Saturday, April 13, 2024 | Shawwal 3, 1445 H
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Destination Phuket


Known as the pearl of Andaman, Phuket in Thailand has been growing as a destination because of its natural attractions.

With Oman Air operating five direct flights to Phuket, the destination has become popular with tourists from Oman.

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“Especially after the pandemic, we have noticed that the destination continues to grow. According to reliable sources, the statistics show that there is a daily average of 50 to 60,000 visitors per day to Bangkok. Phuket has become second to Bangkok, especially with its iconic islands and beaches. Looking at the demand for Phuket as a destination, we increased flights to Phuket five times a week,” explained Tariq al Balushi, Country Manager – Thailand, Commercial Sales Department, Oman Air.

Tariq al Balushi, Country Manager – Thailand, Commercial Sales Department, Oman Air
Tariq al Balushi, Country Manager – Thailand, Commercial Sales Department, Oman Air

Phuket is Thailand’s largest island and is internationally renowned for its picturesque landscapes, fresh seafood, architecture, and pleasant climate.

“Thailand as a destination is very popular among Omanis. A high percentage of them would have already been to this destination. The Phuket Package was launched to cater to the local market and to support the airline route,” said Mundar Yaqoub al Shaikhani, Senior Manager of Oman Holidays, looking at the promotion of overseas routes to the global market.

Mundar Yaqoub al Shaikhani, Senior Manager Oman Holidays
Mundar Yaqoub al Shaikhani, Senior Manager Oman Holidays

“We act on our client’s behalf to get the right price, the right product, and the right exposure within the destination. We do that by partnering with the right suppliers in the market dealing with airfare, hotel stay, tours, and guides in addition to providing tailor-made packages based on their budget, requirements, and preferences. This has been very popular initiative,” explained Al Shaikhani.

Patong Beach is a resort town with lines of cafes, restaurants and street food besides shops. Sunsets are popular and marine sports are popular features.

Once upon a time Phuket was bustling for another reason – tin mining which had attracted various nationalities. Remnants of that era can still be seen and experienced through the Sino-Portuguese architecture and unique local cuisine. The place to experience the bygone days is the old town zone, which had once flourished during the time of the tin mining industry.

Today Phuket is a dream holiday and has become a premier destination in the Andaman Sea equipped with an international airport, hotels, accommodations, hospitals, and restaurants of international standard alongside some of the best scenic spots – turquoise seas, white beaches, crescent bays, reefs and not to forget fascinating islets. All this makes adventure sports a delight in Phuket. But most importantly what makes a difference is the people.

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In fact, Bang Thao Beach has been developed from a deserted tin mine into a luxury five-star resort. The beach being a secluded gateway is perfect for swimming, surfing and sailing.

Laem Promthep is just 19 km from the city and is referred to as the island’s iconic image as it is one of the favorite spots to watch the sunset. The cape is also where the Meteorological Department standardized Thailand’s sunset time.

Thailand has spectacular places like Phuket, and Bangkok, which is bustling with activities and malls, safaris, and waterparks.

The natural attractions are many but fascinating are also the cultural aspects. For instance, Hat Rawai is another popular beach, but it is also home to sea gypsies who once wandered around the Andaman Sea. Phuket’s beaches are numerous but some are natural assets such as Mai Khao, located to the north of Sirinat National Park headquarters it is the island’s longest beach, but Mai Khao is not recommended for swimming because it is home to sea cicadas and is a beach where sea turtles come to lay their eggs. As a measure against the decline in sea turtle population and a step toward the preservation project, the Turtle Releasing Festival is held during Songkran, which is Thai’s New Year.

Kamala Beach is where Phuket Fantasea, a cultural theme park is located. It is inspired by Thailand’s rich and exotic heritage. The show is a combination of high technology, pyrotechnics, and tales of yesteryears – a mixture of myths, legends, and history, depicted through song, dance, and aerial ballet. If it is forests that intrigue you, then a place in Phuket that ought not to be missed is Khai Phra Thaeo Wildlife Sanctuary to enjoy nature trails and Ton Sai and Bang Pae Waterfalls.

An island is also a place for festivals such as the Chinese New Year, Chao Le (Sea Gypsy) Festival, Chinese Vegetarian Festival, Laguna Phuket Triathlon, Phuket King’s Cup Regatta and Phuket Carnival.

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Architecture too is a fascination as can be experienced at Wat Chalong, especially for historians as it is a tribute to Luang Pho Chaem, a highly revered leader. Another place tourists love is the Big Buddha.

The wide long steps in the white lead you to the top providing you with beautiful views looking down at the sea and greenery. The 148 ft. meditating Buddha, Ming Mongkol Eknakri, is popular with tourists and here they can also try their hand in meditation. The structure can be seen from other parts too.

What is enjoyable is also the monsoon rains and the way they pour down suddenly. All one has to do is grab the colorful raincoats. The pleasant weather in the island makes you want to walk. While there is normal transport available it is fun to experiment with Tuk Tuk, Songtaew and some prefer motorcycle taxis.

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