New Experiences | Phuket, Thailand

January 20, 2016

Let the Thailand Island Hopper West adventure begin! Arriving a day ahead was the perfect option for me as I got to adjust to the time difference and relax before joining a fun-filled group tour.

Phuket, Thailand.
My check in to the hotel where I will meeting the tour group wasn't until 2pm so I had all morning to layout by the pool. If you want a full hotel review on my accommodation at the Merlin Beach Resort (click here). After checking out, I took a taxi to my next accommodation and loved seeing the beautiful scenery from my taxi window. As we got closer to the Patong beach area, you could immediately tell this is the place to be! Full of tourists, vendors, motor bikes everywhere, massage shops, and restaurants this area was huge difference from where I was staying the night before. My room wasn't ready to check in yet, so I walked around the hotel grounds and got a drink at the bar. Our tour meeting wasn't until 6pm that evening, so you have time to decompress and explore at your leisure.

After settling in my room, I finally met my roommate! She was from Australia and we got along so great and had a lot of similar interests. During our tour meeting, everyone introduced themselves which was great ice breaker. We then paid for our optionals, which I recommend doing all of them! Then we headed to a restaurant to have our first Thai food experience. Our tour manager wanted to us to give us a taste of the night life so we headed to Bangla Road. The energy there is insane but we didn't party to hard since most people still had jet-lag. My roommate decided to stay out and a bunch of other people who had the energy, and they were had a blast!

The following day we had our first optional which was the James Bond excursion! Also we went to a Thai cabaret which which was so beautiful. Lots of amazing costumes and performances but you aren't allowed to take photos so I don't have any to show in the blog. I just wanted to mention it because I think it's optional that is worth going to! Also you're able to take pictures with the performers after the show (btw they ask for money). If you want an in depth review on my experience with the Thailand Island Hopper West tour (click here). Hope you enjoy the following photos and stay tuned for my Koh Phi Phi post.

Big Buddha. 
Visit the Buddha statue (Phra Phuttha Mingmongkhon Akenakkhiri)! A bunch of us took a cab ride up to see the Buddha up close and it is also one of Phuket's landmarks. You can see it from many parts of the island but seeing the temple up close was very impressive. It's free of charge and houses an exhibition with the story of Buddha. There are monks on the grounds greeting visitors as well as blessing you. If you're not a religious person, I still think it's a must stop when in Phuket. Experiencing something completely different and learning about new cultures is what traveling is all about. Also the drive to the temple, you get to see amazing views of the island from up above!

Patong Beach.  
Patong Beach is at the center and nearby Phuket's main attractions. It is a pretty busy beach but also family-friendly. It has a great atmosphere with many water sports offered, souvenir sellers, restaurants and shops nearby. It's also walking distance from the hotel which was great! There are other popular beaches such as (Kata and Karon Beach) but you would need a taxi to get there. I got an hour long full body Thai massage at a nearby place from the beach (best massage I ever gotten). From then on I got massages practically everyday, it is so cheap and worth it. Also a few other girls and I got henna's done at the beach and got really cute unique souvenirs from a jewelery seller.

James Bond Island Excursion.
This excursion on a speed boat stopped in three different locations and included lunch! The first stop was Hong Lagoon, where we transferred from the speed boat into canoes. This is when I realized that I was in Thailand! The views coming out the cave, seeing the limestone rocks, and trees- just WOW! Truly a breathtaking experience, bring out your cameras and just enjoy the canoe ride. The next stop James Bond Island, beautiful, scenic place for photos and of course a legendary location where they filmed The Man with the Golden Gun. The next stop was Panyee Island, a muslim floating village, were we stopped to have some lunch. It was buffet style so you can get as much as you want. After lunch we had time to explore the floating village and stumbled upon their school grounds. The final stop of the excursion was to Naka Island, this beach looks like a post card! They have the coolest fruit-y drinks to cool you down from the scorching hot sun. We got to sunbathe a little bit in the mostly bluest before heading back to Patong.

Tiger Kingdom.
A group of six of us went to go take pictures with some tigers on our free day. This is one the craziest things I have ever done. There are a few tiger kingdoms located in Thailand. There are different packages offered to pet and takes pictures with different size tigers. Professional photographers are available for an additional cost but if you're with a friend they can take it for you or the trainers that are there. We decided to take pictures with the a small and large tiger. The trainers will tell you what to do and what not to do while being in  the same vicinity as the tigers. It was definitely a unique experience and something I will never forget!

Bangla Road.
Bangla Road is where the nightlife is located! When the sun goes down, the actions begins. It is a busy strip filled with bars, nighclubs, and lounges. It's busy filled with party go-ers ready to experience Thai nightlife. We came the first night and had our first buckets! They serve (freehand) alcoholic beverages in buckets (so crazy)! We also went to experience a ping-pong show (Google it). Lets just say.... I would never want to see that again. Our last night in Phuket we went clubbing, one of the greatest nights. We paid a fee at the entrance that allowed us to an open bar until 1 am. A few of us got alcohol poisoning this night (unfortunately, I never got sleep this night because of it). Don't go overboard partying on the last night because you have a ferry ride the following morning!

Comment below,
Where in Asia is your favorite place to travel to?

Until the next post!
-WanderlustBeautyDreams ♡ 


  1. What a beautiful location. My highlight when in Phuket was walking down to the airport and watching the planes land over head. Watching them take off was an experience as we got blown into the ocean behind us...literally!

    1. This made really LOL. Omg that sounds like a crazy travel story, hope you were okay!