Phuket Island, Thailand
Phuket Island is famous as “the pearl of Andaman Sea”, the paradise of Thailand. Phuket became one of the most popular tourist destinations for worldwide travelers.
Phuket is Thailand’s largest island and nestles against the Indian Ocean Coast some 870 kilometers south of Bangkok. Phuket derives its wealth from tin and rubber, is blessed with teeming marine life, and has enjoyed a rich and colorful history.
Phuket is also one of the major Asian gateways for ocean cruises. Recently a new concept has emerged: Spa Cruises. Combining Thai traditional ways of relaxing the body and mind with all amenities of an up-market cruise .
Patong Beach is the most popular and well-developed beach on Phuket Island. Long recognized as one of the world’s Top 10 diving sites, Phuket is now Thailand’s most important tourist destination, offering a variety of beaches, attractions and exciting night life.
Patong Beach is a beach on Phuket’s west coast. It is the main tourist resort in Phuket and contains the centre of Phuket’s nightlife and cheap shopping on the island. The beach became popular with western tourists, especially Europeans, in the late 1980s. Numerous large hotels and chain hotels are located in Patong
Patong Beach is maybe more famous for its nightlife than the 2-kilometer beach that runs the entire length of Patong. Nightlife is centered on two main areas Bangla Road and Paradise Complex, with Bangla Road being predominantly straight and Paradise Complex being predominantly gay. Much mixing of the two scenes occurs due to Phuket Island’s tolerant nature.
On December 26, 2004, Patong Beach along with many other areas along the western coast of Phuket and Thailand were struck by a tsunami caused by the 2004 Indian Ocean earthquake. The wave caused a great deal of destruction to the waterfront of the beach although the destruction was not nearly as bad as nearby in Khao Lak. It took probably less than 6 months to rebuild 80% of what was destroyed and 1 year after you could hardly not see any traces of destruction caused by the Tsunami.
Patong Beach - History
Official permanent population is 14797 (2006) persons but the real number is probably as high as 60,000 in high season.
1827 Baan Kathu and Baan Patong are small villages without convenient transportation
1898 The Island is organized into five grades of local administration.
1947 The government approves 60,000 THB for a basic road over the hill to Patong
1969 Patong is upgraded to a “sanitation district” and taxes of 20,000 THB a year are collected.
1976 A sealed road is built to Patong.
1979 Electricity arrives
1994 Patong sanitation district is upgraded to a municipally
2004 Patong was hit by the Asian Tsunami 26 December
2005 Recovery year, tourism back to 80% at end of the year. Opening of Patong OTOP Shopping Paradise, Thanon Rat-U-Thit 200P (south end).
2006 Jungceylon, Patong’s first full-fledged modern air-con shopping mall, complete with 200 shops, integrated hotel, etc. Still under construction and the opening has been postponed several times, but will probably launch some time in end of 2006.