Phuket 2019 Day 1 – Arrival into Phuket and check into resort

It was a super long weekend we decided that we wanted to spend it away in Phuket. Our flight was in the afternoon of the National Day holiday and thus it was an easy start to a trip without the rush in the morning.

We left home at about 1115 as my dad drove us to Changi. Without any much traffic on the roads, we made it easily to check in at Terminal 2 for our SilkAir flight just before noon. Pretty familiar with the self service machine, we dropped off our one and only big luggage at the automated gate (and K was just intrigued with it) and went through immigration.

National Day deco at Changi

The plane took off soon enough and the flight was pretty ok, though there were about 2 short periods of turbulence. Lunch was served for the children first and K had his meal of sweet and sour chicken with rice. This was a simple set without the bun that SQ normally have and mommy was disappointed with the simple affair.

Ours came much later and without a choice so we had the same thing that K had. By then K was already done with his food and was busy with Tom and Jerry cartoon on my hand phone that was linked to the aircraft entertainment system.

Shortly after our lunch, the plane was already descending into a cloudy and misty Phuket. We were forewarned about the bad weather online and true enough, it was dampening sight looking out of the window.

The immigration had a short line but K had to visit the toilet first so mommy went to queue. By the time we returned, mommy was already at the start of the line and we cleared immigrations promptly.

I met a colleague and his family on the same flight at the luggage belt (of all places) and after some quick exchanges and a selfie, we went our separate ways for our holidays.

Tried asking the car rental companies only to find that all of them were fully booked out. So we took the exit on the left and found 2 yellow stands offering taxi. Approached the busier one and was offered 1000baht (SGD50) based on their map with standard rates. Paid and left for a private sedan. While in the car, we thought we might have taken the more expensive option and should have checked around first since the distance didn’t seemed too far off.

Line of car rental companies but no car for rent
Phuket airport
Where we got out taxi

We arrived into a Renaissance Phuket after going through a portion of small roads. The reception area was beautifully designed and brightly lit and stood out in the gloomy weather. We were given some drinks and towels to freshen up as mommy went through the check in while K and me chilled. From there we saw a kids pool area with Dino design but we couldn’t really go there currently with the drizzle nor the clubhouse which the staff informed that getting there would need us to cross a path in the open.

At the reception
At the bar

We went to the restaurant below to get free ice cream as K was given a wristband that would entitle him to one ice cream every afternoon (from 3pm-5pm) since the room wasn’t ready yet. While at the restaurant, mommy ordered some spring rolls to munch on. It was served soon after an initial bread appetizer with olive oil and peanut crumbs, which we thought tasted pretty good.

Ice cream entitlement band
At Loca Vore restaurant to get ice cream
Yummy delicious bread
Yummy spring rolls

While sitting along the outside of the restaurant, we saw tiny frogs hopping around. One girl was shocked to see them and yelped while passing by. I wouldn’t have noticed as well if not for her.

What are those 2 things…
tiny frog! So tiny you can unknowingly squash them

Went back to the reception to collect our keys and proceeded to the room via a buggy. It seemed like a long journey as the buggy went through a tiny curvy road and then travel alongside the building. Got off and took the lift to the top floor (3 floors). Opening the door revealed a big and beautiful room that came with a balcony -I was already liking it.

Big room
With a big tub
Shower and toilet
Panoramic view from our balcony
Activities suggestion during rain

Chilled in the room for a long time, as much as it took the rain to drizzle. K had quite a bit of screen time while I fell asleep on the comfortable bed.

When I woke up, K was just finishing his cartoons and asked to be bathed in the tub. We spend some time there as well before getting out of the room for dinner.

The rain had stopped and we thought we would walk to the beach. We managed to see the swimming pool and 2 restaurants in a single building but on different floors but didn’t get to the beach as it was dark.

Swimming pool
2 levels of restaurants

Went to the Takieng on the 2nd floor but was advised that it was fully booked and we had to wait if interested to have their Thai cuisine. However they also adviced us to dine at the Sand box below as they could deliver the food there too. So without much of a choice, we went downstairs and sat at the more casual Sand box, that had a sandy beach floor.

Ordered dinner consisting of nuggets and fries for K, mommy had a curry and duck with rice and I ordered a Margarita pizza to share with K. With the inclusion of one passion fruit drink, the entire dinner was about 1500baht. The food was good, as the nuggets were huge and tasted like they made it by themselves, pizza was baked in a flame kiln and Thai food was spicy.

Chicken nuggets and fries
Duck and curry
Where we had dinner

We took a walk after the filling dinner and found out where the kids club was which was closed for the night, the kids pool which looked pretty fun and came with a slide and the way back to reception which now didn’t seem so far.

Kids’ pool
Around the compound
Huge gym

Back at the room when we prepared for the night, I came to a shocked realization that I had forgotten to pack K’s diapers! Called the reception and they advised to try find them in the coffee shop next to the gym and thus I went there quickly. There was a mini store inside the coffee shop but I only found medium sizes. The staff there advised that I should take the hotel shuttle to 7-11. I could make the trip at 9pm and still make it back before the last one at 950pm.

Went to the lobby and waited for the shuttle which was a small pickup with the back modified into a passenger seating area. Was dropped off at 7-11 at a building with 2 floors next to Turtle Village and I was glad to find XL sizes there under Mamypoko brand, something that I was familiar with back in Singapore, all for about 330baht.

Diapers travel size
Turtle Village

Bought milk and yoghurt too and proceeded to walk to Mai Khao Plaza just a minute walk away to get on the same transport back. The plaza which was brightly lit seemed to have more restaurants and some shops but I didn’t have any time to explore and the annoying drizzle was back.

Heading towards brightly lit Mai Khao Plaza
Mai Khao Plaza, shuttle pick up point just next to the sign

A short 5mins ride and soon I was back at the hotel. Returned to the room to find mommy reading K some books. Got through the night routine and soon, everyone was in bed. I went for my bath after everyone dozed off and went to bed soon after, ending an uneventful first day in Phuket.

Escape Plan to Phuket August 2019

A brief summary on the itinerary

Escape Plan to Phuket:

Total duration 5D4N
Singapore is 1hr ahead of Phuket.
Flight time is 1hrs 50mins on Silkair from Singapore to Phuket. Return flight is 4hrs 45mins on China Airlines from Taipei to Singapore.

Morning flight on 9th Aug at 120pm and arrival in Phuket in the afternoon at 210pm. Return flight from
Phuket on the 13th Jun at 1145am and arrival in Singapore at 220pm.

Day 1 Arrival into Phuket and check into resort
Day 2 Phuket Aquarium, Upside-Down house and Chaofa Variety night market
Day 3 Dinopark mini-golf, Weekend market and Jungceylon
Day 4 Splash Jungle waterpark and Mai Khao village
Day 5 Home Sweet Home

This escape plan was to utilise the National day and Haji super long weekend for a short getaway to somewhere close to home. Since we hadn’t really been to Phuket, we thought it would be a good time to do so.

Budget nature: Comparatively costly

Comparative to other parts of Thailand, I thought it was rather costly to visit Phuket. The flights were obviously expensive since due to the long weekend but we reduced the costs by claiming expiring miles for the flight there and paying for the return on a day after the long weekend. Our transportation could have been cheaper if we booked through Klook or negotiated with the driver more. We spent more than $700 cash than we bought for the 5 days.

Complexity: Easy

It was easy since most of the transportation was taken care of with a chartered driver. It could have been difficult had we been able to get our own car as we realised while in the taxi that it was quite challenging to drive in the chaotic traffic especially in town.