Phuket Old Town

Discover Phuket's Historical Centre

Unlike many Thai provincial capitals, Phuket Town shines with personality and nowhere more so than its Old Town. In this historically rich part of town you will find shrines, temples (Buddhist and Chinese), ornate and beautifully preserved 'shophouses', quaint cafés, tiny printing shops, impromptu private and public museums and even a mini ex-red light district.

Phuket Old Town was built on riches reaped from Phuket's tin boom of last century, when the metal was an extremely valuable commodity. In this quarter of the town, you'll see grandiose Sino-colonial mansions, once occupied by Phuket's tin barons. Phuket Old Town is compact enough to stroll around in. The best time to do this is early in the morning or after the day has lost its heat. There are enough restaurants and cafés to provide you with refreshments so don't bother taking a picnic along.

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Popular places in Phuket Old Town

Amulet Market in Phuket Town

In a tiny alley off Rassada Road in Phuket Town, not far from the Fountain Circle is the Phuket Buddha image and amulet market, a specialised market that attracts many local and overseas Buddhists. In the alley is a long row of stands, each displaying hundreds of amulets. Behind these is a small row of shops, Read More...

  • Opening Hours: Daily from 8am to 7pm
  • Location: Ratsada Rd, Talat Yai, Mueang, Phuket 83000, Thailand
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Baan Chinpracha

Baan Chinpracha, at 98 Krabi Road in Phuket, is a fine example of a Sino-Colonial mansion and is just a few doors away from the famous Blue Elephant Restaurant. Visitors not only will have a sneak peek of how a wealthy Phuket family used to live many decades ago but they can meet its owner too. Read More...

  • Opening Hours: Daily from 9am to 4.30pm
  • Location: 98 Krabi, Talat Nuea, Mueang, Phuket 83000, Thailand
  • Tel: +66 (0)76 211 281
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Blue Elephant Restaurant Phuket

Blue Elephant specialises in Royal Thai cuisine – a rich and exotic combination of flavours once uniquely created for the Royal Palace that has recently grown popular because of the global spread of Thai cooking.

The Phuket branch is based in a splendid, old Chinese-colonial style mansion set in sprawling grounds near the heart of the Read More...

  • Opening Hours: Daily from 9am to 10.30pm
  • Location: 96 Krabi, Talat Nuea, Mueang, Phuket 83000, Thailand
  • Tel: +66 (0)76 354 355
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China Inn Café in Phuket Town

China Inn Café & Restaurant, a beautifully restored example of what people can do with a rundown old building if they possess dedication, patience and vision. The restaurant stands in the heart of Phuket’s old town; a place brimming with history and tradition. Diners sit outside at China Inn and it’s tastefully fitted out with antique Read More...

  • Opening Hours: Tuesday–Wednesday from 10.30am to 6pm, Thursday–Saturday from 10.30am to 9pm (closed on Monday)
  • Location: 21 Thalang Rd, Talat Yai, Mueang, Phuket 83000, Thailand
  • Tel: +66 (0)76 356 239
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Dibuk Road

The road directly to the north of Thalang Road is Dibuk Road. Here, Phuket's past is evoked – dibuk being Thai for tin. This road features textile and arts shops and a French restaurant called the Dibuk. Further south lies Phang Nga Road where you will see an old Phuket establishment, the On On Hotel.

The On On is famous for being famous: many backpackers choose to stay there, in spite of the rather meagre facilities, less-than-cheery staff, gloomy rooms and other, cheaper and brighter alternatives close by. Perhaps people are drawn to it because of its star quality – the hotel featured as a Bangkok flophouse in the movie The Beach. 

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Jui Tui Shrine

The Chinese Jui Tui Shrine is where people use bamboo blocks to obtain advice from the shrine's oracle. Ask a 'yes or no' question then throw the blocks gently in the air. If both blocks land on the same side the answer is 'no'. If one lands up and the other down the answer is 'yes'. A Read More...

  • Opening Hours: Daily from 8am to 8.30pm
  • Location: 283 Soi Phutorn, Talat Nuea, Mueang, Phuket 83000, Thailand
  • Tel: +66 (0)76 213 243
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Phuket Philatelic Museum

Located inside an 80-year-old building on Montri Road, the stamp museum looks amazing from the outside. There are 3 sections inside: the first part exhibits posters explaining how the Thai Postal Service has developed since its start during the reign of forward-thinking King Rama V. The second room houses a good amount of antique equipment and machines, such as telegraph tickers, telephones, and parcel-weighing machines.

The last section is a souvenir room where sets of Thai stamps are on sale, along with other items. All information is in both English and Thai. Entry is free.

  • Opening Hours: Monday–Friday from 9am to 5pm, Saturday–Sunday from 8.30am to 4.30pm
  • Location: Montri Rd, Talat Nuea, Mueang, Phuket 83000, Thailand
  • Tel: +66 (0)76 216 951
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Shrine of the Serene Light

The Shrine of the Serene Light is a beautiful old Chinese shrine which was, at one point, among the finest secret sites of Phuket Town. Formerly only accessible through a non-descript alley, the entrance has now been widened and made significantly grander, making it now one of the most popular shrines in Phuket.

Founded in 1891 Read More...

  • Location: 72/1 Yaowarat Rd, Talat Yai, Mueang, Phuket 83000, Thailand
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Soi Romanee

Soi Romanee is located in the heart of Phuket Old Town. A walk along the soi evokes Phuket’s interesting history. Like many streets in Phuket’s Old Town, there are lots of attractive Sino-Portuguese style shophouses. Some of the vintage buildings have been converted into bars, guesthouses and cafés. Here you can enjoy an easy-going night out. Read More...

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Suriyadate Fountain

At the western end of Rassada Road stands a traffic circle with what looks like large green guns mounted on it. This is the Suriyadate Fountain and the water-spouting 'guns' are in fact what used to be extremely powerful water cannons that blasted topsoil and rocks away in the tin mining process.

  • Location: Ratsada Rd, Talat Nuea, Muang, Phuket 83000, Thailand
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Thai Hua Museum

Thai Hua Museum on Krabi Road is one of the best looking and well-maintained Sino-Portuguese buildings in Phuket. This recently renovated building was at one stage a Chinese-language school.

These days, it's used as a museum, exhibition space and an occasional function hall. The Thai Hua Museum was given an award in the category of constitutional Read More...

  • Opening Hours: Daily from 9am to 5pm
  • Location: 28 Krabi Road, Talat Nuea, Mueang, Phuket 83000, Thailand
  • Tel: +66 (0)76 211 224
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Thalang Road

Thalang Road is the main central street of Phuket’s charming Old Town. This quaint, narrow boulevard is studded with numerous attractions, great shops, an eclectic mix of restaurants, several small guesthouses and more, all housed in the beautiful Sino-Portuguese architecture which makes Phuket Town so famous. As well as being one of the oldest streets in

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  • Tel: +66 (0)7 635 6239
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Thavorn Hotel Museum

On Rassada Road (named after Ratsada Korsimbi Na Ranong, Phuket's forward-thinking governor of 100 years' ago), in the Thavorn Hotel, you will find a fascinating collection of miscellaneous memorabilia in its lobby and adjoining ground floor rooms. Here, there are strongboxes, ancient-looking typewriters, antique post boxes and toys as well as photos from past eras to admire.

  • Opening Hours: Daily from 8am to 5pm
  • Location: 74 Ratsada Rd, Talad Yai, Mueang, Phuket 83000, Thailand
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The Memory at On On Hotel

The Memory at On On Hotel was made famous in 2000 because of its appearance in the Leonardo Di Caprio film The Beach. Located along Phang Nga Road in Phuket Old Town and formerly known as On On Hotel (in Chinese, ‘un un’ means ‘happiness for all visitors’), it went through a complete renovation in 2012 Read More...

  • Location: 19 Phangnga Rd, Talat Yai, Mueang, Phuket 83000, Thailand
  • Tel: +66 (0)76 363 700

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