The smallest of Phuket’s districts has attractions for thrill seekers, while those looking for something quieter will find beaches, shrines and temples.
There are many ways to enjoy Kathu's beautiful scenery. Laze on a beach, swim beneath a waterfall and wakeboard on a freshwater lake. Then turn your attention to the province's cultural attractions, including an important religious shrine.
Relax on the gorgeous sands of Patong, a popular resort town. In addition to the beach, many come here for the nightlife in its hundreds of restaurants and bars. Take a 10-minute long-tail boat ride from the southern end of Patong Beach to Freedom Beach, an enchanting strip of white sand flanked by jungle-covered hills. Due to its difficult accessibility, the beach is quieter than many others in the province.
A refreshing swim in the sea is one way to escape the midday heat, and so is a visit to Kathu Waterfall. This is a series of pools that sometimes fill up and overflow with rainwater, particularly from June to November during the monsoon season. Swim in the plunge pools and dip your head under the cascading water for an even more refreshing sensation.
A short walk southeast from the waterfall will lead you to Phuket Wake Park. Learn to wakeboard at this 1,345-foot (410-meter) long manmade freshwater lake. Lessons are given by professional instructors, while experienced riders can jump and spin off a range of obstacles.
After your fun on the water and beach explorations, experience some of Kathu’s cultural highlights. Learn about the area's tin mining heritage at the Phuket Mining Museum. Make your way to Kathu Shrine in the heart of Kathu village. Beneath a flowing green Chinese roof you can admire several exquisite woodcarvings. These depict deities from the ancient religion of Taoism.
While you are in the village, visit a street market for fresh fruit and vegetables or to barter for clothes and handcrafted souvenirs.
Reach Kathu by flying into Phuket Airport, about 40 minutes away by car. One of the easiest ways to get around to the province’s fabulous beaches, villages and cultural sites is by rental car. However, taxis and local bus services are also available.