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Mai Khao beachfront, where the restaurants will tumble any day now

Bye Bye Phuket Beach Restaurants: Our Tribute to the Best

Thursday, July 31, 2014
PHUKET: At Phuketwan, the reporting team has spent plenty of time at some of Phuket's top illegal restaurants. They were great places to eat, often with the sound of the waves burbling over the plate.

And now, one by one or in groups of six or 10, they are being bulldozed. Others may be spared . . . or they may not.

Life on Phuket for expat residents may never be quite the same. We remember a great meal, about 2002, at Lotus at Laypang. At that stage, the restaurant was just a fraction of the massive size it is now.

And a few years later, we suggested that a tiger prawn sandwich, bought and devoured on the upper floor level at the Som restaurant, was probably the perfect meal for Phuket.

Since then, the prices have gone up and may beachside restaurants have doubled in size, too, in some cases threatening to turn back the tide.

The tide that the restaurants weren't built to withstand comes in camouflage or military uniform. It sends in the graders and the bulldozers. It flattens bamboo and thatch effortlessly.

And let's face it, stopping the illegal appropriation of Phuket's public beaches is probably wise. Yet without the less expensive beachfront restaurants we enjoyed so much, Phuket will be different for many tourists, too.

Other businesses inland are bound to benefit, and so will many of those more expensive resort restaurants that the humble beach shacks often beat for outlook and prices.

Below, then, is our compilation of the best of the Phuket beach restaurants. Some of them are gone, some of them are fighting to survive.

As we munch our picnic lunch of salad sandwiches while sitting on a mat under the trees at Patong, Surin, Nai Yang or Nai Harn, we will miss them dearly.

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Well that's a list and a half, they'll all be greatly missed!!

Posted by phuket madness on July 31, 2014 16:06

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Used to love to sit in the shade at a family run bamboo shack, last one at north end of Kata in front of the area that used to be Club Med's...Nice people great inexpensive food and drink. They had planted trees and shrubs.Often saw them cleaning up garbage left by tourists.Okay rather too many beach chairs perhaps. Baby out with bathwater methinks.

Posted by david on August 10, 2014 07:06

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Only the ones that haven't the 'clout' behind them have gone on Bangtao Beach. One particularly well known one - with its feet in the ocean - is still very much there, just waiting for the right time to reopen.

Posted by agogohome on August 11, 2014 09:01

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Only the ones that haven't the 'clout' behind them have gone on Bangtao Beach. One particularly well known one - with its feet in the ocean - is still very much there, just waiting for the right time to reopen.

If true, then all is lost. And I mean all.

Posted by phonus on August 11, 2014 09:30

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Planning to visit to Phuket on september, specifically Patong, is it still worth it and safe for tourist? thanks!!!

Posted by Pleng on August 13, 2014 12:17

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@ Pleng
Buy 2 water-guns and enjoy beaches in Phuket free of ***holes.

Posted by Whistle-Blower on August 13, 2014 14:22

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Guess it will be quiet crowded under the trees on Patong beach during high season. And after picnicing at the beach, tourists will hopefully take back their rubish.

Posted by Dominik on August 20, 2014 21:02


Monday October 20, 2014
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