as vegetables that are perfectly selected to complement each other. You can enjoy this soup by itself or eat it with rice if you prefer.

Tom yum goong is a spicy soup that is loved in Thailand
Photo from https://www.squaremeal.co.uk/restaurants/thai-square-south-kensington_437

3. Som Tam (Spicy Green Papaya Salad)

Som Tam is a favourite here in Thailand. This is the perfect side dish for almost any meal here. Som Tam means green papaya salad since the main ingredient is shredded unripe papaya.

Some of the other ingredients also include palm sugar, roasted peanuts, garlic, chilli, lime and tomatoes. There are many different varieties of Som Tam. Some include fermented fish sauce and pickled crab, others include eggplant, bamboo shoot and even rice noodles. However, the most basic one is our favourite.

Som Tam is a green papaya salad perfect for a hot day in Thailand
Photo from https://www.swapnascuisine.com/2011/05/green-papaya-salad-kappalanga-omakka.html

4. Kai Med Ma Muang (Chicken with Cashew Nuts)

Another must-try dish in Phuket is Stir-fry Chicken with cashew nuts. This is exactly what the name says, Chicken, stir-fried vegetables and the star ingredient is cashew nuts. It’s normally cooked in a sweet or sour sauce. Rica is a good side dish for this meal.

stir fry chicken with cashew nuts dish in Thailand
Photo from https://www.leisurecooker.co.uk/inspiration/food/recipes/chicken-and-cashew-nut-stir-fry

5. Massaman curry

Massaman curry is a fusion of Thai curry and Indian-style curry. Its most commonly made with red-style curry paste (Thai influence) and dry whole spices like cumin, coriander, cinnamon, and nutmeg (Indian influence). Another essential ingredient is roasted peanuts. Vegans and non-vegans can enjoy this curry.

Massaman curry is a thai and indian influenced curry in Thailand. It's made of chicken, potato, cinnamon and peanuts
Photo from https://www.favfamilyrecipes.com/chicken-massaman-curry/

For more amazing things to do in Thailand Purchase our Thailand Travel planner today. It’s an amazing Thailand Travel Guide to Phuket, Krabi, Pattaya, Chiang Mai and Bangkok.

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Let us know if the comments below which of the things in our Travel guide for Phuket Thailand you would like to do when you travel to Phuket ☺

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