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Coming soon minus the power lines, Phang Nga's water market

Phang Nga Builds Ship to Sail Free of Phuket

Tuesday, July 10, 2012
PHUKET: One day, instead of Phang Nga being part of ''Greater Phuket,'' it could be a case of Phuket being part of ''Greater Phang Nga.''

Plans are coming on fast for a future that involves Phuket's naturally-beautiful neighbor appealing to more tourists in its own right, not just as a day-trip destination.

Newest of the Phang Nga projects is a spectacular 14.8 million baht water market project that is due for completion in September, in plenty of time for the coming 2012-2013 high season.

The development is coming at the site of the present Phang Nga freshmarket, which is near Phang Nga Town and not far from the proposed Phang Nga botanical gardens and zoo.

It will include a Jungceylon style moored vessel with two floors, containing a food court and a souvenir shop.

With its vendor-free no jet-ski beaches, Phang Nga is likely to become more appealing as Phuket beaches crowd up and uncontrolled privatisation makes them less pleasant.

The aim, according to Phang Nga marketers, is to give the province a larger slice of tourism revenue.

Phang Nga tourism players told TTR Weekly that they hope a Tourism Coordination Centre managed by the Tourism Authority of Thailand will soon be upgraded into a full-fledged TAT office on par with the TAT Phuket provincial office.

Phang Nga Tourist Association president, Chalermchat Janejaneprasert, said: ''Most of the time visitors think the attractions belong to Phuket or neigboring provinces on the mainland.

''Phang Nga is perceived as a day-trip destination from Phuket so we face a challenge to market the overnight stays in the province.''

The province has about 170 hotels with 7500 rooms, mostly around Khao Lak on the Andaman Sea coast. With Phang Nga Bay on the eastern side, the potential for ''Greater Phang Nga'' is unlimited.

Department of Tourism figures show that in 2011, Phang Nga received 267,944 tourists, up 2.62 percent from 2010.


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