Challenge: Phuket

What do overpriced restaurants serving mediocre food, beautiful blue water, and topless Swedes have in common?

Phuket, people. Phuket.

Okay, many of you already know that the “ph” in Phuket is not pronounced like an “f” sound, but I wasn’t really sure about this until recently. So get your mind out of the gutter about the pronunciation, okay?

When we were at Khao Sok National Park, we decided to head to Phuket, because why the hell not?

We drove for about 3 or 3.5 hours across two-lane highways where sometimes there were no 7-11s for at least 10 kilometers. It was truly the countryside. I almost passed out a couple of times because I didn’t have snacks for upwards of 10 minutes. It was like torture–TORTURE!

When we got to Phuket, we randomly went to Kata beach, which was all sorts of awesome.

I bought a headband from a nice gentleman for 50 baht (under $2).

The thing about this beach, though? If somebody just plunked me down there, I wouldn’t even know I was in Thailand. There were only white people, except for the surprisingly non-pushy Thai people selling things. Also, the Thai people were completely covered up.

All the white people: teensy bikinis, including the men (Men: PLEASE STOP WITH THE BANANA HAMMOCKS, ESPECIALLY IF YOU ARE OLD AND LEATHERY AND YOUR SUIT KIND OF GAPES OPEN AT THE CROTCHAL REGION. NOBODY WANTS TO SEE THAT, ESPECIALLY ME).

All the Thai people: covered head-to-freaking-toe. I felt for them–it must be rough working on the beach all day in a country that does not prize dark skin.

The beach was pretty much ALL Swedes and then us, and it was really quiet, thank the lord. No stupid beach bars playing regulation Bob Marley music. Seriously, is it, like, a LAW that you have to play Bob Marley if you’re a beach bar? I think it is. Point is, the beach was quiet. No dumb reggae music. Not many kids, either; it was a chill, older-ish crowd, which suits me just fine because I have been about 80 since the day I was born.

Also it was populated with young Swedish women with no tops. And old women wearing THONG bikinis. THONG BIKINIS.

We rented lounge chairs for the day for 100 baht (around $3). That made up for the fact that the food at the restaurants was insanely overpriced. Pad thai was an average of probably 150 baht (about $5-$6), which is a great deal if you’re making dollars, I suppose, and are used to pad thai being way more than that. But when you’re making Thai baht and you’re used to buying pad thai for 30 baht (around $1), it comes as a shock.

Still, it’s a beach town, and all beach towns cost more than real life, which makes you feel like you’re really treating yourself, right? And it was worth it because it was beaaaautiful the entire time we were there. So hooray for overpriced mediocre food!

And for that matter, hooray for mediocrity! (No, I don’t know what this means, but it seemed like the right thing to say at the time. Shut up!)

This is me in my one-piece retro-style swimsuit. It's awesome, and I feel very 40s-movie-star-glamourous in it, but I will never again feel bad about myself in a bikini. I was BY FAR the most covered-up white person on the entire beach. Not kidding. Even the old lady next to us was wearing a bikini, and then she TOOK OFF HER TOP TO CHANGE INTO A SHIRT and we were like, WOW, saggy boobs! Maybe she needed the breast-firming soap? JUST SAYING.

After we left Kata to go to another beach to watch the sunset, we took a wrong turn and ended up on a hill (too lazy to look up the name) in Phuket City, which had a bunch of monkeys running around trying to steal people’s food. I have an irrational hatred of monkeys now because of that stupid monkey who ran after me and stole my crackers in Phetchaburi.

Tell your relative in Phetchaburi that I still want my 20 baht, monkey! And that I'm suing for emotional damages!

This is where the monkeys live. Check out that view! You could build some condos up here and make a million! Dollars, not baht!

I kid. Monkeys don't have jobs, so they can't get a mortgage and you'd lose all your money. It's a bad investment idea--that's why I was an English major!

We finally got back on track and drove up north along the Andaman Sea, while I proceeded to exclaim, over and over, “Wow, look at all the people! Stupid tourists. Wait, I’m a tourist, too. But STILL! I’m not like THOSE tourists.”

Clearly I am superior to the other tourists on that beach, which I didn't actually go to. You can just tell I'm better, can't you?

We finally made it to Ao Bang Thao to watch the sunset. This is where the rich folk go to stay. We are not the rich folk, so we just visited for a couple of hours.

Come on, of course I was reading. Yeah, yeah, beautiful beach. What happens next in "Jesus Land"?! (Spoiler: Nobody gets saved and I bawled at the end. GAH.)

It was super quiet and populated by many Russian tourists.

Ahhh...almost no people.

And then the sun went down on Sunday evening…

And thus ended our time in Phuket...

Final Score:

My good buddy over at BrockEats said that my point system was completely arbitrary. Which it IS, but I don’t care. Because I like to WIN. Don’t say I didn’t warn ya’.

So…

Phuket: 0  Megan: 1

Sweet!

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19 Comments

Filed under Awesome, Thailand, Trips

19 responses to “Challenge: Phuket

  1. Retro swimming costume = GORGEOUS!!!

  2. MB

    You have the beautiful beach, but I have the nachos. I’d say it’s a tie. (Though another month of this icy, snowy bullshit and I may reconsider.)

    • Yeah, beach or nachos…I’m not sure which one I would choose if I had to. I would give up the beach for the icy, snowy bullshit when it’s 1,000 degrees here, though…

  3. Another awesome post, but no surprise there. I actually have a couple of Swedish students that told me they went to Thailand twice, to Phuket no less, so I’m pretty sure they were in the crowd.
    I can SO relate to reading everywhere..and when it comes to books I totally have ADD…I start with “Whispers of the Dead” by Simon Becket…in the meantime I discover “Around the world in 80 days”….after a few pages I begin reading “The lord of the rings” and now I’m immersed in “The neverending story”…gosh, I do hope I can finish at least one of them until some other book sneaks up on me!

  4. I haven’t been to Phuket in years. I have my mother coming over in a few months though, and it might be a good place to take her for a few days.

    You seem to be doing a lot of travelling around at the moment Megan – you’re very lucky.

    Great view in that 4th picture up from the bottom.

  5. I’m glad we get to live vicariously though you! Phuket (*giggle*) looks very lovely. Since I was born and raised in PARADISE (aka Hawaii), I never have gone south. There’s just no novelty in it but once this English teaching gig pays off I’ll have to saunter on down there.

    • Oh yeah, I guess that southern Thailand really has nothing on Hawaii. You’re so lucky that you can be all “whatever” to the beautiful beaches. Sigh…if only…

  6. Thus is the rule of the topless beach: Those that could, don’t. Those that shouldn’t, do.
    Ewww leathery people.

    Germans are very into both the random nudity and the speedos for men, both of which fall under the rule of the topless beach, and thus is disturbing.

  7. I am IN LOVE with the suit, very retro glam fo sho! Now I want to go and watch some more Mad Men.

    Awesome post, hilarious!! Now I know that I don’t have to go to chilly Sweden to meet Swedes, I’ll just go to F&$%et. Cheers!

  8. Thank goodness you did not get to Patong. Phuket is a big island with a lot of variety. I’ve lived here since 1999, doing the Phuket blog since 2006. I personally avoid the main beaches and budgie smugglers as much as possible. If you have time, my blog is here: Jamie’s Phuket Blog. Cheers!

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