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Shopping Guide: Where and What to Buy in Phuket

Shopping in Phuket can be a delightful experience. Vibrant markets and boutique stores offer various items that reflect Thai culture and artisanal craftsmanship. In this article, we’ll share some must-buy items to look out for when shopping. You may find many of them near major tourist attractions in Phuket

A woman looking at hand-woven bags in a store


What to Shop For

Here are some must-buy items to keep an eye out for during your Phuket trip:


Elephant-Themed Items

Elephants hold cultural significance in Thailand, symbolizing strength and longevity. In Phuket, you can find various elephant-themed items ranging from hand-carved wooden statues to fabrics printed with elephant motifs.


Local Clothing and Fabric

Phuket is an excellent place to buy traditional Thai silk clothing, cotton fisherman pants, and beautifully woven shawls. The island is also known for its batik fabric, dyed using a wax-resistant technique to create unique and colorful patterns.


Woven Products

In Phuket, traditional weaving skills are passed down through generations. This artistry is beautifully showcased in woven products, such as bags, hats, and home accessories made from natural materials like rattan or bamboo.


Dried Food and Fruits

Popular choices include dried mango, tamarind, and durian, as well as more savory items like dried squid and fish. Make sure the items you buy are packaged well for secure and easy travel.


Spices and Cooking Ingredients

Phuket’s markets offer a wide variety of Thai spices, sauces, and cooking ingredients, including fresh and dried herbs, curry pastes, and coconut milk. These ingredients allow you to bring the authentic flavors of Thai cuisine into your kitchen.


Spa and Aromatherapy Products

Phuket is famed for its spa culture, and you can buy products to recreate a relaxing spa experience in your own home. Look for coconut oil, herbal compress balls, essential oils, and handmade soaps made with natural ingredients like lemongrass, turmeric, and tamarind.


Pearl Jewelry

The waters around Phuket are ideal for pearl farming and local pearls are known for their quality and luster. You can find pearls set in jewelry, from simple earrings and necklaces to more elaborate, custom-designed pieces.


Paintings and Artwork

Consider buying paintings by local artists that capture the essence of the island's landscapes, seascapes, and daily life. Many art shops and galleries in Phuket Town and along the beach areas showcase these artworks.


Pottery and Ceramics

girls looking at pottery and ceramic gift


You can find practical kitchenware and decorative items handcrafted by local artisans. These ceramics often feature traditional Thai patterns and symbols, making them unique gifts or additions to your home décor.


Shopping Tips

To make the most of your shopping adventures in Phuket, here are some practical tips:


Bargain Wisely

Many markets and street stalls in Phuket expect you to bargain. It’s part of the fun! However, it's important to do so respectfully. Remember, the final price should feel fair to you and the seller.


Use Local Currency

While some larger stores and shopping malls accept credit cards, most places, like local markets in Phuket, usually deal in cash or cash transfers in Thai Baht.


Check for Authenticity

If you’re shopping for branded goods or high-value items such as genuine pearl jewelry and Thai silk, it’s important to purchase from reputable stores. Be aware that if a deal seems too good to be true, it probably is.


Be Mindful of Export Regulations

Certain items, especially those that are culturally significant, like Buddha images or items made from exotic materials, may have restrictions or require permits to be taken out of Thailand. Check the customs regulations to avoid any issues at the airport.


Enjoy the Local Food

Don’t miss out on the delicious street food available at many markets. Trying local snacks can be as much of a cultural experience as shopping.


Where to Go Shopping in Phuket

Walking street market in Phuket Old Town


Weekend Markets

Visit the Phuket Weekend Market (also known as the Naka Market) near Phuket Town to find some items on your shopping list. It’s a sprawling bazaar where you can find everything from vintage clothing to local delicacies. Another must-visit is the Lard Yai Market or Phuket Sunday Walking Street Market on Thalang Road, which is lined with food and clothing vendors and even has live entertainment.


Night Bazaars

Don’t miss Patong’s Malin Plaza and Chillva Market in Phuket Town for a lively shopping experience under the stars. These markets are perfect for grabbing handicrafts and tasting street food.


Shopping Malls

For a more upscale shopping experience, head to Jungceylon in Patong or Central Phuket Floresta to shop for various international and local brands, and enjoy dining options and entertainment.


Combine Shopping with Water Attractions

gift shopping family


Combine your shopping spree with a day of unforgettable water park fun. Andamanda Phuket offers plenty of excitement, with water slides and rides as well as shopping thrills at Bazaar by Andamanda, where you can find a wide array of Thai products and souvenirs. This unique shopping destination is an excellent place to get some shopping done while enjoying the convenience of being close to all the water park action.

Ready to explore the vibrant shopping scene in Phuket and enjoy exhilarating rides and attractions at Andamanda Phuket? Plan your visit today!

Wondering what to bring back home from Phuket? Find out the best spots in Phuket to go on a shopping spree and the must-buy items to look out for.