Memories of Phuket: An Insider’s Guide to Thailand’s Hot Spot

Miles upon miles of beach. Nightlife that gets a little, dare we say, naughty. This is Phuket (pronounced, before you embarrass yourself, poo-ket) – one of Thailand’s hottest resort spots and the latest destination on our growing bucket list.

Here, everything and anything you need to know about this must-go island told from the very best travel guide out there: an insider.

Phuket, Thailand

Devin F.’s fondest memory of his year in Phuket is – as the best memories should be – unpublishable. Something about a motorbike, he offers up, explaining “there’s a sort of easygoing lawlessness about the place. It’s just easier to enjoy yourself.”

Not to say we could imagine not enjoying ourselves on the island The New York Times dubs “a premier beach resort.” Phuket has it all. Relaxation (there’s a reason your local spa calls it a “Thai massage”). Romance. Intrigue.

“If you’re young, take a trip up and over the big hill and into Patong, the Bourbon Street of Phuket. In terms of sheer entertainment, it’s definitely worth at least one nighttime visit,” Devin suggests.

“If that’s not really your scene,” he continues, “you might enjoy a trip up to see the giant Buddha statue that watches over the island, or an always-charming elephant ride. If possible, I’d recommend timing your visit to coincide with one of Phuket’s celebrated festivals, such as the Vegetarian Festival (October) or the Lantern Festival (Novemberish).”

Then, of course, there are the things that draw us 9-to-5ers in – fast. Namely the beaches, which are, in Devin’s words, “as advertised: spectacular.”

Ready to explore Phuket? We’ve scouted out a luxe jumping-off point for your adventures. Find it in our Trending in Travel: Phuket, Thailand Boutique, opening Thursday, August 8, at 11AM.

By Joanna Berliner, Editor 

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August 8, 2013