Phuket is Thailand’s largest Island. The island has many unique towns where travelers visit and stay. Patong, Karon, Kata and Phuket Town are the most popular destinations. This list of things to do in Phuket covers the entire Island rather than one specific destination.
12 Amazing Things To Do In Phuket
Spend A Day At The Beach
The number one reason people go to Phuket is for the beaches, Phuket Island is home to more than 30 unique beaches. From the hustle and bustle of Patong Beach to the unspoiled beauty of Freedom Beach and everything else in between, there is a perfect beach waiting for you on Phuket Island.
Take The Ferry To Phi Phi Don
Believe it or not, Phuket Island is merely a stop to catch the ferry on the way to the Phi Phi Islands for a lot of people. Phi Phi Don is where the main ferry terminal and all of the hotels in the Phi Phi Islands are located.
If you are in Phuket for four days or more, I suggest catching a ferry and spend at least one night on Phi Phi Don. Day trip tours from Phuket are available. I prefer not feeling rushed through everything and being able to plan my own itinerary so I take a ferry. Spending a day or two on Phi Phi Don allows you to explore the Phi Phi islands at your own pace.
Visit Big Buddha
Big Buddha is a 148-foot tall statue of Buddha that sits atop Nakkerd Hill. While constructed of concrete, the statue is covered with marble. It is the most visited attraction on Phuket Island. The view from the top of the hill is amazing. On the grounds, there is an active temple so dress in appropriate temple attire. The Chalong Temple is nearby so you might consider combining both into the same itinerary.
Visit The Chalong Temple
The Chalong temple, Wat Chalong, is the largest and most important Temple on Phuket Island. The temple was built to honor the two monks, Luang Pho Chaem and Luang Pho Chuang, who led the fight against the Chinese rebellion. The temple grounds are free to enter. Wat Chalong is close to the Big Buddha. Since both attractions require you to wear temple attire, it makes sense to tour both on the same outing.
Spend A Day Shopping At The Jungceylon Mall
The Jungceylon Shopping Mall is located in the heart of Patong making it the most frequented mall in Phuket. The mall is lined with both traditional storefronts and market stalls along the walkways. Along with the stores, there are numerous dining options, a cineplex and a bowling ally. The mall is so large it is like a city within a city.
Visit Karon Viewpoint
Karon Viewpoint is the most popular overlook in Phuket. From its location atop a mountain, you can see three beaches from this vantage point Big Kata, Small Kata and Karon. It is a popular stop for tour groups and is accessible via a car or motorbike. If you have your own rental, you might consider stopping at the Heaven Restaurant and Bar on your way up or down. The restaurant’s terraces offer you the chance to take in the stunning view while you dine or have a drink.
Shop At Phuket Town’s Weekend Night Market
This is the largest of the night markets on Phuket Island and it attracts the largest crowds. You can find almost anything here for sale including clothing, jewelry, bags, electronics and of course fresh food of all sorts. As the name implies, it is open only on Saturday and Sunday from 4:00 PM until 11:00 PM. The market is located on the outskirts of Phuket Town on Wirat Hong Yok Road.
Take In The Nightlife On Bangla Road
Bangla Road starts at the beach on one end and ends near Jungceylon Mall on the other end. It is party central once the sun goes down. The street is lined with beer bars open to the street, go-gos, restaurants and discos. Closer to the beach you will find typical touristy type shops selling swimwear, T-shirts and other assorted souvenirs. The smaller sois off Bangala Road offers an assortment of street food and merchandise vendors, beer bars and massage parlors.
Typically, on Bangla Road, you will find a younger and more diverse crowd including couples enjoying a night out on the town than you will find in the adult entertainment districts of Bangkok and Pattaya. While Bangla Road is not strictly a red-light district, a lot of the offerings on Bangla Road are on the adult end of the entertainment spectrum.
Take A Thai Cooking Class
As in many areas of Thailand, there are a number of cooking classes available if you are interested in learning how to cook Thai food. The courses typically last a half-day or full-day depending on which course you choose.
Spend A Day With The Dogs At The Soi Dog Foundation
The Soi Dog Foundation is the largest dog and cat rescue organization in Southeast Asia. They rescue vulnerable animals from the street and the meat trade. Soi Dog’s shelter offers guided torus at 9.30 AM, 11.00 AM, 3.30 PM, and 4.30 PM Monday through Friday.
Get To Know The Tigers At Tiger Kingdom
Tiger Kingdom is the only place in the world that will let you closely interact with real tigers. Yes, believe it or not, they actually lock you in the cage along with your chosen tiger and a trainer. You get to touch the tiger which makes for a one of a kind experience. As you might imagine, this is a controversial attraction, but they do have an excellent safety record. Dining and souvenir options are available.
Visit the Wild Monkeys On Monkey Hill
Monkey Hill is one of the highest viewpoints that overlooks Phuket Town. Ironically, the best views are on the way up the hill rather than at the top. About halfway up, you park and walk the remaining mile up to the top.
As you begin your walk, you will encounter wild macaque monkeys. Keep in mind these are wild monkeys and even though they look cute and will beg for food they can get aggressive especially if you are attempting to feed them. They are also experts at snatching small bags, hats and sunglasses.
You can get some great pictures with the monkeys but do yourself a favor and use your zoom feature on your camera instead of getting too close to the monkeys. I don’t recommend taking small children to Monkey Hill as the monkeys could interpret typical kid behavior and excitement as aggressive.