Phuket is blessed with magnificent coves and bays, powdery, palm-fringed white beaches, sparkling island-dotted seas, sincerely hospitable people, superb accommodations and seafood, delightful turn-of-the-century Sino-Portuguese architecture; numerous sporting and leisure opportunities; a lush tropical landscape all of which combine to create a delightful ambience for truly memorable holidays.
Phuket Vegetarian Festival is held on the first day of the 9th lunar month (usually October). Phuket islanders of Chinese ancestry commit themselves to a 9-day vegetarian diet, a form of purification believed to help make the forthcoming year’s trouble-free. The festival is marked by several ascetic displays, including fire-walking and ascending sharp-bladed ladders.
Thao Thep Kasattri and Thao Sisunthon Fair is held on March 13 every year to commemorate the two great heroines who rallied the Thalang people to repel Burmese invaders. Many activities and celebrations are organised.
Seafood Festival, held around May yearly, is designed to publicise the delicious seafood of Phuket and attract visitors during the rainy season. Activities include a Marine Tourism Resources Parade, seafood stalls, demonstrations of regional cuisines and cultural shows.
Phuket Travel Fair , held on November 1, was first initiated in 1985 at Patong to welcome in the tourist season and designed to foster co-operation among tourism-related operators both in the private and public sectors. Many colourful and interesting activities are organised, such as merit-making in the morning, water sports contests, a Miss Visitor Contest, among others.
Phuket King’s Cup Regatta is held in December. The Phuket Yacht Club hosts international yachtsmen, largely from neighbouring countries who compete in the Nai Han Beach area for royal trophies.
Laguna Phuket Triathlon is held in each December. The triathlon (a 1,000-metre swim, a 5-kilometre bike race and a 12-kilometre run) attracts world-class athletes from all over the world.
Tourist Season Opening Festival , starting from November 1, is usually called the Patong Carnival, from the place where celebrations occur. Colourful parades, sports events, and a beauty competition for foreign tourists are major activities.
Turtle Release Fair is held on Songkran, the nationwide Thai water festival, on April 13 which is also National Fisherman’s Day. Baby turtles are released into the sea at various locations.
Chao Le (Sea Gypsy) Boat Floating Festival falls during the middle of the sixth and eleventh lunar months yearly. The sea gypsy villages at Rawai and Sapam hold their ceremonies on the 13th; Ko Si-re celebrates on the 14th; and Laem La (east of the bridge on Phuket’s northerntip) on the 15th. Ceremonies, which centre around the setting adrift of small boats similar to the Thai festival of Loi Krathong, are held at night and their purpose is to drive away evil and bring good luck.