Phuket to Hat Yai

Phuket to Hat Yai

It takes about 7 hours without problems from Phuket to Hat Yai and Dannok in a comfortable van or the big long haul bus including one or more stops. 
The bus from Phuket to Danok is a huge double decker which is not stopping at the Hat Yai Bus Terminal but turns to Danok at the bypass road. Since the coaches have panoramic windows there is an excellent view over the south of Thailand with paddy fields limestone hills and partly jungle actually a good idea from the tourist point of view would be to clean the windows from time to time when traveling from Phuket to Hat Yai there are no flights available.

Best for travel in Thailand are the buses.

They are good and comfortable although not very fast but carry low prices, e.g. from Phuket to Bangkok about $ 20,-, th12-hour 12 hour ride over 900 km. The routing here from Phuket to Hat Yai is about Baht 400,-and takes around 7 hours. 

There are flights from Phuket to Bangkok and Chiang Mai plus U-Tapao which is Pattaya. Several regional flights are available to Kuala Lumpur and Penang plus Singapore. For flight booking just use the internet but in general Air Asia they have the widest network and lowest prices. With the bus from Phuket to Hat Yai always needs to pass Krabi first.

Phuket to Krabi

Phuket to Hat Yai before Krabi

Phuket to Hat Yai

The routing is to Phang Nga and Krabi beyond  to Trang and passing  Phatthalung and straight to the station for the Bus trip from Phuket to Hat Yai. 

There are hourly buses from 7 am to 7 pm from the Phuket bus station and the amazing thing is they are always quite full means it is often necessary to wait for an hour or more to get a seat. Obviously, Thai people like to move around but it also has its reason that these two cities are the busiest destinations in the south.

Past the junction to Krabi airport and the ferry Ko Lanta directly to Trang city. A few miles beyond Trang is a branch to Satun on the southwest with a ferry to Ko Tarutao and Ko Lipe. After the road passes a mountain range straight to Hat Yai (see the map). The piece from Hat Yai to the border with Malaysia is the worst on this 600 km journey. However, most travelers exit or change the bus from Phuket to Hat Yai at one of the bus stations to other destinations in South Thailand.

Although there is a train connection the road is an ideal way, unfortunately since about 5 years the main roads are getting worst (2017), there is no investment in repair and new ones except between Phuket and Krabi. There is a deep division between Bangkok and the south. The people in the capital don't care much about the south it won't matter which party is in power. Currently (2017) they are discussing to make a high-speed train to the south but it needs to see what happen they usually only talk and never do something.

Krabi to Hat Yai

Phuket Hat Yai and Dannok Bus Counter
Although these small vehicles are fast the time they win on the highway they loose in the city since the driver usually roams around for one or two hours after starting to find some more passengers until the van is full, this is really annoying.

South Thailand travel sceneThere is the big bus terminal but also with small coaches, there is the minibus station and the best liner to Phuket, Trang, Phang Nga and Krabi leaves again from another place where they have their own office, that is opposite of the Tesco Lotus Mall on the highway to the Malaysian border. Close by is another van terminal to various destinations in the south but it is very difficult to find out when and where the van depart because everyone is hiding son potential traveler won't take the competitors.

Phuket bus terminal

At all these terminals are again people and agents around who try to pull you over and promise they have a transport in ten minutes which is usually a lie.

on the bypass road from Phuket to KrabiOn the road in Thailand (1)

Actually, I have never found so many liars anywhere around but one of the major rules in Buddhism is not lying. 

If the cheating is too bad don't hesitate to claim the money back and if they make problems get the police in there are always some police guys around.

Hat Yai is the hub for the south.

In Hat Yai are several bus terminals for long distance stations to the north and local within from here to the Malaysian border. 

But as usual there is chaos and main traffic to other destinations in the north and south south such as Hat Yai Krabi Phuket Bangkok etc. can leave from various stations and small travel agents who have a minibus or van parked in front of the office.

Hat Yai mosque the biggest in south Thailand

Beyond Hat Yai is Danok.

Want to get further south? Such as Malaysia Penang KL Singapore there is no alternative to change the bus or train in Hat Yai. 

But since the Bangkok government is not able (like any other government before) to get the Islamist under control. Don't move anywhere southeast from here because of the Islamist and criminals under the Islamist cover they bomb practically every day at will and that will not stop in the near future because it is supported by Malaysia and financed from Saudi Arabia. Of course this is always denied as usual but there are too many indications for that including that the Islamist joined the criminal diesel smuggler who make lots of money with cheap diesel from Malaysia.