A couple of months back I went for a short holiday over the long weekend to Phuket. I haven’t been to Phuket in a while and since this was my 3rd trip there, I would consider it to be another fun trip. My first visit there was to shoot a wedding about 4 years back and 2 years back for a short holiday. This time around, I was following the Integricity family as well as the Stories family to Phuket together with Mun Tzin.
We stayed at a place near the beach, well, when I say near, it was about a 15 to 20 minute walk. A real difference compared to where I stayed previously (Surin beach and Grand Millennium Hotel) because this time around, I was really right in the heart of the Patong.
We took the very early 7am flight and arrived there way too early before check-in. So what we did was get a bit of breakfast (instant noodles from a small stall) and waited for our rooms to be available.
There were plenty of shops around where we stayed and most of them were either massage parlours or internet cafe’s. Restaurants were aplenty but it was really catered for tourists and they were mostly serving western food such as pizza and pastas.
Roads throughout the town were extremely narrow leaving only just a single lane. Because of that motorcycles are the norm but after my experience with some of our friends during our last Phuket trip, I shall stay away from renting a motorbike. The rest however had other plans.
Motorbike rentals were cheap, a lot cheaper than cars so it is one of the easiest modes of transportation. Cheaper than constantly getting the “tuk-tuk”.
The guys posing for a photo above. Please note that I didn’t shoot some of these photos (I think Grace did with my camera) but they did come from my camera. The itinerary for the first day was mainly to walk around explore the place and then eat dinner.
Since it was Thailand, there were plenty of kick boxing arenas about. I always wanted to actually check out a kick boxing match as I heard it can get rather brutal. There are plenty of stories out there about kickboxing and even after reading about it in my manga reading list, it is quite elegant and efficient in terms of martial arts especially when it comes to the kick. Anyhow, a far cry away from the usual MMA which focuses a lot of holds, wrestling and judo moves.
Also another thing which really fascinated me was the tiger related decor which filled quite a number of the bars about Patong especially on Bangla Road. I did take a bit of a laugh or two because when I was at Phuket, it was just right after the recent elections and with all the bangla controversy, it was pretty amusing to see Bangla Road and Bangla Mall and plenty of other Bangla related items about.
As with other normal tourists, we usually walked around the shopping malls and then finally settling at the beach. While we were at the beach, I didn’t bring my camera with me and didn’t take that many photos. Anyhow the beach was like a total tourist trap where renting a chair or any place costs money.
The following day we went on an island hopping tour where we took a ferry out to sea to snorkel and then have lunch at Phi Phi island. It was interesting because the snorkeling portion was just off Monkey Bay and everyone from the ferry just jumped off the boat into the sea. It was mayhem because I think there were about a hundred people about.
Sadly because the tour group didn’t explain properly to everyone, so many tourists were just standing on the corals and found it amusing that they could just stand on something in the middle of the sea. As we were snorkeling, another large group of tourist arrived and I could have sworn, there were about 200 people snorkeling at the same time.
Lunch on Phi Phi Island wasn’t fantastic but it fed hundreds of hungry snorkelers and tourists. After lunch we decided to chill out and go kayaking under the hot sun. I guess a sunburn was inevitable. By the time we got back to Patong, we were all worned out. We headed to Bangla road again for some nosh and some foot massage. I wanted something a little more on my back and ended up choosing the wrong massage package because at the end the masseuse performed some kung fu wrestling hold on me and promptly decided to crack every bone in my back.
Overall the trip was fun and relaxing even though it lasted only 3 days and 2 nights and half of those time we were busy traveling. I still think Phuket hasn’t lost it’s charm and probably the next time I am there, I would try visiting another place other than Patong.