From the viewpoint, Cape Panwa, Phuket, Thailand

From the viewpoint, Cape Panwa, Phuket, Thailand

From the viewpoint, Cape Panwa, Phuket, Thailand


Taken on: 20th August, 2011. Copyright: All Rights Reserved - See travelfishery's page of Flickr

Read more about Phuket

Thailand's largest island is its best example of the benefits and problems of tourism. Huge promotions of Phuket by the TAT and travel agents since Thailand first start attracting international travellers on a large scale in the 1980s have brought in millions of tourists and billions of baht -- the province is visited by over a third of all international visitors to Thailand in any given year. But along with them has come unregulated development, severe environmental degradation, organised crime and a raft of other ugly annoyances.

The Pearl of the South has quickly lost a good deal of its lustre in the past few decades. As property prices soared, many locals sold up to national and international hotels and many of the most beautiful beaches are now host to scores of them, along with over-priced restaurants, bars, travel agents, massage parlours and the rest of the usual suspects.

For many though, the very developed and westernised beaches that run down the western coast ... Read our complete Phuket travel guide

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