Getting around Phuket is a difficult business. Unlike everywhere else in Thailand there are no regular ‘baht bus’ services from beach to beach. You either have to pay extortionate fees to the tuk tuk drivers or hire a scooter, which can be dangerous on Phuket’s crowded and steep, twisting mountain roads.
Phuket Tuk Tuks
If you don’t want to hire a taxi you can take one of the little four-wheeled vans they call tuk-tuks here. They are very expensive though charging as much as 800 baht to get from beach to beach. It is a racket worth avoiding if at all possible. Alternatively you can take a motorcycle taxi for about a quarter of that sum, but many of the driver’s skills are as dubious as are their states of sobriety. There is a bus service from Phuket town that radiates to all parts of the island and costs about 25 baht a trip.
Phuket does have metered taxis but they are few and far between and often the drivers will refuse to use the meter and play the same game of extortion as the tuk-tuk drivers.
Hiring A Scooter On Phuket
Most people hire scooters. They cost between 150 baht and 250 baht a day depending on age and size on most of Phuket. On Naithon and Nai Yang they generally cost 300 baht a day. The roads in Phuket are some of the most dangerous in Thailand so drive slowly and carefully and always wear a helmet. You also definitely want to make sure you have travel insurance (and to ensure you are covered when riding a bike).
Buses do not go from beach to beach but they do radiate out from Phuket town to all parts of the island. They start at Thanon Ranong at the Ranong market. When going from the beaches, they tend to crawl slowly along the beach road looking for passengers. You just wave them down. They are like large open trucks with seating on either side and are generally a scruffy blue. To stop them once aboard you just press the button or pull a cord to ring a bell and alert the driver. They run between 6am and 7pm. They cost between 20 and 30m baht per trip.
There are plenty of things to do in Phuket, both on and off the beach, including stunning views, health treatments, and the annual Vegetarian Festival.
Phuket Travel Guide
- Phuket: A Very Quick Travel Guide
- How To Get To Phuket
- Getting Around Phuket
- Phuket's Best Beaches
- Phuket's Beaches - A Brief Guide
- Things To Do In Phuket
- Phuket Town
- Phuket Hotels - Where To Stay
- Check Phuket Hotel Availability
- Phuket Map
- Phuket Vegetarian Festival
- Phuket Daytrips
- Phuket Nightlife