Tourist infested Phuket, but still a go ahead
Firstly, Happy New Year everyone! Lets all hope 2013 is great, although frankly I don’t feel much different today. Do you? The second part of my Thailand trip is left to be spoken about, so here it is!
What a crazy fan the owner of this place must be, is the first thought that would come to your mind. Followed by, it would be brilliant to watch a United match here (I’m assuming here that you are a Man Utd fan)! This was the bar in the guesthouse I stayed at in Phuket, Artha Guesthouse. The owner, Mally, was quite a nice, hospitable person with an evergreen hatred for our noisy neighbours, Man City. He even labeled his bar bathroom after City. We were reasonably close to the heart of the Patong area: Bangla Road and Jung Ceylon Mall. Oh and Christin’s Massage.
Walking fifteen minutes to these places was quite enjoyable, if you counted out the constant, shrill cries of “Massssaaaaage, massssaaaaage!” or “Young boy massage!” every ten meters. Massage parlours were scattered in abundance, and deciding which one to go to was more likely to give you a headache than a conclusion. There were cheap shops and swanky hotels, colourful cafes and bars and well… Family Marts and Seven Elevens.
The truly miraculous part about Phuket is Bangla Road, which practically doesn’t sleep. One road to satisfy all your desires, both innocent and not. Food, shopping, bars, clubs, strip clubs, massage parlours etc etc. I could never do justice to Bangla Road without showing you a couple of photographs so that you can put what I’m trying to say into some perspective. I have a little tip over here. Now chances are that if you’re a guy walking in Phuket you will find yourself unable to move forward since an eager Thai masseuse will be trying to seduce you into getting a massage by holding your hand, waist, whatever… Either you can waste time being nice and take a long time to escape, or you can be rude and wrench yourself away. However, if you are in a group with at least one other guy, you can be smart and make him say something to the tune of that isn’t going to work on him since he’s with me! And believe me, it works. It worked wonders for me. It’s a lot wiser to move around under the protective shield of homosexuality, assuming you aren’t homophobic of course!
There are a lot of things to do in and around Phuket in the daytime as well. We went on a day cruise to Phang Nga Bay where we entered limestone caves in canoes and then saw ‘James Bond island’. The caves were quite fascinating, but this island was rubbish. There was absolutely nothing to see other than this one strange rock that was present in one of the older Bond movies. And at the end of it all we jumped into a bay and swam around. All in all, after going diving for 5 days this was just not hitting the spot. I wanted to dive again.
You can also do bungee jumping and other such day trips, but the main problem with all of these is everything has become unbearably touristy and commercial. And if you’re a traveler similar to me, you will hate being in that mix of people, because most often it’s the ones who really can’t see themselves doing anything else and therefore they do these day trips simply to speak about their ‘sightseeing in a foreign country’. This being said, the nightlife and feel of the place is unique, and I don’t regret being there at all. You can also do the same diving daytrips as out of Khao Lak (https://alapparikh.wordpress.com/2012/12/24/diving-and-the-beach-khao-lak-thailand/). For shoppers, it’s a haven. And do bargain well, and don’t do something like offer 400THB for 650THB, since you can probably get it in 200THB. I learnt my lesson the harder way!