With early bail at work on Nov 18 Friday, Etienne and I rushed to the airport for a 4 days of relaxing vacation in Phuket, Thailand. We took Tiger Airway as it had the cheapest flights on a short booking time. The total price was SGD457.14 for 2 person. The flight took 2 hours but since there is 1 hour difference from Singapore to Thailand, it seemed like 1 hour flight. We took the mini van shuttle service outside the airport to drop us to the hotel for 180 Baht per person.
At that time, 1 SGD = 23.46 Baht
Our hotel, Woraburi Phuket Resort and Spa, was located at Karon beach, one of the less crowded areas. Most tourists head to Patong beach as this is the life of Phuket with its tons of activities and endless strait of sand and sea. Our trip was more on relax and chill type so we preferred somewhere more quiet for the 1st 3 nights and maybe a night in Patong to see what’s happening.
Our hotel was very lovely. It was less than 5 minutes away from the beach while being near to the restaurants and street shopping area. The room was spacious, the balcony overlooked the hotel’s pool and the toilet was up to standard. This was priced at SGD106.22 per night for 2 person – a very good bargain for a 4 star hotel. The only angst we had was that we had to pay for our internet usage and the air condition is too cold, even at 27 degrees. Everything else was worth it.
Our Patong hotel, The Royal Palm Beachfront Hotel , was also close to the beach front as well but the accommodation is slightly at the 3 star level. It was SGD86.31 for that 1 night. There was no elevator, the room was smaller, bathroom looks rough with minimal toiletries and the window faced another wall that was in construction. Interestingly, the bathroom had a glass window for bed view and condom was offered as complimentary 😀
The beaches in Phuket are wonderful: white and soft. I went barefoot every time I touched sand. It felt nice to the feet, especially the wet sand and seawater surrounding them. Karon beach had more rip tides so swimmers need to be careful not to be dragged away with the tide. There were not a lot of tourist in the area so we got our quiet time. There are a lot of water activities in Patong beach from jet ski to para sailing.
We took a day tour to Phi Phi, Maya and Khai Islands with Phuket Absolute Marine for SGD64 per person, a good bargain. Their driver picked us up at the hotel and drove to the meeting point near Phuket town. We had to rent fins at 100 Baht since they only provide the mask and vest. Lunch was provided.
The islands we toured had the most clearest water I have been to. It starts at the beach, clear to the point you can see the sand below then gradually become emerald then finally at a lovely shade of blue. I did my first snorkeling and without a vest! It took me a while to realize that we do actually float in sea water and fins do make a big difference on it. There were a lot of fishes and we fed them with bread. It was comical to watch Etienne being ravaged by little fishes 🙂 We made a quick stop at the Monkey Island, where tourist feed the already fat monkeys with fruits.
Thailand food is at best here. You can pick any store, be it cheap sidewalk vendor to posh outdoor restaurant, the dishes are good. There are some that were spicy and may need getting used to but locals match the flavor to the tourist’s palate. The prices may not be rock bottom compared to maybe Bangkok, but its better than Singapore – trust me.
If you are planning to go shopping for beach wares, they have it. Every street has stalls set up with rows and rows of clothes. I was not able to see any dried local food to bring back home. There are some being sold at the airport but by the time I saw them, we were already boarding the plane. I did managed to buy some body balm for massage. Remember to bargain when buying items or availing of services. Sometimes they tend to overcharge as this is a tourist ground.
Massage places are everywhere as well for quick relief of aching muscles and maybe for those extra services for men. The really good ones might be tricky to find, those that also offer spa aura and privacy. I managed to find that our Patong hotel had one at a good price for 450 Baht for full body massage while I took the nearest one in Karon beach for a quick foot massage at 250 Baht.
In Patong, you will get to see the roaming truck featuring Muay Thai boxing matches. After that night of hearing 3 trucks passing by, I managed to memorized the whole announcement which was hilarious. The tuk tuk is different from the ones I saw in Cambodia. They are more of a mini truck similar to Philippine version of multicab.
Patong at night is a different sight. The sleepy areas comes alive, especially in Bangla street where it is filled with clubs, bar and strip tease places. You need to be able to tell the difference between lady boy and real lady as the lines are blurred here. If you are willing to pay a high price, you can head to the infamous ping pong shows where ladies do the out of this world acts that uses the vagina like hands and a place for storage. No I am not going to all the details here as this is a rate G website. I’ll leave your curiosity to check it out, just make sure your wallet has the stomach as well.
Overall, the trip was lovely and we managed to spend some quality time with each other on a relaxed setting. There were a lot of activities, like elephant ride, we didn’t get to try as well as the opportunity to dive in the amazing sea but, there is always a next time 🙂