Phuket is an island, one of the southern provinces of Thailand. Neighboring provinces are Phang Nga, Krabi.
Phuket is the biggest island among islands of Thailand, it is almost the size of Singapore. Phuket is connected with the mainland by a bridge. It is situated closer to the western shore of the Andaman Sea. Its total area is 543 square kilometers and it has one big and 39 small islands.
Originally Phuket was famous for its tin and caoutchouc resources.
The Island is one of the main trade - routes between India and China, it was often mentioned in foreign ship day - books. This region gets its most profit from tourism.
Phuket in Malaysian language means "Hill" as remotely it looks like a hill. Originally it was called Thalang, in old Malaysian it is Telong meaning "Foreland".
The northern part of the province, where there was an old capital, is still called Telong.
In the 16th century tin mining was the main profit. Mines belonged to Chinese businessmen. With the low costs for tin the mines were abandoned. Nowadays Phuket economics is based on two sources: caoutchouc plantations and tourism. Diving in particular attracts thousands of tourists each year.
Since 1980s sandy beaches on the Western Coast of the Island turned into resort centers, Patong, Karon, Kata are among them. After Tsunami in 2004 all ruined constructions were rebuilt.
we can see the growth of prices on Phuket during the last decade.
The major part of inhabitants are Buddists although there is about 30 percent of Muslims( they are descendants of salesmen in general. There are a lot of people of Chinese origin. Peranakans as well known as "Phuket Babas" is a part of Chinese society, of those who have connection with Penang and Malacca.
Time shift on Phuket is UTC + 7.
Patong beach is one of the most popular places on Phuket, as it is situated in the center of the Western shore with an easy access to a wide and long beach.It is famous for its rich nightlife different cheap shops. Patong means "The wood full of banana leaves" in Thai.
Some other popular beaches are Karon Beach, Kata Beach, Kata Noi Beach situated to the south of Patong. Nai Harn Beach, Rawai are to the south. And Kamala, Surin, Bang tao to the north of Patong. Tourists oriented on family peaceful rest visit these places.
Phuket is surroundede by many Islands such as Bon Island (to the South - East), some coral Islands (to the South), Similan Islands (to the South - West). Phi-Phi is to the Souts - East.
Islands inhabitants are busy with trade and provide leisure for tourists.