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Phuket, Malay: Bukit or Tongkah, is one of Thailand’s southern provinces (Changwat). It consists of the island of Phuket, the country’s largest island, and 32 smaller islands off the coast. It lies off the west coast of mainland Thailand in the Andaman Sea. Phuket Island is connected to Phang Nga Province in the north by the Sarasin Bridge. The nearest province is Krabi, to the east, across Phang Nga Bay.

The island’s surface is mostly flat land but is dotted with scattered hills that reach 520 m (1,700 ft) in height. It was already in the 1st century BC. BC populated. The island was part of various Tai states from an early age and was incorporated into the Kingdom of Ayutthaya around the 16th century. After the 18th century, many Chinese arrived; more than half of the population are Chinese today. Called Ujong Salang (“Cape Salang”) by the Malays, the island was also known as Tongkat, Junk Ceylon and Jonsalam.

Phuket Province covers an area of ​​576 km2 (222 sq mi), slightly less than Singapore, and is the second smallest province in Thailand. Lying on one of the leading trade routes between India and China, the island was frequently mentioned in the foreign shipping logs of Portuguese, French, Dutch and English traders. Still, it was never colonized by a European power. It used to get its wealth from tin and rubber and now from tourism.


Phuket is the largest island in Thailand. It is located in the Andaman Sea in southern Thailand. The island is mainly mountainous, with a mountain range in the west of the island from north to south. The Phuket Mountains form the southern end of the Phuket Range, which stretches 440 kilometers (270 miles) from the Kra Isthmus. Although some recent geographical works refer to sections of the Tenasserim hills on the Isthmus as the “Phuket Range,” these names are not found in classical geographical sources.

In addition, the name Phuket is relatively new, having previously been called Jung Ceylon and Thalang. The island’s highest peak is commonly considered Khao Mai Thao Sip Song (Twelve Canes) at 529 meters (1,736 ft) above sea level. However, air pressure measurements have reported an even higher (apparently unnamed) Five hundred forty-two meters above sea level in the Kamala Hills behind Kathu Falls.


As with most of Thailand, the majority of the population is Buddhist, but there are a significant number (20 percent) of Muslims in Phuket, primarily descendants of the island’s original Austronesian peoples. Among the Muslims, many are of Malay descent. People of Chinese descent make up an even larger population, many of whom are descendants of tin miners who immigrated to Phuket in the 19th century. The Peranakans, known as “Phuket Babas” in the local language, make up a sizable portion of the Chinese community. Members, particularly among those with family ties to the Peranakans of Penang and Malacca.

Tin mines:

Phuket is known for its rich tin mines. The ore, found in lowland gravel and on the shallow seabed, is extracted using dredgers and pumps from the river and ocean-going vessels. The island has also become a vital seaside resort—the bridge from the mainland north across a narrow strait. A road connects the main settlements of Thalang, Phuket and Ban Rawai.

In December 2004, the island was severely damaged by a giant tsunami triggered by an earthquake in the Indian Ocean near Indonesia. Several thousand people, including many foreign tourists, were killed. Island area, 210 square miles (543 square kilometers).

Parks and beaches:

Phuket is quite hilly. Some peaks are over 500m, the highest being Mai Tao Sipsong at 529m. Many of them are covered by lush jungles. The lowlands consist of paddy fields and rubber, pineapple and coconut plantations. The only significant area of ​​rainforest on the island is now protected as Khao Phra Thaeo Park. The most beautiful beaches are on the west coast, separated by rocky coves and headlands.

The east coast consists of limestone banks with few sandy beaches, while spectacular limestone islands dot the horizon. Coral gardens were teeming with exotic marine lifelines, the emerald waters surrounding the island, although, unfortunately, much of Phuket’s coral has disappeared due to environmental problems. human pressures and activities.

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