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Phuket districts: best areas to stay, holiday and invest in 2024

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Phuket is Thailand’s largest island and one of its smallest provinces. It is the country’s most important resort in the post-coronavirus era. Phuket was the first province to open to tourists in 2021. Starting from 2023, most flights from the EU and other regions arrive directly on the island, rather than in Bangkok.

Phuket is second only to Bangkok in terms of development and prosperity, and surpasses the capital in terms of ecology and natural beauty. Despite this, the province has yet to return to pre-pandemic levels of tourism. According to objective figures, there is still capacity in the island’s housing stock to accommodate new tourists, winter residents and expats.

Approximately 40 million tourists fly to Thailand every year, making it the world leader in this aspect in 2022. Of these, about 15 million people come to Phuket each year. 70% of the properties on the island belong to foreigners who live there either permanently, or for several weeks or months per year. The majority of deals in the real estate market are closed by foreigners renting and selling properties.

Mikhail Bulanov Mikhail Bulanov Tranio's Real Estate Expert in Thailand

Phuket is approximately 50 kilometres long from north to south and 20 kilometres wide from west to east. However, it is the southern part of the island that is predominantly developed and urbanised. Thus, the island is divided into a developed south and a quiet north, offering different options for living, investment and recreation. Living in a two-storey house with a pool and garden in Pa Klok is very different from holidaying in a hotel near Karon Beach or wintering in a townhouse next to a golf club in Laguna Phuket. The island offers a unique advantage over other resorts in Thailand as it caters to a diverse range of interests and preferences.

Property for sale in Phuket 627 listings on Tranio
New residential complex of premium villas, Thep Kasattri, Thalang, Phuket, Thailand for From $1,122,000 From $1,122,000
New residential complex of premium villas, Thep Kasattri, Thalang, Phuket, Thailand

Completion in: 2025.I 45 units in total

Two storey villa with large swimming pool, terrace and garden, close to golf clubs and beach, Pasak, Phuket, Thailand for $734,000 $734,000
Two storey villa with large swimming pool, terrace and garden, close to golf clubs and beach, Pasak, Phuket, Thailand

Total area 488 m² 4 bedrooms

Three storey premium villa with swimming pool, close to golf clubs, beach and international schools, Pasak, Phuket, Thailand for $683,000 $683,000
Three storey premium villa with swimming pool, close to golf clubs, beach and international schools, Pasak, Phuket, Thailand

Total area 228 m² 3 bedrooms

New luxury residential complex with excellent infrastructure within walking distance from Bang Tao beach, Phuket, Thailand for From $108,000 From $108,000
New luxury residential complex with excellent infrastructure within walking distance from Bang Tao beach, Phuket, Thailand

Completion in: 2026.I Total of 789 apartments

Modern villas with swimming pools and lounge areas, Phuket, Thailand for From $709,000 From $709,000
Modern villas with swimming pools and lounge areas, Phuket, Thailand

54 units in total

New residential complex of magnificent villas with swimming pools in Thalang, Phuket, Thailand for From $1,561,000 From $1,561,000
New residential complex of magnificent villas with swimming pools in Thalang, Phuket, Thailand

Built in 2023 51 units in total

New exclusive residential complex within walking distance from Bang Tao beach, Phuket, Thailand for From $178,000 From $178,000
New exclusive residential complex within walking distance from Bang Tao beach, Phuket, Thailand

Completion in: 2025.I Total of 400 apartments

Large resort condominium for investment on the beachfront of Naithon Beach, Phuket, Thailand for From $148,000 From $148,000
Large resort condominium for investment on the beachfront of Naithon Beach, Phuket, Thailand

Built in 2023 Total of 251 apartments

Phuket’s renowned sandy beaches are located on the west coast of the island, facing the Indian Ocean, while the mangrove-covered east coast faces Phang Nga Bay with its pronounced ebb and flow.

Tourist infrastructure, including hotels, restaurants, and nightclubs, is concentrated in the western part of the island. On the opposite side, there are yacht marinas.

In the eastern part of Phuket, small islands and karst rocks rising directly from the water are the main attraction of the local marine area, while in the west the ocean stretches out far and wide.

Phuket International Airport is situated in the northern part of the province. However, even the southernmost point of the island can be reached by car within an hour’s drive from the airport.

palm trees
Adisa / Shutterstock

Phuket Town is located in the southern part of the island and serves as the administrative centre of Phuket. It is now a single agglomeration with the areas of Chalong, Wichit, and Rassada. This area is popular among foreigners who prefer to live away from the beaches but closer to infrastructure such as cinemas, shopping malls, international schools, hospitals, and co-working spaces for comfortable work. The beaches can be reached by car in approximately 15 minutes.

The west coast, which is primarily a tourist destination, is separated by a ridge of hills with several passes that provide communication with the main Phuket. Each beach on the west coast has unique characteristics. However, essential tourist infrastructure (hotels, restaurants, massage parlours, etc.) is ubiquitous, and the area is always bustling with activity.

A coastal road connects all beaches on the west coast, with a convenient bus service running along it. In the island’s interior, the road network is more developed, but most residents rely on their own transportation rather than public transport.

The areas of Choeng Thale (Bang Tao and Surin beaches, the Laguna Phuket complex), Rawai (Rawai and Nai Harn beaches), and Kamala are becoming increasingly attractive for both tourism and permanent living. Karon and Patong, on the other hand, are solely dedicated to the tourism industry.

Phuket is administratively divided into three large districts, known as «amphoes»: Thalang, Kathu, and Mueang Phuket. These are further divided into 17 sub-districts known as «tambons», such as Chalong, Kathu, Rawai, and others.

Certain areas of sub-districts can be further subdivided into smaller areas called «mubans», such as Bang Tao, Surin, Nai Harn, and Cape Panwa.

Phuket districts and their respective areas:

Mueang Phuket

Kathu

Thalang

  • Choeng Thale
  • Pa Klok
  • Mai Khao
  • Si Sunthon
  • Thep Krasatti
  • Sakhu

The best areas in Phuket for holidays

Choosing the best area for a holiday in Phuket largely depends on your preferred activities, beyond the universally available options of sunbathing, swimming, and exploring Thai cuisine. Any beach on the west coast will offer you a chance to indulge in the local gastronomy and replenish your vitamin «Sea» (Sea, Sun, and Sand) deficiency.

coconut tree
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  • Patong has the most active and rambunctious nightlife.
  • Karon and Kata offer comfortable family holidays with nightlife options.
  • Nai Harn also provides comfortable family holidays with expatriate ambience.
  • Laguna Phuket is a luxurious option for both romantic getaways and family holidays.
  • Kamala and Surin are ideal for family holidays and luxury villa holidays.
  • The northern region of Phuket offers a tranquil holiday experience with a focus on the beach.
  • Chalong, Kathu and Wichit are perfect for active exploration of Phuket and a taste of the expat atmosphere.

Best areas to live in Phuket

Most Phuket residents eventually realise that it is better to live in areas designed for residential purposes rather than tourism. The allure of the sea outside the window gradually fades into the background, while transport accessibility, necessary infrastructure, and personal factors such as an established circle of friends or a new hobby become priorities. The proximity to schools is also an important factor for those who have children.

beds
Nicha / Shutterstock

The most popular locations for expats living permanently in Phuket are, as follows:

  • Laguna Phuket and its surrounding areas;
  • Kamala;
  • Rawai;
  • Chalong;
  • Wichit;
  • Katu;
  • Koh Kaew.

The last four or even five items on this list are areas that provide convenient access to several international or high-quality Thai schools and kindergartens. Moreover, the children factor indirectly impacts the overall appeal of the area for expats and those without children. This is because a community formed in a particular location will often develop a convenient infrastructure, such as cafes, hairdressers, gyms, leisure and recreation centres, which can in turn attract even people without children.

Currently, a large share of the tourist flow on Phuket comprises regular visitors to the island. Over the past 20 years, many tourists who actively travel have visited Vietnam, the Philippines, and Indonesia, but ultimately, many of them have returned to Thailand. It appears that there is a formula for happiness in Thailand: it is affordable, flavoursome, and is easily understandable due to the widespread use of English. Additionally, the nature is beautiful, and the locals are hospitable and considerate hosts, providing excellent service with a smile on their faces.

Lana Romanuk Lana Romanuk Tranio's Real Estate Expert in Thailand

Elite locations in Phuket

One of the fundamental principles of the Phuket real estate market is that a property’s value is heavily influenced by the view from its windows. This concept encapsulates the various factors that contribute to the cost of housing on the island and, as a result, affect the level of infrastructure in the surrounding area and the social characteristics of the community.

Tranio has a representative office in Phuket. Our managers and lawyers will organise a turnkey transaction without increasing the purchase cost.

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Luxury housing in Phuket consists of hillside villas where the breeze from the Andaman Sea dissipates the heat as the sun slowly sets, turning the sky crimson. This includes houses on a hill in the southern part of Surin, the Millionaire’s Mile in Kamala, some of the developments around Kata and Karon beaches, the cape north of Bang Tao, and the hills near Nai Yang. New projects in locations of this calibre are extremely rare.

Phuket luxury real estate for sale 122 listings on Tranio
New residential complex of magnificent villas with swimming pools in Thalang, Phuket, Thailand for From $1,561,000 From $1,561,000
New residential complex of magnificent villas with swimming pools in Thalang, Phuket, Thailand

Built in 2023 51 units in total

New exclusive residential complex within walking distance from Bang Tao beach, Phuket, Thailand for From $178,000 From $178,000
New exclusive residential complex within walking distance from Bang Tao beach, Phuket, Thailand

Completion in: 2025.I Total of 400 apartments

Exclusive residential complex of villas with swimming pools and sea views within walking distance of Nai Thon Beach, Phuket, Thailand for From $805,000 From $805,000
Exclusive residential complex of villas with swimming pools and sea views within walking distance of Nai Thon Beach, Phuket, Thailand

Completion in: 2024.I 20 units in total

New residence with swimming pools and a view of the ocean, Phuket, Thailand for From $165,000 From $165,000
New residence with swimming pools and a view of the ocean, Phuket, Thailand

Completion in: 2029.II Total of 875 apartments

Spacious modern apartments near the beaches, surrounded by beautiful nature, Layan, Phuket, Thailand for From $198,000 From $198,000
Spacious modern apartments near the beaches, surrounded by beautiful nature, Layan, Phuket, Thailand

Completion in: 2027 Total of 128 apartments

Penthouse with a panoramic sea view and a swimming pool, Phuket, Thailand for $1,850,000 $1,850,000
Penthouse with a panoramic sea view and a swimming pool, Phuket, Thailand

Total area 380 m² Land area: 220 m²

Spacious villa with a swimming pool and panoramic views in a luxury residence, 350 meters from Kamala Beach, Phuket, Thailand for $1,800,000 $1,800,000
Spacious villa with a swimming pool and panoramic views in a luxury residence, 350 meters from Kamala Beach, Phuket, Thailand

Total area 311 m² 3 bedrooms

Complex of villas with swimming pools and jacuzzis directly on Bang Tao Beach, Phuket, Thailand for From $2,451,000 From $2,451,000
Complex of villas with swimming pools and jacuzzis directly on Bang Tao Beach, Phuket, Thailand

Total of 19 apartments

The second category of luxury housing is the master-planned developments, which take a good location to a new level through the efforts of designers, architects and those who ensure that the plan remains unchanged day after day. Villas and mansions located near golf courses in Kathu and Thalang, as well as marinas such as the Royal Phuket Marina, are always in high demand.

Property for sale in Laguna Phuket 21 listings on Tranio
Investment eco condominium with guaranteed yield of 5%, Layan, Phuket, Thailand for From $129,000 From $129,000
Investment eco condominium with guaranteed yield of 5%, Layan, Phuket, Thailand

Yield 5.0% Completion in: 2027

Spacious modern apartments near the beaches, surrounded by beautiful nature, Layan, Phuket, Thailand for From $198,000 From $198,000
Spacious modern apartments near the beaches, surrounded by beautiful nature, Layan, Phuket, Thailand

Completion in: 2027 Total of 128 apartments

New residence with a swimming pool and an underground parking, Phuket, Thailand for From $616,000 From $616,000
New residence with a swimming pool and an underground parking, Phuket, Thailand

Completion in: 2026.II Total of 54 apartments

Apartments with swimming pools in a luxury low-rise residence, Phuket, Thailand for From $1,070,000 From $1,070,000
Apartments with swimming pools in a luxury low-rise residence, Phuket, Thailand

Total of 72 apartments

Complex of villas with swimming pools and jacuzzis directly on Bang Tao Beach, Phuket, Thailand for From $2,451,000 From $2,451,000
Complex of villas with swimming pools and jacuzzis directly on Bang Tao Beach, Phuket, Thailand

Total of 19 apartments

New residence with a view of the golf course in a picturesque and luxury area, Phuket, Thailand for From $164,000 From $164,000
New residence with a view of the golf course in a picturesque and luxury area, Phuket, Thailand

Total of 420 apartments

New beautiful residence on the shore of the lagoon, Phuket, Thailand for From $154,000 From $154,000
New beautiful residence on the shore of the lagoon, Phuket, Thailand

Total of 309 apartments

Residence with a private beach and a panoramic view, Phuket, Thailand for From $802,000 From $802,000
Residence with a private beach and a panoramic view, Phuket, Thailand

Total of 185 apartments

Finally, on the east coast, including Cape Panwa and Cape Yamu, there are prestigious complexes that are highly regarded but not well-known to the general public. The windows in these buildings offer a view of the sunrise rather than the sunset. In addition, the level of privacy and seclusion is truly unique in this part of the island.

Thailand
Adrian Roy Esmeris / Shutterstock

Phuket property prices

The price of a completed condominium in Phuket starts at 4,000 US dollars per sq. metre. However, if purchased during the early stages of construction or before the foundation is laid, the discount can be as much as 40–50%.

Studios and one-bedroom apartments of 30-35 square metres are the most popular rental units, often managed by hotel operators under well-known hotel brands. A studio apartment can cost around 120,000 US dollars, and developers often guarantee a rental yield of 5–7% per annum.

Apartments for sale in Phuket 263 listings on Tranio
New luxury residential complex with excellent infrastructure within walking distance from Bang Tao beach, Phuket, Thailand for From $108,000 From $108,000
New luxury residential complex with excellent infrastructure within walking distance from Bang Tao beach, Phuket, Thailand

Completion in: 2026.I Total of 789 apartments

New exclusive residential complex within walking distance from Bang Tao beach, Phuket, Thailand for From $178,000 From $178,000
New exclusive residential complex within walking distance from Bang Tao beach, Phuket, Thailand

Completion in: 2025.I Total of 400 apartments

Large resort condominium for investment on the beachfront of Naithon Beach, Phuket, Thailand for From $148,000 From $148,000
Large resort condominium for investment on the beachfront of Naithon Beach, Phuket, Thailand

Built in 2023 Total of 251 apartments

New turnkey studio apartment 700 m from Bang Tao beach, Phuket, Thailand for $157,000 $157,000
New turnkey studio apartment 700 m from Bang Tao beach, Phuket, Thailand

Total area 30 m² Studio

Residential complex with swimming pools, fitness centre and tropical garden, 850 meters from Bang Tao Beach, Phuket, Thailand for From $129,000 From $129,000
Residential complex with swimming pools, fitness centre and tropical garden, 850 meters from Bang Tao Beach, Phuket, Thailand

Completion in: 2025.IV Total of 231 apartments

New residence with swimming pools, gardens and a co-working area, Phuket, Thailand for From $71,000 From $71,000
New residence with swimming pools, gardens and a co-working area, Phuket, Thailand

Completion in: 2025.III Total of 609 apartments

Investment eco condominium with guaranteed yield of 5%, Layan, Phuket, Thailand for From $129,000 From $129,000
Investment eco condominium with guaranteed yield of 5%, Layan, Phuket, Thailand

Yield 5.0% Completion in: 2027

New residence with swimming pools and a view of the ocean, Phuket, Thailand for From $165,000 From $165,000
New residence with swimming pools and a view of the ocean, Phuket, Thailand

Completion in: 2029.II Total of 875 apartments

Villa prices start at 2,000 US dollars per square metre, with a minimum area of 250 sq. metres. Compared to apartments, this segment offers a wider price range and a more varied selection. A villa can be a typical house in a village or a mansion on a hillside with seven bedrooms and an infinity pool, where the water surface merges with the sky.

Villas for sale in Phuket 355 listings on Tranio
New residential complex of premium villas, Thep Kasattri, Thalang, Phuket, Thailand for From $1,122,000 From $1,122,000
New residential complex of premium villas, Thep Kasattri, Thalang, Phuket, Thailand

Completion in: 2025.I 45 units in total

Two storey villa with large swimming pool, terrace and garden, close to golf clubs and beach, Pasak, Phuket, Thailand for $734,000 $734,000
Two storey villa with large swimming pool, terrace and garden, close to golf clubs and beach, Pasak, Phuket, Thailand

Total area 488 m² 4 bedrooms

Three storey premium villa with swimming pool, close to golf clubs, beach and international schools, Pasak, Phuket, Thailand for $683,000 $683,000
Three storey premium villa with swimming pool, close to golf clubs, beach and international schools, Pasak, Phuket, Thailand

Total area 228 m² 3 bedrooms

Modern villas with swimming pools and lounge areas, Phuket, Thailand for From $709,000 From $709,000
Modern villas with swimming pools and lounge areas, Phuket, Thailand

54 units in total

New residential complex of magnificent villas with swimming pools in Thalang, Phuket, Thailand for From $1,561,000 From $1,561,000
New residential complex of magnificent villas with swimming pools in Thalang, Phuket, Thailand

Built in 2023 51 units in total

Exclusive residential complex of villas with swimming pools and sea views within walking distance of Nai Thon Beach, Phuket, Thailand for From $805,000 From $805,000
Exclusive residential complex of villas with swimming pools and sea views within walking distance of Nai Thon Beach, Phuket, Thailand

Completion in: 2024.I 20 units in total

Residential complex of first-class villas with private pools, Phuket, Thailand for From $572,000 From $572,000
Residential complex of first-class villas with private pools, Phuket, Thailand

Completion in: 2024.IV 21 units in total

New complex of villas with swimming pools close to a golf club, Phuket, Thailand for From $369,000 From $369,000
New complex of villas with swimming pools close to a golf club, Phuket, Thailand

Completion in: 2024.III 30 units in total

Prices for housing in the village start at 500,000 US dollars, while a full-fledged villa by the sea starts at 1,000,000 US dollars. It is important to note that the cost per square metre can vary between different projects, and in some cases can double, even if the projects are developed by the same company.

The main advantage of Phuket’s property market is its diversity. Firstly, although prices for new resort developments have gone up since the pandemic, there is still room for growth. The primary group of foreign investors from China is just beginning to return to this market after lockdowns.

Secondly, the developers are international. Phuket is attracting the big players from as far afield as Bangkok, Australia, and Europe. Thirdly, the flow of tourists still has great potential for growth, particularly due to the increasing number of tourists from China and the rising demand from other countries.

Mikhail Bulanov Mikhail Bulanov Tranio's Managing Partner & Co-Founder
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    Tranio’s managers offer advice on buying real estate in Phuket
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    Real Estate Expert Tranio Thailand
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