Sprawling north of Phuket Town, Ratsada lies on the eastern edge of Phuket Island near the quiet coastal retreat of Ko Sire. It offers a laid-back atmosphere compared to the bustling beach resorts of the island’s west, with colourful fishing boats bobbing alongside its shingle beaches. The village of Laem Tukkae is home to a community of sea gypsies whose ancestors were the original inhabitants of Phuket.
Things to do in Ratsada
If you’re interested in Thailand’s farming traditions, pay a visit to the Vanich Farm to come face-to-face with the resident buffalos, chickens and sheep. Admire the traditional Thai farmhouse and try on authentic costumes before browsing the equipment used by local farmers throughout the ages.
For panoramic views of Phuket Town, follow the trail that leads to the top of Monkey Hill, which is named for the troupe of macaques that inhabit its slopes. Watch the comings and goings at the colourful shrine near the base of the hill or dine on Thai classics at the Green Forest Restaurant. You can work your meal off with the locals in the exercise park that’s located halfway up the hill.
Looking for something to do after dark? Visit Chillva Market, a bohemian-style night market that’s been creatively constructed using up-cycled shipping containers. Shop for vintage fashions and homewares in the market stalls and feast on tasty street food while enjoying live music performances in the central amphitheatre.
Getting around Ratsada
Ratsada is around 35 minutes’ drive from Phuket International Airport and 20 minutes from Patong. Buses and songthaews connect to Phuket Town and motorcycle taxis are readily available. Hiring your own motorcycle or car will give you greater freedom to explore the area.