The locals in Phuket are some of the friendliest and most charming people you will ever meet. It’s not uncommon for complete strangers to smile and wave at you in the street (no, not just the “good time girls”..) and they’ll go out of their way to help a complete stranger.
By nature Thai people are friendly and humble folk. Phuket’s locals are no exception either; treat them with respect and you’ll have friends for life.
Before tourism, the main source of income for the island of Phuket was its abundant sources of tin. As far back as the 17th century, the French, Dutch and British all competed for the opportunity to trade with Phuket for this valuable resource. Eventually, seeking to reduce the influence of the Dutch and the British in the region King Narai named a French missionary as the governor of Phuket. Brother Renee Charbonneau remained governor of Phuket until 1685, after which the tin monopoly the French had established was passed onto their ambassador; the Chevalier de Chaumont.
Phuket was and has always been a trading hub influenced by many cultures. Nowadays, evidence of past foreign influences can still be seen in Phuket’s capital Phuket town in the form of Sino-Portuguese architecture, defining it from any other place on the island.
Food & Drink
As in all tourist detonations around Thailand, you can expect to find the “typical” dishes in most restaurants. Pad Thai, Tom Yam Gung, Khao Pad, etc as well as your standard European fare. There’s also a huge variety of street food in the various markets held around the island and being in the South, be sure to try out the delicious curries!
Fishing is a major source of income for locals on the island and Phuket is a seafood lover’s paradise. Fresh fish caught the very same morning are rushed to restaurants to be served throughout the day. Lobster and tiger prawns are a favourite and are proudly displayed on ice right outside the restaurant.