Patong Beach, Phuket
Patong is Phukets most known Beach.
It has a wide and long curved sandy beach.
Behind the Beach is the main Road and on that road the Hotels (also higher ones), the numerous Shops and Tailors and Restaurants.
Patong is the place you go, if you want to be in the middle of things. Here is the Center for watersports (of course you can also go elsewhere), here is the place for Nightlife, the biggest selection of restaurants (Japanese, Thai, French, Italian, German, Indian, ..) and so many tailors you will never find out who is the best (though they all claim its them).
Tuk Tuks bring you from one end of the Beach to the other (well, you can also walk the 3 km)....(very important: do not forget to set the price befor driving)
The "other side" you see in my picture. This may not be your place if you are here for a little quiet ...
but of course you can also go to one of the many other beaches- they are quieter. And not soo far away, either.
This is one of the interesting activities when you get to patong beach, besite sunburn, you also had a chance to see the whole area with doing windsurfing. The cost to do that is around THB800, but you still can nagociate for the price. They will take you for the windsurfing for 10 mins to see the whole beach area from the sky. It must be awesome to see the whole area from the sky, i did not do that as i am on budget trip.
My first time at patong beach, the beach guy has offer me to ride a jetski with price THB500 and i can ride for 30mins, i did not accept. The beach boy there are very friendly with me, and they love talking with me and talk about the area there and ask about my country. When they find me as a interesting person to talk with, they have inviting me with a free ride for the jetski, it was interesting to do that but i did not accept the invitation as i am very careful when i am alone, and have to take care of myself. I got an advice from someone which i met on the train, this old men told me "when you alone, you can see and you can listen to anything around you, but you don't trust it". I keep that advice until i got home.
My husband and i LOVE the beach! so you can just imagine our joy at being able to laze around on Patong. For 100Baht, you get two beach chairs and an umbrella and a guy taking care of your every single whim. You want a coconut juice? Just let him know and he'll buy one for you! If the sun has moved and your want your umbrella moved, too? Just call him and he'll be moving you into the shade in a second! We positioned ourselves on the middle of the beach right in front of our hotel (Baan Laimai). The guy in charge of the beach chairs here was quite friendly and told us a lot of tsunami stories. It wasn't as crowded as we expected it to be reading the reviews from here. There were a lot of people but trust me, the beach is big enough. It's also fun just to watch time go by as you see the same food vendors going bacj and forth, wathcing people parasail, and just people watching generally. We also went for a swim and although the water wasn't very clear, it was warm and nice and the water doesn't sting your eyes much. It was just great being able to lay there in that long, wide stretch of sand and frying all day. THAT is the life. :)
At night, you can walk along the Beach Road and you would've already seen 70% of what you can shop for in Phuket, maybe not for as cheap as you might get it in the inner night markets in Patong but for really dirt cheap nonetheless! Aside from shopping, it's just such an experience to walk along a road with the sea in sight & with the sea wind blowing at you & experiencing the locals & tourists intermingling on the Beach Road. It's pretty exciting to watch local vendors chase after customers just to make them buy their wares.There's also the constant roaming truck with Muay Thai fighters parading on it that goes around the Patong about 100 times a night. "Tonight!... Biggest Match... Muay Thai Boxing!!! You go to Thailand... You go watch Muay Thai!" cues the Muay Thai music afterwards. It is pretty entertaining! There is just an air of such laid-back fun while walking along the Beach Road at night. During the day, there's also a myriad of things to see. Again, locals trying to sell tourists all kinds of things and following poor foreigners around bugging them to book a tour or have a suit made. But more than that, there's the endless floor of blue "Patong Beach" tiles that line the road and a still a list of more little discoveries that you don't really see at home. Fresh fruit vendors, people in Karon tribe costume selling their wares, tsunami evacuation route signs, fabulous art in small shops, all the colorful tuktuks, the locals, the Western commercial establishments like Starbucks or McDonalds that look just a little bit out of place.. or just something as simple as phone booths with things written on it that you don't understand. Go for it and you'll be surprised at how much you can discover! :D Plus it's the best way to get to see Patong and kind of have an idea of where you'll be getting that Thai massage tomorrow, or where you'll be eating your next dinner as you see all of the places you can visit and how much everybody offers their services: canvassing on Patong Beach. :)
The beach area is a tourist attraction, and it also a local hawkers attraction with promoting and selling their items. When you laid back at the beach, you can see so many hawkers will pass by your sits, they are selling stuff like T'shirt, bracelet, Fruits and food, expacially a stiky rice with chicken. What made me interesting is to watch once guy who will pass by with his tray full of food pack and sing "when you hungry, come to me and get the rice......." he is so fun... he even friendly.
As we stayed in town, we made some visits to Patong beach. It's sunny day in low season (June). Beach is beautiful, its long beach so I can see some parts is little crowded and some parts is quite empty. We enjoyed hanging around front beach and take a stoll along beach road by day and at night its so lively, well long way we drove from town. This kind of place is not suit for us as we think food and many other things is rather expensive, can say its touristy area. In some parts of beach I saw red flag and sign show the area not allow to swim, but I saw many visitors swim. Guard said they cannot stop if anyone want to swim, red flag and sign is just a warning. Anyway I saw them keep watching into the sea so I feel it's safe.
The songran are the fun festival here it also known as a water festival, This thai new year they have a way to celebrate it, it fall on 13th of April every year. There are always fun at bangla road, i always walk to bangla road for drinks, and the new year eve, i thought nothing will happen, just about 50m before i reach to a bangla road, i wet already, almost everyone at the area have a water gun and i had one too... hehe i was borrow it from the guy who walk with me at bangla road, they made me wet, i have to make them wet too.
It is not only water, when you walk with your water gun, some people will wipe your face with their hands which full of powder with water... soo fun there and i had a great time.
By day things are quiet, but by nightfall the sidewalks are full of shoppers browsing the displays of clothes, souvenirs, accessories, paintings, luggage, leather items, and all sorts of little gadgets that dazzle the senses with flashing laser lights or bleeping noises. Fake brand name goods and pirated CDs and software are usually on offer, except when there's a periodic crackdown on the practice.
The main night market in Phuket runs along the beach road and into the small lanes running back from the beach, providing more convenient shopping. There's another market in front of the Paradise Complex on Rat-U-Thit Rd that runs two to three nights a week in high season, usually Mondays, Wednesdays and Fridays. There are two Ocean department stores – one on the beach road and another on Bangla Rd – and plenty of small grocery stores, 7-11s and pharmacies.
Patong is where all the action is. Located on the west of the island just 9 km from Phuket town, it is Phuket's busiest beach, a tourist center that has grown out of a banana plantation in 20 over years. It is brash and noisy, vibrant and lively, yet surprising well ordered with everything you could ever want to buy or entertain yourself with.
But let me warn you ... Patong Beach is not very nice. If you want nicer beach, go to Kata or Krabi ... they have much nicer beaches.
Also, night time in Patong is full of neon lights and bars, girls, discos etc .... not for the faint hearted ... loud and messy is the words to describe Patong at night.
When the time pass by you don't realised it. The people around the beach getting less and less, and you also can see people just walk around the beach area for everning excersize, or jogging at the beach, the dog also run here and there, and dogs here likes to sit next to people, when i was there at the beach, the dog always sit or laid next to me, i dont know why, i never likes dogs anyway and always afraid of them, since they like to sit or laid close to me for almost everytime i was there, also likes to walk with me, i just try to be brave then after awhile, i got use to it and still afraid to touch them.
As i always at the beach, i like to walk along the beach, walk with the wave came to wipe the sand, play with the wave, sometimes its even stronger than me, it can make me fall, so people around the area which watching my behave, will laugh at me, i had fun with doing that. When i was walking around the beach area, i realised that, along the beach at 80% of people doing sunburn is white people, there are really a tourist favourite area. They love to get a brown skin like asian, they said it is a beautiful to have a brown skin. I had brown skin when i get back to Kuala Lumpur, and as always, mom will complain about my skin, she prefer me to have a fair light skin, i dont understand why.
Patong is the longest beach in Phuket streching approximately 3 km from one end to the other. It is surrounded by hotels, resorts, nightlife, restaurants and shopping possibilities. You will see 3 or 4 rows of sunbathing chairs totally occupied afternoon. There are water sport activities you can get involved in. If you don't enjoy too crowded beaches, you either need to come early in the morning just like I did or you choose a less crowded beach like Kata or Karon.
During my first day here in phuket, i woke up very early, at 7am thai time, which is 8am malaysia time. It is a beautiful morning, very sunny. First thing i do is taking shower and ready with my beach wear, and even forgot my breakfast, and went down to the reception ask for the road to get to the beach, i just follow the direction that the reception guy gave it to me, i just walk for less then 5 mins and reach at patong beach, it is so clear over there, sunny, clean beach, blue water but not clear cristal water, many people get ready for sun burn. When i reach to the beach, i been greeting by a hawkers there which renting their sits and umbrella at THB50 for the whole day.
The people of thai tent to speak thai with me, but i just reply with smile and say i don't speak thai, and that made them interesting to talk with me. My whole day at the beach was company by the beach boy who renting they unbrella, they will always drop by to my sit and talk with me a few mins before they continue their work, very friendly of them.
When i was sitting there and put on the sun block, there is an europian men sit next to me, his age range is around 50's, and was try to talk with me, he was saying hi and i say hi to him, and he was offering himself to help me with putting a sun block on me, and said after i did yours, u should do to me too. which i think it wasn't sound nice when the guy around my dad age was asking me for such thing, i just ignore him after that.
Get a Thai massage or a foot massage by the beach. The women offering the massages often have their own set-ups by the road where there's shade but I requested one of them to give me a foot massage right where I was since I wanted to sunbathe and she obliged rather grudgingly because the whole time, she kept asking me to adjust the umbrella so she could be under the shade, too. I felt bad for her so I moved my chair just so she can stay under the umbrella. I actually wouldn't recommend the foot massage if you're gonna shell out 250Baht. For a hundred Baht more, you can get a Thai massage but you have to go to their setup by the road. I actually didn't like my massage because her pressure wasn't strong enough but to each his own. Also, for the same price, you can actually get a massage at the air-conditioned massage parlors on the Beach Road already so you might want to just spend your 350Baht on that instead. But for a unique experience, have atleast a thirty-minute long foot massage by the beach just for the experience.
And during the day, they dont care wherever you are, even in the tuk tuk, they will trow you with the water. that what happen to me, i was so wet on that day, even i am not walk around the area, but just in the tuk tuk itself they made me wet, lucky my bagpack did not wet as i was, otherwise there is another job for me to dry up all my clothing.