Review: Phuket Bike Routes by Local Riders
Route 1: Phuket Gateway – Mai Khao Beach – Sarasin Bridge.
Review by Peeradej Puksakitsakul – Business Owner
The route starts at Phuket Gateway. If you ride back to Chatachai checkpoint, you will pass the Nurool Ebadeyah Mosque and then take a U-turn at the traffic-lights as the map shows or you can choose to bike back to Phuket Town and turn left at the Mai Khao temple entrance to 3033 route. If you choose the second route, you’ll pass the village, rubber tree plantations, rice fields and buffalos along the roadside. Route 3033 has less traffic and you can also enjoy the beach views before you arrive at Mai Khao Soi 2 before heading back. On the way back you can also visit Mai Khao Temple to pay respect or to make merit. After that you can turn left at Mai Khao Soi 7 along Mai Khao Beach see the views and enjoy the sea breezes before getting to the exit at Mai Khao Soi 8 so, that you’re back on Thepkrasattri Road to head back to Sarasin Bridge. On the way back there’s another highlight called Phru Che San, a peaceful and green spot. Riders love to visit here to relax and take photos. When heading back to Chatachai checkpoint you’ll pass Sai Kaew Beach with its pine trees. Most people will stop to take photos as this is another popular landmark. The best time to ride this route is in the early morning because there’ll be less traffic compared to the evening. The highlight of this route is the Sarasin Bridge with its fresh morning breezes. For new riders if you have any questions please feel free to ask me or to join our group ‘Guan Rod Teeb’. Call us at 081-597-5950
Route 2: Pakhlok – Laem Sai – Ao Po Pier
Review by Doctor Visit Thongterd and Sujaree Thongterd
This ride starts at Pakhlok sub-district and the first stop at is at Bang Rong Pier which is a small pier with a roadside mangrove forest. The next stop is Bang Pae Waterfall, a very shady and cool spot. Along the way you’ll pass a restaurant, the waterfall and the Gibbon Rehabilitation Centre. If you’ve got time, you should pay it a visit before heading on to the next stop. Next is Ao Por pier which is an embarkation point for Phang Nga Bay, Koh Yao Island and Naka Island – another good photo opportunity. The next stop (and in my personal opinion the highlight of the route) is Laem Sai Pier. I’m always impressed by the scenery of both the roadside and the rubber tree plantations. The road is new and is an easy ride. You can see some views of Phang Nga Bay from this road. This is also a recommended route for new riders who are not yet confident enough to go out on the main roads, easy and safe with less traffic. You can also find coffee and shops along the route.
You only need to be careful when you start to go out onto the main roads as the traffic is bad compared to smaller roads. The main roads are sometimes not in good condition and are bumpy, so new riders should be careful. Riding up certain hills can be a bit exhausting. The best recommended time should be on Sunday morning as there’s less traffic and the air is fresh.
Route 3: Phuket Town – Old Phuket Town – Koh Sirey
Review of the route by Karntida Tanwattanathavorn – Nurse
For riders who live in Phuket Town this is the best recommended route. This route runs for a total of 20km and you can stop to visit the Old Town along the way to view and photograph all the colourful street art on Thalang, Krabi, and Dibuk roads and up to Naritsorn Road until you get to Sri Suthat Road before crossing over the Koh Sirey Bridge. You must be a bit careful along the road leading to Koh Sirey as there’s lots of traffic from tour buses and tourists. Also, the road in that area is a bit uneven until you reach the clock circle at the entrance of the island. I would recommend you turn left at the circle and you’ll get to see lovely sea views from the hill. Another option is to take a right at the three-road junction at the clock tower. If you keep going to the end you’ll pass many bicycle riders along the way. Eventually you’ll reach Laem Tuk Kae; take a break here with its cool sea breezes and local fishermen. Another landmark of this route is the Phra Tard Inn Kwan temple. Park your bike below and walk up to make merit and view the scenery. Then head back to the clock circle and you can stop at the monkey view point before heading back to Phuket Town on Phang Nga Road and the street art buildings.
The best recommended times should be both in the evening and in the morning but the advantage of the morning ride is that you’ll get fresher air. However, this route is suitable for office people who need some exercise after work. During the Old Town ride you should watch out for cars.
Route 4: Old Phuket Town – Laem Panwa
Review by Somkiet Jiraamornrat – Council member of Phuket
I recommend waking up a bit early around 5.30 – 6.00 to visit Cape Panwa for the sunrise. Starting from the 72nd Anniversary Commemoration of Queen Sirikij Public Park in Phuket Town, go through Thalang Road, Krabi Road passing the old buildings and street art along the way and then head to Patiphat Road toward Chao Fah East Road until you get to Sakdidet Road heading to Panwa Cape. This route is not so difficult to ride and you can visit Khao Khat viewpoint along the way – the views from the tower are spectacular and if you come in the evening, you can also catch the sunset as well. The road up to the viewpoint is not so good so it’s not recommended for new riders. The challenge of this route is the road itself. You must be careful on at each turn and corner.
At Panwa Cape you can view the sunrise from the ocean and stop at the Phuket Aquarium. If you come in the evening, the area is just as beautiful. The danger of this route is that you must be very careful riding along Patiphat Road as the traffic is bad. You should wear a helmet and safety equipment and some lights on the bike that are easy to notice.
Route 5: Saphan Hin – Laem Phromthep
Review by Panupong Sukkawatthanachaiyakul – Freelancer
Warm up and start from the 60-year Mine Monument Roundabout and pass Saphan Koh Pee to Dao Rung intersection to Chao Fah East. There are few spots along the way where you can take a break such as Soi Palai and the Old Pier. Another spot is Chalong Pier – a good photo shooting location. After Chalong pier head south to Laem Phromthep and after about 5-6km you’ll pass Rawai beach which is another photogenic spot and a good for a break as well. Most people think that Laem Phromthep is exclusively a sunset destination but I recommend a visit during the morning because there’s less traffic and no tourists and it’s more peaceful then than in the evening. Some riders choose another route which is along Soi Sai Yuan through the local community of Nai Harn to Laem Phromthep as well. Along this route you can also visit the Windmill Viewpoint and Yanui Beach which is also beautiful. Along this route the hills can make it tough going but the views are worth it and once you reach the top of the hill and see the surrounding vistas, all the stress and exhaustion will be gone. On the way back you can also visit Wat Sinsupharam or Wat Luangpu Supha temple and the lake in the temple area as well.
The most dangerous spot is the five-way intersection roundabout at Chalong. The most recommended time is early morning before people start go to work or at the weekend at about 6.30 – 7.30.