If you are planning to visit Phuket; Thailand’s largest island; then be assured that you are going to have a thrilling, exciting, and adventurous holiday. Phuket is an ideal tourist destination for those who want to sunbathe on the beaches, shop for treasures in the local markets, explore various other islands, view spectacular temples, enjoy the vibrant nightlife, or simply have a lazy holiday. In short, the island offers something for all kinds of travelers and a three-day trip would certainly be a short one. To make the most of your stay in Phuket, you can follow the below-mentioned itinerary.
The best time to go to Phuket is in the months of November to February as the weather conditions are ideal for sightseeing and beach activities. March to May is summer season and the average temperature can go up to 30 degrees Celsius. Heavy rains can be expected in the months of June to October, so traveling should be avoided at that time as the rains can spoil your outdoor plans completely. However, during the rainy season, the prices of hotels and flight tickets are at an all-time low; thus, making it the cheapest season to travel.
A comprehensive 3-day itinerary to Phuket, Thailand
3 days in Phuket: Day One Phi Phi Islands
First-time visitors must add Phi Phi Islands to their itinerary so that they can discover amazing limestone cliffs that are rising out from the clear tropical waters. You need to allow an entire day to visit the Phi Phi Islands as it is about 46kms away from Phuket. Since Phi Phi consists of a group of six mesmerizing islands, you will have a wonderful time island hopping and exploring its beauty.
To reach the island, you can take a speedboat rather than a ferry since the speedboat would reach faster and save a lot of time. Moreover, it is better to avoid traveling during the rainy season i.e. June to October as the service of speedboats and ferries would be less.
Since you are short of time, research well online and select a tour organizer that would let you explore several islands on the same day. Alternatively, if you want to have a relaxing trip then you may select the best spot and enjoy a few hours of swimming and snorkeling. Some of the famous attractions that you could cover on that day are Loh Samah Bay, Maya Bay, Viking Cave, Pileh Cove, Monkey Beach, Mosquito Island, and the popular Koh Phi Phi Island.
A few things to keep in mind are that you need to carry essential stuff like sunscreen, hat, swimwear, best snorkel gear, water, towel, extra pair of clothes, and sunglasses. Also, ensure that you take good care of your belongings as the monkeys out there are notorious for snatching away various things.
3 days in Phuket: Day Two James Bond Island
The second day of your trip can be spent by visiting James Bond Island, which is one of the best places in the Bay of Phang Nga. It is about 45kms away from Phuket and the easiest way to reach is through a speedboat or a luxury boat and for that you can book a tour online. The island has gained its popularity as some of the scenes of the James Bond movie “The Man with the Golden Gun” was shot there.
Secluded caves, mesmerizing beaches, crystal clear water, and spectacular limestone karsts will keep you busy for the entire day. Don’t forget to carry your cameras so that you can capture these beautiful moments to cherish for a lifetime. Some more areas that you could explore are Muslim fishing village, Ao Phang Nga National Park, Panak Island, Ice Cream Cave, and Naka Island.
At the James Bond Island, you will be able to view some of the best landscapes ever. A few scenes of the movie ‘Jurassic Park’ too have been shot here. To have a wonderful time, you should carry your swimming costumes, beach towels, sunglasses, sunscreen lotion, an extra pair of clothing, and a camera.
Most of the tour organizers provide authentic Thai cuisine for lunch, so you should inquire about it before selecting the package. Since James Bond Island is a popular tourist destination, it would be quite crowded during peak season. However, the beautiful sights would surely make your trip worthwhile.
3 days in Phuket: Day Three Phuket
Since you have already explored the most popular attractions that are close to Phuket, you should spend your third day in exploring the interiors of Phuket while relishing yummy Thai dishes and shopping for local stuff. Phuket is worldwide famous for its clean and clear beaches.
There are several beaches that you can visit and among them, the most popular ones are Freedom Beach, Kata Beach, and Nai Harn Beach. You can even visit the Nakkerd Hills to view the statue of Big Buddha. It is 45 meters tall and 25 meters wide at the base. To view the beautiful temples of Phuket, you should visit the Wat Chalong, which has been decorated by hundreds of tiny glittering glass pieces.
Evenings can be spent at the Phuket Old Town, where you will find several temples, ornate shops, museums, cafés, and more. To savor the Royal Thai cuisine, you should visit the Blue Mountain Restaurant at Krabi Road, Phuket Town. If you have an interest in collecting stamps or are a philatelist, then you should visit the Phuket Philatelic Museum, which is located at Montri Road.
Other than the various stamps that are on display, you can even learn more about the development of the Thai Postal Service and view some antique equipment such as parcel-weighing machines.
To enjoy the nightlife in Phuket, you should visit the Bangla Road in Patong Beach, which gets converted into a street that is full of life. There are innumerable discotheques and go-go bars out here, so barge into any one of them and have a wonderful time.
Alternatively, you could visit the night markets to purchase several interesting handmade items at very low prices. It is the best place to relish traditional Thai cuisines by visiting the local street food stalls. At the night markets, you will even come across several local artists performing dance and music on the streets.
Few Tips To Remember For First Time Travelers in Phuket
- Always choose a reputable company to book any tours or conveyance rather than a random person whom you met on the streets. Alternatively, you can take help from your hotel receptionist.
- If you are planning to rent a car or scooter to explore the island, then you should have a valid international driving license. Also, follow all driving rules, or else you will end up paying fines.
- The best time to go shopping is in the night since the weather in the day would be quite hot and humid. Moreover, night markets sell stuff at reasonable prices and the food stalls are the best place to relish traditional Thai cuisine.
- If you are planning to visit the various temples, then ensure that you dress up modestly and cover your head with a scarf or handkerchief.
- Those who are traveling with kids should not walk on Bangla Road with family in the evenings or late nights.
- While using the ATM machines for withdrawing money, ensure that there isn’t any stranger nearby. Always remember that in Phuket, the money comes out first and then your card will eject. So, do not forget to take your card from the machine.
- Solo women travelers should not walk alone late in the night or accept friendly offers by strangers. It is advisable to use public transportation to reach your destination at night.
After having a splendid three days in Phuket, you may consider driving from Phuket to Bangkok by renting a car, as it is about 850kms away and the innumerable beautiful beaches and picturesque landscapes en route would make your drive fruitful. You may even have one night stay in between at Chumporn or Ranong.
The floating market, Lumpini Park, and Siam Niramit are some of the popular attractions that should not be missed in Bangkok. By following the aforesaid tips, you will be able to explore some of the best places in Thailand within a short period of time.
Bio: Astraveler is from Lithuania. He has been to almost 50 countries and still actively counting. Due to such an interesting travel experience, he started a blog to share his knowledge with the world.