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| A great
view of Phuket Town, the southern part of
the island, and some of the offshore islands,
can be obtained by going to the top of Khao
Rang Hill, on the city's northwest. There
are also several restaurants featuring spectacular
views of the city, a health park for exercise
enthusiasts, and a comfortable, expanse of
grass for picnickers at the top with a bronze
statue of Phraya Ratsada Nupradit the model
Governor of Phuket during King Rama V's reign.
about 8 kms. outside town. Take Vichit Songkram
Rd., to the Bypass Rd., and turn left, and
drive for about 10 mins. Wat Chalong will
be on your left. This is where stands the
cast statue of Luang Por Cham, who helped
the people of Phuket put down the Angyee,
or Chinese Coolie, Rebellion in 1876 during
the reign of Rama V. There are also statues
of Luang Por Chaung, and Luang Por Gluam.
Other monks, who were abbots of the temple
during later times, and who are the objects
of respect and recipients of the offerings
by Phuket people generally.
beginning of the tin boom during the Nineteenth
Century led to construction of many fine
old mansions and shops still well preserved.
The architectural style, typical of the
region, is described as Sino-Portuguese
and has a strongly Mediterranean chracter.
Shops present a very narrow face on the
street but stretch back a long way. Many,
especially on Dibuk Rd., have old wooden
doors with Chinese fretwork carving. Other
streets, forming what might be called "Old
Phuket", with similar structures
are Phang-nga, Yaowarat, Thalang, and Krabi,
and a walking tour of the area is easy and
delightful. Some other old European-style
buildings of note are the Provincial Hall
(Sala Klang), the Phuket Courthouse (San
Changwat), and Nakhon Luang Thai Bank.
than one hundred species of sea life are on
display at the aquarium, many of them taken
from the water around Phuket. Open daily,
8:30 a.m. - 4:00 p.m. The aquarium is located
at Cape Panwa, on the island's extreme southeast;
admission is 5 Baht for children and 20 Baht
for adults. A Songtaew (local bus) can be
taken from the Talad Sot, or Fresh Market.
Tel. (076) 391126.
Butterfly Farm and Aquarium:::
species of butterflies, other insects, and
many kinds of marine life are on display.
Located in Sam Kong about 3 kms. from downtown
Phuket. Open daily, 9:00 a.m. - 5:00 p.m.Tel.
(076) 215616, 210861.
| A land
reclamation project provided abundant new
land now used for parks and public facilities
at Sapan Hin, located where Phuket Rd., meets
the sea in Phuket Town. In the circle is the
Tin Mining Monument, shaped like a large drill
bit, dedicated to the memory of Captain Edward
Thomas Miles, the Australian who brought the
first tin dredge to Phuket in 1909. The monument
was built in 1969 on the occasion of the 60th
anniversary of tin dredging in Phuket. The
Sport Center is located in the park.
Sea Shell Museum:::
the world's most valuable collection of seashells
has been put on display at Phuket Seashell
near Rawai Beach on the island's southwestern
shores. The emphasis is on shells from Phuket
and Thai waters, which are among the most
sought-after by collectors, however shells
from every part of the world are featured.
Wherever they originate, each shell in the
Shell Museum is the best of its type--very
often the only of its type. Displays have
been created in a logical order, and visitors
can see at once differing characteristics
among related species. There are numerous
rarities and freaks including the world's
largest golden pearl (140 karats), large sections
of sedimentary rock containing shell fossils
that represent the earth's earliest life-forms,
and a shell that weighs 250 kilograms. One
of the world's great private museums, the
Shell Museum is open daily from 8:00 a.m.
till 7:00 p.m. For details call 381266, or
is Thai for Hindu "Brahma"signifying
purity, and "Thep" means 'God'.
Phromthep is a headland stretching into the
sea and forming the extreme south-end of Phuket.
It has been prominent feature for mariners
since of early seafarers from the sub-continent,
remains of whose journey's have been found
all along the Malay-peninsula's west coast.
Beach turn right and go for 2 kms. The cape
has tall cliffs on the south, and was formerly
called by local villagers "Leam Jao"
(The Gods' Cape). From the cliffs running
down to the boulders at the sea is a line
of palm trees. Emerald green currents swirl
in the deep water and breakers hurl themselves
in vain against the rocky point : it is one
of Phuket 's most inspiring vistas. From Promthep
Cape, which is the most beautiful place to
catch Phuket's famous sunset, a road leads
northwest to Nai Han Beach.
of the Chao Ley or Sea Gipsy village, many
restaurants and bungalows, shell handicraft
shops, and both fishing and charter boats
to the nearby islands. The beach itself is
suitable for swimming. Rawai is 7 kms. west
of Chalong Circle.
smallest of Phuket's three main tourist beaches,
Kata is different in appearance and style
from Karon or Patong. The beach itself is
broad and curving, and structures bordering
it are low-rise. The waters are perfect for
swimming, and at the north end is a coral
reef with many varied corals and fishes which
stretches out toward Poo Island., about 1/2
km off shore. Facilities for every price range
include hotels, bungalows, tour companies,
restaurants, bars and clubs. There is regular
bus service to and from Phuket town during
of Kata is Kata Noi, a smaller beach with
only a few hotels and little other development.
The beach is superb. Many fish inhabit the
rocks and corals along the beachless shoreline
stretching south. To get there take the narrow
beach road up over the hill from Kata.
second largest of Phuket's principal tourist
beaches. Large resort complexes line the road
back of the beach, but the strand itself,
long and broad, has no development. The sand
is very white, and squeaks audibly when walked
on. The southern point has a fine coral reef
stretching toward Kata and Poo Island. Restaurants,
bars, tour companies and other non-hotel businesses
are at the north end, near the traffic circle,
and at the south, on the little road connecting
the back road with the beach road. The narrow
road between Kata and Karon has a number of
small businesses as well as the Dino Park
Mini Golf facility. Karon is the most up-scale
of Phuket's beaches. Regular daytime bus service
to and from Phuket Town.
this point can be seen the bays of Kata Noi,
Kata and Karon, and also Poo Island. It is
one of the island's best views. A large public
sala, or shelter is there for visitors, and
several vendors sell food, drinks, and souvenirs
in the area when the weather is nice. The
viewpoint is between Kata and Nai Han Beach.