Information on Phuket Town

Information on Phuket Town
Phuket town is the capital and the largest town of Phuket Province. With a population of 63,000, it is considered the economic hub of the province. Most part is rural or provincial in description and basically a non-tourist attraction but the Chinatown area and the Thai-style shopping opportunities are attracting fair attention from tourists. Accommodation and food here are far cheaper than those near the beaches and the rustic atmosphere dramatically provide a refreshing change of pace.
Getting in Phuket Town
Phuket town is about 30 km from the north to Phuket International Airport. From the airport, Phuket town is about 30 minutes by taxi which cost around 500 baht. A shared mini bus charging 100 baht can reach it within 45 minutes and about an hour by a government Bus with lesser charge of 85 baht. Schedules of arrival and departure of these buses from and to the airport are every one to one and a half hour intervals. The bus leaves from the airport at 06:30 to 20:45 regularly while it leaves Phuket town starting from 0:5:30 to 18:30 on regular basis. Payment is made in the bus and not in the terminal.
Buses and songthaews on the other hand, connects Phuket town to different major beaches around the Island. Route starts from Thanong Ranong at the Ranong Market. Patong beach being the most popular beach is the most popular service route charging 25 baht with departure intervals of every 30 minutes. Fares to other beaches are from 15 to 30 baht depending on the service route. A taxi ride going to beaches from Phuket is charged from 200-400 depending on how good is your bargaining skill.
Getting around Phuket Town
Because it is a large town, covering it around by foot is impossible although walking around the town is a good experience. A tuk-tuk ride; an ingenious public transport is the most popular means of getting around the town. Fares are on government regulation but many tuk-tuk drivers charged more than the regulated fare. One should have the first hand information about tuk-tuk fares in order to avoid being scammed. One should also be cautious not to ride tuk-tuk alone without being familiar with the routes. You’ll be surprised to be getting around places and be charged with enormous amount.
Shopping around Phuket Town
Other than its rustic way of life, shopping is the main attractions of Phuket town. It has several local markets, malls, department stores. But it is the Chinatown’s Thanon Thalang that tourists flock to shop. It has large selections of boutiques and galleries retailing traditional Thai handicrafts and antiques from the different neighboring regions. Phuket Night Bazaar is the place where to shop for local stuff. Big C supermarket offers same kind of merchandise but of cheaper price. If you are adventurous and want to experience Thai shopping, Ranong Market is the place to go. Here you can buy everything you want while sweating and passing through chaotic stalls. However it has been closed in 2008 to give way to new building constructions. Another good market is the Weekend Market where you can scout and buy Thai souvenirs. But if you want shopping in the most convenient way, there are several great shopping malls around Phuket town. Shop for cool and good buys in Ocean and Robinsons or in Top’s Supermarket. International food chain such as McDonalds and KFC are also found here. Central Festival is a Thai department store chain where you shop in comfort and coolest condition. Here they sell everything from imported to authentic Thai products but comparatively low-priced. A good midnight market in the tradition of Metro Market and Wallmart is super cheap. Everything is sold here but it is best to shop in the evening after taking an “eat all you can” from a nearby Thai restaurant and later join the fun and thrill of shopping here.
Phuket town is one town that still continues to uphold its historical roots while coping up with the modern way of life. Taking a break from the active and chaotic city life, Phuket town offers a refreshing retreat.