Tiger Kingdom, Big Buddha & Chalong Temple | Phuket Day 2

Day 2

You can read my other posts on Phuket here: Day 1, Day 3, Day 4

Day 2 of our Phuket trip was a city tour where we visited the following places.

  1. Kata Beach
  2. Tiger Kingdom
  3. Jungceylon
  4. Big Buddha
  5. Chalong Temple

As we had a full day schedule ahead, we started the day early at 9am. Panya picked us up at Sugar Palm punctually.

1. Kata Beach

Phuket Kata Beach

Carin & Marcus On Phuket Kata Beach

Kata Beach wasn’t part of the day’s itinerary but Panya stopped by and let us admire the sea view for a short while. He also multi-tasked as our photographer! The beach was empty as the waves were strong and swimming was not allowed.

2. Tiger Kingdom

Road To Phuket Tiger Kingdom

I had mixed feelings about visiting the Tiger Kingdom. Part of me felt that something about tame tigers just doesn’t sound quite right and I shouldn’t be supporting the attraction by visiting it, yet part of me want to see it for myself. So to me, this is more like a been there, done that activity and I wouldn’t do it another time.

Tickets are priced differently depending on the size of tigers you want to interact with. The cubs are the most expensive. There are 4 sizes ranging from smallest to big. We went for medium.

  • Smallest (2-4 months old): THB1,000 per pax
  • Small (5-10 months old): THB900 per pax
  • Medium (11-15 months old): THB800 per pax
  • Big (16-36 months old): THB800 per pax

TIP: You can also top up for photography services but I don’t think there’s a need for that. The handler who brings you to the tigers can also take photos for you.

Phuket Tiger Kingdom Cafe

Phuket Tiger Kingdom Signboard

There’s a cafe at the outer zone and also a signboard indicating the Do’s and Don’ts. Rule of thumb is to approach the tigers from behind and pat them firmly. The handler will also go through these pointers before letting you into the tigers’ enclosure.

Phuket Tiger Kingdom Warnings

Phuket Tiger Kingdom Walkway

Phuket Tiger Kingdom Tip Box

When you enter the inner zone, there will be multiple enclosures on both your left and right. Only one group will be allowed into the enclosure at one time, so you’ll have to wait for your turn.

Marcus With Sleeping Tiger

Waking Sleeping Tiger

Marcus With Medium Tiger

Marcus With Tiger Tail

Finally our turn! I decided to let Marcus go first and be the guinea pig haha. At first, the tiger was napping so the handler used a stick to prod him and he woke up (though quite unhappily as you can tell from his face). Then the handler started asking Marcus to take his tail and pose for photos. Look at the tiger’s I-cannot-be-bothered face! He must be so sick of humans like us doing the same old thing to his tail every day.

Carin With Medium Tiger

Carin With Tiger Tail

My turn. The tiger cannot take it anymore and went back to sleep.

Carin & Marcus With Medium Tiger

A photo of us. He is so handsome! The tiger I mean.

Phuket Tiger Kingdom Sleeping Tiger

Carin Tiger Belly Rub

Carin With Tiger Paw

Next, another tiger who was sleeping with his belly up in the sun. I felt a little braver and went first this time.

Marcus Tiger Belly Rub

Marcus With Tiger Paw

Carin& Marcus With Tiger Paw

After all our silly antics rubbing his belly and holding his paw, he’s still sound asleep.

Phuket Tiger Yawn

Phuket Tiger Tongue

Carin & Marcus With Sleeping Tiger

The third and last tiger was a smaller-sized one. The first thing he did when we came was to yawn. I get the hint – we must be really boring humans. But he was still polite enough to oblige for a cute photo sticking his tongue out before lying back down and continue his nap.

Tiger Kingdom Small Tiger Enclosure

The smallest and small sized tigers are kept in different enclosures, equipped with tables for you to interact with them more easily.

Phuket Large Tiger

Carin With Phuket Large Tiger

The big sized tigers are really…BIG! You can still take photos of other tigers from the common walkway as long as they are happy to pose for you.

TIP: Go early to avoid the crowd. It’s open daily from 9am to 6pm and we went at 10am.

3. Jungceylon

Phuket Jungceylon Icon

Phuket Jungceylon Thai Structure

We then drove half an hour to Jungceylon for lunch.

Jungceylon Food Bazaar Card

Walked around and eventually settled for Food Bazaar, the food court at Jungceylon. The payment system is like Kopitiam here in Singapore, where you top up an amount into a card and use it to make purchases. Any remaining amount can be refunded.

Jungceylon Food Bazaar Dessert Wagon

Jungceylon Food Bazaar Stalls

Jungceylon Food Bazaar Red Lanterns

Jungceylon Food Bazaar Decor

One of the brightest and most cheerful food court I’ve ever seen. Really like the old school theme that I can relate to as well.

Carin At Jungceylon Food Bazaar

Marcus At Jungceylon Food Bazaar

Jungceylon Food Bazaar Maneki Neko

Jungceylon Food Bazaar Mango Rice

Even the tables were so colourful. It was also very clean and had a gigantic maneki-neko (招财猫). Hope that helped in the business! And if you’re wondering how’s the food, I think the mango sticky rice made the deepest impression. I’ve had countless mango sticky rice at different places in Thailand and none of them had disappointed me!

Phuket Jungceylon Street

Phuket Jungceylon Street View

The street opposite Jungceylon looked lively and interesting too but we didn’t explore. There’s also Big C at Jungceylon where you can stock up on all the junk food. I love to comb through Big C whenever I’m in Thailand!

4. Big Buddha

We took another half an hour drive to Big Buddha.

Phuket Road Pillion

Phuket Street Elephant

Nakkerd Hill View

Arrive At Phuket Big Buddha

On the way, saw a guy who was riding as a pillion both topless and helmetless. An efficient way to get a nice tan. Also spotted an elephant and a nice view when we were near the top of the Nakkerd Hills. And then finally, we arrived!

Carin With Sarong

First thing before you enter the premises is to cover your legs with a sarong if you’re wearing something short. They are provided free of charge.

Phuket Big Buddha Board

Side Of Phuket Big Buddha

Front Of Phuket Big Buddha

I had the impression that Big Buddha was a common attraction in Phuket and thus, I was really surprised to find out that it is still under construction. The project began in 2009 and is still quite far away from completion as it relies on public donations.

Big Buddha Sea View

Big Buddha Panoramic Sea View

Big Buddha Land View

Big Buddha Panoramic Land View

Carin & Marcus At Phuket Big Buddha

Best view of Phuket island.

Carin With Big Buddha Gong

Marcus With Big Buddha Gong

Gently rubbing the gong to produce a sound will bring you good luck.

Phuket Big Buddha Entrance

Phuket Two Buddhas

Phuket Big Buddha Bells

Buddha Statues

Entering Phuket Big Buddha

Inside Phuket Big Buddha

Big Buddha Marble Tiles

We entered the Big Buddha to view the construction progress. It’s pretty bare inside and there are prayer sessions going on. As mentioned, the project is funded by public donation. You can make a donation to leave a note on a square piece of marble that will eventually be used in constructing the Big Buddha.

Big Buddha Back View

Big Buddha Back Sea View

Big Buddha Panoramic Back View

More good view of the outlying islands from the back of Big Buddha.

5. Chalong Temple

Phuket Wat Chalong

Phuket Chalong Temple

I feel a trip to Phuket wouldn’t be complete without visiting a Buddhist temple. They are so beautiful and iconic. Chalong Temple (also known as Wat Chalong) is the biggest and most popular Buddhist temple in Phuket. I can easily understand why by just viewing it from outside.

Inside Phuket Wat Chalong

Gold Buddha Statues

Phuket Wat Chalong Interior

Phuket Wat Chalong Exterior

Wat Chalong Buddha Bone Splinter

The item protected in the glass globe is a splinter of Lord Buddha’s bone.

Carin At Phuket Wat Chalong

Likewise, you have to wear a sleeved top to cover your shoulders and use a sarong to cover your legs if you’re wearing something short. No shoes are allowed in the premises too.

TIP: Avoid wearing your favourite or an expensive pair of shoes just in case it gets stolen or accidentally worn away by someone else.

Front Of Phuket Wat Chalong

One last poster worthy photo of Wat Chalong!

Carin Poo

Hello! I grew up reading blogs, and now, blogging lets me share the love around. I offer a glimpse into my simple life, and maybe you can find a different perspective of the things I enjoy. My cat says Hi! :)

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