Travel Alert: Phuket's beaches can be very dangerous for swimming. Check the Health & Safety page for advice.
Chaotic Patong’s beautiful curved beach sparks with frenetic electricity. The steamy streets seethe with souvenir shops, girlie bars, pricey seafood restaurants, dive shops, travel agencies, hotels and everything in between. Scantily clad golden-brown travellers pay homage to the neon gods, dancing the night away to booming sound systems in sweaty, pulsating clubs, or sipping Singha under the stars at sandy beachside bars. Demurely dressed diners dine on giant prawns and Italian wines at decadent, romantic restaurants where the views are as worthwhile as the food.
Hat Patong is the island’s most popular beach, and it seems to be trying to become the next Pattaya – the streets are filled with flashy fluorescent signs lighting the night sky with a lurid red glow – but it’s not nearly as creepy and by day it’s quite fine for kids. The sort of people drawn to this teeming, neon-lit atmosphere will adore Patong, while the more peace-loving souls (you know who you are) might want to stay far, far away.
Although most of Patong has been spruced up, some reconstruction continues.
Last updated: Dec 7, 2009
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