The Greatest Show on Earth: Phuket FantaSea
Phuket FantaSea is a Night to Remember
Phuket FantaSea is a colorful extravaganza of a show that brings you the best of Thailand all in one place.
Phuket is blessed with beautiful beaches and temples galore that will keep you busy all day long. But what can you do in the evening, once the tourist day is done? The Phuket FantaSea show is a popular choice to while away an evening with traditional Thai culture and dance.
Many people (understandably) shy away from these kinds of cultural shows, fearing that they’re going to be tacky and a waste of time. Don’t worry though, because the FantaSea show is a little bit different. Here are our tips for a great Phuket night out.
More Than Just a Show
It’s quite hard to describe what Phuket FantaSea actually is. At its heart it’s a dance show, sure, but there’s a lot more on site as well. On arrival you’re met with a dramatically lit fish pond, and there’s an outside stage which often hosts a ‘pre-show’ performance called Viva Bangkok. There’s a loosely-woven story about a couple visiting the capital city but above all it’s a chance to see beautiful costumes and hear traditional music in the open air.
There’s a huge restaurant where you can eat a pre-show dinner buffet which costs a bit extra but is delicious. There’s also an animal enclosure area on-site where you can see a rare white tiger, and take elephant rides. Unfortunately, the involvement of animals is the bit of FantaSea that we can’t recommend. The tigers are not kept to international standards and elephants should never be ridden for their own good! We suggest that you skip this part if you can.
The Best Time to Experience Phuket FantaSea
The main show normally starts at 9:00pm, but you’ll need lots of time beforehand to enjoy the rest of the sights. The Viva Bangkok show starts at 7:45pm and you’ll probably want some time to go shopping, dress up in some traditional Thai clothes for photos and stroll the fish pond as well. If you’re planning on eating dinner then a 6:30pm arrival is suggested to make sure you get the most from your visit.
What about the main show?
Once you’ve made the most of the pre-show entertainment then it’s on to the main event. The theatre is a sight to behold- it seats 3000 people and is constructed to look like an ancient temple. It’s an atmospheric setting for an impressive spectacle. We won’t spoil the surprise of all the different parts of the show but you can expect a combination of elephants, traditional dance, high-wire acrobats, farm animals, monsoon rains, cannons and more. The costumes are gorgeous and the quality of performance incredibly high. It lasts about an hour so make sure you soak it all up!
How much are tickets to Phuket FantaSea?
There are a couple of price points to choose from. Tickets to just the show cost about $54, and tickets with a buffet dinner included are about $66. Don’t be put off by the high costs though. Number one, it’s well worth it, and number two, you can often negotiate a cheaper price with a local tour agency who might throw in free transfers as well to sweeten the deal.
#BodegaHostels Insider Tip
The FantaSea site is about a half hour drive from Phuket and Karon beaches, so many people book a package that includes transport to and from the venue. Trying to flag down a red truck on the spot can be a lengthy and costly exercise.
You can’t take cameras or camera phones into the theatre. Yes, that’s annoying on the face of it, but it does mean that you can just relax and enjoy watching the show instead of worrying about getting that perfect Instagram shot. If you really want photos as a souvenir then just google it, there’s tons of promo shots online! If you don’t want to leave your personal possessions in their safe room then best leave them behind at the hostel.