Written by Administrator
Friday, 26 March 2010 09:36
self-drive car (or motorcycle) in Phuket If you have a few
days on this island, this is the best thing you can do.
Every visitor to Phuket gets an idea of the large size of the island when
driving from the airport to his hotel. This size, and the many beaches and
attractions scattered widely around the island, make personal transport almost
a ‘must’ for anyone who wishes to see the real Phuket. If you’re accommodated
in Patong, it becomes almost essential – if you wish to see what Phuket is all
about – to rent your own car, drive and get out and about. A lot of younger people rent motorcycles - and then go. While this is a very
pleasant way to get around, the first-time visitor should beware, and remember
that the number of motorcycle accidents here is exceptionally high, especially
on the mountain roads at the back of Patong and Kata.
Here comes the major warning. Rent a car with full insurance, or you risk
getting into serious trouble. The surest way is to go to a well-known car
rental company, all of which have comprehensive insurance for car and driver.
Ask about it.
If you rent a car from the side of the street be exceptionally careful. Some
who put up signs saying ‘Insurance’ might offer nothing but the compulsory 3rd
party coverage. Visitors bringing one of these vehicles back with any kind of
bump or scratch risk being charged exorbitant prices and sometimes face violent
Be warned. We strongly recommend using well-known rental
companies, and we offer a list of operators below.
The drivers licences from most all developed countries - including European
nations, North America and Australasia
– are legally acceptable in Thailand. You will need to present this when renting
a vehicle. A credit card will be required by most rental companies.
Driving conditions: Thailand’s
road system is remarkably good, especially in the provincial areas where many
good roads are to be found with little traffic. It is thus easy to drive all
around Phuket island and off into the neighbouring provinces of Phang Nga and
Krabi. In fact we strongly recommend getting off the island of Phuket
to see some of the spectacular scenery in the adjacent regions.
If a foreigner has trouble along the way and requires help, he will usually
find the Thai people helpful, and even gracious.
Finding your way:
Find one of the many free maps available through hotels in Phuket, or get a
copy of PHUKET Magazine (free in some resort rooms, or available for 100 Baht
in most gift shops). Getting off Phuket is simple, and once on the mainland
there are just two major routes, directly north along the Andaman coastline to
Khao Lak and Ranong, or east to Phang Nga town and on to Krabi. The roads are
all well signposted in both Thai and English, and there are white kilometre
posts along every major road.
National Car Rent offers a comprehensive road map to the whole region with each
Accommodation along the way:
There are plenty of places to stay when driving off Phuket. We offer suggested
tours in the following pages, and also list some of the hotels to be found
along the way.