MY PARADISE: Mojitos, sunsets and adventures in Phuket, Thailand
Editor's Note: Here's another great story from one of our readers, Taylor White. Phuket sounds like a beautiful place to visit. Taylor, thanks for sharing your great adventure with us. This story will appear in our upcoming Destination Paradise magazine that will hit the streets in late February.
When my Husband and I tied the knot, I was already thinking about our honeymoon destination.
Since we are already stationed all the way over here in Japan, we were searching around Southeast Asia to find something that caught our eye as the ultimate location.
We had heard about Thailand, but mostly crazy Bangkok, and that just wasn’t appealing to us as a "honeymoon” location. With more research, we stumbled upon Phuket.
Further down south, in between the Andaman Sea and the Gulf of Thailand, lies a narrow peninsula with an abundance of breath-taking beaches. We planned to spend three weeks in Thailand, so we divided our time between three areas of Phuket - Patong Beach, Kata Beach, and Karon Beach - all located on west coast of the peninsula. These beaches are all next to each other, connected only by a 2-lane road that follows the coast.
Flying to Phuket was quite easy and affordable. We had a lay over in Hong Kong (quite an experience of it’s own) then flew into Phuket International a couple of hours later. Upon arrival, we took a taxi to our first resort located on Patong Beach. Patong is known for it’s nightlife, shopping and massages. This area can be somewhat overwhelming. But luckily an escape is in easy access since a beautiful beach parallels the craziness.
Our second hotel was located near Kata Beach. Kata Beach is amazing, the absolute best beach that my toes have ever encountered. This area is cleaner and quieter than Patong beach, with great shopping and wonderful restaurants.
Along the sand of Kata Beach sits a couple of superb beachfront restaurants. They offer an incredible view accompanied with impeccable service. We were fortunate to eat at these restaurants quite often during our stay at Kata Beach. When we weren’t dining, we spent the majority of our time relaxing on the sand and snorkeling the beautiful reef that was only 60 feet from the beach.
We picked a villa right along Karon Beach for our final week Karon beach is located between Patong and Kata Beach. This beach is very long with an abundance of souvenir stores and massage parlors. We took advantage of all the massage parlors and enjoyed massages almost every day. These are respectable massage parlors (we were on our honeymoon!) and we paid probably $15 each for a two-hour massage.
We loved Phuket. There is an over abundance of things to do, so we planned an activity for almost every day. While in Phuket we rode elephants, scuba dived off surrounding islands, snorkeled off beaches, jet skied, took day trips to surrounding islands such as Phang Nga Bay and the famous Phi Phi Islands, surfed up north at Surin Beach, and bargained with the locals almost every day while shopping for goodies.
If you are looking for quiet beaches, incredible sunsets, crystal clear water, relaxing spas or even a crowded fun bar, Phuket has something to offer you. We will be back to Phuket: The sparkling gem in Southeast Asia.