“There are no foreign lands. It is the traveler only who is foreign.” – Robert Louis Stevenso
There’s so much beauty in some of the islands spread across our beautiful Earth… I’ve visited only far and few between in my time, although they do truly grasp my attention. Phuket, situated in Southern Thailand is one of them. On a recent visit there, I never imagined I would be so taken aback by its beauty. I was told that Phuket is very ‘touristy’ as opposed to the other areas in Thailand that had been visited – which was true – yet the sandy beaches, the warmth of the sun on my skin and the glittering waters was a gratifying escape from reality. As you drive across the main highway and down towards Patong Beach where the hotel was situated, the sight of the oh-so-blue azure waters leave you breathless. It just appears out of nowhere! Driving over a winding road and then you’re hit by the island waters – I genuinely gasped out of sheer astonishment at my sight.
Phuket is made up of several beaches, and many sightseeing attractions. Being there only for two days and needing to satisfy my urge to curb my quiet adventurous soul meant I didn’t get to see as much of the island as much as I would have liked to. One of the first things I had had eagerly been waiting to complete was my first experience scuba diving – and on a small note, let me just say that that experience was absolutely fantastic. Added to the fact that the individuals we’d met at Aussie Divers had been truly a delight to meet, and clearly experienced during the underwater experience. The underwater sea is a phenomenal and magical setting, which believe me, I am ready to explore further when given the opportunity. Hence Day 1 was occupied with a full day 3 dive out at the Racha Noi and Racha Yai islands.
Scuba Diving at Rach Noi Island
Following on from this was the second packed day with touring around the island’s sights, such as the Wat Chalong Temples and the Big Buddha. Not only were the temples gorgeous on the outside, but the intricate architectural interiors were truly fascinating. As for the Big Buddha? This construction is truly the underestimation of the term ‘big’. Only as you climb up the stairs to view this structural masterpiece do you realise the actual size of it. Unfortunately, this sunny morning led to showers in the afternoon, where I was meant to go out on the boats to visit the limestone cliffs near Phang Nga Bay and the caves in close proximity to it. Despite the rain however the sheer enormity of these cliffs is quite the eye-opener – literally! To add on to the excitement of that is the kayaks that led us into tiny caves which you’d never expect to be able to fit into (in order to do so you have to lie down so that the kayak can slide under and inside into the cave). These caves thus open up into small lagoons, with the cliffs looming over us and serenity of stillness as your companion.
Wat Chalong Temples
Caves opening up into lagoons
As busy as these two days were, Phuket was definitely my favourite stop. On the morning before the departure back to New Zealand there were several quick stops made by the beaches. Oh how I wished I could have stayed longer in order to enjoy Phuket more! The glorious beaches were worthy of a longer visit, and a photograph is all I have as a memory. For now. I intend to go back at some point in time and explore more of Phuket (I just have to prepare myself for the food better next time #vegetarianproblems).
I apologise for the cluster of photographs, however Phuket had been such a beautiful place I could not resist! For those of you who have been here, what did you think of Phuket?