Often mispronounced, Phuket is one of the southern provinces of Thailand. Phuket is made up of the large Island of Phuket plus 32 other small islands and is a very popular destination for beach-goers.
These islands are located in the Andaman Sea off the west coast of Thailand. With more than 30 beautiful beaches to choose from, as well as a lively lifestyle, Phuket is a dream destination for a warm, relaxing vacation. Phuket City, the capital, has old commercial districts and busy markets. Patong, the main resort town, has many nightclubs, bars, and discos. Thailand is generally a welcoming country and Phuket is one of its most gay-friendly destinations.
But before you begin packing your swimsuit, sunglasses, and flip-flops, you need to make sure you can properly pronounce the name of this Thai province.
The Right Way to Say Phuket
It may sound like profanity, but many people mistakingly pronounce Phuket as "Fuket." Although this makes sense since in English the letters "p" and "h" next to each other make an "f" sound, this is not the case in the language of Thai. In Thai, when a "p" is followed by an "h" the "h" is silent, so you simply pronounce the "p." Therefore, Phuket is read as "Poo-ket."
Pronouncing Other Thai Words
This same rule applies across the board, so Koh Phi Phi (another island in Thailand) is pronounced "pee pee," not "fee fee." Koh Pha Ngan (the Thai island known for its full moon party) is pronounced "pang gan," not "fang gan."
Other Thai pronunciations are not intuitive for Americans. When you pronounce the letter “r” in the Thai language, you should slightly roll your tongue. The “ng” sound is pronounced the same way in Thai as it is in English, but the difference is that in Thai, it can be used at the beginning of words.
What to Do in Phuket
Now that you know how to say it, you may want to take a trip to Phuket. And it is well worth it. There is a lot more to do on Phuket Island (and those surrounding) than just relax on the sand. The top things to do in Phuket include exploring the greenery of Phuket via the zip line tours the Flying Hanuman company offers and strolling around the Portuguese colonial-style Phuket Town's museums, boutiques, and coffee shops.
Phuket is lush and green. Your list of things to do will include visiting the dense, jungle interior's amazing waterfalls. Phuket is home to too many waterfalls to count, but its most famous include Bang Pae, Ton Sai, and Kathu. You could combine these waterfalls with the Flying Hanuman zip line adventure, or hire a taxi driver for the day in order to try and see as many as possible.
You can't miss "Big Buddha Phuket," seated high atop a hill in the southwestern corner of the island. In addition to the 150-foot tall marble statue itself, the viewpoint offers one of the island's most astounding panoramas, whether you come during the day or stay until sunset.