Besides the stunning beauty of the islands,coming to Phuket, you have the opportunity to admire the tranquility of the ancient city with the rich history and culture of the first habitants living here. It’s Old Town Phuket.
The ancient town with old buidings along the two sides of the road has been over 100 years. The houses and restaurants were built in the late nineteenth and early twentieth century when Phuket is an important tin mining area.
The journey to Old Town Phuket
Before the journey, we dropped byThailand Tourism Department at the Thalang Road to get a map of Phuket Town Treasure
The Old Town is not too large so we can walk around. It just stretches two kilometers, including six streets and two alleys. It took me a half day to travel around this town.
In my own experience, walking around streets is the most interesting way to explore the feature and culture of Phuket. The Old Town starts from the east, at the junction with Thep Kasatri Road and the South of Queen Sirikit Park.
The main section of Thalang Road begins after connecting with Thep Kasatri Road. This road is about 400 meters long. It has still retained the old feature, only a few new buliding were remodeled.
Along the Dibuk Road, I saw galleries, bakeries, restaurants, guesthouse that are closeto each other and also family stores that have operated for generations. The first thing that surprised me was that in the midst of a crowded, bustling and vibrant tourist city like Phuket, there was a peaceful and quiet old town.
Diverse cultural heritage
Coming to Phuket, I was attracted by Chinese-Portuguese style restaurants with airy and picturesque balcony. In addition, I liked to immerse myself in the night scene with bright red lanterns in this town.
Along the old town, I saw many ancient villas and houses retained over the time. The most famous building was Baan Chinpracha. Buit in 1903, it is the only Chinese style villa in Phuket that opens for tourists. In the midst of Chinese architecture campus, we still saw the Thai characteristics such as the back garden with Thai featured plants and flowers.
The luxury Phuket Lauana Resort is a cannot- miss destination. It is located on a tin mine that still remains of the golden age of mining on the island.
Thavorn hotel on Rasada Road is also worth a stop. Just with 30 bahts, we were lost to the memories in the 1960s. It was the only place that we could see the unique elelvator in Phuket.
Besides the ancient villas, the restaurants with unique architecture are also features of Phuket Old Town. The symbol here is the Chinese-Portuguese style buildings with exquisitely designed wooden windows or brightly colored fences.
The Old Town Phuket has something in common with the ancient town Hoi An, the cultural and architectural diversity on each roof and street corner. I saw Chinese style restaurants with red lanterns, luxurious Western villas and Portuguese style restaurants. Built in nineteenth century, Phuket Old Town has been conserved well. Morning and evening is the best time to explore this town.
Walking around the street and enjoying a cup of tea while watching the peace of town is a very interesting experience that you should try when traveling to Phuket.
Some notes for the Old Town trip
- From the airport: Take the bus (about 100 bahts) to Phuket Old Town. Leaving the Old Town, tourist can take songthaew or tuk-tuk from Ranong to any beaches.
- At the Old Town: Most of tourists choose tuk-tuk as the transport to discover this town. However, it’s not the best way to explore this place completely.
Prepare a map taken from Thailand Tourism Department and start your jouney.
In Phuket, you can enjoy the diverse cuisine from many countries such as: Arabic, India, Malaysia, China. If you like Western dishes, La Romantica – the Italian restaurant is the ideal place.