A must-do in Phuket is a walk in the old part of Phuket City, around Thalang, Dibuk and Krabi roads. The beautiful architecture along these roads will take you back to the charm of a century ago.
Phuket plays host to a wonderful mix of nationalities who have chosen to live here: it has Thais, Chinese, Malays, Indians and Nepalese, a young and growing Eurasian community and a unique mix of Hokkien Chinese and Thais called ‘Baba’.
The Baba community’s heritage can be seen in Phuket’s Old Town in its architecture, commerce, dress and way of life. The core of the Old Town essentially is made up of five roads and several ‘sois’ (small streets), these are Rasada Rd, Phang Nga Rd, Thalang Rd, Dibuk Rd, and Krabi Rd. This quarter teems with history and after years of neglect is currently being renovated.
One hundred years ago, Thalang Rd was a hive of activity as tin mine workers would head there to buy essentials, sell tin ore and indulge themselves in less-than-exemplary activities. Theirs was a hard life and the comforts of alcohol, opium, women, and the chance to win some extra cash through gambling provided a heady contrast to the drudgery of tin prospecting.