Phuket - Old Town

Phuket Town itself is quite low key. There are not many big buildings here - mainly shophouses. The most interesting part of town are the old steets around Thalang Road, Debuk Road and Rasada Road. They are all connected and not far from each other. It is quite nice spending half a morning just wondering around, and then stop at one of the many restaurants or cafes for lunch.

Due to the Chinese, Portuguese and European influence in the early days, the Old Town here is populated mainly with Sino-Portuguese/ Sino-Colonial shophouses. These are the same as the ones you find in Penang, Malacca, Singapore and Kuching. There are many variations in the architectural details, but the basic design is a two-storey shophouse with a "five-footway" - essentially a multi-functional verandah serving as a covered pedestrian thoroughfare. On the ground floor is usually a shop, though in some of the units it is actually the living area. On the 1st floor is usually the living quarters. If you want to know more about Phuket heritage, go to this excellent web site - Phuket Heritage.

Old shophouses along Thalang Road.

Shophouse facades - quite similar to those in Penang, Malacca or Kuching. The variation is in the details. I think the old contractors or builders probably moved from place to place, bringing the designs with them.
These shops wouldn't look out of place in Kuching or Penang.

An interesting cafe on Thalang Road.

Evidence of Chinese and Muslim culture.

A must-have in any Asian home - a gas stove. Don't forget the rice cooker as well.

One thing I noticed in Phuket which is quite different are these gold shops. They are usually decked out to the nines in garish red and gold decors.


love the gold shops!! shame I didn't spend more time there in the old town.
Borneoboy said…
Hi 3HT. For me Old Town was very interesting, looking at all the old buildings which reminded me so much of Kuching. They are doing a much better job of preserving the building and culture though. I heard most of the old streets are now listed as conservation areas.
Really??? That is great!! Perhaps the Penang govt should learn a few things from them. Yeah it does have the bygone charm.

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