Phuket Taxi and Transfers

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Thread: Rawai/Nai Harn/Chalong short trip report

  1. #1
    Cadet
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    Rawai/Nai Harn/Chalong short trip report

    Hi all,

    As i spent a lot of time on the board before i went on my trip and many of you were very helpful (many not also) i thought i'd just give a few tips on this often ignored part of Phuket. i've been going to this area on and off for 10+ years but this was my first time back in just over 2 years, i'd read a lot on here and other forums about how things had changed, all for the worse apparently and whilst lots had changed, there is still a lot of nonsense written on these boards that could have put me off! so i'll be totally honest and candid as i can be given the rules. I'll tell it how it is, so people can make an informed decision, i'm not encouraging any dodgy behaviour just stating facts, so it would be really nice if there weren't loads of replies from people taking the moral high ground and being superior!

    the main thing i've learnt in my 6 or so trips and over 10 years visiting the same area, is that lots of things change constantly, places that were popular and busy, have become quiet and boring and vice versa. but some things never seem to change, the key to having the best time is quickly working out where's good and where is bad.

    Firstly to get around this area i ride a motor bike, a trusty honda click that isn't very powerful but still deserves respect so you don't kill yourself or others!! i also like to do some bar hopping and sink a few beers, the two don't mix, i know and i can already hear the morally elite typing a reply to this, but around these quieter roads, i confess i have a few beers and ride my bike. Taxi's aren't easy to get and the bars are spread out so i'm as careful as i can be and never get hugely drunk but i do technically break the law and the moral code!! Lots was written on here about a police clamp down of drinking and driving a bike - in this quieter part of Phuket, it was all rubbish, if anything i saw much less police than ever before, the temporary police check point that used to be on the T junction on the main naiharn road by Ronik's wasn't there for the whole month. the Chalong circle police check is still there but they are only interested in getting traffic across the terrible roadworks going on whilst they build the underpass! i didn't see get so much as a licence check in 30 days. lets be clear for my morally upstanding friends, have an accident and you are in deep trouble if you've had a drink, especially as a Ferlang, so it's not a great idea, but i said i'd be honest and so i have.

    the nightlife is fairly quiet, it was low season, but i've been in low season several times and this was particularly quiet. Even more important to do your homework in the first few days and work out where is good and where is rubbish to go. i was the unofficial tour guide in a very mixed group of friends, 17 in total, some single guys, some married couples and some kids. There's loads for everyone to do you just have to find it. The kids loved the 8 or 10 different beaches we went to along with a longtail boat trip to coral and bon island. The ladies loved the massages which are still great value at 300baht. dozens of really good thai restaurants and many more western food options than i ever remembered if that's what you fancy.

    Talking of a bit of what you fancy, some of the single guys (and possibly a few of the other blokes) found some really good nights out where ladies where "available for company'. Sleepy little Rawai and Nai harn has a few of these types of places, by far the best was the newly opened Stumble Inn but honey bar and Ole bar were popular too with our crowd. The old places that people have mentioned before such as Asia Bar and Jasmine bar were very poor, possibly because the bar girls spent more time on their smart phones than speaking to the customers!! Chalong is still what it always has been, the road from the circle to the harbour is littered with 10 or more bars where a single man with a wallet would be in paradise. For the more shy men the massage places are exactly what you read about. if you want a great massage go one where the staff wear a uniform, if you want one with a bit of fun go to any of the others, especially obvious are any where the girls shout and scream at you to attract your attention.

    so there you have it, 17 happy campers and all will have totally different stories to tell. one thing i really want to say is despite reading the forums about violent gangs roaming the streets and robbing tourists, in this part of thailand i've always felt incredibly safe, never seen any trouble and could not praise the locals for their friendliness enough.

    so hopefully you can tell i love this area, so when will i be going back?? i won't, not for anything other than a day trip, i'm getting on a bit and so my next trip will be somewhere nearby but that has everything i need within walking distance, so somewhere like Kata or Karon. i can't stand Patong ( far too crowded and noisy), but i think i could trade off the busier/noisier bars in Kata or Karon for the convenience of not having to ride my bike everywhere and being able to have a couple more drinks on a night out.

    if anyone wants anymore details, just dm me.
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  2. #2
    Lamai Beach Bum Thai Dreamer ผู้เพ้อฝัน bacwaan's Avatar
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    ^ all sounds about par for the course for the southern phuket area...of course there are police stops at times...sometimes more than others...and the area is known to have spates of crime from time to time as well...sounds like you didn't come across any of this so great that you enjoyed your holiday...but it does only take one instance of a bike crash, DUI or handbag snatch to ruin a holiday

    How was the weather whilst you were there...I hear HKT copped quite a bit of rain in the 10 days towards the end of Sept (last month)...could be the reason you didn't see too many police stops..they are not so big on standing out in the rain

    I like it down that way as well...it's nice and laid back and has a life of its own...there are some decent bars, nice inexpensive restaurants and enough massage/knocking shops to satisfy most male vistors...and Nai Harn is one of the nicest beaches on the island...it's a great area for a laid back holiday for people of all ages

  3. #3
    Thai Dreamer ผู้เพ้อฝัน Hatari's Avatar
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    Hello Hilo and thanks for your report; I lived in Chalong, left in April 2010, friends/neighbours I had there have moved on, and in some cases, passed on, don't get any local news these days

    Some good memories there, Chalong Pier and the road to it from the Circle, I did some part time work at a language school on that road and walked or cycled the gauntlet of the "hello welcome..." women 2-4 times a day, entertaining times. I'd get waved to from the cops at the Circle, cyclists of no interest apart from one occasion I was stopped, but he just wanted to look over my bike - triathlon bike I'd brought with me from NZ

    Our favourite cycling route was Chalong to Rawai, around through Laem Prom Thep to Nai Harn, swim, back 'inland' via Sai Yuan. Security guard at end of the beach would look after our bikes, we'd head out kayaking and swimming, but a favourite was from the little beach one bay back, Yanui, snorkeling and an easy swim out to the island Koh Man I think it is

    Safety, can't recall ever feeling threatened there, though worst experience was being burgled 3 days before we moved to Sa Kaeo, lost all electronic things, phone, laptop, camera, back-up drives plus more so we left minus most photographic memories. In 2009-10 there had been a spate of robberies late at night on the road Nai Harn up to the Kata viewpoint, people knocked off their motorbike and robbed, believe one foreigner died as a result, was well publicised at the time I didn't take the risk, staying with the main road over the hill Karon-Chalong.

    There were a few Farang road deaths of course, alcohol related usually. Once while cycling I saw my first close-up fatality on the long downhill towards Rawai, male high school students racing, overtook me, their handlebars or mirrors hit each other one went full speed into a concrete post, dead on impact.

    Did you go up to Big Buddha? I've seen recent pics, big changes since we were there when it was under construction living on Soi Yodsane the road to BB and could see it from the balcony. Something I couldn't do today, I used to run to the top and back every Tuesday for my hill training, and Sundays a "half-Buddha" to a point and back, speed. It'd kill me in 2017.

    Nai Harn
    Last edited by Hatari; 4th October 2017 at 07:09.
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  4. #4
    Thai Dreamer ผู้เพ้อฝัน Hatari's Avatar
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    Hilo - any photos to share?

    This thread Pics around Phuket hasn't been added to for two years

  5. #5
    Uber Star Soi wanderer Thai Dreamer ผู้เพ้อฝัน MarcTwoSix's Avatar
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    What a weirdly contentious start to your TR.

    I don't think anyone was unhelpful when you asked the board questions

    As for drink driving
    I think most do it on scooters in Thailand
    I definitely do but not like I did back in the day when I had no reason to be on a bike in the shape I was

    All and all, it looked like you had a good trip

    These days I enjoy being with the kids and family as much as our drinking

  6. #6
    Uber Star Soi wanderer Thai Dreamer ผู้เพ้อฝัน Tingtong's Avatar
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    Thanks for reporting. Ive often thought Id like to stay down rawai way for a few days. Its a nice place with a few different sights to see and a bit of a different vibe. I wouldn't waste my time going to any of the close by Islands .....'Coral Island' should be renamed No Coral, no fish but plenty of Rubbish on the shore Island 555
    That Street that runs from the circle is just like running the Gauntlet in any of the soi's in Bangala (in the old days) 55

  7. #7
    Uber Star Soi wanderer Thai Dreamer ผู้เพ้อฝัน Moo Uaon's Avatar
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    Nai Harn the best beach in SE Asia.
    Nice little area around there.
    FACE YOUR FEARS LIVE YOUR DREAMS

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    Bacwaan - we got a monsoon around the 12th August, 3 days where you just didn't want to go out, but after that normal low season, the odd rain showers with sun the rest of the time albeit a fair bit of cloud sometimes too. Certainly didn't spoil the trip and everything is a fair bit cheaper.

    Hatari - Big Bhudda is still far from finished, workers there every day developing the area, the road does at least do all the way to the top now and is in good condition, when i first went 10 years ago i had to turn the bike around as the road was to dangerous.

    Marctwosix - i don't feel it was contentious, many people we're very helpful, yourself included. However, i was, on a number of occasions rather disappointed that some chose to do there moral crusader piece and tell me i was wrong to even mention it on the board. i understand that's the nature of these forums sometime and they have their right to speak out, as to i to feel they are being unhelpful.. The person who threatened violence towards me if i injured or killed his family as a result of drink driving, seemed particularly to have jumped to dramatic conclusions about a fairly simple question and certainly gets put in the unhelpful box!!!
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  9. #9
    Thai Dreamer ผู้เพ้อฝัน Hatari's Avatar
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    Big Buddha 2009, wrapped in a masterpiece of wooden scaffolding


  10. #10
    Uber Star Soi wanderer Thai Dreamer ผู้เพ้อฝัน Moo Uaon's Avatar
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    I don't think they'll ever have the big Buddha appear to be finished as the donation gravy train will just about stop there and then. The big money spinner seems to be the buy a tile and write your name on it and gets slapped on it. They've probably sold enough of those to clad 3 BB's by now.
    Quarky likes this.
    FACE YOUR FEARS LIVE YOUR DREAMS

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