Phuket is the biggest island in Thailand, located in the Andaman Sea of southern Thailand. One of the most popular tourist areas on Phuket is Patong Beach on the central western coast, perhaps owing to the easy access to its wide and long beach.
Most of Phuket’s nightlife and its cheap shopping is located in Patong, and the area has become increasingly developed. Other popular beaches are located south of Patong. In a counterclockwise direction these include Karon Beach, Kata Beach and Kata Noi Beach, and around the southern tip of the island, Nai Harn Beach and Rawai. To the north of Patong are Kamala Beach, Surin Beach and Bang Tao Beach.
These areas are generally much less developed than Patong, and sought out by individuals, families and other groups with a preference for more relaxed and less crowded environs than Patong.
There are many islands to the southeast, including Bon Island, just a short boat trip away.
There are several coral islands to the south of Phuket, the Similan Islands lie to the north west, and Phi Phi Islands to the south east. Islanders engage in a lively tourist trade, catering to snorkelers and scuba divers.