Phuket temples are always worth a visit, from tthe one hidden inside a cave to the famous Wat Chalong, a visit to Thailand would not be complete without exploring few of these magnificent buildings (Wat means Temple, you guessed it).
Phuket does have many ‘Wats’ and one by one we will probably list them all, but many are difficult to find or have very little touristic interest unless you are a Buddhist. Of course you already know that you have to remove your shoes (and cap) before stepping in and making a donation even small is a nice gesture and ultimately, it is good for you. Here are 19 temples in Phuket, but we counted more than 26 so we will add temples as we visit them. See also our page about Chinese Shrines of Phuket which are obviously completely different.
Chalong Temple, built at the beginning on 19th century, is the largest and most visited Buddhist temple in Phuket. Its real name is Wat Chaitararam, but you probably won’t hear it or see it on any road signs. It’s not my favourite temple to photograph, but it is almost a must to visit. (read more)
Wat Putta Mongkon or Wat Klang might not be the most impressive temple in Phuket but this one means a lot to people living around Phuket Town. All temples are of course worth visiting but since Wat Putta Mongkon is really close to Thalang Road, the historical streets of Phuket Town it would complete your visit perfectly. (read more)
Despite being considered big (at the time), many travellers miss Khao Rang Temple because the road leading to it is not so easy to locate, you have to try hard to deserve it. It is certainly not as grand as the Big Buddha in Chalong, but it has a discreet charm. To me, it also feels a lot more real, and not so much a tourist attraction. Mostly locals go there to do merit and pray on week ends. (read more)
Wat Phra Thong which means ‘Golden Buddha Image Temple’ is a very old temple with a big legend, the kind of story that irresistibly attracts people. It’s not very big or impressive, but the first thing everyone wants to see is the famous half buried golden Buddha. So what’s this strange legend about? (read more)
(On the way to airport) Wat Sri Sunthon sounds like any another temple, and since there are so many of them in Phuket, you might ask what can be different about this one? (read more)
Phuket Big Buddha, a 45 meter tall marble statue, is visible from anywhere in the southern part of Phuket. It might not be my favourite attraction, but the views from up there are breathtaking. (read more)
(Karon Beach) A small but beautiful temple in the back on Karon Beach. You’ll find it by driving inland from the Karon circle. This temple frequently hosts markets and fun fairs, always fun to visit. Read more about the Karon Temple Market
This unusual wat is 200 years old, the oldest in Phuket, built when the main city of Phuket was located in Thalang. It seems to be permanently under construction. Each of the many buildings is decorated with a multitude of intricate ornaments, then surrounded by a multitude of statues of diverse origins, from an arm less cop standing next to a lion to the more logical Buddha images. Everything was designed with mixed Chinese and Thai mythology influence, largely influenced by the mood of the day. Read more
This small but beautifully decorated set of temple is rarely visited as it is inside Kathu, a village located a bit away from the main Phuket Town – Patong road. Not many travelers take the time to drive around this area. The monks at Wat Kathu are very friendly, some even speak English and will happy to chat with you about any question you may have.
This superb temple is often overlooked. Located not far from Cherngtalay village on Bangtao beach, you will drive by it when come from the heroines monument going to Bangtao beach. By the time you’ll notice it, it probably will be too late.
This very large and nice temple on the fringe of Phuket town also plays a very important role for Phuket citizens, but is rarely visited by tourists because of its location in a back street of town.
You cannot miss the Patong as you will drive by when arriving from airport. It’s a nice temple but surprisingly not very popular with locals who prefer another temple less visible, not far from the north end of Patong Beach.
This beautiful temple built on top of a fly of stairs is not often visited by tourists as the gate leading to it is barely visible between two shop houses. This temple seems to face Wat Khao Rang set on a hill on the other side of town.
(On the way to airport) A very anonymous white walled temple on the way to airport. I never saw anyone while visiting it.
This temple only main characteristic is the golden Chedi standing next to the main temple. Located just across the road form the famous Phuket Weekend Market, it’s a good opportunity to visit both at once.
Another of the many Wats of Phuket with no real particular sign except for a small golden Chedi.
(Thepkasatri Road, outside Phuket Town on the way to airport) Beautifully standing on the east coast of Phuket just opposite Koh Maphrao (Coconut Island) this temple is not often visited as cars usually drive (too) fast in these curves and the street leading to the temple is hard to locate.
Recently rebuilt, this temple was hidden and rather unknown despite being so near the very popular beach of Nai Harn. In the recent years the temple has been rebuilt, nicer and bigger and is a nice occasion to stop for a photo and pay respect.
(Koh Sirey) This small island is only 20 km square and is visible from quite far with its Thai temple built at the top of a hill. Driving up there is easy and a small road drives around the temple, surrounded by many small shrines dedicated people passed away. The temple also shelters a golden reclining Buddha which without being really impressive (like the one at Wat Sri Sunthron), is still as big as the temple. (read more)
A very small but brightly decorated temple on the road between the Heroine monument and Bang Pae waterfalls. Easy to spot the gate by the road side.
Wat Luang Pu Supa is where the oldest monk in Thailand lives, more than 112 years old. Parts of this this temple are still under construction. Quite large and built over the waters of an artificial pond, the temple grounds also include a golden Chedi and a large but unfinished hemispheric Chedi.
20 Wat Thepkassatri
21 Wat Mai Khao
22 Wat Kittisankaram
23 Wat Tha Chat Chai
24 Wat Sawang Arom (Wat Rawai)
25 Wat Pa Aram Wattanaram
26 Wat Samkong
A faded decorated gate opens at the feet of a cliff onto a large cavern with high ceilings, about forty meters long and twenty meters wide. This natural temple shelters an impressive fifteen meters long golden reclining Buddha and several other large standing Buddha images. (read more)