On our third day in Thailand we decided to take half a day and see where many locals go –– Phuket Town. (Now is called Phuket City) Many times Phuket Town is overlooked for the beaches or other sea tours, but for those who do go it is neat to see all the hustle and bustle of the "city".
There were so many things to do there. The zoo, Butterfly Gardens, "Farmers" markets, shopping, Pearl House, offices and much more. We opted to hop in a tuk tuk and just go to the different shops, markets and walk around. I had hoped to find Old Phuket Town to look at the buildings and history, but we never made it there before our driver had to get us.
Doesn't Matt look excited sitting in the back of a tuk tuk?
There were several "farmers" markets in Phuket Town. It was interesting to walk around looking at what was for sale and watching the locals interact. Some of the items I could never imagine eating. I learned that Thailand (and Matt says many countries) does not refrigerate their eggs. And the fruit, oh the fruit. If I could have I would have bought it all. I had some of the most awesome fruit in my life while on this trip.
Dried fish anyone?
There were aisles upon aisles of fruit.
These pineapples would be about 30¢ in the US and the oranges (which were always green) would have been about $1.
Another thing I learned on this trip was that nothing (and I mean NOTHING) foodwise is ever wasted. Some of the things you can never imagine eating are eaten in Thailand (and lots of Asia) Ducks are just smoked or cooked whole –– head, beak and all. If you order chicken, unless it states chicken breast, it is fair game as to what parts you are eating. The pork is actually very good in Thailand (I was surprised). I just hope that what I ate was never this:
Yes that is a hog head and yes that is some part of skin just draped on the side. And yes, people bought this.
One interesting thing about Thailand is mode of transportation. You do not see many big SUVs but you do see lots of pickup trucks and cars. I thought it would be more like Europe, small cars everywhere. But this may because many people use scooters as their primary mode of transportation. Everywhere you look you see people on scooters. Sometimes many people on the same scooter. Several times we saw a scooter with 4 people hanging off it. And helmets? The driver will wear one but that is usually it. And many times you will see small kids hanging off the scooter, usually without a helmet. With the windy, hilly roads I cannot imagine riding a scooter. People fly around those roads and being on a tiny scooter would be terrifying.
Everywhere you looked you saw scooters for sale or rent.
While in Phuket Town we opted to try some good Old Mickey D's rather than some of the more native foods. After some of the food we saw at the markets I think we were ready for something a bit more familiar. And let me tell you this was some of the best McDonald's I have ever eaten.
Thailand is beautiful. Just look at the background.
We spent about 4 hours in Phuket Town walking around and shopping. I got a few dresses and a pair of shoes that has quickly become one of my favorites. Matt got some Callaway golf clubs polo shirts, a custom suit and a few dress shirts (can't beat a custom suit and 2 dress shirts for $200 US dollars.) We also got some Thai silk, Phuket River pearl earrings, and a few other items to bring back for the kids and my mom.
Matt convinced me to buy this dress. Lots of people around here are wearing something similar so why not. Plus I loved the color. And hey, it only cost me $9.
As usual, I have more pictures posted here.
Stay tuned, lots of more to post about our trip.