The return of paradise on earth
After dreaming of an imaginary trip for months,
I instantly made a plan to visit Phuket after the announcement of Phuket’s ‘Sandbox’ program – a government pilot program to welcome back domestic and international tourists to this wonderful island.
Phuket is a province you could never bore of because of its cultural and natural attractions, range of enticing food, accommodation to suit every pocket, and attractive facilities, as well as tourism hygiene management. So, just plan your trip, pack your bag, and embrace a happy vacation!
Phuket Old Town – Baba-Nyonya of Siam
The unique culture of Phuket is none other than Peranagan or Baba-Nyonya. Peranagan means “straits-born” which describes the descendants of Chinese immigrants who settled in Penang, Malaka, and Singapore, and married local Malay women during the 15th – 19th centuries.
Peranagan’s identity and culture can easily be seen from the architectural design of Tiem Chu or Chinese shop houses. In the Old Town, you can enjoy strolling around taking photos of well-preserved Sino-European buildings around Soi Rommanee, Phang-nga, Krabi, and Yaowarat Street.
Peranakannitat Museum is where you can explore Peranagan’s history, which displays its way of life, traditions, and food. Don’t miss the local dishes, including laksa and goreng noodles. For Hokkian (native Chinese) food, there is a wide selection to choose from, ranging from Hokkian roll stuffed with jicama, Hokkian fried oysters, and fried noodles, to desserts like aiyu jelly.
Drive around the island; pray to the Big Buddha; enjoy the sunset.
t is safe to drive around Phuket, stopping off for sightseeing and enjoying the famous beaches and landmarks, such as Rawai, Patong, and Promthep Cape. Able to be seen from anywhere in the southern part of Phuket, the Big Buddha is one of the most popular and revered landmarks. The gleaming white marble statue of Buddha is perched high on the top of Nakkerd Hill.
Up there, you can enjoy panoramic seascape views and Phuket Town. Another new, scenic site is Krating Cape. Aside from driving, you must walk through a small forest for a while. Prepare your mind, wear the right shoes, and take enough drinking water. I can guarantee that the breathtaking views of the Andaman Sea and sunset from the Cape will be well worth the effort.
Sail around Phuket
Koh Racha Yai is well-known for its delicate, white sandy beach and suitable for strolling around and swimming. You can walk to Ao Patok and the most beautiful beaches of Ao Siam and Ao Tue.
Koh Mai Ton is a small island, also with a white, sandy beach and crystal clear water. Enjoy relaxing activities, such as walking, swimming, and snorkeling.
Koh Hey is heaven for water sports lovers who enjoy parasailing, scuba diving, snorkeling, jet skiing, and riding a banana boat.
Phuket is ready to welcome tourists. If you are already vaccinated, plan your holiday and go! By relaxing and recharging, you will also play a part in supporting the local economy and communities. Enjoy your trip 🙂
PHUKET’S LOCAL ALL-TIME FAVOURITE RESTAURANT LIST
1) Mee Sapam Grandma Jia – A Local restaurant that has been operating for over 60 years. Steamed crab with curry paste, spring roll, and aiyu jelly are recommended. / FB. @meesapam
2) Mee Ton Pho – A Hokkian noodle shop which has been in business for over 70 years. We recommend Mee Ton Pho noodles, Hokkian fried noodles, and noodles with fish in gravy.
3) O Taw Bangneaw – A food stall with a 2020 Michelin Star award. Its signature dishes are cooked on a charcoal stove. Open from 6.30 pm to 11 pm. / Tel. 091 515 4949
4) Community Food Mall – Around the street corner between Yaowarat Road and Deebuk Road, offering a variety of local foods at affordable prices.
5) Khanom Chin Pa Mai – In business for more than 50 years, Khanom Chin Pa Mai is still a popular breakfast dish for the locals (Khanom Chin means rice noodle). Passed down from generation to generation, the family recipe is worth a try. It offers nine types of curry daily, including chicken, fish and crab, and served with a selection of side dishes. / Tel. 098 165 6641
6) Delico Cafe and Dessert – One of the most chic cafe/dessert that also serves an international menu and Thai classic dishes. Delico started from the inspiration to create a showcase space for their design and furniture business, where clients can try the furnitures as well as sit down for a meal. / FB. @delicophuket
– Phuket ‘Sandbox’ is a state program that allows travel activities to resume under the current coronavirus situation. Only vaccinated Thai and foreign travelers are allowed to enter the island without abiding by a 14-day hotel quarantine period.
– Foreign travelers must submit a negative PCR (virus detection) result no more than 72 hours before arrival, possess health insurance that covers COVID-19 treatment to the cost of at least $US100,000, a confirmed booking at an SHA Plus (Amazing Thailand Safety and Health Administration) hotel for at least 14 days, and the intention to stay in Phuket for at least 14 days before leaving for another province.
– Some attractions may adjust their opening hours, so check before your arrival.
– For trips around the islands, contact your hotel or tour agency for one-day packages.