Guess what’s more exciting than visiting a beach to soak in the beaming sun while that sand tickles your feet! It is spotting planes from that very same beach. Well, that’s what the visitors at Phuket’s Mai Khao Beach suggest, for they love spotting planes and posing for a quick picture with it. Read on and you’ll know what we mean. By Kumar Shree
Unlike a common sight at most beaches, where people are lying on the sand sunbathing or swimming, the sight at Phuket’s Mai Khao Beach is different. Here, people line up along the shore to stare at the sky. A few moments later, a rumble of approaching jet engine changes the expressions from that of amusement to excitement and the much-awaited plane appears in the sky.
In the blink of an eye, the crowd scatters. While some pose for selfies, others reach for their respective cameras as the plane passes overhead before landing at its destination – the Phuket International Airport. So, what makes the Mai Khao Beach so popular for plane spotting? Matt Falcus, founder of Airportspotting.com and author of the World Airports Spotting Guides has an answer to that.
He notes that, Mai Khao Beach is one of the few places in the world, which allows you to stand so close to a flying plane. While, this unique photo opportunity is exciting for people, it also has the airport authorities concerned about beach and people’s safety.
If you plan to visit the Mai Khao Beach, December to May is the best time. The longest beach of Phuket, Mai Khao has just a small section for plane spotting. This section of the beach has no direct accessibility though and you’d need to take a slight detour. When coming from South, you would need to visit the Sirinat National Park as this section of the beach comes under the park property and walk around a kilometre from there. When coming from the North, you can opt for shuttle service set-up by the locals.