How to Deal with Phuket's Tropical Climate
How to Deal with Phuket's Tropical Climate

Yep, it gets hot in Phuket. For most, the climate in Phuket is a significant reason why tourists flock here every year and many expats decide to relocate here. After all, why would you move to a tropical island if you don’t like hot weather? Any given day may have partly cloudy skies, a nice cool ocean breeze, and toasty temps but still comfortable. On other days (like this time of year) during the monsoon season, the island is engulfed by low clouds, with strong winds off the sea, and cooler temps that almost warrant a sweatshirt. On the other end of the spectrum, there are those clear blue-sky days with still air and high humidity and it can be stifling, oppressively hot. 


Smart home Cr: ArchDaily

The obvious answer is to hide inside in the air conditioning. If it’s practical, or you own your house, it can be very helpful to find a way to shade the south-facing side of your house. This aspect receives the brunt of the day’s strongest sun, and if it beats down relentlessly on the uninsulated cement wall of your house, that heat eventually transfers to the inside. Smart home design will use a combination of fewer windows (double pane if you want to reduce the need for air conditioning) Smart home design will use a combination of fewer windows that wall, or a sunshade or landscaping to provide shade. Perhaps you’ve noticed traditional Thai-style houses are often on stilts high above the ground. Amongst other reasons, this allows airflow underneath the house which helps keep it cool.


A common feature seen with houses around Phuket is the covering of all open land around the house. People do this so there is no garden to maintain and it discourages snakes and other critters. However, having a garden or at least some unpaved areas makes a huge difference in keeping the heat down around your house. As mentioned earlier, the cement absorbs the sun’s heat which basically serves as a heating pad surrounding your house – what is called the heat island effect. Having exposed land helps with water drainage too and the evaporating moisture from the soil and plants growing in it significantly contributes to keeping air temperatures cooler. 


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Another enclosed area that gets crazy hot is vehicle interior’s. Having window tint applied to your car helps enormously in dealing with this heat. Many car dealers will negotiate window tint into the deal when negotiating. If not, there are shops all over the island which specialize in tinting. The darker the better, but be aware that tinting that is too dark makes it hard to see through at night. Having a foldable sun shade for the vehicle’s windshield also helps keep the interior from getting as hot while parked. It makes it much quicker and easier to cool the interior when going somewhere.


light-colored long-sleeved shirt Cr: chiangraifocus

If you don’t want to be confined indoors but want to get out and about, this presents other challenges in beating the heat. While your first instinct may be to wear the least amount of clothing possible, this isn’t always the best option. If out in the sun, wearing a breathable hat and a white or light-colored long-sleeved shirt of thin material creates a breathable barrier between the sun and your skin. This also helps protect from sunburn. Even if you’re not out in the sun long enough to get burned, getting in the habit of limiting sun exposure is a good idea to prevent skin damage from the negative cumulative effects of UV light.

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