Located in the Andaman Sea, the island of Phuket in Thailand was one of the earliest tourist developments in South-East Asia. Though most people come for the beaches, Phuket boasts amazing snorkelling, windsurfing and trekking for the adventurous types. Hills dominate this tropical island and the views from the top shouldn't be missed.Find Cruises Sailing to This Port
Haad Nai Yang National Park is located on the north-west side of the island and is 35 sq. miles (90 sq. km) of protected tropical paradise. There are two reasons to make the trip out to this lush park. First, you'll find Phuket's largest coral reef in shallow water, just 140 m (460 ft) from the shore. And second, if you're visiting between November and February, keep an eye out for the giant leatherback turtles that come to nest every year – it's an amazing sight.
If you're looking for a wild way to see Phuket, try a rainforest trekking journey through the Khao Phra Taew National Park. Phuket Nature Tour has daily hiking tours (2 ¼ miles) through lush jungles and past crystal clear waterfalls. This half-day excursion includes transport, English-speaking jungle guides and drinks.
Ever ridden an elephant? Well, the Siam Safari Nature Tour can give you the opportunity of a lifetime. They also have tours that include SUVs (Sport Utility Vehicles) and river rafts. It's a unique and adrenaline packed half day eco-adventure with elephant rides through the jungle, and SUV tours where you may spot some local wildlife and an exciting trip down the Chalong Bay on a raft.
Because the island of Phuket is only a little over an hour's drive from north to south, you have a wide variety of dining and entertainment options. The beach areas in the west are packed with small shop-front eateries and Patong features something for every palate – from fast food to coffee houses to designer sushi restaurants.
Phuket-Town – For some fine meals and a taste of local culture, the long ride from the west coast beach areas to Phuket-Town is worth it.
Patong Beach is the place to find all sorts of handicrafts and souvenirs. Shopping here you'll find an assortment of leather shops, jewellers and ready-to-wear clothing boutiques. Everything here is cheaper compared to the prices in the West, so it's the perfect place to find that special souvenir for your friends and family.
Thai currency is the baht. There are three coins of 1, 5 and 10 baht and six banknotes of 10, 20, 50, 100, 500 and 1,000 baht. You can exchange all monies as well as traveller's cheques at the local banks. Most major credit cards are welcome at major shops and hotels. There are also cash machines on the island.
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Learn more about this port city with these tourist information guides.