14 October 2017

Phuket (Thailand Pt. 2)

Dear readers,

after Bangkok (Thailand Pt. 1 HERE), our trip continued to the beautiful island of Phuket. We arrived at the hotel in Patong in the evening and fell asleep pretty fast. We were also lucky with this hotel (Frutta Boutique Hotel) - everything was new and modern, we had a king size bed, AC, our own bathroom. At the check in we received cute welcome drinks with fresh fruit and later on every day new towels and free bottled water (because you can't drink water out of the pipe in Asia). We were staying there for 8 nights.
On the first day, we woke up early to explore the beach. After a 10 minute walk (past a busy street, a mosque, quiet gardens, shops and restaurants), we came to the beautiful sandy beach. There was not many tourists there, so we got a peaceful shady spot under some palm trees. Just lying there on the fine sand, watching the palm leaves slowly wave back and forth and the sea mildly splashing onto the beach, was the most relaxing feeling I have ever experienced. The fact that it will be like that for the next whole week, was making me so happy. One of my favourite things there was the warm water. I'm a person who strongly dislikes taking a swim in cold water (no matter if in the sea or the pool). Mostly I prefer just soaking in hot water from hot springs, so the water temperature in Phuket was just perfect for me - walking into the water smoothly and not thinking about how your body parts are about to freeze off. Later that day we got ourselves a nice refreshing coconut smoothie. After spending the whole day at the beach, which we mostly did every day, we always ended up in the hotel pool before going to the tourist streets in the evening. Patong woke up every evening after the sunset - offering many little stores to buy cheap stuff at, bars and clubs to dance 'til the morning and food stalls with unbelievably delicious cheap food. The vibe was pleasant, the only thing that bothered me was, that Thai people were trying to sell you something on every corner, but we just ignored them. The weather temperature dropped down to a nice 28°C (with comparison to daytime temperatures of 35°C) and that was the time we got hungry, so we were mostly eating "real food" only in the evening. From pad thai with chicken and shrimps to different meat skewers (e.g. crocodile) and weird desserts, we tried it all.
One day, we decided to take a day trip to Phang Nga national park. All inclusive, extra expensive touristy thing, but a must if you are travelling to Thailand for the first time. First, we drove by the limestone caves with a speedboat, then continued to the famous James Bond island. Later on, after a heavy 007 photoshoot session, we were taken to a Muslim village, where we could observe people living on water and had some delicious traditional lunch. Our journey continued to a limestone cave, where we took pictures with the famous "ice cream cone". At last, we visited a beautiful white sand beach. We returned to Patong right before the sunset, cooled down at the pool and visited the rooftop bar from our hotel, where we watched the sky go red.
One other day, we took a half day trip around Phuket (with our private driver). We visited a viewpoint, where we could see the beaches of the island line up, then continued to the Big Buddha statue and down the hill to the Chalong temple. We also visited an elephant farm and a cashew factory. We finished in the town Phuket, where we drank our well deserved coconut and orange slushies.
The beach was pretty empty the whole week, sometimes we just encountered some Russians, probably on their vacation, chilling out with some beers and playing ball. Sometimes, Thai people approached and wanted to sell aloe vera lotion, massages, scarfs and so on, but they were not clingy.
We left Patong in the early morning for a plane to Singapore.
To conclude, Phuket has magnificent beaches and is a good start for island hopping, because many tourist companies there were selling different packages and trips. The town Patong is more of a party town, but we did not visit any clubs. Next time we will probably visit other islands, since Thailand has so many of them. Have you even been to a Thai island? How do you like the beaches?

Love, Julija

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