Phuket restaurant guide – Where to eat in Phuket
Deciding where to eat in Phuket is a daunting task, with so much choice and restaurants spread out across the island make sure you choose the best. The restaurant scene here caters for all, fine dining restaurants, exceptional Thai food, western home comforts and the weird and wonderful array of snacks from the food stalls. As with anywhere in the world it isn’t all wonderful, there are plenty of dodgy places and overpriced restaurants all over the island.
Eating out and away from your hotel is a wonderful experience and perfectly safe. Yes some people will get a dodgy stomach, some won’t like the Thai flavors but the majority of people will enjoy the experience. After all traveling should be about new experiences and what better way to connect with a culture than through food?
It would be an absolute travesty to come all the way to Thailand and not try the local food. The Thai palate is very different to the western palate and the local cuisine reflects this. Hot, sour, sweet and salty are the regular tastes of most Thai dishes. Most people will have tried Thai food back home from their local take out, but this isn’t real Thai food. The dishes back home are adaptations of the most popular dishes, designed with western palates in mind. Here you will get the real deal.
Most hotels and large tourist town restaurants will offer you a variety of the more popular dishes, but most of these will be overpriced and the standard of food not as good. Although they will provide a great ambiance and or setting.
If you want the real Thai food then head over to Phuket town, here you will find many Thai restaurants offering some of the best food on the island. Some will be more like what we are used to back home with a variety of dishes on offer, but what we prefer are the specialty style restaurants. In these smaller joints they know what they are good at and stick to it, be it noodle restaurants, seafood restaurants, Thai BBQ or even Dim Sum.
The cost of Thai food varies greatly but generally the hotels and tourist spot will be the most expensive and the small Thai restaurants the most reasonable. The best bet to find a great place to eat is to look for a busy restaurant, where the locals are eating, after all if they enjoy it, then it will be good.
Don’t decide where to eat in Phuket without considering Thai food.
Being an island and with fishing as one of the main industries it is no wonder that the seafood on offer in Phuket is amazing. Freshly caught, a wide variety and inexpensive eating seafood is a must when here. Seafood can be found all over the island from side street stalls, beach side restaurants and 5 star settings wherever you decide where to eat in Phuket, seafood will feature highly.
Being locally caught and hugely popular the seafood is always fresh and great tasting. Again we would recommend leaving the confines of your hotel or resort and venturing outside to find the best value. We recommend 2 different restaurant types, Local style and luxury.
The local style seafood restaurants can be found all over the island and are frequented by both locals and tourists. These shabby looking open air restaurants don’t offer luxury surroundings but still offer a great dining experience. Try finding one of the busier ones either beach or river side, there’s nothing quite like eating fresh fish next to the water.
There are also several up market luxury style restaurants located in the Kamala and Karon beach areas. These are slightly more expensive but offer a truly unforgettable night.
Thai food stalls can be found all over Phuket, these are very popular with the locals as well as regular visitors and expats. The variety of food on offer is immense which each vendor offering their specialty. Phad Thai (Fried Noodles), Noodle soup, BBQ and stir fry being the most popular choices. Food carts are also where you will find the much talked about weird and wonderful side of Phuket’s food scene. Ever fancied a quick snack of salty crickets, a squidgy roach or even BBQ’d chicken guts? No me neither but if you do there will be a vendor offering it for you.
At first sight these stalls aren’t the most hygienic places to eat, on the side of the road under the blistering sun. But we and thousands of others eat at these stalls on daily basis without complaint. In fact the turn over is so fast the food wouldn’t have time to go bad, and the fact it is cooked fresh in front of you should offer comfort.
When you first pluck up the courage and decide on a food stall meal you will undoubtedly be baffled by the choices on offer. Don’t be afraid to converse with the stall holder or even the others eating there, the Thais are extremely proud of their cuisine and will be delighted to show you the ropes.
Food stalls are the most economic way to eat whilst your here with a quick meal from $1.50US.
For the unadventurous among you, there are plenty of international restaurants scattered all over Phuket. Not matter what corner of the world you originate from, if your felling home stick then there will be an opportunity to grab a little home comfort food.
Hope this guide helped you decide where to eat in Phuket?
Why not check out the best areas to stay when in Phuket