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Driving from airport to Nai Harn

New York State
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Driving from airport to Nai Harn

Can anyone recommend the slow/scenic route from the airport to Nai Harn? (if there is such a thing) This will be my first time driving in Thailand and my first time driving on the "other" side. I am an awesome driver and I have driven many major cities throughout the world. I have been to Thailand before so I know what to expect, and to be honest, I look forward to the thrill and challenge. I just thinks it's best if I start out slow. (every map gives me directions on the east coast, going through Phuket Town. How is the west coast? Distance doesn't look much longer). Thanks!

Phuket, Thailand
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1. Re: Driving from airport to Nai Harn

Driving the west coast is certainly more scenic than running down Thepkasatri Road though P Town.. In fact several parts of that drive are favorites of mine. The problem is that the route itself is not clearly marked and even maps are sometimes rough estimates.

It's probably best to think of the drive in segments such as:

Airport south to the turn off to Naithon Beach. (3-5 minutes)

Naithon Beach road along the coast south to Outrigger turn right to go through the Laguna area to Cherng Talay. (15-20 minutes - if you drive slowly like I do)

Cherng Talay - go out to the main road (at the police station), turn right and follow that road through Cherng Talay, BangTao, on through Surin Beach to Kamala and over the mountain to Patong. (Another 20-25+ minutes or so.)

Find your way through Patong to Karon, stay on the coast to/through Kata Beach. (10-12-15 minutes depending on traffic)

Turn right at the T junction in Kata to the Orchidacia - turn left - up the hill and along the coast to the Karon Viewpoint and on south to Nai Harn. (15-18+ minutes)

Times are all very rough estimates and don't include pulling off the road to look around (and there are some neat places to look around and some great view points). You'll drive though lots of rubber plantations, high viewpoints of the sea, several small towns, most of the islands best beaches and a few super touristy zones.

It's a great drive and the way I drive when time is not a factor.

Now . . . along that path is not always coastline, and you might want to bump over to the coast here and there but then head back to the road that will continue south.

My guess is that driving that route will probably take you about 30+ minutes longer than blasting down the main road, but much much more relaxing and revealing of the island's beauty.

Edited: 02 August 2012, 21:45
Rawai Beach, Phuket
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for Phuket
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2. Re: Driving from airport to Nai Harn

I agree and often drive that way when I pick up friends who come to Phuket for the first time.

The highway can really suck, especially at rush hour.

When leaving the airport, just turn right and then go straight, not turning and following all the taxis heading for the hi-way.

That way you are on the old airport road for about 5-7 kms to that turn for NaiThon beach.

You could probably figure it all out from google maps.

Have fun.

New York State
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3. Re: Driving from airport to Nai Harn

Thank you for such detailed advice. The directions are perfect!

I look forward to our scenic drive!

4. Re: Driving from airport to Nai Harn

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