I visited Phuket for 1 day, as I was on a cruise. Through Cruise Critic, I set up a tour with Chaya for a group of 19 people. Chaya was responsive to emails prior to the tour date and answered any and all questions and kept up with people and payments (payments were made by the individual tour members through Heritage Trails).
Unfortunately, we had to tender into the port which took up valuable tour time but we had a wonderful experience learning about the local life and history of Phuket and fit as much as possible into the day. Chaya and our vans were waiting for us when we arrived at the pier.
Our group was divided into 2 comfortable vans with AC as we traveled from site to site. We visited Phuket town and were surprised by the Mayor of Phuket at the Visitor Center, which was a great experience. We visited Baan Chinpracha (Sino-Colonial mansion), Rang Hill View Point and Wat Khao Rang (Buddhist temple) before lunch. All sites were interesting and no tour buses in sight! Lunch was at a local restaurant where we had excellent Thai food. After lunch was the highlight of the day for me: the sea gypsy colony. I did not know what to expect and was intrigued by the their way of life. We meandered around their “colony” till it was time to head back to the port.
Lunch, water and all entrance fees were included as well as “Happy Room” breaks. The drivers of the vans were safe and helpful. Chaya was excellent at explaining the local life and history and was easily understood by all. Between sites we relished the AC in the vans, as it was quite hot and humid.
The tour was well executed and a very good value. I highly recommend Heritage Trails.
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