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Kamala Beach
Written by Administrator    Thursday, 25 March 2010 13:21    PDF Print E-mail

Today A Village, Tomorrow a Resort Area

Move Over Beach Buffaloes, the Tourists Like Your Beach and Your Village

Kamala, a 3-kilometres beach set in a bay in the middle of Phuket’s west coast, is quite different to all others on this large resort island. Until recently the main thing Kamala was famous for was a herd of over 100 buffaloes which would wander down the beach to the edge of the water every evening and take in the sunset with their feet in the salty water.

 

 Kamala Beach

Behind the beach was lots of open, green grazing area, and two distinct village communities, Buddhists by the beach and Muslims back close to the high mountain range that rings the valley and beach.

The beach at Kamala is shallow and the deep clear water expected in Phuket is not here, though swimming is fine at high tide. There are few buildings right by the beach, and a long stretch of it is protected from all development forever since it is a Muslim cemetery, though it appears as open grassy land studded with sugar palms.

The interesting area now is the Buddhist community down by the beach, which still remains essentially a village, but with many of the homes there having transformed themselves into guesthouses and restaurants. The atmosphere is still very casual and rather quaint and village-like. But development is moving fast, and this is changing season by season as the local residents scramble to join the new hospitality industry. Already there is one large box-like hotel adjacent to the beach, and other plans are afoot for more. The one good quality resort here, built with style, is the Kamala Terrace Resort, situated in a quiet cove a little south from the main beach of Kamala. This four-star hotel enjoys privacy on a green hillside setting, with all rooms having great seaviews.

Kamala Beach

Today a main road has been constructed right through the middle of the valley, bisecting the two communities and opening the way for rapid development of a new satellite centre of shops and buildings. This is rapidly becoming the centre of the new Kamala. The inevitable bars and restaurants aimed at the tourism market are also springing up here, though few have the ambience of the small places close to the beach.

The tourism industry has brought accompanying services like long distance phone, e-mail cafés and car rentals. Again, most are concentrated along the beach road.

The most remarkable development in Kamala is the amazing new Fantasea entertainment centre, by far the biggest and most ambitious on Phuket. This is an extravaganza of a Thai cultural show, that, at its defining moment, raises a dozen large elephants into the ‘sky’ above the stage. The performers number hundreds, and no expense has been spared in creating the most impressive such show in Thailand. This is one of the island’s ‘must see’ happenings.

Final note: the beach buffaloes are hard to find these days, and it seems that they have become another victim of development and modernization.

For hotel contact information see our accommodation page HOTELS/Kamala.