Rawai: One of the Best Kept Secrets of Phuket
Rawai is a treasured place and one of the best-hidden secrets that the Phuket Island has to offer. It's considered as a beautiful and relaxing beach village that has kept the place intact with only a few technological modern developments in the area.
This is the main reason why the place is very authentic and sought by many people and stay. A lot of retirees, entrepreneurs, artists and individuals who want to find peace and tranquility would love to remain in this lovely place.
So, where is Rawai? Rawai Island is located in a tiny town of Phuket, Thailand. It's a small island situated in the southernmost part of Phuket. It has green flourishing coastal hills located in Laem Phromthep, with the Andaman Sea surrounding it. The lush hills are home to smaller communities that are being developed slowly, but you can still feel the beauty of nature.
Rawai is recorded to be the first tourist beach spot in Phuket. Why is that? It's very easy to get to Rawai. You can reach Rawai by taking a songtaew. If you're not familiar with what a songtaew is, it's a passenger vehicle mostly found in Laos and Thailand.
In English, songtaew translates to "two rows," which is a truck or pick-up truck, that has two bench-type seats on both sides of the vehicle. Sometimes a third place is located in the middle part.
Even though the place is not very much developed, there are many places to go to including island-hopping in a taxi-boat. You can also rent a scooter to get around. Aside from the nightlife, you can check out the jungle safari, do elephant trekking or take up Thai boxing.
If you're not the adventurous type, you can learn how to cook authentic Thai food, see the Phuket Sea Shell Museum, batik painting or go on a market tour. If you've had a rough day, you can go to their healing center and get Thai massages or use the herbal saunas.
The most popular tourist spot in Rawai is Phromthep Cape. It's a well-known place and is considered to be the most photographed place in Rawai. It is most famous for its photographic sunrise and sunset at the peak of the southernmost hill. It's also very romantic, and a lot of lovers prefer to go here for a romantic getaway.
The cape has a lighthouse with a spectacular view and has an impressive and unique display of antique maritime artifacts. At the top of the lighthouse/museum balcony, you'll see a great view of the Koh Racha Noi, Koh Racha Yai and Phi Phi Islands on a very bright day.
The place is also air-conditioned, so you can just enjoy the view from inside or trek and sit on the edge of the cape's promontory. There are also small stalls that sell sarongs, shawls, beachwear, batik, toys, shells and snacks.
The Rawai Beach is ideal for chilling and relaxing, but it is not suitable for swimming because it has a lot of boats moored on the shore. The Rawai Beach can be reached when you go to Central 402 main roads, located in the middle of the island and then going south.
The beach has a great seafood market located in the Sea Gypsy village. Restaurants offer grilled chicken, fish, crabs and other seafood. If you want to swim, you can go to nearby beaches like Nai Harn Beach, Laem Ka Beach or Ya Nui Beach.
Rawai restaurants have a wide array of food available. Most of them cater Thai food. Baan Rima, Som Tum Lanna, Banana Corner and Oyjoi Number 1 Thai Food Restaurants are the most popular ones. They have European food in the German Bakery, Italian food in Da Vinci Restaurant and even vegetarian food in the Natural Efe Macrobiotic World Restaurant.
If you want to experience or go to a Buddhist temple, Rawai has Wat Nai Han and Wat Chalong. Wat Nai Han is alive monastery where you can watch while monks work in the temple or recite scriptures. Wat Chalong however, is a temple that is strictly for worshippers. Please dress appropriately and respectfully when visiting.
Rawai is an authentic place with natural beauty. If you want to experience a close-knit community and a perfect place to experience authentic Thai culture, Rawai is the place to go.