Whether you choose to live, work, retire or enjoy a long-term holiday in Phuket, the island will leave its mark with you forever. The island is picture perfect and can only be described as a tropical paradise. The stunning turquoise sea, the white sandy beaches, the sprawling rain forests and an all-round amazing way of life. Phuket is breathtakingly beautiful.
You will want to change your clothes swapping your suit for another type of suit, a bathing suit or swim shorts. Once you have worn flip flops for a while and broken a few, or walked bare footed on the white sandy beaches with the sand between your toes you will never want to wear normal footwear again. The beaches are so incredible, you will swap your usual Saturday night pub crawl for a sundowner in a beach bar…bliss.
Foodwise, prepare yourself for a taste explosion. If you ask for spicy, brace yourself because boy will you get that. Also, due to the climate, fresh produce is easy to come by, so forget what you thought you knew about fresh produce. Try a coconut freshly picked from some 5 minutes ago and then try to go back to drinking it from a carton. You will not be able to.
In terms of activities you can do anything from learning to cave dive with a private diving instructor on a chartered yacht, to swinging like a pro golfer, to surfing, to learning to cook with a top chef or climb up a mountain face. We are talking real bucket list items here. The island hosts one of the best sporting complexes in the region attracting Olympic athletes and national teams from all over the world. Also, Phuket is closely situated to the idyllic Phang Nga, just a boat ride away. It certainly beats the usual long car commute to work.
Itching for shopping? Phuket has everything you can think of from the food and beverages you crave to the clothing brands you love. Be warned though high import taxes on luxury goods means that you may find yourself downing more beers than wine.
As for healthcare and education, Phuket has anti-aging centers, excellent dentists, pharmacies at every corner, five international hospitals, and as many reputable international schools.
Work can sometimes be a little challenging, as the year round holiday vibe does absorb energy and like most places under the sun, the pace is a little slower not to mention that the employment rate being very low in this part of the world, it is sometimes hard to retain unskilled staff. To reenergize, nothing beats a short city fix in Bangkok. You will find that living full time on the island, traveling for a few days every three months does a world of good.
As a predominantly Buddhist country you will notice how laid back, kind and friendly Thai people are. Although they do work hard, there is a sense of inner peace emanating from them. This will definitely rub off on you.
Phuket will enrich your life in so many ways. If you don’t have a car on the island you won’t miss it. Boats, taxis and tuk tuks are everywhere or alternatively, if you don’t have far to go, just walk, there are beaches everywhere. The climate during the dry season is incredible and with the amount of sunshine, you cannot help but be relaxed and happy.
The pace of life is so different, this means little to no stress. Precise timings will go out of the window, on the island it just doesn’t seem important. You can take your time to do things in your own time and indulge in activities that truly make you happy.
Wearing beach wear most days is liberating and you will never feel comfortable in restrictive clothing ever again.
Will you change? Absolutely. You won’t ‘sweat the small stuff’ anymore. Wearing beach clothes and t-shirts and shorts will become the norm.
It is fun, relaxing and generally a calmer way of life. Island life can be a real adventure and there is plenty to do and see and once you have been to Phuket you can almost certainly guarantee you will never want to leave…