Patong Beach is a tantalizing combination of sun, sand, sea, and seductive nights. A popular holiday destination on the west coast of Phuket Island in Thailand, Patong Beach has patrons from all over the world. This highly developed beach resort town has about 2-mile long white sandy beach and numerous restaurants, hotels, and bars close by. In addition to that, Patong has some of the best night-streets that are best-known for the raunchy pleasures they offer – Paradise Complex and Bangla Road. In the recent years, the town has also added a large shopping mall (Jungceylon) and various shops that sell clothes, accessories, and handicrafts.
Patong Beach Activities
There are two things close to the heart of every Patong Beach tourist – lounging on the beach during the day and partying and bar hopping at night at the Bangla Road hotspots. This, however, is just the tip of the excitement that Patong Beach offers. Here are some of the other popular activities one can enjoy doing in and near Patong.
Bungee Jumping – The Jungle Bungy Jump is a must-go for every thrill-seeking adventure enthusiast visiting Patong. It is just 15-minute drive away and has a well-established setup to ensure safe fun. Every participant is given five different ways of bungee jumping – standard, tandem, catapult, backward, and water touch. Along with the exhilarating experience, the participant gets to take away a certificate, a t-shirt, and photographic memories.
Flying Hanuman – Flying with the help of a harness is one of the most innovative ways of seeing the rainforests in Phuket. Participants are given all kinds of security equipments to zip through sky bridges, rails, and ziplines. Although one must make sure to lather on enough mosquito repellents to enjoy the experience without any pest bites.
Zorbing – Hill Rolling, as it is officially called, is all about rolling inside a gigantic plastic ball down a steep hill. Rollerball, the company offering zorbing, is located at Kalim Beach and offers free transfers to and from Patong.
Go-Karting – Patong Go-Kart Speedway offers a Mini Grand Prix experience for both kids and adults. It has an 820-yard racing track with sharp turns and smooth bends. In addition, there is an off-road track for those looking for a more challenging drive.
Patong Beach Attractions
The beach area of Patong is in itself a highly popular attraction. It offers opportunities for swimming, sun bathing, and jet skiing. Check out the other places to visit in and around Patong Beach below.
Bangla Road – Outdoor bars, go-go bars, discotheques, neon signs, blaring music, street entertainment, and skimpily dressed young women, Soi Bangla is a vehicle-prohibited stretch famous for its nightlife. As the sun goes down, the road is thronged with people who are mostly here to drink, dance, and let themselves loose. Some of the favorite Bangla hangouts include Seduction Beach Club and Disco, Soi Sea Dragon, Heroes Bar, and Sin City Bar. Apart from the bars and pubs, Bangla Road has restaurants, massage parlors, tailor shops, souvenir or gift stores, and hotels.
Paradise Complex – It is similar to Bangla Road. The only difference is that it provides voyeuristic enjoyment for gays.
Wat Suwan Khiri Wong – Wat Patong, as it is commonly known as, is a Thai Buddhist temple. It is located at the crossing of Phrabarami and Phisit Karani Road, at the foot of Patong Hill. The temple has a holy aura with various Lord Buddha statues, intricately designed traditional buildings, and a prayer hall. There are monks who live in the temple and lead a purist life.
Tiger Kingdom –There is a place where a person can be safe with a tiger in a room and this is Tiger Kingdom. The concept of Tiger Kingdom is pretty simple. They rear tigers since birth around humans and allow them being petted. People can also take pictures with them. There is although a number of rules that must be followed and paperwork that must be signed before the ultimate meeting. Tiger Kingdom is situated near Patong Go-Kart Speedway and is open from 9 a.m. to 6 p.m.
Patong Boxing Stadium – Another tourist favorite, this 350-seater stadium, on the Sai Namyen Road, showcases various staged and real Muay Thai boxing matches. The fights are between professionals trained in the stadium’s training wing and amateurs who wish to participate. Tickets are sold according to the location of the seat; the closer the seat to the arena, higher the price. There is a large screen as well that makes witnessing the match easier for those at the back.
Beaches – The long west coastal stretch of Phuket Island has numerous beaches other than Patong Beach. Tourists take a short trip to the closest ones like Kalim, Freedom, and Paradise, usually to get away from the crowd. Kalim Beach at Patong’s north is a popular hangout for surfers and hill rollers. Freedom Beach on its southern end is about 650 feet above Patong Bay and has white sand, long-tail boats, and lots of places to sunbathe. On the southwest lies Paradise Beach, a stunning and small strip of just about 490 feet, featuring coral reefs and a dense cover of palm and tropical almond trees.
Phuket Mining Museum – This museum in Kathu showcases the tin-mining heritage of the island through photographs and models re-creating caves, mines, and the lives of miners and their families. The museum is about 6.8 miles from Patong Beach via Route 4029 and PK. 3030. Its opening hours are from 9 a.m. to 4 p.m., Monday to Saturday.
Kathu Waterfall – Tourists who wish to visit Patong between June and November, Kathu Waterfall is a must see. This is because its real beauty is seen only during the rainy season. A rather out-of-the-ordinary waterfall is surrounded by a dense green cover. Rain water that gets collected into the pools is ideal for taking a dip in. It is situated about 4.9 miles from Patong Beach.
Patong Beach Hotels
Patong Beach, being a highly popular tourist destination, has no dearth of accommodation options. A variety of hotels, service apartments, bed and breakfasts, villas, and resorts lie at every few steps. Hotels that are situated a few kilometers away from the beach and areas and are famous for their nightlife like Bangla Road tend to be cheaper. Of course hoteliers who do not have an English speaking staff offer only a few amenities and charge lesser.
Backpackers and budget travelers should prefer to stay at hostels and guesthouses. Apsara Residence Phuket, Patong Backpacker Hostel, Dive Den, Priew Wan Guesthouse, and Presley Guesthouse are some good budget accommodations in Patong. They may not be by the sea and provide only the basic amenities, but for those who wish to spend their time outdoors and only use the room to sleep, these can be ideal. For tourists for whom money is not an issue, accommodations include Amari Phuket, La Flora Resort Patong, and Absolute Bangla Suites. They offer luxurious comfort, visually pleasing interiors, dedicated service staff, and facilities such as swimming pool, spa, gym, and business center. Mid-range hotels are also available in Patong that have decent rooms, amiable service, and select amenities. Patong Mansion Hotel, Holiday Inn Resort Phuket, and Seaview Patong Hotel are the well-known mid-range hotels in the area.
Where is Patong Beach?
Patong Beach is located in the Kathu District, close to Phuket Town in the island of the same name. A drive from the town will take around 20 minutes.
Patong Beach Map
How to Reach?
By Air: Foreign tourists can either fly directly to Phuket or indirectly via Bangkok. Phuket International Airport is the nearest destination to Patong. It is about 22 miles away. There are a number of transport options available from the airport, from metered and “limousine’ taxis to shared mini-buses and local buses. A taxi is the fastest way to reach Patong Beach. It takes about 40 to 60 minutes depending on the traffic via Route 402.
Tourists many a times like to take a detour to Phuket Island and Patong Beach from Bangkok. Domestic flights ply daily and at regular intervals between Bangkok and Phuket and it takes only about an hour to reach. Even though traveling by road is not a preferred option, there are a number of air-conditioned and non-air conditioned buses connecting the two cities. The journey takes about 12 to 14 hours. The distance between Phuket and Patong Beach can be covered by a local bus, taxi or hired car.
Best Time to Visit
Owing to its proximity to the equator, Patong Beach gets hot in the summer season (March to May), has heavy rainfall during the rainy season (May to October), and is mild and cool during the winter season (November to March). Winter, therefore, is the best time to enjoy the beach in Patong. Again, hotel rates, restaurants prices, and all other tourist services costs are high during this time. Budget travelers can visit during the rainy season to avail discounted stays, eats, transports, and services.
- There are 750 licensed hotels in Patong and 46,803 accommodations registered to the authorities.
- Patong was severely destroyed during the tsunami and earthquake of 2004. Since then, it has recovered pretty well.
- Phuket and Patong used to be mining islands rather than tourist islands. Its diverse racial population owes its roots to the people who traveled from far away to work in the mines.
What things you should keep in mind while searching for or booking a hotel?
- Hotel booking websites have a wealth of information about accommodations in Patong. It is best to research through reviews and user-posted photographs of the hotel to make an informed decision. After all, a privacy-seeking couple wouldn’t want to end up in a hostel even though the name says “boutique hotel.”
- Busy streets in Patong can get real noisy at certain hours in the day and during festivals. Those looking for a quiet vacation should avoid booking a hotel stay on such streets.
- Hotels usually offer airport transfers with or without extra cost. Unless haggling and spending long traveling hours is your thing, availing the service can save you from an exasperating experience in the beginning of your Patong trip.
What can make my traveling around Patong hassle free?
- Although many people in Patong know English, their fluency may be an issue. If you do not want to be misunderstood, carry your hotel and sightseeing addresses written in Thai on a sheet of paper.
- Always keep a bottle of water with you and stay hydrated at all times. The heat can be overwhelming if you are not prepared.
- Patong can be pretty overcrowded during its peak season. Hence, be careful of your belongings and the fact that the places you wish to visit may have more heads than you can imagine. If you do not like crowd, it is best to go during the rainy season.
WBPG, WBVDAPublished On: Thursday, May 21st, 2015