With options ranging from Korean and Mexican restaurants to French bistros and American-style steakhouses, Phuket has one of the most cosmopolitan dining scenes in Southeast Asia. Since local boats supply restaurants with freshly caught fish, crab, shrimp and lobster daily, the island is a great place for seafood lovers. Southern Thai cooking is very different from that found elsewhere in the country, being spicier and more pungent. Fresh turmeric, fermented fish sauce and prawn paste are all important seasonings.
For a stylish night out and a change from Thai cooking, head for this chic Italian spot that is a favorite with local expatriates. The homemade pastas, such as Sardinian fregola with clams, lobster and tomatoes, are delicious. Outstanding wine list.
324/15 Prabaramee Road, Kalim Bay, Patong. Tel. (66) 76-618-127.